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Throwback Tracks -- October 6, 2016


The Guys from {MUSIC}

Throwback Tracks -- October 6, 2016

David R. Smith

I'm back! After some hiatus to get back into the life that is theatre, I offered to write the Throwback Tracks for Shaun this week. As one who understands the grind that is life, I recognized that maybe he needed a break from doing it so here I am.

I feel like there will come a time where I will stop having "themes" for my Throwback Track articles, and will just end up throwing 5 songs together. But that day is not this day. No no, friends. We definitely have a theme for today's Throwback Tracks. 

"...And what is it, Dave?" you might be asking. Well, dear reader, today's theme is: once talented artists who were wildly popular, put out a bunch of really great albums in the 60s, 70s, 80s or 90s but then put out really, really crappy stuff later in their careers. Fun, right? That's what I thought! Though, it would be less fun if I elected to go with the crappy songs they put out instead of some of their good ones they put out years ago. Funny. But less fun. So I'm not gonna do that. We'll just go with good songs.

So. Here we go!

The Guys From do not hold the rights to any of these songs, it is more our hope to expose our readers to new (*cough*) and different retro music, or re-expose them to things they may have forgotten about.

At the top of each section, will be the song name, followed by the artists' name linked to their website (if possible...which is totally hit and miss with oldies), so you can fall down the rabbit hole, finding and supporting what you dig. 

Gimme Shelter - The Rolling Stones

The crappy song: Anybody Seen My Baby. Remember that crap? Ugh. If I paid $300 to see the Stones and they pulled that song out, I'd be pissed!

I'm pretty sure the first time I heard this song was in Scorsese's Goodfellas and it was perfect.  (Hand to god: I was watching the Blue Jays-Orioles Wild Card game while I was writing this article and when the game ended, Goodfellas was on the movie network. Serendipitous!) This isn't one of the more "well-known" Rolling Stones songs, as it's not off Beggar's Banquet, or Sticky Fingers. It was off Let It Bleed and the most well song off that album is probably Midnight Rambler. 

I think another reason this song doesn't ring familiar with people is because it never gets played on the radio. I feel like with lyrics like "Rape, murder, it's just a shot away" make it pretty hard to be considered radio friendly. 

While the song would be good with only Mick singing, what really makes this song one of the best in the Rolling Stones' catalogue is the powerful vocals by Merry Clayton. She just hauls.

Sunday, Bloody Sunday - U2

The crappy song: There's just one? I mean, they had that whole iPhone B-S where their album got uploaded onto everybody's phones whether they wanted it or not (most people being the latter) but if I have to pick a song... Discothèque. In all fairness, U2 did have a re-emergence when they came out with All That You Can't Leave Behind. There are some really great songs on that album. But I still include them here, because I can't stand Bono. Plus I'm quite certain anything they've put out in the last 16 years is garbage. 


Sunday, Bloody Sunday is vintage U2. You know; from back when Bono was still just an Irish dude singing about the troubles in Ireland. This song is literally older than me. It came out on U2's album War which was released earlier in 1983 before I was born. That makes this song ancient. But it's so good. It's so powerful. And it's the perfect indication of what made U2 so damned good back in the day. I will not pretend that I like U2 now but I will be completely honest about my enjoyment of War and The Joshua Tree. Because those are quality albums.

Are You Ready - AC/DC

The crappy song: Stiff Upper Lip. Certainly not the worst song on the list of crappy songs. But definitely not AC/DC's best. 

The Razor's Edge was a pretty incredible album by the boys from down under. After the success of Back In Black in 1980, there were a few downer albums by AC/DC in the mid-80s. Then came The Razor's Edge. Kicking off the album is possibly the most famous AC/DC song, Thunderstruck and shortly after that, Moneytalks. Both great songs.

Because of those two anthemic songs, I feel like this one gets a little less love, which I get, but I don't necessarily love. I really enjoy this song. I like the bridge that includes the entire band, instead of simply Brian Johnson's high-pitched (sometimes aggravating) voice. I also just really dig the instrumentation.

The nice thing about AC/DC is they have many songs that you can use to pump you up. This song is no exception. The Calgary Flames use it as part of the warm up and I can't speak for the rest of the Saddledome, but I find it's effective for me!

No More Tears - Ozzy Osbourne

The crappy song: I Don't Wanna Stop. Holy crap this song is bad. And the video is even worse! During the opening riff, it looks like Ozzy wants to start singing but just can't find the time. It's like he's jumping double-dutch and just can't figure it out. It's painful.

Now; I don't want to pretend that I love Ozzy Osbourne. I like him well enough. There are a few really sweet Black Sabbath songs and a few pretty unreal Ozzy songs but I would never go so far as to say he's one of my favourites. 

This song, though. That bass line, the lyrics, the absolutely gnarly guitar solo in the middle. This song hauls. Apparently the song is from the album of the same name. The only other song I know from that album is Mama, I'm Coming Home which is also good. But not knowing the rest, I won't suggest anything else about it.

But this song, though!

Sweet Emotion - Aerosmith

The crappy song: Do you even need to ask

Man do I love this song. Every time I hear that opening bass line with the crazy wah-wah before the drum kicks us into the lyrics, all I can think about is the opening scene to Dazed and Confused. It's a great scene and a perfect song to suit that scene. 

The song came out on the album Toys In The Attic, which also has the song Walk This Way. I honestly couldn't decide which song to put on between the two so it honestly had to come down to my love of Dazed and Confused

I don't know what happened to Aerosmith. They were so good for so long and then... well then they sucked. Even the song Falling In Love Is So Hard On The Knees, which I once thought was amazing, is actually awful. (Though, I will say, the line "Sometimes I'm good but when I'm bad I'm even better." is one of the best lyrics ever. 

And bringing us back to Sweet Emotion, that song also has one of the best all-time lyrics. "My get up and go must have got up and went." Classic.

That's it! There's nothing more to read. So go away. (But please keep coming back and

Here is the September Apple Music Playlist. Nothing says "here's a headache for Shaun" like trying to figure out how to fit old school hip hop in with Styx and The Cult....but it's a pretty great list. 

In case you missed our previous Throwback Track playlists, here they are:

August Apple Music Playlist

July 2016 Throwback Playlist

June 2016 Throwback Playlist

May 2016 Throwback Playlist

April 2016 Throwback Playlist

Remember, as Shaun uses Apple Music, that is where the playlists live, but if you want him to look into other services, just hit me up on Twitter and I will chat about the prospects of places like Spotify with him. 

See you again next Thursday with some new....oldies...*cough*

-D (@davidronn)

photo credit: Correspondent/Dutch RTL News/Berlin 20140610_211752 via photopin (license)