Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Show #152 August 13, 2016

This one's for Holly... no question!

Holly (Would You Turn Me On?) All Time Low So Wrong, It's Right
Just Who Is The 5 O'Clock Hero? The Jam Direction, Reaction, Creation
Are You Receiving Me? XTC Fossil Fuel The XTC Singles 1977-92
Are We Gonna Be Alright? Ric Menck The Ballad Of Ric Menck
Are You Passionate? Groovie Ghoulies Go! Stories
^Can You Dig It? Mock Turtles Can You Dig It?
Can I Take The Car Tonight? Incredible Kidda Band Too Much, Too Little, Too Late!
Can't We Do Anything Right? Mike Viola and The Candy Butchers Falling Into Place
Do You Compute? Donnie Iris Do You Compute?
Do You Have to Go? Rooney Washed Away
Do You Wanna Get High? Weezer Weezer (White Album)
Does Anyone Know Where The March Is? Newtown Neurotics Punk Collection
Does She Talk? Matthew Sweet Girlfriend
Does It Matter As Much To You? The Innocents No Hit Wonders From Down-Under
How Do You Know? The Lyres How Do You Know 7"
How Do You Do? The Boomtown Rats A Tonic For The Troops
How Long Will It Take? The Plimsouls The Plimsouls... Plus
Is It Day Or Night? The Runaways The Runaways
Is There Anybody In My World? Little Murders Stop Plus Singles 1978-1986
Is This Real? Wipers Is This Real?
What Do I Get? Buzzcocks Singles Going Steady
What's With Terry? The Undertones Hypnotised
What If I Killed Your Boyfriend? Material Issue Telecommando Americano
Where's The Boy For Me? The Revillos Rev Up
Where's Bill Grundy Now? Television Personalities Where's Bill Grundy Now? EP
Where's Your Mom? Chixdiggit! Chixdiggit
>Who Are the Mystery Girls? New York Dolls Rock 'N Roll
Who's Your Boyfriend? Piper Piper
Who Will Save Rock and Roll? The Dictators D.F.F.D.
Who Loves Life More? Sloan Action Pact
Why Is It Always This Way? The Ramones Rocket To Russia
Why Can't I Be You? The Cure Why Can't I Be You?
Why Can't I? Liz Phair Liz Phair
Life On Mars? David Bowie Hunky Dory

^Power Pop Peak:  #18 UK Singles Chart 3/9/91

ALL SacroSets:  ? Songs

>Power Pop Prototype:  1974

540 Forest Ave, Brockton, Mass
I have always loved libraries.  My first was the West Branch of the Brockton Public Library on Forest Ave.  It was one of the few places I was allowed to ride my bike to by myself.  When I was in the third grade some fifth graders beat the crap out of me when I was coming home from the library (luckily without any books) yet within a week I was back going through the stacks.  When we moved to Duxbury, Mass I didn't get to the library as much.  They call it the Duxbury "Free" Library, which still strikes me as redundant because I've never heard of a "pay" library.  Wouldn't that just be a "bookstore?"  But I digress.  The Duxbury library was all the way across town from my house and it was right beside the Intermediate School and The High School so there was no way to enjoy the place without being hassled by douche bags from school.  (Yes, I'd taken a beating from school bullies in Brockton but that was pretty random since John F. Kennedy Elementary and the West Side Branch were about ten miles away from each other.)
128 St. George St, Duxbury, Mass

As much as I loved my library in Brockton, it couldn't hold a candle to the library I'd discover in college.  One of the reasons I chose to go to Emerson was its radio station, WERS.  Thanks to Cousin Rich, I had discovered college radio, "the left of the dial," in high school.  I listened to the evening Niteklub show on WERS and the famed Late Riser's Club on Massachusetts Institute of Technology station WTBS (later WMBR after they sold the call letters to Ted Turner).  I did pretty well in high school but math and science were not my strong suit so there was no way in hell I was going to get into MIT.  Emerson it was then.  The first day of school I took the shuttle from my Fensgate dorm down to 130 Beacon Street and climbed the stairs to the third floor, the WERS studios and, more importantly, the station record library!

130 Beacon St, Boston, Mass (corner left)

"Hollywood" Michael Shannon
The studios were at the front of the building, top left in the photo above, and were not air conditioned so on hot days the windows would be open and on the air you could clearly hear Beacon Street traffic in the background which I thought was incredibly cool.  This traffic noise was often referred to as "Live Traffic Reports" by DJ Michael Shannon called this traffic noise. (No, not the talented actor from HBO's Boardwalk Empire and the fantastic films 99 Homes, The Iceman and Take Shelter but another guy named Michael who had one of those difficult to pronounce eastern European names that is all consonants and chose "Shannon" because it sounded Irish and you can't go wrong with an Irish sounding name in Boston... until they find out you're not Irish.)  Anyway, at the back of the building was the record library, thousands of albums stored on floor to ceiling heavy steel racks with plywood shelving and bookcases of 7 inch singles in beaten up cardboard boxes.  Those first few months at school I spent many hours browsing the WERS record library though I was sheepish about pulling anything to listen to on the "preview station" (a turntable, 70's era receiver and the stankiest pair of headphones in the world).  That changed when I got my first
From "A"
shift in December- taking advantage of the regular Niteklub hosts leaving for Christmas break.  From then on I spent as much time as possible listening to music at WERS.  I started with the A's (the letter, but also the Philly Power Pop band) and worked my way through the alphabet listening to anything I hadn't heard
to "Z"
before.  It was awesome-  like getting a PHD in underground rock and roll!  I discovered so many great records, many of which I'd later find at stores like Nuggets, In Your Ear, Looney Tunes and Planet Records.  Yes, I probably could've gotten laid more my freshman year but I stand by my decision!!

After college I got a show on WMBR and did the same thing over the course of three years.  The WMBR library was even better than the one at WERS, going back to the 60's and with a ton of obscure rarities and old tapes of Boston bands.  (The WMBR music library had MUCH better security!)  Sad to say, WERS got rid of most of their vinyl records in the late 90's but on a return visit to WMBR ten years ago I was very happy to see that not only had they kept everything- the station had knocked down a wall next door doubling the size of their record library.  Those MIT people are wicked smart!

These days my personal record library grows by about 30-40 vinyl LP's a year, 10-15 CD's and a handful of seven inch singles.  On the other hand, my digital library probably grows by 20-30 albums per month and roughly the same number of singles.  I'm amassing more music than ever before, luckily I can listen to it in a lot more places on my phone and laptop.  

As I've said before, without my digital library, there is no way I could make ALL KINDSA GIRLS happen- there simply isn't enough time to create shows with vinyl and CD's.  Plus, just doing different sorts in iTunes gives me lots of ideas for shows like Show #151's "Head Over Heels" features and tonight's ? Songs.  Not only does iTunes inspire themes, it allows me to indulge all my OCD tendencies putting a
show together.  Case in point, I was listening to music on shuffle and The Lyres classic "How Do You Know?" (shown at the top of this post) came up- the original version on Sounds Interesting records- a Boston rock and roll classic!  This got me thinking about songs that ask questions, so I made an iTunes smart playlist looking for "?" in the name of a song.  This yielded 142 responses and from there I was down the rabbit hole...

  • I decided all selections must include a question mark, which excluded great songs like "Do You Want Crying" by Katrina and The Waves and "What's Going Ahn" by Big Star.  Subsequently I discovered several instances of crappy tagging by record companies who left off the "?" in a song title which stopped me from considering "Can I Be Your Hero?" by Wreckless Eric and "Who's Gonna Tell Mary?" by The Moondogs.  Then there is Kiss' "Do You Love Me" which doesn't have a "?" on the vinyl LP but does on the CD- SLOPPY WORK PEOPLE!
  • Seeing a pattern in ? Songs, I decided to go with sets of three songs, each beginning with the same word.
  • I then felt these three song sets should be in alphabetical order, starting with Are?, Can?, Do?, Does?, How?, Is?, What?, Where?, Who?, and Why?  It kind of bugs me that I didn't get all the "5 W's" (Who, What, When, Where and Why?) or do them in this order but I was running out of time and already committed to the alphabetical order.
  • I still wanted to do my Power Pop Peak (slot 9) and Power Pop Prototype (slot 25) so that meant finding a hit song that started with "Can?" and an older song starting with "Where?" or "Who?"  I had to fudge it a little on the Peak going with the Mock Turtles' "Can You Dig It?" which was only a hit in England, but "Who Are The Mystery Girls?" was an easy choice for the Prototype (though I had to bump it to slot 27).
  • My goal for each show is to end with a song that is slower, more contemplative, perhaps even elegiac.  In my opinion, David Bowie's "Life On Mars?" was the perfect choice.  I LOVE that song!

Perhaps I've revealed too much and you now think I should be under a doctor's care, or perhaps serve as an OCD case study. On the other hand, you've got to admit it makes for a cool radio show so thanks for indulging me!

Stream/download the show below:

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