High Fidelity #socs

Image by Webster2703 from Pixabay

NOTE: I can’t remember the last movie I saw. I don’t think we’ve been to the movies in ten years, we don’t watch movies on TV, and when Mary subscribes to Netflix, it’s to watch TV shows. Movies just don’t excite me like they used to. Anyway, this is a movie I remember seeing and enjoying, so it’s the one I’ll use here…

I’m not what you would call an audiophile. I love music, of course, but you probably figured that out already. Having said that, it has never really mattered to me how I got it. I’m just as happy listening to a song on a transistor radio with a 3" speaker as I am listening to it on a $1000 hi-fi stereo system. In fact, I’d go so far as to say some music just sounds better on a transistor radio.

I remember reading an article in Guitar Player magazine about 30 years ago that quoted Neil Young bitching about compact discs and how the quality couldn’t compare to vinyl records. I tended to agree with him until I actually sat down and listened to a few CD’s and realized, yeah, it sounds at least as good as what I remember the vinyl record sounding like, at least to my unsophisticated ear, and a CD doesn’t take up as much room as does a vinyl record, and the technology is such that, with a reasonably good CD player, I can pack a dozen or more CD’s and the player into my briefcase and have enough music to get me through a week on the road. If I run out or get bored with what I brought with me, I can always go to a music store and buy a couple more CD’s and entertain myself further. And when the iPod came out, I could bring my entire music collection with me.

I realized it was an economic decision: how much sound quality was I willing to part with in exchange for greater convenience and accessibility to my music collection. Turns out, I didn’t have to sacrifice much in the way of quality in favor of having it all with me. Audiophiles would disagree, of course, but screw ’em if they can’t take a joke.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday is brought to you each week by Linda Hill and this station. During January, it’s also used for Linda’s excellent Just Jot It January.

And now this word from Avon beauty products. DING-DONG, Avon calling!

Song of the Day: Buddy Guy, "Cheaper to Keep Her"

God bless him, Buddy Guy might be the last of the great bluesmen from the early days of Chicago blues that’s still with us, and he shows no signs of slowing down, even at 83 (84 in July). He played in the house band at Chess Records, where he played with Muddy Waters and developed a friendship and musical relationship with Junior Wells, Muddy’s harmonica player, that lasted until Junior’s death in 1998. (I’ve already told the story about meeting Buddy in the restroom at a nightclub, so if you want to read that, click the link.) Buddy runs Legends, a nightclub at 700 S. Wabash, which he opened in 1989; he says Muddy Waters made him promise to keep the blues alive before his death, and the club is a way to do that. "Cheaper To Keep Her" is from his 2005 album Bring ‘Em In.

The Friday 5×2: WHOT (1330 AM Youngstown OH), 1/17/67

WHOT was, according to Wikipedia, one of the first Top 40 radio stations in the country, starting in 1955 on 1570 AM as a daytime-only station that, "despite technical limitations," became popular in the Youngstown, Ohio market. It moved down the dial to 1330 AM in 1963, which is where they were on January 17, 1967. WHOT lives on as a Top 40 station ("Hot 101") at 101.1 MHz on the FM dial.

  1. Aaron Neville, “Tell It Like It Is” I’d have sworn this song wasn’t this old, but this reached #2 on the Hot 100, #1 on the R&B Singles Chart, and #2 on the Canadian Adult Contemporary Singles chart in 1966-67.
  2. The Mamas & The Papas, “Words Of Love” Essentially a showcase for Mama Cass Elliott, this rose to #6 in the US and #5 in Australia.
  3. Jimmy Ruffin, I’ve Passed This Way Before” Older brother of The Temptations’ David Ruffin, this was Jimmy’s follow-up to “What Becomes Of The Brokenhearted.” It rose to #17 on the Hot 100 and #10 on the R&B Singles chart.
  4. Paul Revere & The Raiders, “Good Thing” Their third Top 10 single after “Kicks” and “Hungry” rose to #4 in the US and #5 in Canada.
  5. The Royal Guardsmen, “Snoopy vs. The Red Baron” The Guardsmen had been The Posmen but changed their name to sound more British. This was their biggest hit, among the bestsellers for twelve weeks, reaching #2 and being certified gold. They had to release it as “Squeaky vs. The Black Knight” in Canada because Laurie Records wouldn’t release it in Canada. Apparently Charles Schulz, creator of Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang, hadn’t give the record his blessing…
  6. The Seekers, “Georgy Girl” This song was their third #1 hit in their native Australia and #2 in the US. It was the title song of the 1966 movie that starred Lynn Redgrave, Charlotte Rampling, Alan Bates, and James Mason.
  7. The Four Seasons featuring the “Sound” of Frankie Valli, “Tell It To The Rain” I can’t remember this song, but it reached #10 nationwide. Quite a few of The Four Seasons’ records on Philips were credited this way.
  8. The Lovin’ Spoonful, “Nashville Cats” One of their better-known songs despite the fact that it peaked at #8 in the US. It did better in Canada (#2) and New Zealand (#6).
  9. The Monkees, “I’m A Believer”/”Steppin’ Stone” A two-sided hit for the Prefab Four. “I’m A Believer,” by Neil Diamond, was a #1 hit worldwide, while “Steppin’ Stone,” by Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, reached #20 on its own in the US.
  10. The Four Tops, “Standing In The Shadows Of Love” Surprisingly, this only reached #6 in the US and the UK, though it reached #2 on the Hot R&B Singles chart. It did much better in many markets.

And that’s The Friday 5×2 for January 17, 2020.

Jade #JusJoJan

Source: Pixabay

MB from Words Less Spoken provided today’s prompt, "jade." Thanks, MB!

The Blogger’s Best Friend™ tells us that jade is an ornamental mineral, mostly known for its green color. Evidently, there are two minerals that are considered jade: nephrite, a silicate of calcium and magnesium, and jadeite, a silicate of sodium and aluminum.

We generally think of jade as green, and most of it is, but there are variants. Nephrite can be white, which is called "mutton-fat jade," while jadeite can come in a variety of colors, including blue, brown, dark green, red, black, and lavender. My aunt has a ring with a lavender jade in it, and it’s quite pretty.

This was written for Just Jot It January, which is a blog hop hosted by Linda Hill during the first month of the year. Now a word from Chevrolet, building a better way to see the USA!

Song of the Day: Willie Dixon, "Spoonful"

You can’t talk about Chicago blues without a mention of big Willie Dixon. Willie was an outstanding standup bass player and singer who played with Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Chuck Berry, and other Chess Records acts. He was also a prolific songwriter, having written "Spoonful" for Howlin’ Wolf, "Hoochie Coochie Man" and "I Just Want To Make Love To You" for Muddy Waters, "Wang Dang Doodle" for Koko Taylor, just to name a few of the over 500 songs he either wrote or co-wrote. As standup bass gave way to the bass guitar, Willie retired from playing, but not from performing or songwriting, and he recorded over twenty albums and appeared on countless others.