Meme of Solace

I’m sure the title refers to a James Bond film; I’m swiping this from SamauraiFrog.

List 10 musical artists (or bands) you like, in no specific order (do this before reading the questions below). Really, don’t read the questions below until you pick your ten artists!!!

There is something to be said for following the instructions in this case.

1. The Beatles
2. The Beach Boys
3. David Bowie
4. The Rascals
5. The Rolling Stones
6. Linda Ronstadt
7. The Supremes
8. The Temptations
9. Talking Heads
10. The Police

What was the first song you ever heard by 6?

Something early, probably “Different Drum”.

What is your favorite song of 8?

“I Can’t Get Next To You”. From the rowdy opening to the Sly Stone-inspired shared vocals.

What kind of impact has 1 left on your life?

Massive. I have a ton of their albums, both as a group and as solo artists. I know arcane things about their album releases. People say to me, “What album is X song on?” and far more often than not, I’ll say “American or British album?” And then peg both of them. There’s a picture of Lennon in my office and a photo of the Imagine imagine from NYC in my house.

What is your favorite lyric of 5?

Probably the chorus of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”. “But if you try sometime, you just might find you get what you need.” From Let It Bleed, probably my favorite Stones album. The organ noodling of this song during the early funeral sequence of The Big Chill cracked me up, while others in the audience wondered why.

How many times have you seen 4 live?

Never, though I’ve seen them live on TV once or twice.

What is your favorite song by 7?

“Love Is Like An Itchin’ In My Heart”. What an insistent bass line. there’s a version that’s about 30 seconds longer than the single I particularly enjoy.

Is there any song by 3 that makes you sad?

Ashes to Ashes
Time and again I tell myself
I’ll stay clean tonight
But the little green wheels are following me
Oh no, not again

What is your favorite song by 9?

“Making Flippy Floppy”, probably because I saw the Talking Heads during the Speaking in Tongues tour in 1983 or 1984 at SPAC in Saratoga.

When did you first get into 2?

It’s really odd, actually. I had a compilation album with I Get Around and Don’t Worry Baby in 1965, and the Pet Sounds album in 1966, both of which I liked. But I never considered myself a real Beach Boys fan until I got Surf’s Up, which was a mainstay of my freshman year in college, 1971-72. THEN I went back and got into the earlier music, and bought the retrospective albums that came out in the mid-1970s.

How did you get into 3?

I was in my dorm room in my freshman year and somehow won Hunky Dory from my college radio station, WNPC on a radio call-in contest. I liked almost all of it; my roommate Ron only liked Changes.

What is your favorite song by 4?

“It’s Love”, the last song on the Groovin’ album, featuring flute by Hubert Laws, plus a great bass line. When I got a new turntable in 1987, the track ran so close to the label that the album would reject before the song would end; drove me nuts. Actually bought the CD five years ago largely for this one song.

How many times have you seen 9 live?

Once, but it was one of the two greatest shows of my life, along with the Temptations in 1980 or 1981.

What is a good memory concerning 2?

A mixed memory actually. I had this friend named Donna George, and I bought her the Beach Boys box set. Before she died of brain cancer a few years ago, she assigned another friend of hers and me to divvy up her music. I took the Beach Boys box, and I always remember her when I play it.

Is there a song by 8 that makes you sad?

The Temptations with a Lot o’ Soul is full of melancholy songs, but I’ll pick No More Water in the Well.

What is your favorite song of 1?

A truly impossible question. Seriously. It’s dependent on mood, what I’ve listened to recently. I’ll say Got to Get You Into My Life, but reserve the right to change that.

How did you become a fan of 10?

Almost certainly listening to WQBK-FM, Q-104 in Albany, NY, a truly great station that also turned me onto the Talking Heads, the Clash and a lot of other music of the late 1970s and early 1980s.
ROG

Music by the Decade QUESTION

Groundhog’s Day is for recollecting: It’s not THAT neat and tidy, but it seems that each decade of my music collecting life was dominated by a few groups or solo artists.
1960s: The Beatles, the Supremes. Sure, I could add the Rascals, the Rolling Stones, the Temptations, Simon & Garfunkel, and undoubtedly others.
1970s: Clearly Stevie Wonder and Paul Simon. I have every album each one put out (yes, even Stevie’s Secret Life of Plants). Other contenders: Joni Mitchell, Joan Armatrading, Beach Boys, Elton John, Neil Young.
1980s: Talking Heads, the Police. I also considered Bruce Springsteen, Prince, REM, Neil Young.
1990s: Johnny Cash and Nirvana. Also Mary Chapin Carpenter, Lyle Lovett, U2, Beatles.
2000s: There hasn’t been an overriding group, but I’ll suggest that compilations by Fred Hembeck and Lefty Brown (along with Lefty’s fellow travelers) has definitely shaped my music the most this century.

So what music has dominated your life at various points? You don’t have to break it down in 10-year periods, as I did, but whatever bite-sized time frame you wish. ROG

Good Deed

Sunday, April 29: I”m riding home on my bicycle from church. Lying in the street is a checkbook. It’s face down, but I can still tell what it is. It’s located at what I call the “change line”. Quite often, I find loose change lying on the street about a car width from the curb, which I suspect has fallen out of drivers’ pockets.
If the address on the checkbook were in my neighborhood, I would have dropped it off at the address, but it’s not, so I ride home. Call the number on the checkbook, which is a person in Watervliet, the next town over.
R: May I speak to [X]?
X: This is [X].
R: I found your checkbook.
X: What?
R: I found your checkbook.
X: I don’t know.
R: It’s an HSBC checkbook.
X: Oh, that’s mine. I’ll call you back in 15 minutes.
R: O.K. [I figure he needs to get a ride.]
[15 minutes later]
X: Hi, this is [X]. O.K., I’m coming over. What is your address?
[I give it to him.]
[10 minutes later, while we’re eating lunch before I get picked up to go to my conference in Utica an hour later, the doorbell rings, and I go to the door.]
R [to person at the door]: Here you are.
[In my peripheral vision, I see two Albany policemen.]
P1 [in his best “talking to a perp” voice]: What’s going on here?
R [stepping onto the porch, trying to stifle a sigh]: I found his checkbook on the ground.
P1: When was that?
R: Right before I called him. It took me five minutes to ride home, oh about 30, 35 minutes ago.
[At this point, the second policeman takes X, who seems to be jumping up and down as though he’s helped in the bust of the century, onto the sidewalk.]
P1: Where did you find it?
R: On the street, on Western Avenue, about two car lengths beyond Ontario Street.
[By this point, my wife and daughter have come to the door. P1’s tone lightens.]
P1: Usually, in 90% of these cases, there’s some kind of shakedown.
Then they leave.

As it turns out, X had been robbed of his wallet and checkbook, I inferred; this was never stated to me outright.
O.K., what could/should I have done?
1) Leave the checkbook there on the ground – unacceptable. If I had lost mine, I would have wanted someone to do something.
2) Mail it back anonymously – not optimal. I thought he was missing it, and would want it back right away.
3) Drop it off at the police station; there’s one on the way home – what I probably should have done, an idea I had dismissed at the time because I was trying to save time to get ready for the trip, and didn’t want to have to go through the bureaucracy of filing a police report.

Being a Good Samaritan has become such a hassle.

BTW, and I didn’t know this until I was retelling this story to some friends, my wife and daughter coming to the doorway was not a happenstance. The wife heard the policeman’s first utterance and decided to make herself and our child known to him. “See, he’s a family man,” the message would be. Smart wife.

ROG