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  1. #1
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    What album(s) was a musical epiphany for you?

    What album or albums hit you so hard, from left field even, that musically, you were never ever the same again? This may have happened more than once in your life, if you like music as much as I do, I'm sure it has.... What rocked your world?

    1. "Hot Buttered Soul" - Issac Hayes: First Soul album I ever heard that wasn't just a collection of singles. There were no singles on this album to speak of. You just had to listen and go through it. Albums as concepts were rare in the R&B genre at that time. Groundbreaking at least for a kid from the projects raised on '45's.

    2. "Kind of Blue" - Miles Davis: From this, I discovered what my uncles were always arguing about when Miles left Bop for Cool. Opened my eyes.

    3. "Gonna Take a Miracle" - Laura Nyro and LaBelle: Discovered that there was more "blue eyed soul" out there than just the Righteous Brother's. I also learned you didn't have to write a song to define a song. This album is still in my rotation.

    4. "What's Going On?" - Marvin Gaye: Who says soul couldn't be relevant and speak to the worlds problems. Who say's Motown was just for dancing and romancing. Still in my heavy rotation.

    5. "The Last Poets" - The Last Poets - Rap before there was rap, scorching, political and sadly still relevant today.

    6. "Free Will" - Gil Scott Heron - A contemporary of the Last Poets Mr. Scott was/is a prophet without honor in his own land. Showed me that records can be intensely politcal and personal all at the same time.

    7. "Band of Gypsies" - Jimi Hendrix - Hey, this is what all they were talking about. He does that live? But how can he.

    There are other's but I'll leave that for a later day...

    Da Worfster

  2. #2
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worf101
    What album or albums hit you so hard, from left field even, that musically, you were never ever the same again? This may have happened more than once in your life, if you like music as much as I do, I'm sure it has.... What rocked your world?
    I'll give you three of mine. In order of appearance in my life....

    1. David Bowie - Ziggy Stardust -- This was my first real rock album. I bought it when I was about 10 or 11 because I liked the album cover. I had no idea that it would change my life. It moved me from my little teeny-bopper world of Andy Gibb to the world of reputable rock music. Ziggy totally blew me away and I will be forever grateful to Mr. Bowie for creating this album.

    2. Kansas - Leftovertures -- Leftovertures was my introduction to a more progressive sound. My all-time favourite album to this day, Kansas opened my mind to other bands like Yes and Genesis.

    3. Porcupine Tree - Stupid Dream and Lightbulb Sun -- Brought to my attention by the folks at this board, PT was the band that convinced me that there were modern day bands still creating excellent progressive rock. I had given up on finding anything new that would rock my world like old Kansas and Yes albums did. I had resigned myself to a life of classic rock radio (insert green pukey smiley face here). But this place changed all that.

    Mentioning the albums that changed my life wouldn't be complete without mentioning (and thanking) my brother who was always saying to me, "hey, listen to this!". It was his Kansas album that I first listened to and his PT cds that I borrowed. Thanks BL!

  3. #3
    Toon Robber tentoze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worf101
    What album or albums hit you so hard, from left field even, that musically, you were never ever the same again? This may have happened more than once in your life, if you like music as much as I do, I'm sure it has.... What rocked your world?
    ----cutcut----

    Da Worfster
    A short list:

    V. Morrison, Astral Weeks - because it was totally new and different, and still is.

    The Band, Music From Big Pink- see previous comment.

    Guy Clark, Old # 1- because it turned my ears in a different direction.

    Graham Parker, Howlin' Wind- because it renewed my enthusiasm for rock n' roll in the mid-70's.

    John Hiatt, Slow Turning- because it did for me in the 80's what G. Parker did for me in the 70's.


    Obviously, there's a longer list. And, wIth some more listening time and perspective, I might jump into the new millenium and add British Sea Power and Decemberists in among there somewhere, but it's too soon yet.

    et
    ----Never Off Topic, Never Rude-----

  4. #4
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    Too many to put in order

    I can't say that anything jumps out to be a favorite all time but I'll list a few of my favorites.
    Alan Parsons, I Robot, most of his music is good
    Heart, Little Queen, some of the best female rock vocalists of all time
    Cat Stevens, Tea for the Tillerman, all Cat Stevens LP's are good
    Emerson Lake and Palmer, nearly all of their stuff, good live too
    Yes, 90125 but most of theirs are good too
    Jethro Tull did some great stuff and was great live before Ian got old
    Fleetwood Mac, Rumors, also great live
    Kansas, Leftoverture, I'll agree, that was a good one
    Pat Benatar, one of the best female vocalists to ever sing rock music
    Sarah McLachlan, great voice, great pianist and writer
    Bach organ music, Virgil Fox played it better than anyone I've ever heard and was amazing live
    Davey Spillane, kind of celtic/jazz/rock played bagpipes and various instruments in Riverdance, very talented also great live
    Lot's more that I listen to but these all stand out for me as some of the best performers that I ever had the pleasure to hear.
    Bill

  5. #5
    Forum Regular MindGoneHaywire's Avatar
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    During the period when I first started listening to punk rock I discovered album after album full of incredible stuff & I never looked back. I guess it started with the first & 3rd Ramones albums, then a DKs EP, a 2-LP compilation of the Jam called Snap!, and then two more hardcore albums: Black Flag's Damaged & the first Suicidal Tendencies LP. After that I went for a long period of time where all I bought were punk rock records (no, didn't stop listening to my rock albums, but there were a few I never went back to, others I became indifferent about, and others I appreciated even more because I heard for the first time how they'd influenced the stuff I was now listening to).

    Not long after that I heard the first Violent Femmes LP for the first time. I'd heard a tune or two here or there prior to this (the album had been out for a couple of years & had gotten some radio play), but it hadn't had all that much of an effect on me. Once I heard the whole thing through I thought it was amazing. You kind of expect a certain amount of screaming & out-of-tunefulness from punk rock. This was a different thing, and I thought it was great that amateurishness was on display in this form. In a way this struck me as being more 'about' what punk rock was than some of the punk rock records I'd heard up to that point. Then eventually I heard the NY Dolls records I realized how true this was.

    It took me a couple of years to catch up to some of the stuff that stands out for me more than some of the stuff I heard initially. The first Public Image Ltd rec I heard was the one they put out in 1984. It sounded interesting then (if not good) but the last time I put it on I couldn't believe how awful it was. I listened to it quite a bit back then because it was so different & because it was closer to what I was listening to than, say, Simon & Garfunkel. But over the next couple of years I discovered Elvis Costello, the Replacements, Husker Du...some of the more timeless stuff that sounds just as good to me today. I'm more likely to want to listen to something like that on the average day than something like GBH. Don't get me wrong, I still listen to hardcore. It's just that most of it is not very good. But that was something I thought back then too. It was a bit disappointing to find out how much crappy hardcore there was at first. Bands like Husker Du & the Replacements I heard earlier on, but it just didn't get across to me because the more hardcore stuff had more of an impact sound-wise. A couple of years later I started to realize exactly how much better they actually were.

    Didn't list too many rock albums because I generally expected to like most of the ones I bought, from the beginning, so most of 'em weren't exactly 'epiphanies.' I guess the next one was the first great rap album I heard, which was the Beastie Boys' Licensed To Ill. I heard this before I heard Run-DMC's Raising Hell; I'd heard an earlier Run-DMC album, but I thought it was spotty. Prior to this most hip-hop was singles. Licensed To Ill was the first time I heard an entire album that really stood up on its own. Listened to that about 30 times a day for six months.

    Grew up listening to jazz, but I didn't know a lot about the genre & didn't go out of my way to listen to it particularly. I did stick to a couple of recordings I grew up hearing. 15 years ago Public Enemy put out It Takes A Nation Of Millions & Chuck D was interviewed in the Village Voice about it. He started going on about being misunderstood & went on about John Coltrane & how he'd been treated in the press when he changed his direction musically (there's a line in Don't Believe The Hype that alludes to this). I went to the library & borrowed Blue Train. That really caught my ear & I started listening to jazz a lot more intently than I ever had before. (Not long after that I found an old pressing of Blue Train somewhere for $2...not an original, I found when I sold it on Ebay a few years ago, I think it was from 1960, and I got a few bucks for it) I don't know how this happened, but it was several years before I actually heard Kind Of Blue. Of course, when I did I wondered why I had never heard it before.

    Worf, I never got back to you on Pet Sounds...didn't have a chance. Do I actually hear its influence in recordings today music-wise? Here & there I do. The best example I could give would be Beck--on Mutations & the last one, Sea Change. I think there's a case that he's pretty influenced by that record. Now, when I first heard Pet Sounds it wasn't really an epiphany. I think that's one of those records that's highly praised, but when I first heard it I didn't get it, & it took a few hundred listens for me to be able to agree with all of the praise written about it--praise that never includes the qualifiers that casual listeners may not think so highly of it on a casual listen. (This still hasn't happened for me with Astral Weeks...maybe someday. Maybe not, though) But part of the reason, also, that it took awhile for me, is because I heard SMILE for the first time right around the same time. That hit me so hard that I probably didn't even play Pet Sounds again for six months after I heard it the first time. I sure hope I haven't turned anyone off to this, as I've commented on it so much, but I think it's just as good as Pet Sounds, albeit different. It certainly is more ambitious, but it's also far more accessible on first listen. It's all the things you see written about Sgt. Pepper...yet when many go back & listen to Sgt. Pepper, it hasn't aged well, doesn't always stand up as well as it once did. SMILE holds up, & not just because it wasn't released at the time & is therefore fresher to most people. It's superior to Sgt. Pepper, while being somewhat similar musically, and was (mostly) recorded prior to the Sgt. Pepper sessions. Doesn't take much to listen to this & wonder how much it would've changed pop music had it been finished & released on time, instead of Pepper. But it wasn't, and it wasn't, and it didn't. With Brian Wilson taking SMILE on tour next month...maybe, just maybe...it'll be officially released in some form--some form that doesn't make it out to be a muddled, out-of-context, jumbled mess, as every official snippet of this record has going back 35 years.

    I don't like others.

  6. #6
    Rocket Surgeon Swish's Avatar
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    I wouldn't say these were an epiphany, but...

    I would say they probably shaped my listening habits for years to come.

    1. Heavy Weather - Weather Report - remains my favorite progressive jazz record of all time.

    2. Aqualung - Jethro Tull - I haven't listened to this in a long time, but it was the real deal. I never think of it as "progressive" rock, and that wasn't even a genre when this was released.

    3. Ziggy Stardust - Bowie - still holds up pretty well, and I played the crap out of it way back when.

    4. 12 Dream of Dr. Sardonicus - Spirit - I loved it back in the 70s but it really sounds kind of dated now. It still contains some great songs though and it isn't exactly painful to listen to in the present.

    5. Waiting for Columbus - Little Feat - This remains as my favorite live album of all time. Lowell George pumped out some great tunes in his short life span.

    6. Band of Gypsies - Hendrix This record is what made me want to learn to play guitar.

    7. Eat a Peach - The Allman Brothers - remains one of my favorite live albums and has some outstanding tunes that still get me pumped up today.

    That's all for now. I guess there are some in the modern era that would fit, I just can't list any of them yet but probably could in another 20 years.

    Swish Baby
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  7. #7
    DMK
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    Too many to list

    A lot of Coltrane, Ayler, Brotzmann, Dolphy plus the Sex Pistols and PiL, several Beatles discs and many, many more.

    Most recently, it was a disc by a group called Sol Invictus. The disc is "In a Garden Green" which I've now owned for almost a year. I love it but I can't say why. It's dark and brooding, folky, avant garde and it just hit me in a way I can't explain. I play it at least once a week and it never fails to entrance me. It's an extremely complex disc and I hear different things in it every time I listen. I've only been able to find one other recording by this group and it was also good, although it didn't live up to the first - and I can't explain that, either! But like many, many other records, it was a kick in the pants in the sense that every time I think I have some idea of what music is or should be, something like this comes along and lets me know that music is an infinite universe and someone out there will have a muse that will blow my ideas away!

  8. #8
    Crackhead Extraordinaire Dusty Chalk's Avatar
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    I've done this before, but thought I'd rehash anyway:

    Aerosmith, Rocks -- hardest thing I ever heard up to that point, by far, and upon first listen, I couldn't take it. Hadn't gotten into Black Sabbath yet. I have since learned to embrace the dark side.

    Skinny Puppy, Vivisect VI -- I wanted my mommy the first time I heard this. The stuff of nightmares. I liken it to seeing your first truly gory horror film.

    Various artists, Dry Lungs V -- my first album-length excursion into noise. Still one of my favourites. The doors were opened by Controlled Bleeding ("Swallowing Scrap Metal" from the Penetration compilation), but this is the one that give me a good shove into the room.

    Talk Talk, Spirit of Eden -- a truly abstract revelation. I had never heard an album as patient as this one (well, some moments here and there, such as the climactic tracks of Chris Squire's Fish Out Of Water and Steve Hackett's Voyage of the Acolyte -- but those are not fair comparisons; it's a different kind of patience), and certainly not from the previously very poppy The Colour of Spring. There was something about it that just made me keep coming back.
    Eschew fascism.
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  9. #9
    Forum Regular audiobill's Avatar
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    Talking A couple come to mind....

    The Beatles' "White Album"

    Van Morrison's "Astral Weeks"

    Pink Floyd's "Animals/ The Wall"

    Bob Dylan's "Desire"

    Neil Young's "Decade"

    The Rolling Stones "Beggars Banquet"

    Elvis Costello's "This Year's Model"

    The Clash's "London Calling"

    Ani Difranco's "Dilate"

    Nick Drake's "Pink Moon"

    Led Zep's "Physical Graffitti"

    The Who's "Who's Next"

    Velvet Underground's "...and Nico"

    Jethro Tull's "Thick As A Brick"

    Patti Smith's "Easter"


    It's interesting to note how many of these life/music-altering albums are older, rather than newer........and I do listen to tons of newer music.

    Cheers,
    Bill

  10. #10
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    I will try to do this chronologically:
    Hendrix: Electric Ladyland (A christmas present from Mommy)
    Led Zep: 2 (Headphones? Cool!)
    Pink Floyd: DSOTM (I can still remember the first time on my car 8-track, alone & lost)
    Yes: Tales from Topographic Oceans (It went with all the bongs and paraphenalia)
    Lynyrd Skynyrd: Second Helping (USAF in the desert)
    Patti Smith: Horses (Hmmm...this is different.)
    Eagles: Hotel California (I love my HiFi)
    Elvis Costello: My Aim is True (Ah..this is where Patti was going)
    US: Boy (Anyone can dance at the club!)
    Gang of 4: Entertainment (Anyone can be pissed off too!)
    XTC: English Settlement (Sit down and start listening again)
    .
    .
    .
    .
    (big gap)
    .
    .
    .
    .
    Midnight Oil (blip)
    Nirvana (blip blip)
    .
    .
    .
    Big Star; #1 Album (where the hell was I then?)
    .
    .
    Many many faceless and nameless powerpop bands
    .
    .
    .
    (Stop)

    Wait a minute! Are you telling me that there are no bands I am listening to today that I consider epiphanous? Now I'm depressed....

  11. #11
    Forum Regular tugmcmartin's Avatar
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    Here's my list...

    Some have been mentioned before by others...

    Allman Brothers Band - Eat a Peach
    Led Zeppelin - Houses of the Holy
    Little Feat - Waiting For Columbus
    Michael Jackson - Thriller
    The Who - Quadraphenia and Who's Next
    Bobby McFerrin - Don't Worry Be Happy (what? there's life outside of rocknroll?)
    Steppenwolf - 16 Greatest Hits (not really an "album" per se, but still something that made me go "wow")
    Grateful Dead - American Beauty
    Beastie Boys - License to ill (hip hop meets white suburbia)
    NWA - Straight Outta Compton (gangsta rap meets white suburbia)
    Nil Lara - Nill Lara (a meeting of world music and rock that still blows me away ten years later)

    There are others, but those are the prominent ones....

    T-

  12. #12
    dld
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    These were all epiphinonamous for me in some way

    My list

    Cream, Wheels Of Fire

    Yardbirds, Over Under Sideways Down

    Jerry Jeff Walker, Viva Terlingua, my first exposure to progressive country music, I think that turned out to be a good thing

    Lucinda Williams, Car Wheels.....

    Neil Young, After The Gold Rush

    John Lennon, Plastic Ono Band

    Moody Blues, A Question Of Balance

    Traffic, Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys

    Fleetwood Mac, S/T 1975

    Pink Flord, DSOTM

    Nick Lowe, Pure Pop For Now People

    BS&T, S/T

    Pearls Before Swine, One Nation Underground

    Hendrix, Are You Experienced
    Do I have to spell it out?

    C---H---E---E----S----E

    A--N--D

    O---N---I---O---N---S

    Oh No

  13. #13
    DPM
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    Not too many recently.

    This kind of thing is getting rarer. Still, I know that something special may be lurking just around the corner. Hope springs eternal.

    1) Ambrosia/Ambrosia--An excellent recording in every way imaginable. It touches the heart yet stimulates the head. It gets the toe tapping too.

    2) Marillion/Script For A Jestors Tear--This was proof positive that prog had a future and that I wasn't going to be limited to the prog classics of the 70s.

    3) King's X/Gretchen Goes To Nebraska--The best album from the best power trio since Rush.

    4) Porcupine Tree/Stupid Dream--These guys resurrected my hope for rock'n'roll. Maybe the ole' girl has some life in her yet.

    5) Bela Fleck & The Flecktones/UFO TOFU--Take the best elements of bluegrass, jazz and funk, meld them together withh a group of excellent musicians, and you end up with something really special.

    6) Gentle Giant/Free Hand--This recording is probably the best place to start for those wanting to partake of the Giant. Vocal and instrumental interplay doesn't get better than this.

    7) Black Sabbath/Vol. 4--A headbanger's delight. Supernaught still kills to this day.

    8) Rush/2112--My first exposure to this band was back in high school. Somebody had this on their portable 8 track. If I recall correctly my response was..."No way! That is not a dude singing that stuff."

    Dave M

  14. #14
    Dubgazer -Jar-'s Avatar
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    mine.

    Iron Maiden - NUMBER OF THE BEAST. Better than any metal I had heard up to that point. Made the other bands sound like kids.

    Husker Du - NEW DAY RISING. Unlike anything I had ever heard. I could hardly hear the vocals, everything was washed together. Yet I couldn't stop listening.

    R.E.M. - FABLES OF THE RECONSTRUCTION. Again, unlike anything I had heard before. I could hardly understand the words, but that didn't matter, the emotions somehow came across anyway. The guitars were hypnotic. I couldn't stop listening.

    Sonic Youth - EVOL - sounded like complete and utter noise when I first listened to it, but it got under my skin and I kind of started to understand it. Then I heard SISTER and it all kind of made sense.

    Bob Marley - LEGEND
    Black Uhuru - GUESS WHO'S COMING TO DINNER
    The beginnings of my love for Reggae. Who knew I would love this music so much, but it just gets under your skin.

    Joy Division - SUBSTANCE. I'd never heard anything like this before, just.. dark, stark, weird.. the human emotion just so intense, right there naked on the surface. Soon I heard CLOSER and just was amazed. The ultimate band for a disenfranchised 18 year old to discover. It was hard for me to fathom that this music was being created as I was buying my first AC/DC albums..

    The Clash - SANDINISTA. Introduced to me by the same friend who turned me onto Reggae. a weird "first" Clash album, but for some reason, I just couldn't stop listening to this either. I taped it and carried it around with me for months listening on my walkman, alternating between it and a tape I had made of New Order's SUBSTANCE comp.

    There's so many albums that I picked up in that period that just blew me away, it was almost like drowning.. The Smiths, Depeche Mode, the Stone Roses, Nine Inch Nails debut.. it was quite a time.

    Then I heard the Jesus Lizard, and after a few years away from "heavy" music, I got back into guitar rock... I couldn't stop listening to GOAT, HEAD and PURE. Amazing stuff. Also heard Slint's SPIDERLAND around the same time. I was working at the college radio station, almost every week, I would have GOAT on one table and SPIDERLAND on the other.

    My Bloody Valentine - LOVELESS - it took a few spins to start to warm to this, but the music was so dense it seemed like I was listening to a different album every time.

    Painkiller - EXECUTION GROUND - some of the scariest music ever put down.. Laswell, Zorn and Harris work their magic to combine elements of thrash, jazz and dub into some of the best psychic nightmare music.. yea I made that term up.

    Flaming Lips - TRANSMISSIONS FROM THE SATELLITE HEART
    Mercury Rev - YERSELF IS STEAM
    Two albums that defined an era for me.. there were dozens of bands doing similar music, but these were the holy grails. They both seem like different bands now. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

    -jar, for now.
    If being afraid is a crime we'll hang side-by-side,
    at the swingin' party down the line..


    The Replacements

  15. #15
    Close 'n PlayŽ user Troy's Avatar
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    I wish these could be more varied and less obvious, but there it is what it is.

    Sgt Pepper and DSOTM- I heard them when I was very young (7 and 13) and both were shockingly different from the AM raisio music coming out of the transistor radio under my pillow. Those albums really broadened my horizons.

    Yes's "Close to the Edge", Genesis's "Wind and Wuthering", Tull's "Aqualung"- Wow, now THIS stuff was sure different in a world populated by cheesy Foreginers, Eagles and Argents! Like glowing, multi-layered glaze technique oil paintings made with sound, these records changed the way I listened to music.

    Wall of Voodoo's "Call of the West", the first B52's and XTC's "Black Sea" revitalized my interest after watching with dismay as the tide of repetitive and boring punk and disco overwhelmed popular music. These bands took the punk ethos and showed that it could still be creative, colorful and arty.

    Porcupine Tree's "The Sky Moves Sideways" and Spocks Beard's "The Kindness of Strangers" opened my eyes to the 2nd golden age of prog-rock. No, not really new, but it was thrilling to hear young bands making these great sounds again.

  16. #16
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    Good Topic.

    What's interesting to me about it is that many of my very favorite groups wouldn't put anything in this category. Stuff like Chuck Berry, Elvis, Little Richard and more never really came to me as an epiphany. They were just always in the air from the crib on up. Still, there are a few albums and such I could point to...

    The Clash - Give 'Em Enough Rope
    This just rocked. Yet, it had something to say, both on a personal and a political level. Stay Free is still one of my favorite songs.

    Black Flag - Nervous Breakdown single
    Brutal side of punk. As an adolescent, once I heard these guys, my musical interests for the next several years of my life were set. Sure, there were other excursions, early rap, old soul, a little jazz and reggae, but if you were young and angry when this came out, it fit like a glove.

    John Lee Hooker
    OK...not a record, but a performance. As a teenager with little blues interests, a free ticket to his gig magnified my appreciation for blues music exponentially.

    Massive Attack - Protection
    Getting older, slowing down. It's laid back, it's got a bite. Smooth R&B mixed with a hip hop sensibility and a modern electronic sound. Electronic, yet organic.

    I could probably go on with quite a few more, but I'll just call it a post here.

  17. #17
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    Well, lets see.

    You see, music, to me, is also very important, and I listen a lot (or used to) on the stereo in altered states.

    I still listen, but not in altered states.

    Stuff that hit me real hard were:

    1) Yes - Tormato. A corny ass album to most, but I love it's simplicity but way deep music ideas and concepts.

    2) Kansas - Leftoverture. I remember that day it came out. When I first heard "Carry on Wayward Son" I knew that Kansas was something special in my musical life.

    3) Genesis - The Lamb, sides 1 and 2. Genesis could rock when they wanted to. Songs like "back in new york city" are so powerful to my ears, not much comes close. Also Trespass, although way different from the Lamb.

    4) Bob Marley - Rastaman Vibration. When I was 16 and into green stuff that you start on fire and inhale, my virgin ears had never heard a reggae song. When I was over at a friends having a good time he put on this album and my eyes went wide open. "What in the hell is that stuff"? I crooned". "Marley", said Roger. I was hooked. Peaceful content and that bass and rhythym did me in. Still love BMW altho I dont start green things on fire anymore.

    5) Deep Purple - Machine Head - got me hooked on hard rock real fast, at age 13 or 14 when that album came out.

    6) Human League - Dare. My first foray into new wave, I loved that cheesy ass album and still do.

    Plus also XTC - "Black Sea", Devo's first, Rush's "2112", and a buncha other stuff.

    Dave

  18. #18
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nobody
    Good Topic.

    What's interesting to me about it is that many of my very favorite groups wouldn't put anything in this category. Stuff like Chuck Berry, Elvis, Little Richard and more never really came to me as an epiphany. They were just always in the air from the crib on up. Still, there are a few albums and such I could point to...
    Very interesting point. These men were/are God's on the earth. They, along with Big Joe Turner and perhaps Louis Jordan and His Tympany 5, are the founders of modern popular muisc, the trunk of the tree. Jazz and blues came before but these men helped give birth to RocknRoll and all that came after, but like you they just "existed" for me from birth like oxygen, there was no music for me BEFORE them.

    [/QUOTE]John Lee Hooker
    OK...not a record, but a performance. As a teenager with little blues interests, a free ticket to his gig magnified my appreciation for blues music exponentially.[/QUOTE]

    Another sterling point. Sometimes you have to see/hear/experience a genre, before you can appreciate a genre.

    Da Worfster

  19. #19
    Forum Regular MindGoneHaywire's Avatar
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    Worf:

    They, along with Big Joe Turner and perhaps Louis Jordan and His Tympany 5, are the founders of modern popular muisc

    Worf, I'm a big fan, but let's not overstate the case. I've seen Bing Crosby given the credit for inventing pop singing, and I see no evidence to the contrary. As a musician I'm sure you're aware that Les Paul invented multitrack recording. As much a fan as I am of Turner & Jordan, others would say Louis Prima is just as deserving of such accolades, or even throw names into that hat like Wynonie Harris or Howlin' Wolf or Ray Charles or or or...which is not to say that I'd argue the same thing, just that it's perhaps just a bit more subjective. Despite the idiotic things he said about rock'n'roll, Frank Sinatra transformed pop singing in the 1950s, and Barbara Streisand made her mark in the 60s, too (though I can't stand just about anything she ever did & probably wouldn't even if she didn't sing endlessly flat, which she did). My take is that the Beatles came in & essentially wiped the slate clean, and a large percentage of rock'n'roll, if not popular music in general, became far more influenced by them, & those they influenced, than by much that had come before them. Now, they were obviously influenced by Elvis, Larry Williams, Arthur Alexander, Carl Perkins, & the like, but while Ringo was a fan of Lightnin' Hopkins, I've never seen anything suggesting they were big on guys like Jordan, Turner, Prima, or anyone like that. Moreover, only putting a couple of names out there like Jordan & Turner as the architects of rock'n'roll ignores the country influence. Without going into a name-dropping exercise, I'd just point out that it was only in combination with the hillbilly stuff that the influence of guys like Jordan 'created' r'n'r. The dismissal of C&W by people who 'just don't like it' is common, but irrelevant. In many cases it's based on the contemporary stuff & done by people who have rarely, if ever heard, the people who were recording in the 30s, 40s, & 50s, and who have likely never heard any Western Swing, which puts much r'n'r from ANY era to shame.

    I only have two Jordan CDs: the MCA greatest hits, and a record he made for Mercury in the mid/late 50s, which amounts to a re-working of some of his earlier stuff, but with a pronounced r'n'r influence; he made the arrangements slightly more aggressive in a bid to cash in on the stuff that he did significantly influence, which had become a legitimate and lucrative form. Have to say I actually dig the later rec just as much, if not more than, the standard greatest hits collection. If there's something else you think is essential, feel free to recommend. As for Turner...still haven't managed to corral much of his early stuff. I do have a hits collection from Atlantic; the R&B years. Outside of that, I do have the odd track on this or that R&B comp or box set, the most remarkable of which is on the Swingtime Records box--Radar Blues. Ever hear that one? I think it's from 1948 & easily my favorite song by him. Rocks like a mofo. I tucked it on a blues comp I sent around to some folks on this board a few years ago (if you have any interest, PM me). In the meantime, I'm still on the lookout for a way to get my paws on stuff 'Roll 'Em Pete' & others from that period.

    I don't like others.

  20. #20
    Forum Regular jack70's Avatar
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    Re

    Quote Originally Posted by nobody
    What's interesting to me about it is that many of my very favorite groups wouldn't put anything in this category.
    Totally agree with that. Lots of listeners have listed faves here. I'm thinking the Q was more about opening new doors in one's musical imagination... Most of my fave rock albums were not super-revelatory (for me anyway), as much as I totally love em. A few were, but I'll skip those here because of time.
    anyway....

    1/ Hearing Bach organ music live in a large cathedral around age 8 (not an LP, but the music effected me profoundly). I didn't quite understand what it was, or why it made my neurons start snapping... (I'm still not sure). True genius need not be explained I guess.

    2/ Discovering an old 78 of Spike Jones in a box of records of my Mom's. This happened before Zappa & the Bonzo Dogs, and maybe that's partly why I loved those wierdo's so much later on. As the twig is bent...

    3/ Hearing Charlie Parker for the first time in a 7'th grade music class. Couldn't understand what the deal was at all, but I knew I liked it & wanted to hear more. "What the hel_ is this?" Opened a whole new world.

    4/ Going to a series of classical concerts over a period of months as a young kid (great acoustics in this great old classic building that was state-of-the-art in the early 1900's). I'd heard bits of classical music on LPs that my dad usually played Sunday morning, and played some classical melodies myself while taking music lessons.... but listening to the power of a live orchestra as a young kid was pretty impressive stuff. Much like the difference between a cheap boombox and a great state-of-the-art stereo system. Brought classical music waaaay up in my young mind as having lots more depth and subtlety than what had been my general impression.

    5/ Jimi Hendrix's first album. At the time I'd only heard about this new "great" guitarist who'd been playing in the UK for a while, making a name for himself, with praise from many current pop and Rock stars. My friend who played guitar in our cheesy R&R band had just gotten the LP and raved about it to me during a phone call. I got it myself the next day, sight unheard, and remember being mesmerized by the opening chords of Purple Haze. It was so different in so many ways from anything in R&R, yet it also had the foundation of everything that's great about R&R... rhythm, energy, passion, emotion... in addition to a great "sound," let alone excellent guitar. Whats amazing is that Electric Ladyland was just as mindblowing a year later... it's rare that a single artist can do that twice in a career. Those 2 LPs probably effected rock music as much as any others. Even quiet little modern alternative punky bands have have echos in them.

    6/ Zappa's first LP Freak Out I bought because of the very (at the time) weird cover. I knew it was either going to be really good, or really bad when I opened it up (it's the first double LP by a rock artist) and saw a song called "Help I'm a Rock". Needless to say it had LOTs of "new" things I'd never imagined before in there. I started reading everything I could about this strange guy, and that led me to get a copy of...

    7/ Poem Electronic by E Varese. Musique Concrete was the door to another whole musical world. I then got a whole slew of weird electronic albums... everything from such "popular" fare as A Rainbow in Curved Air by Terry Riley, Silver Apples of the Moon & Switched on Bach, to Stockhausen, Tonto's Expanding Head Band, a series of "Electronic International Competitions" albums, Kayn & Nono, and many early Moog albums... some poppy and some advant-garde. That all led me to explore all sorts of Euro experimental stuff a few years later in this vein, especially...

    8/ Klaus Schultz's debut Irrlicht, which sorta joined much of the "weirdness" factor of Zappa & M>Concrete with classic symphonic music. Although I first heard Tan Dream, it was this album that made a deeper impression at the time. There were then LOTs of "prog" type experimentations that came along in response; they borrowed and used lots of these new sounds, but few did it well or originally, although it was fun watching it happen.

    9/ Hearing my first few Western Swing LPs that I'd ordered sight unseen out of simple musical curiosity. I remember being struck with the thought of "how could this great music be out there, yet still unheard by me". By that time (my mid 20's), there wasn't a whole lot of musical things I'd not at least casually listened to.

    I suppose all that's a reason I still search out new and weird stuff... you never know what secrets and what undiscovered gems await being dug up.

    ...this could go on for a long time... I'll forgo my strange '66 punk & '77 punk stories, early blues artists intro, weird classical & weirder-still Euro-wacko artists for now. They weren't all quite as "epiphany like," as those above, but they did all slam open new musical doors.
    You don't know... jack

  21. #21
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Hello again Haywire

    Quote Originally Posted by MindGoneHaywire
    Worf:

    They, along with Big Joe Turner and perhaps Louis Jordan and His Tympany 5, are the founders of modern popular muisc

    Worf, I'm a big fan, but let's not overstate the case. I've seen Bing Crosby given the credit for inventing pop singing, and I see no evidence to the contrary. As a musician I'm sure you're aware that Les Paul invented multitrack recording. As much a fan as I am of Turner & Jordan, others would say Louis Prima is just as deserving of such accolades, or even throw names into that hat like Wynonie Harris or Howlin' Wolf or Ray Charles or or or...which is not to say that I'd argue the same thing, just that it's perhaps just a bit more subjective.
    Hey mind... I wasn't speaking in "absolute's" just my opinion is all I listen to what Louis Jordan was doing in the late 40's and while the "1-4-5" had been around for decades, it hadn't quited rocked like THAT before. You can make a case for several people or groups of people as the progentors of RNR. I choose the people I do because of when they did it, how they did it. They might not be the ONLY one's but they were among the first.

    Quote Originally Posted by MindGoneHaywire
    Despite the idiotic things he said about rock'n'roll, Frank Sinatra transformed pop singing in the 1950s, and Barbara Streisand made her mark in the 60s, too (though I can't stand just about anything she ever did & probably wouldn't even if she didn't sing endlessly flat, which she did)..
    Unh you gonna have to prove that one to me. Sinatra was a great "pop" singer of the 30's 40's and 50's, but we're talking about RNR here. I don't get his relevance to this conversation. and I really don't get Bab's inclusion.

    Quote Originally Posted by MindGoneHaywire
    My take is that the Beatles came in & essentially wiped the slate clean, and a large percentage of rock'n'roll, if not popular music in general, became far more influenced by them, & those they influenced, than by much that had come before them. Now, they were obviously influenced by Elvis, Larry Williams, Arthur Alexander, Carl Perkins, & the like, but while Ringo was a fan of Lightnin' Hopkins, I've never seen anything suggesting they were big on guys like Jordan, Turner, Prima, or anyone like that. Moreover, only putting a couple of names out there like Jordan & Turner as the architects of rock'n'roll ignores the country influence..
    If you'd read my original post you'd realize that I was merely ADDING Turner's and Jordan's name to the list of early progenetors provided by "Nobody". I'm not foolish enough to give any two people credit for inventing a musical genre.. RnR evolved from the Blues but these guys HELPED to give it it's most recognizable form. That's all I'm saying.

    To continue our running battle as to the importance and influence of the Beatles on popular music today. I don't know if we're ever going to agree on this one. Of course we're talking post Sgt. Peppers Beatles not the Fab 4 that were covering Motown songs. I admit Sgt. Peppers was/is ground breaking but I still don't feel it was a lasting "sea change" in popular music. I own the album, I listen to it (particularly after these conversations) and it still don't hear it reflected around me today as much as say James Brown's "Funky Drummer". This doesn't take away from their place in music history... not by any means, but all history doesn't remain relevant in all ways.

    Da Worfster

  22. #22
    PPG
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    Sgt. Pepper's LHCB

    Sparks - Kimono My House

    10cc- Original Soundtrack

    Jean-Luc Ponty - Aurora

    Synergy - Metropolitan Suite

    Return To Forever - Romantic Warrior

    Cheap Trick - In Color

  23. #23
    Forum Regular MindGoneHaywire's Avatar
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    I listen to what Louis Jordan was doing in the late 40's and while the "1-4-5" had been around for decades, it hadn't quited rocked like THAT before

    I hear ya, but I disagree mildly, as there are exceptions to that. Granted, Jordan really refined what others did bits & pieces of, stuff that was rockin', but I enjoy hearing those bits & pieces. Like some of the more aggressive-sounding swing stuff, like Big Joe Turner's 'Roll 'Em Pete,' like Illinois Jacquet's 'Flying Home,' like Wynonie Harris, like Prima, like a few things Nat King Cole was doing in the late 30s (most notably 'Please Be Mine-a-ble'), like Jimmie Lunceford, like some of the stuff on labels like Specialty & Mercury in 1944 & 1945, stuff in that vein. Nobody's going to make a credible case that anyone or anything here made more of an imprint on r'n'r than Jordan (save perhaps Louis Prima). But they're there, & this is stuff I seek out actively & am always on the lookout for. There's plenty I haven't heard. If this sort of stuff rocks yr boat, check out Nick Toshes' 'Unsung Heroes Of Rock'n'Roll.'

    You can make a case for several people or groups of people as the progentors of RNR. I choose the people I do because of when they did it, how they did it. They might not be the ONLY one's but they were among the first.

    I agree completely. Jordan is probably the key figure, though I think Prima is equally deserving. Outside of recognizing those two, I concur that it was a group effort. Turner's contribution, I believe, was rooted & focused more firmly towards the blues side of the spectrum, though. Which is not to say that he wasn't influential, but I think Jordan rates ahead of him in that regard.

    Unh you gonna have to prove that one to me.

    On Streisand? Do you have absolute pitch? Go back & listen to the records. She's flat. Always was. Today they might use pitch shifters, but the woman always sang flat. Not outrageously flat, but painful to my ears nonetheless. And I listen to plenty of rock music with off-key singing that doesn't bother me; but it's not a genre where that's of tremendous importance. Streisand's brand of pop music highlights professionalism, if not perfection, and it's always been a source of consternation to me that nobody ever acknowledges her flat singing. It's there. Trust me. Again, not to denigrate her abilities in other areas, though it's not my cup of tea, the woman is talented. But her pitch was always off.

    we're talking about RNR here. I don't get his relevance to this conversation.

    You said 'modern popular music.' Specifically, you said They, along with Big Joe Turner and perhaps Louis Jordan and His Tympany 5, are the founders of modern popular muisc. That's why I brought up Bing Crosby, Les Paul, Sinatra, & Streisand. Sorry if this seems anal, but I'm not going to assume that you're talking only about rock music when you make a statement like that. And I have what I think is a pretty good reason: way too many fans of rock music--and I certainly don't include you in this--are so rock-centric that they never bother with anything that's NOT rock. This is a disturbing attitude, but I wasn't accusing you of it, just making a point. I think it's important to acknowledge what these artists did. There's already enough people running around who think there was no such thing as music, or good music, prior to rock and roll. It's that crappy attitude that I was addressing, more so than yr comment specifically. So pardon me.

    If you'd read my original post you'd realize that I was merely ADDING Turner's and Jordan's name to the list of early progenetors provided by "Nobody". I'm not foolish enough to give any two people credit for inventing a musical genre.. RnR evolved from the Blues

    I read the post. I didn't imply you were giving them & only them credit, just that there's a lot more to it, & yr post read like an overstatement of the importance of Jordan & Turner. That's my opinion, but I think it's pretty firmly grounded in fact. Go back & take a look at that post, and then read the last sentence in the post I just excerpted above. It completely ignores the influence of country & western. If you're talking about blues & jazz, that's one thing. If you're talking r'n'r, that's a different story altogether, & to completely ignore country just doesn't wash.

    To continue our running battle as to the importance and influence of the Beatles on popular music today. I don't know if we're ever going to agree on this one.

    Perhaps not.

    Of course we're talking post Sgt. Peppers Beatles not the Fab 4 that were covering Motown songs.

    We are? Just the fact that you think of the Fab 4 as a band that was 'covering Motown songs' tells me that you're viewing them through a very strange prism. What'd they cover, 3 Motown songs? 4? In 1963? We're talking about an act that managed 7 full-length, 12 or 14 song albums in less than 4 years between 1963 & 1966. Not counting non-LP singles, B-sides, & EP tracks. 4 Motown covers out of what, 90 or 100 songs?

    I'd say that songs like And I Love Her, Yesterday, & Michelle all had a pretty big impact; you'll hear those in the supermarket before you'll hear anything they did after 1966. I remember reading somewhere that by the early 1970s--perhaps 1970--there were 1,000 recorded cover versions of 'Yesterday.' Oh, and 'Something' was one of the songs, if not the song, that changed Frank Sinatra's mind about rock'n'roll--no mean feat.

    I admit Sgt. Peppers was/is ground breaking but I still don't feel it was a lasting "sea change" in popular music.

    Sounds like what you said about Pet Sounds. Sgt. Pepper was as ground breaking as it was in some part because the followup to Pet Sounds wasn't finished on time & never was, & still hasn't been released to this day. Had it been released in January of 1967 we wouldn't be having this discussion.

    I don't buy the Sgt. Pepper hype either, but the record is considered to be the most important album and the most important artistic statement by the band widely considered to be the most successful & influential rock band ever. So it has to carry some weight. It's certainly not a fraud. Its problem is that it seems more of its time now than it probably did at the time; it hasn't aged well. But that's partly because so many took inspiration from new ideas & put out work that explored those ideas more fully than the Beatles did, in some cases exploring those ideas to a fault (pretentious, overblown concept albums & the like). When that happens one can tend to lose sight of how important the original actually was. And it was important. But there were also things going on on Pet Sounds that the Beatles incorporated into that record, and on its followup as well. Maybe someday it'll see the light of day.

    I listen to it (particularly after these conversations) and it still don't hear it reflected around me today as much as say James Brown's "Funky Drummer

    Yeah, but that conveniently ignores the fact that Funky Drummer almost singlehandedly inspired the hip-hop aspect of rap music--not to mention that Serge Gainsbourg had a VERY similar beat going on on a tune of his done over a year before James Brown recorded it. Rock & rap are two different forms; rock is not one that could or would be so influenced by one & only one song in particular, so the comparison is unfair. If you're exposed to stuff influenced by Funky Drummer, fine. If you're listening to a classic rock radio station, which a lot of people apparently do, it's a joke to suggest that you don't hear the influence of Sgt. Pepper reflected today. Its influence is all over those playlists, which inexplicably manage to keep radio stations afloat. Keep in mind that prior to the lawsuit regulating the use of samples, 'Funky Drummer' was the illegally-used blueprint for approximately half of the rap recorded during its first decade. And I don't say that to downplay its influence, only to point out that the circumstances under which that influence flowered were somewhat artificial, relative to rock music. Bits & pieces of rock records were not used without license by rock bands influenced by those bits & pieces. And lest you take these remarks the wrong way, I am not anti-sampling & never have been (I get sick & tired of hearing from people who call themselves 'musicians' that sampling is this or that...always prefaced by 'I'm a musician,' as though that's supposed to mean something, that they're supposed to have a license for a blanket denunciation of sampling as being a crime against nature, or something. I'm a 'musician,' too. So what? Sampling has become a function of music, whether they like it or not). But it's quite possible that had the law reflected that the creators of work & owners of copyright had to be properly compensated for sampling some 25 years ago, that 'Funky Drummer' might not have had the impact it did--and in fact rap may have grown in a very different way.

    More significantly, you're not taking into account that the Beatles' influence is sometimes hard to detect because it's gone through so many filters. Sit down & compare the Please Please Me Album to Rubber Soul, then compare Help! to the White Album, then try Revolver vs. Abbey Road, lastly A Hard Day's Night with Sgt. Pepper. The difference in years between each of those records is three years, or close to it. The stylistic range is pretty impressive, I believe. But the Beatles not only pioneered many of the styles they dabbled in (which is not to say that influences aren't recognizable, only that they're not exactly derivative), but they were also pretty darn good at most of 'em. They didn't spend much time doing stuff they weren't good at. If you take the time to divide their music by style or period, you can look at acts that were specifically & directly influenced by what they did. In some you can hear garage band influence based on their early material; in others you can hear syrupy ballads; in others you can hear psychedelic work reminiscent of Sgt. Pepper itself, or 'pop opera' conceits inspired by side two of Abbey Road. The list is long & impressive. And I say that anything that those acts influenced--and that's not exactly a short list, either--probably has something of a Beatles influence in one form or another. Oasis wasn't the only band in the past 10 years that was influenced by the Beatles.

    Simply put, there haven't been many acts in rock music in the past 40 years that weren't influenced by the Beatles in some way, or at least influenced by artists that were themselves influenced by the Beatles, or...and so on.

    I don't like others.

  24. #24
    Bipolar Bingo Enthusiast Chip_B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worf101
    What album or albums hit you so hard, from left field even, that musically, you were never ever the same again? This may have happened more than once in your life, if you like music as much as I do, I'm sure it has.... What rocked your world?
    Interesting that you include The Last Poets and Gil Scott-Heron among your epiphanies...I had a dorm roomie back in '76 during my days on active duty with the USAF who had a phenomenal LP collection and a keen interest in minority issues. He introduced me to the Poets, Scott-Heron, and the truly outrageous music of Betty Davis ("He used to beat me with a turquoise chain..."). It was quite an education in what you could consider the 'indie R&B' of the time. Anyhoo, my choices are:

    The Beatles - Abbey Road. This may seem an odd choice considering how far along the Beatles were when they recorded this record, but it was certainly an epiphany all the same. The first listen was revelatory; nearly every song a masterpiece of songwriting and performance. If I live to be a hundred, I'll never tire of this record.

    Jimi Hendrix - Are You Experienced? A high school acquaintance brought it by and I listened to it on my tinny mono 'record player'. I hardly knew what to make of it at first, but it sure as hell had a major impact. The first time I heard that sublime break in Jimi's version of 'Hey Joe' it felt like i was shedding my skin. I had The Leaves' version on a .45, so the contrast was utterly stunning. Yessiree, it was most definitely an ephiphany.

    Moby Grape - Wow. Hearing this for the first time was like experiencing rock n roll from an alternate universe. It was full of quirky ballads, psychedelia, Blues, and attitude, and damned if that collaboration with Arthur Godfrey--which had to be played at .78rpm--wasn't completely bizarre. I still love to listen to 'He' and 'Rose Colored Eyes' and have used them on various tapes and comps several times. 'Wow' indeed...

    Steve Miller Band - Sailor. Rolling Stone once dubbed this record one of the 'strangest rock and roll albums ever recorded' (and they actually meant it in a good way) and I think that description apt. Foghorns, dreamy guitars, blended fades and intros connecting short, disparate ditties about girls and gangsters...it all clicked with me in a big way.

    The Allman Brothers Band - s/t. I was hooked as soon as I heard the opening notes of 'Don't Want You No More', but when the Bros transitioned to 'Not My Cross to Bear' and those ultra cool Hammond chords flowed from the speakers behind Greg's tortured howl, all the little hairs on the back of my neck stood on end and sorta stayed that way for the rest of the album. I was so mesmerized, I think there were moments when I forgot to breathe; I just sat there like a drooling idiot with my jaw scraping the carpet.

    The (English) Beat - Wha'ppen. Unlike anything I had ever heard and it came along at a time I was really craving 'different'. I listened to it over and over and over and never lost my sense of amazement. I like 'I Just Can't Stop It' even more, but since I expected it to have a similar affect, I wouldn't classify it as an epiphany.

    Pink Floyd - Ummagumma. I went off the deep end the first time I heard 'Careful With That Axe, Eugene' and 'Several Small Species...' due in large part, no doubt, to my altered state of mind and accompanying activities involving a very, very lovely lass. It would take far too long to explain what was actually going on and probably still wouldn't make any sense anyway, so I'll just leave it as that. Regardless, the album had a profound affect.

    Jon-Luc Ponty - Cosmic Messenger. I was never much of a fan of fusion, but this really nailed my 'cool' button.

    John Mayall - The Turning Point. Not at all what I expected from the Boss Bluesbreaker and boy, did I like it! The Turning Point also led me to grab the Mark-Almond records which were also a huge treat.

    Johnny Winter - 2nd Winter. Johnny's unique slide work just blew me away. I couldn't wait to play it for friends and watch their 'holy chitt!' reactions.

    Sonny Boy Williamson. I don't know the name of the record, but it was truly revelatory. I heard it at a friend's house and couldn't get it out of my head for weeks. His harp playing was like a living thing expressing great sorrow and his voice was just haunting. Unfortunately, the friend moved before I could find out the name of the LP he'd played for me, but I still sought out as much of Sonny Boy's music as I could find. It turned out to be a richly rewarding move and connected me to artists like Howlin' Wolf, Muddy Waters, Little Walter, and a slew of other Blues greats. I've been absolutely hooked ever since.

    There are other albums that had significant "!" factor, but they weren't revelatory. Just to name a few:

    Spooky Tooth - Spooky Two
    Mott the Hoople - s/t
    Procol Harum - Broken Barricades
    Crack the Sky - s/t
    Led Zeppelin - I
    Rory Gallagher - Live!
    Funkadelic - Maggot Brain
    Verve - Urban Hymms
    Pink Floyd - DSOTM
    Beatles - White Album
    Frankie Laine - Hell Bent for Leather
    Ray Charles - ...Sings Country
    Wet Willie - Drippin' Wet

    Okay...my fingers are tired.

    -Chip
    "The Blues ain't nothin' but a good man feelin' bad"

    -Willie Brown

  25. #25
    Forum Regular jack70's Avatar
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    Beatle sh_t

    Quote Originally Posted by worf101
    To continue our running battle as to the importance and influence of the Beatles on popular music today. I don't know if we're ever going to agree on this one. Of course we're talking post Sgt. Peppers Beatles not the Fab 4 that were covering Motown songs. I admit Sgt. Peppers was/is ground breaking but I still don't feel it was a lasting "sea change" in popular music. I own the album, I listen to it (particularly after these conversations) and it still don't hear it reflected around me today as much as say James Brown's "Funky Drummer". This doesn't take away from their place in music history... not by any means, but all history doesn't remain relevant in all ways.
    You realize Worf, that you risk blowing this thread up with that (Beatles) opinion? LOL! Although I'm more in the middle when it comes to the Beatles (as icons) than many others here... I have to agree with Jay on a few things.

    First, I don't think much Motown influence was in the Beatles at all. A few album filler cuts (of things they liked), means little in actual influencing their work. In fact, most other British Invasion bands of that era had much more outside (R&B) influence in their material (Animals, Them, Kinks, Pretty Things, Rolling Stones) than the Beatles did. Other bands had Soul influences, but they're less well known to most. The Beatles early stuff was very country influenced, via Perkins and others. It's just one reason they sounded so different and unique.

    On Sgt Pepper:
    I'm one who agrees with those who call it "ultimately fraudulent" (look at Zappa's parody cover for a clue). But at the same time you... are missing the point about the album's importance too. That may sound contradictory, but let me explain. I think the album isn't as consistently solid or original as even Rubber Soul or Revolver. I also think it suffers from a lack of overall cohesiveness, despite appearing to be a cohesive thing. I generally don't think it's as "special" as many think it to be. However... (big caveat here), it DID influence pop music in profound ways that still echo through the music industry. Just read any of the early R&Rer's of the era... they all have important things to say about that album. It's simply not a "fluke" thing that so many point to it with adoration. It changed the way musicians approached albums... from the way they were recorded, produced, and just thought about. Just as important was the way lyrics got way more complex and expansive overnight. Of course, MUCH of the credit of Sgt Pepper goes to the 5'th Beatle, George Martin.

    I DO think the album would have been quite a bit better had Strawberry Fields and Penny Lane been included, which they weren't for commercial reasons (the business aspect of 45/EP releases in the UK during the 60's). But as much I have fond memories of the album, it didn't knock me out (no epiphanies) the way it did to others. No matter... it's still a big deal.

    I agree with Jay that it's very difficult to view it in proper context today because of the millions of songs that have come after it. It has to be judged from it's time (to be fair), and that's difficult unless one lived through it. It's like saying Edison's wax cylinders weren't "so great" compared in light of decades of technological improvements since. Influences in art have to be looked at the same way. Here's a few of the current "hit songs" in early 67... at the very time of "A Day in the Life, Strawberry Fields" etc) It's from Tony Jasper's British pressing Top Twenty, a nice little old paperback I often flip through (to keep history in perspective). They're all top-10 hits.

    Release Me - Englebert Humperdink
    This is My Song - Petula Clark
    Let's Spend the Night Together - Rolling Stones
    I'm A Believer - The Monkees
    Peek-a-Boo - New Vaudville Band
    Snoopy vs the Red Baron - The Royal Guardsmen
    Simon Smith & His Amazing Dancing Bear - Alan Price
    I Was Kaiser Bill's Batman - Whistling Jack Smith
    Something Stupid - Frank & Nancy Sinatra
    Touch Me, Touch Me - Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich
    Ha Ha Said the Clown - Manfred Mann

    Heavy sh_t, don't you think?

    Quote Originally Posted by worf101
    but I still don't feel it was a lasting "sea change" in popular music
    I'm one who'll credit many others in addition to the Beatles for future R&R music (the late 60's & 70's)... but this WAS a "sea change". Some would even call it a Tsunami.
    You don't know... jack

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