[ Saturday, December 31, 2005 ]
-A moratorium on those fuckin' hurricanes, tsunamis, earthquakes and all other natural disasters.
-The indictment of Karl Rove, the conviction of Tom DeLay, and the continuing sputtering of the Bush administration
-New albums from OutKast, Steve Earle, Cee-Lo, Nick Lowe and Bob Dylan
-No new albums from Ryan Adams (take a break, dude)
-A new home for the cancelled ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT
-New seasons of DEADWOOD and THE SOPRANOS that live up to previous years
-At least one new artist in both rock and roll and hip-hop that blows me, and everybody else, away
-As per my standing order, anything from Jon Stewart, Sarah Silverman or Aaron Magruder
-Substantive, though reasonable, levels of success and happiness for me and my friends
light at the end of the tunnel in the Iraq War
-The Democrats take back Congress in the 2006 mid-terms
-A few good parties, concerts and club visits
-The re-birth of the Gulf Coast
On the box right now: Slick Ballinger, MISSISSIPPI SOUL. Debut E.P. from the next big thing in blues. Mark my words, mark my words...
Dove With Claws [7:55 AM]
[ Thursday, December 29, 2005 ]
Best albums of 2005
- Live From Iraq-4th25
- I Believe To My Soul-Various Artists
- Late Registration-Kanye West
- Georgia Hard-Robbie Fulks
- Knockdown South-James Mathus
- There’s More Where That Came From-Lee Ann Womack
- Motivational Speaker-Alvin Youngblood Hart
- The Cookbook-Missy Elliott
- Childish Things-James McMurtry
- Moments From This Theatre-Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham
- The Breakthrough-Mary J. Blige
- Get Lifted-John Legend
- Extraordinary Machine-Fiona Apple
- I’ve Got My Own Hell To Raise-Bettye Lavette
- Mercy Now-Mary Gauthier
- A Bigger Bang-Rolling Stones
- The Real Deal-Billy Joe Shaver
- Devils and Dust-Bruce Springsteen
- Naturally-Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings
- Forever Hasn’t Happened Yet-John Doe
- Soul’s Chapel-Marty Stuart and the Fabulous Superlatives
- Cold Roses-Ryan Adams and the Cardinals
- Master Of Disaster-John Hiatt
- Ain't Nobody Worryin'-Anthony Hamilton
- The Foundation-Geto Boys
- Chaos And Creation In The Backyard-Paul McCartney
- Prairie Wind-Neil Young
- Baby-Detroit Cobras
- I Am A Bird Now-Antony and the Johnsons
- A Time 2 Love-Stevie Wonder
- Put The "O" Back In Country-Shooter Jennings
- Everything’s O.K.-Al Green
- Restless Soul-The Proclaimers
- The Moon Is Blue-Bobby Bare
- How Late Do U Have 2 B B-4 U R Absent?-George Clinton and the P-Funk Allstars
- Welcome To Jamrock-Damian Marley
- Documentary-The Game
- The First Lady-Faith Evans
- Beer Drinkin' Songs-Pupy Costello and His Big City Honky Tonk
- Chavez Ravine-Ry Cooder
- Hacienda Brothers-Hacienda Brothers
- New Whirl Odor-Public Enemy
- Fair And Square-John Prine
- Haunted Cities-The Transplants
- Modern Sounds Of The Knitters-The Knitters
- Shine On-Ralph Stanley
- Heavy Trash-Heavy Trash
- Blame The Vain-Dwight Yoakam
- One Kiss Leads To Another: Girl Group Sounds Lost And Found-Various Artists
- Complete Mercury Recordings-Doug Sahm
- Dirty Laundry: The Soul Of Black Country-Various Artists
- Pure Genius: Complete Atlantic Recordings-Ray Charles
- A Musical History-The Band
- The Definitive O.D.B. Story-Ol' Dirty Bastard
- Willie Hightower-Willie Hightower
- I Have Always Been Here Before: Anthology-Roky Erickson
- Complete Goldwax Recordings-The Ovations
- Night Train To Nashville, Vol. 2-Various Artists
On the box right now: Arthur Alexander, BEST.
Dove With Claws [3:42 PM]
[ Wednesday, December 28, 2005 ]
Ten musicians I learned to love this year
Now, I already liked all of the names listed below, but 2005 was the year when moderation turned to adoration, of varying degrees.
In alphabetical order...
Gary "U.S." Bonds
Tune in tomorrow for my favorite albums of 2005...
On the box right now: Gordon Lightfoot, UNITED ARTISTS COLLECTION, Disc 1.
Dove With Claws [6:41 PM]
[ Tuesday, December 27, 2005 ]
-I saw SYRIANA yesterday, which I thought was very good. I don't know that it's quite the masterpiece that some eager critics are suggesting it is (hosannas that smell a little too much like hopeful liberal politicking), but it was pretty damn effective nonetheless. I always have a soft spot for films that tackle societal problems with an unflinching eye, blaming everyone equally, yet also suggesting redemption for (almost) everybody. I also had a bit of a laugh at the end of the showing, since the film died as soon as the first end-credit came on. Maybe Rumsfeld finally figured out what the flick was about, and put the red-white-and-blue kibosh on it.
-I forced myself to listen to Ryan Adams' newest (as in, this month's) album, 29, again. I absolutely hated it the first time I spun it; I thought it was a really self-indulgent collection of forgettable, extended gloom-and-doom songs that felt like a second-rate LOVE IS HELL. Maybe it was my lowered expectations, or maybe it takes a bit to sink in, but I actually liked 29 okay this time. A masterpiece it certainly isn't, and it's nowhere near as good as COLD ROSES, Adams' first and best album of 2005, but I think it actually might inch out JACKSONVILLE CITY NIGHTS for the second-best slot. Crazy.
-Has anybody besides me noticed that coverage of post-Katrina recovery, upped considerably due to year-in-review episodes of news shows, has slowly, yet consistently, erased black faces from stories of dislocation and recuperation? Happy Kwaanzaa.
-Now that the "War On Christmas" is over for another year, I'm taking this opportunity to declare "War On Groundhog's Day." If I see one likeness of Punxatawney Phil on public property, I'm calling the cops.
On the box right now: Mary J. Blige, THE BREAKTHROUGH.
Dove With Claws [8:35 AM]
[ Sunday, December 25, 2005 ]
For He's a jolly Good fellow
Hey, happy birthday, Jesus. You look pretty good for 2005 years old. Hey, sorry for everything.
I couldn't think of anything to get You; after all, what do you get somebody who has everything (is everything?)? Anyway, I made You a mix disc, since I know You always need tunes up there in the Beyond, and since - as I'm sure You're aware - that's my default position when I can't think of anything.
There's a whole lot of stuff on here. Some of Your all-time favorites: Al Green, Stanley Brothers, Aretha Franklin, OutKast; I tried to find slightly more obscure material for them, just so You don't have Your five-hundreth copy of "Respect" or "Rank Stranger." Then, of course, there's my more esoteric picks; I haven't given up on my campaign to get Arthur Alexander and Mia Zapata canonized, so they're both on there. Then, of course, there's Black Sabbath; don't worry, I haven't told anybody that You like them. (Speaking of which, any way You could make Ozzy a little less embarrasing? He's starting to worry me. Work on Flavor Flav while You're at it, if it's not too much trouble.)
Alright, I'm sure You've got stuff to work on, so I'll let You go. Just a little token of my appreciation. (Oh, there's a special bonus track on the end that You might find amusing. Inside joke.)
Don't drink too much. I know how You, Matthew and Andrew get when y'all have too many. 2005 years of gettin' wasted. Give Mary Magdalene my best. Oh, and say "Hi" to Ray Charles, Johnny Cash and Richard Pryor. They're coming to Your party, right?
On the box right now: Various Artists, ONE KISS CAN LEAD TO ANOTHER: GIRL GROUP SOUNDS, Disc 2. This new Rhino Records collection may be the most purely pleasurable thing I've heard all year.
Dove With Claws [7:28 AM]