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The Appetizer Radio Show

Serving up your connection to new and emerging artists along with established legends each week.

Connect with us using these platforms to discover fresh flavors of music from the known as well as the unknown.

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The Sounds of the 1960’s with Joan Jett

This article was originally posted on The Vinyl Vortex. The original article and others by Gabe Crawford can be found here. Follow Gabe Crawford on Twitter for all his music musings @gabecrawford and @vinylvorrtexok. 


 

Recently I was lucky enough to walk away with six Joan Jett and the Blackhearts records. One of my favorite vinyl shops, Monkey Feet Music, has just received a lot of 6,000 records. Needless to say when I get paid, I’m making another trip.

FullSizeRenderOne of the albums I picked up was Bad Reputation. After doing research, I found that this album was actually Joan Jett’s self titled solo debut. This album is her first album after leaving The Runaways.

The album’s opener is the Jett classic “Bad Reputation.” This is one of my favorite Jett songs and is a great anthem to sing while driving to work. There is nothing like yelling, “I don’t give a damn about my bad reputation!” right before walking into a dreaded business meeting.

Although what really stood out to me on this album was Jett’s covers of the 1960’s classics “You Don’t Own Me,” “Shout,” and “Woolly Bully” (Technically “Shout” was released in September 1959, but I figured it was close enough). These songs were recorded off the heels of rockabilly, so it is only natural that Jett would pay homage to these founding songs years later.

IMG_2476When listening to anything that Jett touches, you must remember there is rock and roll and then there’s Jett’s version. Her version mixes a punk image with a rhythmic guitar rift and gritty vocals. It’s quite unpredictable.

This is evident on her version of “Shout.” No longer is this a cheery pop song, but it’s a rock anthem of rebellion. I love Jett’s clever rewording of the song, “Take my pants off and shout!” I could easily see myself at a Jett concert or in the comfort of my own home hopping around, beer in hand, screaming these words with or without pants. The same goes for “Woolly Bully.” This song was “dirty” for the time, pushing the limits when it comes to content. Naturally, Jett just piles on all the dirt it needs with a dash of her brand of sex appeal creating a version that definitely wouldn’t be allowed in 1969.

Yet, the true gem out of these tunes is Jett’s cover of “You Don’t Own Me.” This song was originally sung by Lesley Gore who I would consider sweet, wholesome, and just plain cute. Those are some sentiments Jett quickly turns around in her version.

IMG_2477Jett gives this song a completely new persona proving that lyrical content often lies in the hands of the vocalist. No longer was it a sweet girl you felt sorry for, this was a girl you were scared of! She became the girl the boys had to fight for and treat right. Jett played by her own rules and she was not afraid to swing a few punches.

In many ways this album and her 1960’s covers only foreshadows the rest of Jett’s trailblazing career. She was already a bull out of the gates with songs like “Bad Reputation” and “You Don’t Know What You Got,” but it is the little things that remind you of the Jett’s true musical genius and artistry.

For her to go back and cover three 1960’s song on her first effort after the Runaways is brilliance. This shined a light directly on her pure musical talent. It shows Jett’s respect for those who came before her, but it also showed she had a complete style all her own, a style only she is capable of.

It’s safe to say Jett truly loves rock and roll and it’s foundation, but she gives it a new reputation.

Tina Turner Country…Music?

There is barely any debate among music critics and listeners whether or not Tina Turner is an impeccable artist. She has a style that cannot be replicated and a legacy that is sealed into society’s consciousness. Find me one person that doesn’t know when to shake their head during “Proud Mary” and I’d be shocked.

IMG_2377There is more music that often goes unnoticed from her career between being a solo superstar with the album Private Dancer and her tenure with the Ike and Tina Turner Review. Between the years of 1974, a year before she divorced Ike, and 1984, the year “What’s Love Got To Do With It” went number one, Tina recorded multiple albums to little success.

The first of these albums was Tina Turns The Country On! This album finds Tina at her first solo experiment. When looking at music history and the history of Tina’s style, the choice to release an album of country and western covers does not seem like the obvious next step in her career. Yet this album speaks volumes of where Tina was at in 1974 and also widens her breadth as a vocal artist.

This album comes right at the end of Ike and Tina Turner’s marriage. Their popularity had waned in the 70’s due to Ike’s frequent drug use, which resulted in missed and postponed shows. Tina was beginning to build her nerve through inspiration she had found through Buddhism which was the budding of her independence.

That’s the diamond in the rough when it comes to Tina’s first solo album: independence. For the first time, she was given the most freedom on how she was going to conduct herself as a musician.

Tina Turns The Country On! is completely…country. Tina knows country because she was brought up in Tennessee, but I don’t think anybody was expecting her to sing it. Each song is a cover of a country hit with a new arrangement and that arrangement was…country.

Tina Turner, the queen of rock and roll R&B, now had twang.

IMG_2378I could see Tina doing a twist off of Ray Charles successes from his early 1960’s country themed albums, but I didn’t expect a performance I would have readily seen on The Wilburn Brothers Show or The Johnny Cash Show. I was expecting a blended mix of early R&B and country, but instead she fit in perfectly right next to Loretta Lynn.

There are three levels of Tina within the album and with each level she becomes more…Tina. I call the first level “Mid-Tina.” This level finds Tina singing with the roughness we have all grown to love, but mixed with smooth twang. We find this on the songs “Bayou Song, “If You Love Me Let Me Know,” and “Don’t Talk Now.”

Next we venture into “Tina Turned Up.” This is the Tina we generally find in her earlier recordings with Ike Turner. These elements are found in songs such as Bob Dylan’s “Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You” and Hank Snow’s “I’m Moving On.”

Lastly, we have “Tina Turned Down.” In this level, Tina demonstrates her chops for delivering straightforward and easy masterpieces. This level contains all my favorite songs from this album. First she sings a vulnerable and rousing rendition of Kris Kristofferson’s “Help Me Make It Through The Night.” Her voice is as smooth and liquid as melted butter. Her performance of this song finds her vocals in their most purest form. It is like they come from a child.

Tina-Album-Tina-Turns-The-Country-On-Promo-02Then there is the hopeful Dolly Parton cover “There’ll Always Be Music.” I could easily see a choir erupting behind Tina at any moment during this recording. Her genuine love of unadulterated music is on complete view. She then closes out the album with “The Love That Light’s Our Way.” This song eludes to the concrete truth that love will always prevail and lead the way, a sentiment that was muddled for Tina at this time. Her vocals in this song will convince anybody, that truth and love always prevails, something she still believed deep down.

This album begins to encapsulate the independent artistry of Tina Turner. It shows that she was not only a musical interpreter that crossed genres, but one that can reach the furthest of human emotions in the same fell swoop. She takes country music, flips it on its head, reconstructs it, and sings it her way, but she was still under a jail cell.

Her later solo efforts were to be completely independent of Ike Turner in all regards. This album shows that all you need sometimes is to let someone shake their own tail-feather and to never restrict someone to be a private dancer. This artistry within Tina was nearly untapped and it was time for the world to hear it.

It was time for Tina to be Tina.

Originally posted on The Vinyl Vortex, a music blog based out of Oklahoma City curated by Gabe Crawford. Visit www.thevinylvortex.com for more. You can also follow the blog on twitter @vinylvortexok.

Remember When Playlist & Players


Remember When I believe that great music has no expiration date. That’s why strong albums are the continual focus on each week’s radio show. This time we dive into some of the most celebrated music of our past 13 years, highlighting artists and albums that have captivated us time and again. Some tracks are not all that old, going back to 2015. Yet we’ll revisit a few “classic” favorites from 2004, 2005 and more. Enjoy!

Hour 1 Playlist

(Show Theme) Lindsay Katt. “Heart Place (Instrumental)” Picking Out Boxes. Lindsay Katt, 2008. 01:15

Dresses. “Blew My Mind” Sun Shy EP. SideOneDummy Records, 2013. 03:04
Dresses. “Tell A Lie” Sun Shy EP. SideOneDummy Records, 2013. 02:39

The Rocketboys. “All The Western Winds” 20,000 Ghosts. The Rocketboys, 2009. 05:06
The Rocketboys. “Rare Triumphs Of Love and Fortune” 20,000 Ghosts. The Rocketboys, 2009. 03:48

Joss Stone. “Star” Water For Your Soul. Stone’d Records, 2015. 05:08
Joss Stone. “Wake Up” Water For Your Soul. Stone’d Records, 2015. 04:44

St. Paul & The Broken Bones. “Sugar Dyed Honey Pants” Greetings From St. Paul & The Broken Bones. Single Locke Records, 2012. 02:37
St. Paul & The Broken Bones. “Broken Bones & Pocket Change” Greetings From St. Paul & The Broken Bones. Single Locke Records, 2012. 03:49

Bootstraps. “Haywire” Bootstraps. Bootstraps under Harvest Records, 2014. 04:20
Bootstraps. “Revel” Bootstraps. Bootstraps under Harvest Records, 2014. 03:23

Iron & Wine & Ben Bridwell. “Magnolia” Sing Into My Mouth. Black Cricket Recording, 2015. 03:51
Iron & Wine & Ben Bridwell. “No Way Out Of Here” Sing Into My Mouth. Black Cricket Recording, 2015. 04:38

James Vincent McMorrow. “Gold” Post Tropical. Vagrant Records, 2014. 03:00
James Vincent McMorrow. “Cavalier” Post Tropical. Vagrant Records, 2014. 04:43
Oh Wonder. “Lose It” Oh Wonder. Josephine Vander Ducht and Anthony West, 2015. 03:00

Hour 2 Playlist
(Show Theme) Lindsay Katt. “Heart Place (Instrumental)” Picking Out Boxes. Lindsay Katt, 2008. 01:10

Further Seems Forever. “Bye Bye Bye” Hope This Finds You Well (Best of). Capitol Christian Music Group, 2006. 03:24
Further Seems Forever. “The Moon Is Down” Hope This Finds You Well (Best of). Capitol Christian Music Group, 2006. 03:12

New Found Glory. “Head Over Heels” From the Screen To Your Stereo, Part II (Bonus Track Version). Drive Thru Records, 2007. 03:30
New Found Glory. “Stay (I Missed You)” From the Screen To Your Stereo, Part II (Bonus Track Version). Drive Thru Records, 2007. 02:42

The Get Up Kids. “Close To Me” Eudora. Vagrant Records, 2001. 03:25
The Get Up Kids. “I’m A Loner Dottie, A Rebel” Eudora. Vagrant Records, 2001. 02:55

Dry The River. “Everlasting Light” Alarms in The Heart. Transgressive Records, 2014. 03:16
Dry The River. “Med School” Alarms in The Heart. Transgressive Records, 2014. 03:40

Citizen Cope. “The Newspaper” The Rainwater EP. Rainwater Recordings, 2010. 03:25
Citizen Cope. “Off The Ground” The Rainwater EP. Rainwater Recordings, 2010. 04:44

The Killers. “Believe Me Natalie” Hot Fuss. The Island Def Jam Records, 2005. 05:05
The Killers. “Jenny Was A Friend Of Mine” Hot Fuss. The Island Def Jam Records, 2005. 04:04

Hammock. “Wish” Kenotic. Hammock Music, 2004. 05:21
Hammock. “The Air Between Us” Kenotic. Hammock Music, 2004. 03:44

Regina Spektor. “Ballad Of A Politician” What We Saw From The Cheap Seats (Deluxe Version). Sire Records, 2012. 02:13
Regina Spektor. “Firewood” What We Saw From The Cheap Seats (Deluxe Version). Sire Records, 2012. 04:52

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