Can’t Get it Out of My Head by ELO

They had me with the cello…. ...Or maybe it was the reference to an ebb tide in the second verse.* Like several of my favorites, I have the Midnight Special to thank for my introduction to the Electric Light Orchestra. As a kid, I made the leap pretty fast from the Crazy Horses “prog rock” of the Osmonds to ELO. These aren't in any particular order...but I'm blogging about 30 of my … [Read more...]

005 Shine Springs Farm Podcast: Featuring Shane Tutmarc

Episode 005 of the Shine Springs Farm Podcast features an interview with Nashville musician Shane Tutmarc, commentary on the Stanford Organic Study and why Shine Springs Farm intends to seek organic certification and Certified Naturally Grown status. The "arts" are a key part of a sustainable lifestyle. Music, dance, "hoedowns" and "Hee-Haws" have been a big part of farm life for centuries. … [Read more...]

Kelly Hogan: Singing My Life…

I’ve never met Kelly Hogan. I’m pretty sure she doesn’t know me. So when I first heard a few songs off her latest album back in May 2012  it seemed odd to hear her singing all about my life. Then I heard the entire album. More songs about my life. Scary. But scary in a good way. Uncanny thematic accuracy perhaps is a better way to describe what I heard in Hogan'ssongs. Maybe it’s because she … [Read more...]

The Bluebonnets at SXSW

I can't be at SXSW, but I'm thrilled to help spread the word about The Bluebonnets, a straight-up rock and roll band with a bluesy foundation. The Bluebonnets feature Kathy Valentine on lead guitar, with amazing vocals and bass by Dominique Davalos. Eve Monsees is rhythm guitarist. Update: The new lineup includes Michelle Schreiber on drums. KV describes her as "freakin fantastic." "Rumor" … [Read more...]

The King Lives On

This week's Sunday Sign pays homage to Elvis:   I bought this Speedway one-sheet on ebay back in 2000 and had it archive-mounted and framed. It cost me an arm-and-a-leg and it's been a burden to move around the country, but I can't bring myself to get rid of it. One of the first Sunday Sign posts, the historical marker at Elvis Presley's Tupelo birthplace, commemorated the … [Read more...]

Words Without Deeds

Last Friday I drove down to Tuscaloosa for a concert by My Morning Jacket, Neko Case and Phosphorescent. Proceeds from the show went to the United Way Tuscaloosa tornado relief fund. Before the show, the musicians toured the path of the tornado and saw the destruction first hand. Neko Case posted this photo via Twitter. It's a scrap of writing she found amidst the … [Read more...]

Sunday Sign: Birthplace of Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley died August 16, 1977. Here's to the King: This is the fifth post in my weekly series, the Sunday Sign. Click here for other Sunday Signs  on The Ben Franklin Follies. I was spending the night with a friend the night the TV announcers came on to inform us that Elvis was dead. I still remember it vividly. My friend's mom was quite distressed. … [Read more...]

Social Media & The Bluebonnets in Austin

One year ago this week, the last week of July, I was driving through Texas en route to Colorado. During my trip, I had the great fortune of spending three nights in Austin, where I got to hang out with my good friend, DeDe and her daughter, Heather, and see The Bluebonnets perform live—twice—at two legendary venues. More on those performances in just a few paragraphs. I started writing this post … [Read more...]

Why the Go-Go’s matter in rock history

I happen to believe in historical and factual accuracy. So did Ben Franklin. Spin is one thing. We can argue all day about "who" is most influential in rock music history. But it's simply ludicrous to completely ignore the as-yet-unduplicated album chart success of the Go-Go's, the first all-female band to write their own songs, play the music AND hit #1 on the Billboard album charts. In … [Read more...]