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Throwback Tracks--December 15, 2016


The Guys from {MUSIC}

Throwback Tracks--December 15, 2016

Shaun Cordingley

Much like "Tuesday Tunes" this week, this is going to be the last "Throwback Tracks" for 2016 as I am itching to take a break for the Holidays. 

Thank you all for supporting "Throwback Tracks" since I started it in April of this year, it has been nice to revisit these songs, and share some classics that I (and occasionally Dave....sparingly...) really enjoy, and even though it it somehow harder to write than "Tuesday Tunes" for me, I do enjoy it as much, and I look forward to returning to "Throwback" in the new year. 

This week, I'm wandering into the 1960s...and Woodstock a little bit...because, why not?

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. 

Magic Bus - The Who

This is The Who's third appearance on "Throwback Tracks" (here being the first, and here is the second) is for "Magic Bus" a song that Townshend wrote while the band was working on My Generation, but was actually released by a rather obscure UK band called The Pudding first, in 1967...though it did not become a hit. Actually The Pudding's version is...strange and bass heavy....and very 1960s...

In 1968, The Who returned to "Magic Bus" releasing it as both a single, and as part of Magic Bus: The Who on Tour, the band's fourth album to be released in the United States. Despite the fact that (at the time) the single was not much of a hit, barely breaking into the top 30 in either the US or the UK, the song became a popular staple of The Who concerts. 

I specifically like the use of claves in this track, balancing off the guitars to give the song a really different sound from a lot of The Who's other work, plus that sung-back, repeated "magic bus" is hard not to sing along to...

On the Road Again - Canned Heat

Blues and blues-rock did not have a wide/mainstream following in the 1960s, which inspired the formation of Canned Heat, a band who took and interpreted the blues sound, while incorporating elements of psychedelic rock. What I really appreciate is that Canned Heat also spent time and energy promoting the original blues artists. 

Chances are, if you recognize the name Canned Heat, it is for one of their two international hits, and the lesser known of the two (today) is "On the Road Again". This "driving blues-rock-boogie" song uses a great little combination of harmonica, and blues guitar (specifically E/G/A), combined with Alan Wilson's falsetto makes this track one that...well frankly, I am amazed does not get more classic rock play on radio, because there are few better songs to drive to. Period. 

This is also, arguably, one of the most influential songs of the 1960s as it was one of the first to popularize that E/G/A riff outside of blues, and I am sure you recognize that guitar riff from a plethora of rock songs since...

Feeling Alright - Joe Cocker

I never realized how many of Joe Cocker's most famous songs were covers until I started doing a bit more research for "Throwback Tracks" today, and "Feeling Alright" is no different. Originally recorded by Traffic in 1968 as a softer, more folk-rock version, Joe Cocker took "Feeling Alright" and reworked it into a blues-y...bongo drum/piano filled track that he used as the opening to his debut album in 1969 With a Little Help from My Friends the just pops out of speakers, thanks to that piano, and Cocker's raspy vocals. 

This is a feel-good song for the ages (if you don't pay too close attention to the lyrics) that, to be honest, I have not found too many people who dislike "Feeling Alright"...and while there have been a pile of other cover versions since, I'd argue that Cocker's is still the best. 

Oh: and yes, it is actually "Feeling Alright", "Feelin' Alright" was what the song was called when Traffic did it, and a lot of other covers keep the original title, but when it was first released, Cocker's version was "Feeling Alright". 

Come and Get Your Love - Redbone

"Come and Get Your Love" burst back into popular culture thanks to it's inclusion in Guardians of the Galaxy, which is just awesome, because it is a helluva fun song from the 1970s, with just the right balance of that 70s sound, with a bit of funk and a bit of rock. Redbone, the band behind the track (which was written by brothers Lolly and Pat Vegas), also holds the distinction as being the first Native American band to have a #1 hit in the United States and internationally. 

That electric sitar, combined with incredibly singable vocals, plus that (as Star-Lord proves) easy-to-dance to rhythm makes "Come and Get Your Love" one of the best funky, mid-tempo dance songs of the decade (particularly before disco exploded out--you can hear some disco elements in "Get Your Love", but it's such a genre twist to begin with...)

L.A. Woman - The Doors

I was having a conversation with my mom this past week, and we were talking about "Throwback Tracks" and she asked me if we had ever put up a song by The Doors. I thought for a while, and then went "Oh...crap" here we go!

I decided to go with "L.A. Woman" off of The Door's final album (of the same name) because I always liked the story that Jim Morrison recorded the vocal part of this track in their makeshift studios bathroom because of the reverb...and to be perfectly honest, I get some Ian Curtis hits in the vocals of "L.A. Woman"...if Curtis had been a singer of a great, psych/blues rock band in the late 1960s, early 1970s. It's a long song, but it never feels long (as some tracks from the era can) as there are shifts, energy transitions, and a general tone that keeps refreshing the song as it continues. 

To describe The Doors, they're fascinating lyrics, or their tumultuous time as a band in the little amount of space I have set aside for each track would do them a great deal of injustice, so if you are interested, I definitely suggest looking into a documentary, or one of the really good books on The Doors...maybe pick it up for your Holidays...

Here is the November 2016 Throwback Playlist--again we're lucky enough to get every track on the list, which is one helluva 90 minute experience (little bit of everything, and some epic swings).

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

October 2016 Throwback Playlist,

September 2016 Throwback Playlist

August Apple Music Playlist

July 2016 Throwback Playlist

June 2016 Throwback Playlist

May 2016 Throwback Playlist

April 2016 Throwback Playlist

Remember, as I use Apple Music, that is where the playlists live, but if you want me to look into other services, just hit me up on Twitter and we'll chat about it.

There won't be a December playlist--I will instead intend on doing one of those massive "December & January" lists...which shouldn't be...too...awful. 

See you again in 2017!

-S (@Shauncord

photo credit: JustinJensen Waiting for the Sun via photopin (license)