Friday, March 25, 2011

Gear Daddies- Let's Go Scare Al

I had a request for some Gear Daddies, more specifically their debut, Let's Go Scare Al, from 1988. A sometimes forgotten and overlooked band from Minnesota, they were maybe overshadowed by some of the bigger names, but the Gear Daddies definitely have an important place and influence on the Minnesota music scene. Lead singer Martin Zellar is still very much active as a solo performer and the band occasionally reunites for concerts almost annually. Their Zamboni song is a staple at hockey rinks everywhere, my hometown included.

After the last post I dug around and found some live shows from the Gear Daddies I acquired in a trade years ago. I'll upload one of them for my next post.

Let's Go Scare Al (1988)

  1. Cut Me Off
  2. Statue of Jesus
  3. Boys Will Be Boys
  4. Don't Forget Me
  5. Heavy Metal Böyz
  6. Drank So Much (Just Feel Stupid)
  7. She's Happy
  8. Blues Mary
  9. This Time
  10. Strength

GEAR DADDIES- Let's Go Scare Al. rar

Monday, March 21, 2011

Take It To The Limit...One More Time!

This is actually Soul Asylum (around the same era), couldn't find any photos of the TITTL band.

I think I've taken this "Cover's Series" to the limit for now, so I'll lay it to rest for a little while. But first, we're going to conclude the series with a rare one-off show with a band that billed themselves as, The Take It To The Limit Band featuring an all-Eagles (almost) covers show. The band consisted of Dan Murphy (guitar, vocals) and Dave Pirner (drums, vocals) from Soul Asylum, Martin Zellar (guitar, vocals) from the Gear Daddies and Jim Boquist (bass, vocals) later of Son Volt. Fans of Golden Smog should note, many claim this is the earliest incarnation of Golden Smog considering the lineup and concept with founders Pirner and Murphy gradually adding members to it's loose lineup of members. This same group of musicians also played a all-Rolling Stones cover show in 1989 under the name, "Her Satanic Majesty's Paycheck." If anyone has a recording of that show, please let me know!

What can I say, if you love the Eagles, you'll hate this concert and if you hate the Eagles, you'll be happy to know they must have been playing these songs with their tongue-in-cheek throughout (I hope?). The set featured sloppily performed versions of Eagles songs along with some solo members songs and even a Bangles cover to end the show, all performed to the displeasure of the "lucky" crowd at the Uptown bar. Personally, I love this show, it must of been a fun time and I will admit some of these songs are horrible and laughable, but in a good way. A must listen for all Soul Asylum, Golden Smog and anti-Eagles fans everywhere!

Uptown Bar

Minneapolis, MN

January 8, 1987
  1. Lyin' Eyes
  2. Heartache Tonight
  3. Take It Easy
  4. Rocky Mountain Way
  5. Already Gone
  6. Best Of My Love
  7. Tequila Sunrise
  8. Witchy Woman
  9. Peaceful Easy Feeling
  10. In The City
  11. Take It To The Limit
  12. Walk Like An Egyptian
TAKE IT TO THE LIMIT- 1-8-87. rar

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Grand Champeen Play Soul Asylum

When I first heard Grand Champeen, my first impression is they sounded like Soul Asylum used to sound. Their sound had the urgency and intensity of early Soul Asylum albums and shows and their recorded input thus far has revealed they can also write some great rock songs. They sound like a continuation of Soul Asylum, circa, And The Horse They Rode On, as if they never recorded Grave Dancers Union. Don't get me wrong, Soul Asylum is still one of favourite bands from the 80's, but unfortunately with huge mainstream success comes mediocre songs that seem to have taken the edge off the band. I saw Soul Asylum live around the time when the success of Grave Dancers broke (1993) and they were just starting to get some commercial radio play and then saw them again in the 2002 in Fargo (for $15), well after they were chewed up and spit out by the mainstream. One thing I can say about the band is that you have to see them live, to fully appreciate them. Back in the late 80's they were heralded as one of the hardest working bands live and it still rang true when I saw them. I love all their albums pre-Grave Dancers and I have piles of concert recordings from all periods of their career that I still covet. In the 80's, they were probably most comparable to the Replacements for their live shows filled with cool covers and their spontaneous drunken performances.

In 2006, Grand Champeen took on the challenge to perform the Soul Asylum songbook in front of a Minneapolis crowd (SA's hometown) for a Benefit for the Karl Mueller foundation. The results were amazing, they sounded so much like Soul Asylum if you weren't a hardcore fan (or a collector of their live shows), you might think it's actually them! For the hometown crowd, they were treated to a setlist restricted only to their earlier material up to, And the Horse They Rode On and as a bonus to close the show they played the awesome, James At 16 medley, song by song, a SA live classic. This unique show is a must listen for Soul Asylum fans that miss the old songs and also it's a pleasure to hear a talented band like Grand Champeen having the time of their lives paying tribute to a band that has influenced and inspired their own music!

April 14th, 2006

7th Street Entry

Minneapolis, MN

01. All the Kings
02. Tied to the Tracks
03. Closer to the Stars
04. Easy Street
05. Crashing Down
06. Marionette
07. Can't Go Back
08. Sometime to Return
09. Chains
10. Broken Glass
11. Sun Don't Shine
12. Stranger
13. Long Way Home
14. Spinnin'
15. Never Really Been
16. Standing in the Doorway
17. Nowhere to Go
18. Made to be Broken
19. Freaks
20. Be On Your Way
21. Cartoon*
22. Heavy Rotation
23. medley 1
24. medley 2

Guitar/Vocals: Channing Lewis
Guitar/Vocals: Michael Crow

Bass: Alex Livingston

Drums: Ned Stewart

GRAND CHAMPEEN- 4-14-06 Mpls, MN. rar

Monday, March 14, 2011

fIREWHOSE- Live Who covers 8-25-89

This might be a little obscure, but Firehose was a band that formed after D. Boon of the Minutemen died accidentally and left the two remaining members, Mike Watt and George Hurley without a frontman, singer and guitarist. Minutemen fan, Ed Crawford from Ohio, expressed a desire to fill the void and he made his way to California to try to convince Watt and Hurley to let him audition. Crawford played the Who's, I'm One and a couple of Minutemen songs and the other two were so impressed, they together formed Firehose in 1986. The band went onto to record five full-length albums, two Ep's and played 980 shows before disbanding in 1994.

This is a very unique Firehose show as they open the show with 7 Who covers! Ed says it's their way of welcoming the Who who were in town at the time. If you were at this concert you must of been confused and wondered if their whole set was going to be Who songs. If you love the Who, this must have been quite the treat, they do a commendable job and I doubt they duplicated this feat ever again...Amazing!

Music Machine,
Santa Clara, CA
August 25, 1989

1) Naked Eye
2) Long Live Rock
3) Helpless Dancer
4) I’ve Had Enough
5) A Quick One While He’s Away
6) Join Together
7) Going Mobile
8) Max & Wells
9) Chemical Wire
10) What Gets Heard
11) In My Mind
12) Whispering While Hollerin’
13) Riddle of the 80’s
14) If’n
15) Some Things
16) Mas Cojones
17) ‘Nuf That Shit, George
18) In Memory of Elizabeth Cotton

FIREHOSE- 8-25-89

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Feelies (aka Foggy Notion) Play The Velvet Underground

Back when I was in university, a friend of mine had a job through the cities Parks and Rec department, booking entertainment for block parties and noon hour concerts in the downtown area. One of his regular performers was two guys sporting sunglasses, playing acoustic guitars and performing covers of Velvet Underground (and a couple Violent Femmes) songs. They were called The Sons Of Batman and for a group that played for next to nothing they were pretty good. Technically, a group like that might be considered a tribute band, but to me they were a couple of guys that took the spirit of the band and made it their own. They weren't trying to impersonate or copy the Velvet Underground's music note for note, but instead they played the songs acoustically maintaining a cool laidback style, yet they were scraggy and unpolished.

The Feelies are a band, in my mind anyways, that come closest in sound and vibe to the Velvets. The Feelies often include covers in their setlist of bands they admire and are influenced by, Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers, The Stooges, Neil Young, Television, the Rolling Stone and the band they cover the most, The Velvet Underground. I've posted a recording that features The Feelies play a complete set of Velvet Underground songs back in 1983. At least it sounds like the Feelies, but the line-up is debatable according to another source (in the comments section), it seems Foggy Notion is more an off-shoot of The Feelies with members from a number of different bands. Regardless, it's a great set of outstanding music that if you close your eyes and listen (okay, you really don't need to close your eyes), you almost swear it's the Velvets...kinda?

THE FEELIES (aka Foggy Notion)
Hoboken, NJ

May 15, 1983

  1. I'm Waiting For My Man
  2. White Light/White Heat
  3. Here She Comes Now
  4. There She Goes Again
  5. Run Run Run
  6. I'll Be Your Mirror
  7. Cool It Down
  8. All Tomorrow's Parties
  9. What Goes On
  10. Kill Your Sons
  11. Sister Ray
  12. Foggy Notion
THE FEELIES- 5-15-83. rar

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Yo La Tengo All-Request Marathon 2004

As you might have noticed it's unofficially all-covers week here at TDIT with another WFMU pledge week, all-request marathon with Yo La Tengo. This edited version of the marathon was originally posted at, but the site hasn't been updated in years and all the internal links don't work anymore. Fortunately I archived this show to disc back in the day and recently came across it when I was searching through the cases of live recordings I have on CD looking for interesting stuff to post. This show is just as fun as the 2000 fundraiser with lots of great interpretations of some killer songs. I know I have at least another year of YLT on WFMU, but does anyone have any of the others? They've been doing this since 1996, so there should be some more recordings somewhere...right?

WFMU All-Request Marathon

March 20, 2004

  1. I'm Your Captain (Grand Funk)
  2. Gigantic (The Pixies)
  3. Barstool Blues (Neil young)
  4. Next Big Thing (Dictators)
  5. Build Me Up Buttercup (Foundations)
  6. Jesus (VU)
  7. Surfin Bird (Trashmen)
  8. Psychotic Reaction (Count Five)
  9. Chicken Scratch Shuffle (??)
  10. Cars (Gary Numan)
  11. The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Tokans)
  12. Hold On (I'm Coming) (Sam and Dave)
  13. Tonight's The Night (Neil Young)
  14. banter
  15. Tonight's The Night (Rod Stewart)
  16. Monk Time (The Monks)
  17. She Cracked (Jonathan Richman)
  18. This Boy (Beatles)
  19. Drawing To A Hole (The Clean)
  20. White Light/White Heat (VU)
  21. banter
  22. Hey Ya (Outkast)
  23. Close To Me (The Cure)
  24. Taxman (Beatles)
  25. The Rain, The Park and Other Things (The Cowsills)
  26. London Calling (The Clash)
  27. We Didn't Start The Fire (medley) (Billy Joel)
  28. outro
YO LA TENGO- WFMU 2004. rar

Monday, March 07, 2011

Yo La Tengo- WFMU Fundraiser 2000

Photo by WFMU (actually this is from their 2006 fundraiser)

When most bands start out it's only standard they throw a few cover songs into the mix of their originals. Lots of people like to hear something familiar that they've heard before, that's why cover bands are always a popular crowd-pleaser especially for things like weddings and socials. Sometimes it's hard for a band that plays all-originals to gain the trust of the audience, but if they're good they should be able to win over and convert these sceptics into fans. It really saddens me to see singers get famous performing other people's songs, kind of a slight step up from karaoke or American Idol.

Case in point, "Lady Maria", the 10 year old from my hometown that skyrocketed to international stardom after Lady Gaga viewed her video on YouTube of a cover of her song, Born This Way, and tweeted about it. I guess if this is your idea of stardom, having Lady Gaga tweet about you, drawing more than 20 million views on YouTube, appearances and interviews on Ellen, Good Morning America and Access Hollywood and singing on stage with Lady Gaga, then good for her. Lady Gaga's message on Twitter was, "This is why I make music. She is the future." In my opinion, if Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber and Maria Aragon are the future of music, then get me the hell out of here!...and give me bands like, Yo La Tengo!!

Beginning in 1996, Yo La Tengo started making annual visits to WFMU, an independent radio station in New Jersey to help out their annual fundraising campaign. Listeners who pledged money during the band's on air performances were offered a chance to request a favourite non-YLT song that the band would attempt to perform. This made for some interesting listening with the band valiantly trudging through the songs despite flubbed lyrics and missed chords. Lots of classic covers, as well as obscure and goofy tunes that really tests the bands knowledge of all kinds of music. This is truly a band that is more concerned about entertaining and showcasing their amazing musical skills than fame, fortune and international stardom, thought YLT does have a very dedicated cult following. The band released a compilation of their appearances (1996-2003) at the WFMU fundraisers on an album called, Yo La Tengo Is Murdering The Classics, a very appropriate title! Yo La Tengo carries on this tradition to this day with their most recent session last week at WFMU...please support stations like this so we aren't left with only stations that cater to the "future of music"...!!

This recording is most of the songs from their appearance in 2000 (not sure of the exact date?).

WFMU (2000)
  1. Roadrunner (Modern Lovers)
  2. Return Of The Grievous Angel (Gram Parsons)
  3. Take Me To the Hospital (The Replacements)
  4. Sweet Lady Genevieve (The Kinks)
  5. Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This (Eurythmics)
  6. American Pie (Don McLean)
  7. Color Me Impressed (The Replacements)
  8. A Place Called Altamont (Nightmares)
  9. Rock The Boat (Hues Corporation)
  10. 19th Nervous Breakdown (The Rolling Stones)
  11. Too Many Creeps (Bush Tetras)
  12. Don't You Want Me Baby (Human League)
  13. Nothing (Fugs)
  14. Watching The Detectives (Elvis Costello)
  15. I've Got A Feeling (The Beatles)
  16. Top Of The Pops (The Kinks)
  17. Sheena Is A Punk Rocker (The Ramones)
  18. Needle Of Death (Bert Jansch)
  19. Ring Of Fire (Johnny Cash)
  20. Panic In Detroit (David Bowie)
  21. Roundabout (Yes)
  22. Mendocino (Sir Douglas Quintet)
  23. Raindrops Keep falling On My Head (Burt Bacharach)
  24. Raw Power (Stooges)
YO LA TENGO- WFMU 2000. rar

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Golden Smog- Collection Of Live Covers

When Golden Smog first formed in 1989, they were kind of a side project covers band featuring members of some well known Minneapolis bands such as The Replacements (Chris Mars), Soul Asylum (Dan Murphy, Dave Pirner), Jayhawks (Gary Louris, Marc Perlman) and Run Westy Run (Kraig Johnson). They played a handful of shows annually and released an EP called, On Golden Smog which consisted of 5 cover songs, in 1992. Chris Mars eventually left and the band added Noel Levy (Honeydogs) and Jeff Tweedy (Uncle Tupelo, Wilco) to record a proper full-length all-originals album. Up until then, their live shows were heavily laden with interesting and often unrehearsed drunken covers which were tongue-in-cheek in nature, but always good natured.

Even after releasing their first two full-length albums, Down By The Old Mainstream and Weird Tales, the band continued to include a good amount of covers in their shows. What I have here is a collection of soundboard recordings between 1996 and 1998 of some cover songs Golden Smog performed and to this day they still perform many of them. These recordings sound excellent and they play great ("almost better than the original") versions of many songs I'm sure you'll recognize. Thanks to whoever compiled this collection and shared in at Dime.

Live Covers

1. On The Beach (Europe Radio 1996)
2. What's So Funny About Peace Love and Understanding*
3. Signed DC*
4. Sad Peter Pan*
5. Photograph*
6. Most Beautiful Girl in the World+
7. One More Night+
8. Pink Turns To Blue+
9. Love and Mercy+
10. Seven Year Ache^
11. Easy To Be Hard #
12. Revolution Blues#
13. Who Loves The Sun#
14. Hanging On the Telephone #
15. Fooled Around and Fell in Love **
16. I Got You **
17. Spooky **
18. Buick MacKane ^
19. Powderfinger+
20. Five Years+
21. Do You Know How It Feels To be Lonesome (Europe Radio 1996)

** First Avenue, Minneapolis December 12, 1998
# Great American Music Hall, San Francisco June 26, 1996
^ Tramps, NYC April 13, 1996
+TLA, Philadelphia April 16, 1996
* 9:30 Club, Washington DC April 17, 1996

GOLDEN SMOG- Live Covers. rar
Locations of visitors to this page