a segue-segue

Good evening friends. Gonna talk mostly music today, sorry if that’s not your bag.

But, before all that… Recently, I mentioned that the epic hike Anthony and I had planned for our coincident sabbaticals (sabbatici?) was “off.” Turns out, Anthony has turned around his poor luck and our hike is now officially back “on.” Unfortunately, however, we’ve had to reduce the planned itinerary due to a more limited span of overlapping available time betwixt us. Fortunately, though, we still get to do it. The current plan involves trekking only half the originally planned route, meaning about a week-solid on the trail instead of fourteen days.

Tonight, after mowing the lawn, edging the lawn, and blowing off the sidewalk, I came inside and did some hardcore music research – the likes of which I’ve not done in quite a while. Inspired by this super-interesting (to me, at least) article I stumbled on the other day, which alleges that much of Jimmy Page’s prodigious musical output was either pilfered or recycled, I decided I didn’t know quite enough about that part of the Beck/Page/Clapton lineage.

So, while at work I queued up Jeff Beck’s Truth to jog my memory, and when I got home I hit the end-all-be-all of music knowledge, allmusic.com, to attempt to figured out what Yardbirds albums I should own but didn’t. Then, list in-hand, I headed off to my favorite legitimate music download site (hahahah!) and began the deluge of bits. In the end, I grabbed the the entire Yardbirds discography, as well as a boxset, and some live and rare material. Tomorrow at work the music in my headphones will be more than a soundtrack to multitask by, it will be an education.

New tunes have their burden tho, friends… as I once again I find myself wanting a new iPod to hold everything I have. Woe to me…

Hey, speaking of mowing the lawn and music, let’s use those things as a nice segue into some reminiscing, shall we? OK!

Today, I decided to change up my normal routine of iPod on random while cutting the grass and instead put on Wishbone Ash’s 1972 classic, Argus. I freaking love that album, it somehow manages to combine the best “eerie” aspects of early Black Sabbath, the crunch of Led Zeppelin, and the progish melodies of Yes. I absolutely love that album. Interestingly enough, I only “discovered” Argus a mere ten-ish years ago. (Cue tinkly chime things and warbly-wavy video cut).

It was way back when I worked at Omni Records & Tapes in Merritt Island, Florida. Man, I loved that job. I was an “assistant manager,” which was a BS title that meant I got paid slightly more than minimum wage for the additional work of dealing with unruly customers, staying late to count the dosh and do the books, and getting the alarm code and a set of keys to the store. Even still, it was my dream job. A music freak employed in a music store, treading up and down the aisles, making recommendations, surprising the “old folk” with his knowledge, etc. Plus, I got to buy CDs at a dollar over wholesale, and I had access to almost any “import” I wanted. I swear I spent a full 50% of my paycheck right back into that store. The owner must’ve loved me, I basically worked for CDs.

Anyway, I worked there with a fellow by the name of Bob. Bob was a “true” manager, sitting one rung above my mere “assistantship” in the record store pecking order. Bob and I were fast friends from the start, sharing a common love of good music, beautiful women, and computers (my word, how’s that for a lonely-nerd resume?).

Warning, segue-segue: I had, in fact, had my first encounter with Bob years before I got my job at the record store. As a teenage student of classic rock-‘n’-roll, I had once come into Omni in search of an obscure early 70s record called Woyaya, recorded by the African rock-funk outfit Osibisa. At the time, my buddy Kyle and I had a copy on vinyl we’d liberated from his father’s LP collection – and I was trying to locate a CD copy. I can remember Bob’s quizzical look when I asked if he could special order the CD. “How’d you end up looking for that record?,” he asked, obviously familiar with it himself. I told him I had a vinyl copy, doing my best to exude the “in the know” nonchalance of a beyond-his-years music nut. Anyway, Bob managed to find that CD as an import, and special ordered it for me.

Whoa…. off-track here, let’s bring this back.

‘Twas record-store-manager Bob what introduced me to Wishbone Ash, and today’s lawn-mowing background jam, Argus. He used to use the downtime on the weekends to root through the discs in the store and turn me on to new tunes. One Sunday it was Wishbone Ash – I remember some young kid came in with his dad, and, as an aspiring guitarist, had his ears piqued by the disc on the sound system. That kid bought Argus before I even had a chance to listen to it all the way through. I did, however, immediately reorder two copies – one for restocking, and one for me. Hey, thanks Bob! Oh, and, related – ’twas record-store-manager Bob who also turned me onto Jeff Beck’s Truth, which I also mentioned above. That particular turning-on, however, happened just last Christmas when I was home in Florida. Keep the suggestions coming, my friend, I’m still happy to be your understudy.

Well, that’s it for now. Be sure to watch the blog this week for some new pictures of baby Keaton, and this years “half-best-of” list… I promise they’re all in the chute.


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2 Replies to “a segue-segue”

  1. I would never! Well, unless it was something like “Ray-Ray’s Werld of Hip-Hop ‘n’ Rapz,” or something. And, even then, I’ll allow for changing tastes 🙂

    And, if you guys dig Osibisa’s Head, you should check out Woyaya! I promise it’s better. Hey, while we’re at it, while not go and “sample” it right now?

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