Yesterday, The BCPF was to get her hair cut and that got us to Underdog Records earlier in the day. Like, 11am early. Her cut was next door at Hair Bomb with Cynthia Platt-Miller so we did that before eating. The BCPF has lived here her entire life and had never eaten at Grecian Corner so I took her there. We had good food, yeah, good, good food. Anywhat, here’s the haul:
- Cat Power – The Greatest — In what I’ve come to know as “sadcore” (“bleak lyrics, downbeat melodies and slower tempos, or alternatively, songs with deceivingly upbeat melodies that are simultaneously characterized by depressive lyrical undertones or imagery,” according to Wikipedia), it was musically something that I figured I’d hear in a coffee shop somewhere. I liked it. Her voice is really smooth. She spent some time in her youth attending school in Greensboro. The BCPF wanted it and yep, she got it. I had never heard anything that I knew of from Cat Power. The BCPF said that she had played me something before but it wasn’t announced who it was. New.
- Mister Rogers – It’s Such A Good Feeling: The Best Of Mister Rogers — What the world needs now is more Fred. Fred Rogers made everything seem okay when we were kids, at least he did to me. The BCPF agreed. Life lessons, how to deal with situations, education and more. Ol’ Fred was a great guy. This is a Barnes & Noble exclusive and is on transparent red vinyl. NM (but there is a scratch on the best song on the album… boo).
- Lou Reed – Rock N Roll Animal — Yesterday’s haul can be explained best this way: a lot of Byrds, a lot of Lou. Not a lot of either, really but multiples of both. Let’s just go with that. This is a live album of Lou doing four Velvet Underground songs and one non-VU song. I have stated many times that I am not a fan of Velvet Underground but I like (mostly) Lou solo. These versions of the VU songs were really good. Another cool aspect of this album is basically it’s the Alice Cooper band (the Welcome to My Nightmare years) with Lou instead of Alice. Dick Wagner (who played the guitar solos on “Sweet Pain” and “Flamin’ Youth” as well as the acoustic guitar on “Beth” on KISS’ Destroyer) and Steve Hunter were both guitarists on this album, “Whitey” Glan played drums and Prakash John played bass. All four of those guys were the band on Nightmare. Anywhat! It was a decent listen. NM/EX.
- Lou Reed – Rock And Roll Heart — This was Lou’s first album on Arista records. I haven’t listened to it, yet. There were three singles released for the album, “I Believe in Love,” “Chooser and the Chosen One” and the title track. VG+.
- The Byrds – (Untitled) — It’s untitled but really, that’s the name of the album. It’s a 2xLP that is a live show on sides 1 & 2 and studio stuffs on sides 3 & 4. It’s the first “official” live album by the band (recorded in early 1970) and the first to feature Skip Battin on bass, having replaced John York. VG+.
- The Byrds – The Notorious Byrd Brothers — This album was #171 on Rolling Stone’s Top 500 Albums of All Time List. That’s a good place for it. Some on that list I couldn’t figure why they were where they were and some I couldn’t figure out why they were there at all, but this one fits perfectly where it is. It’s a good listen. This is the one where David Crosby gets kicked out of the band. Who knows the real reason but it stemmed from his rants and political musings as well as his not wanting certain songs on the album because it was from outside writers (King/Goffin), and so on. But, the album is legit good and, again, deserves the spot it holds on the RS list. VG+.
- The Byrds – Ballad Of Easy Rider — The title song was written by Roger McGuinn and Bob Dylan, although Dylan wasn’t credited on the album. It was, of course, featured in the film Easy Rider and this album was released to capitalize on the success of that film. Critics panned it at first but it has grown to be a strong spot holder in their discography. VG+.
- John Entwistle – Smash Your Head Against The Wall — This was the first solo album of any of the members of The Who. The cover is quite weird. It’s his face superimposed in an x-ray of a skeleton chest. I don’t know what it sounds like as I haven’t listened to it, yet, but Jonathan said that he liked it a lot. That’s good enough for me. VG-.
- Various – Nothing In Common – Original Soundtrack — Sealed but a cutout. Tom Hanks and Jackie Gleason. Songs from Thompson Twins, Richard Marx, Aretha Franklin, Carly Simon, Nick Hayward (from Haircut 100) and The Kinks among others. That’s all I got for it. NM.
- Rick Wakeman – The Myths And Legends Of King Arthur And The Knights Of The Round Table — I haven’t heard this yet but I love Wakeman’s concept album stuff. I like mystic, medieval themes, too, so I will probably enjoy this. I look forward to hearing it. VG+.
We got to Underdog Records around 11am and the place was jumpin’. I like seeing a long of people in there. Jonathan had Drive-By Truckers pumping, the incense and candles burning and it was a good time in the old record store, for sure. I noticed Jonathan had a lot of used stereo equipment like equalizers, cassette decks, receivers and even a CD changer. Those were all the “black-faced” late 80s/90s stuff that for whatever reason people tend to shy away from these days. They want silver plated stuff that makes them seem a bit more “legit,” I guess but good sound is good sound. I know the black-faced stuff is more digital and solid-state and the older stuff seems more “vintage” and is possibly tube-powered. I don’t know. My stuff is all black-faced except for my turntable which is plastic but silver. Anywhat, the prices were really good and much of the stuff had been fully-serviced. So, the point is, if you want to update or create a new-to-you stereo system, Underdog Records is the place to be to get that. Listen to each new episode of The Less Desirables to hear what the TLD/UR special of the week is. I use Discogs to track my collection and Jonathan now puts QR codes on his labels to help make sure you get the right version/variant/copy in your Discogs account. Good stuff!
Until tomorrow, keep spinning…
“I have always wanted to have a neighbor just like you. I’ve always wanted to live in a neighborhood with you. So let’s make the most of this beautiful day. Since we’re together, we might as well say: Would you be mine? Could you be mine? Won’t you be my neighbor?” – “Won’t You Be My Neighbor” (Rogers)