Category Archives: music
Growing up in the heyday of MTV videos, I always considered Ric Ocasek as the leader and most important member of The Cars. “You Might Think” was one of my favorite videos, with his goofy mug floating all over the place. I had no idea what an important part all the others played until much later. Still today, though, I can’t help but think of Ocasek more than any other member when I think of the band.
The Cars’ self-titled debut album dropped in 1978 and charted the hits “Just What I Need,” “My Best Friend’s Girl,” and “Good Times Roll.” Also appearing on the album are “You’re All I’ve Got Tonight,” “Bye Bye Love,” and “Moving In Stereo.” For a debut album especially, it’s pretty fantastic.
The Cars were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Saturday night, an honor that was many years overdue. The surviving members reunited to perform at the ceremony and were joined by Weezer‘s Scott Shriner on bass. The group closed their set with “Just What I Needed,” originally sung by the late Benjamin Orr.
Inducting yourself into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is kind of like wearing a band’s t-shirt to their concert, right? But that’s what happened Saturday night as bassist John Illsley congratulated himself and his Dire Straits band mates, three of whom didn’t even bother showing up, on their induction into the Cleveland institution. Mark Knopfler, David Knopfler, and Pick Williams all decided to skip the ceremony.
Joining Illsely on stage were keyboardists Alan Clark and Guy Fletcher, who also received the honor from the Rock Hall. Other former Dire Straits members Hal Lindes, Terry Williams, and Jack Sonni were shunned by the committee.
I’m not sure if I have ever participated in a Blog Bat Around before, but this one might help me organize my thoughts on collecting. Thanks to Night Owl Cards for starting the topic. Here goes…
MY CARD COLLECTING PROJECTS
Cincinnati Reds: I know I will never own every Cincinnati Reds baseball card, but that doesn’t stop me from attempting to create a master checklist. It’s an ongoing project, as new sets are released every year and I discover older sets I never knew existed until some kind soul sends me a card from the set. I’m still working on crossing out my recent acquisitions, and I found a shoebox that had several other needs that have not been inventoried yet.
Kurt Stillwell: The former second-overall draft pick of the Cincinnati Reds has right around 100 cards. At one time, I had a good checklist and kept up with the collection. I was close to completion, and something went off the rails. I have several empty slots in the binder, and the checklist has disappeared, and I really have no idea which cards I still need. It’s not a huge project, and so close to finished, I really need to figure out where I’m at with it.
Shawon Dunston and Doug Dascenzo: As a baseball fan in the mid- to late-’80s and early ’90s, I saw a lot of Chicago Cubs baseball on WGN. I loved watching Dunston fire the ball to first base, nearly breaking Mark Grace‘s hand. I loved seeing Dascenzo hustle around the bases and take the mound on occasion. Both were fantastic “through the mail” signers to boot, so I have quite a few autographs of each. I would like to eventually acquire, at a minimum, all their Cubs cards from their playing days. Both moved on to other teams, and I do have some cards from those later years, but I remember them best as Cubs.
Reggie and Bo Jackson: I think Reggie was my first favorite player. Or at least my first favorite non-Reds player. I don’t have a huge number of his cards, but one of my prized possessions since middle school has been his 1973 Topps card. I recently came into possession of his rookie card, which is now the pièce de résistance of my small Reggie collection. These are not organized at all, and I have no idea what I might be missing. Bo was an amazing athlete. For those who never saw him perform live—even if only on television—you truly missed out. Acquiring his cards from his playing days, even if including the football issues, seems a little more doable than Reggie.
Non-Reds cards of Eric Davis, Chris Sabo, Buddy Bell, and Dave Parker: Davis and Sabo had their best years in Reds uniforms, while Bell and Parker were better known for their time with other teams. I don’t have checklists available for these collecting goals yet, but I like to pick up cards I don’t think I already have occasionally.
Stars and Famers: I used to hoard cards of Hall of Famers. I didn’t care how many 1986 Topps Ozzie Smith cards I had, they were never available for trade. Until recently. The cards were just taking up so much space, and I didn’t ever look at them. A much more manageable project is to keep one or two favorite cards of these guys. The rest have been shipped off to team collectors. Likewise with the likes of Don Mattingly, Ken Boyer, Dale Murphy, and a few guys that aren’t really should-be Hall of Famers, but once seemed to be on the right track, like Darryl Strawberry and Will Clark. Same rule as HoFers: one or two favorite cards of each is enough for me.
Music Cards: Pro Set Musicards, Yo! MTV Raps, Donruss KISS cards, and a very small selection of other brands. I have nearly the complete set of Musicards (missing only a handful of cards). Two of my favorite music cards came from Steve over a year ago, when he had Topps make custom cards of Vivian Campbell and John Sykes for me.
Miscellaneous: Here is the catch-all. If it’s something I like, I’ll collect it. Be it He-Man cards, Dukes of Hazzard cards, Star Wars cards, Superman cards, you name it. I may never chase the entire set, but I like to have a few cards of pop culture awesomeness in my possession. Come to think of it, I might be close on that He-Man set. No closer than I was 15 years ago when I first bought that wax box, mind you, but close still.
I look forward to reading all the other bloggers’ various card collecting projects.
Ricky Zero of Radio Cult and Possum Kingdom Ramblers contacted me last month about a Pro Set Musicards trade. He has been working on the set since it was released and lacked only #60 Janet Jackson. I happened to have an extra, and he had a few that I needed toward my set.
That knocks off #26, #160, and #183. I am now only four cards short of the complete first series:
8 Legends: The Doors
132 Perfect Gentlemen
187 Billy Idol
250 Historic Concerts: Muddy Waters at the Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, November 4-6, 1966
Thanks Ricky for helping me knock a few more cards off my wantlist!
(September 6, 1971 – January 15, 2018)
Lead singer Dolores O’Riordan of the Cranberries passed away at the age of 46. She was in London for a recording session. The cause of death has not been made public.
Irish and international singer Dolores O’Riordan has died suddenly in London today. She was 46 years old.
Family members are devastated to hear the breaking news and have requested privacy at this very difficult time. Full Statement: https://t.co/L8K98BFpSM pic.twitter.com/ADEY51Xnwe
— The Cranberries (@The_Cranberries) January 15, 2018
I’m really shocked that #DoloresORiordan has passed so suddenly
– I was talking to her a couple weeks before Christmas she seemed happy and well – we even spoke about maybe writing some songs together – unbelievable god bless her pic.twitter.com/Pk2QyAaaBw
— Dave Davies (@davedavieskinks) January 15, 2018
So sad to hear of Dolores O’Riordan passing. I remember as a young girl, hearing The Cranberries for the first time and wanting to be just like her.
— Michelle Branch (@michellebranch) January 15, 2018
— mark lanegan (@marklanegan) January 15, 2018
Sad to hear about the passing of Delores O’Riordan.
— Elijah Wood (@elijahwood) January 15, 2018
My first time hearing Dolores O'Riordan's voice was unforgettable. It threw into question what a voice could sound like in that context of Rock. I'd never heard somebody use their instrument in that way. Shocked and saddened to hear of her passing, thoughts are with her family.
— Hozier (@Hozier) January 15, 2018
Oh this is sad. https://t.co/uLaBZLHEKD
— Shawn Duncan (@sduncandrums) January 15, 2018
— Julia Michaels (@imjmichaels) January 15, 2018
Nooooo!! Have always adored her songs and voice https://t.co/asBAt1RJl1
— josh groban (@joshgroban) January 15, 2018
— Melissa Etheridge (@metheridge) January 15, 2018
I once met Delores O’Riordan when I was 15. She was kind and lovely, I got her autograph on my train ticket and it made my day. She had the most amazing voice and presence. So sorry to hear that she’s passed away today x
— James Corden (@JKCorden) January 15, 2018
Please take a few minutes to watch Dolores O'Riordan perform Zombie in her fierce Limerick lilt on Late Show with David Letterman. A reminder that she was *23* here: https://t.co/Wtp9O0q5XK
— ⭐ amy o'connor ⭐ (@amyohconnor) January 15, 2018
There really are a ton of great bands out there that you have probably never heard of. Rival Sons, Scorpion Child, Black Country Communion, Tyler Bryant & the Shakedown, Revolution Saints, just to name a handful. But there is one band that has absolutely overshadowed all others, and they only have eight songs recorded so far: Greta Van Fleet. The group of three brothers and a drummer released a 4-song EP earlier this year, and have added four more songs on their latest release, From The Fires,, which dropped in November. Apparently they are getting some radio airtime, and that’s great, because this is the most rock n’ roll band since Led Zeppelin.
I’m not even making a list with this post. It begins and ends with one band: Greta Van Fleet. Buy it for every headbanger on your Christmas list.
I am so pumped about Star Wars, Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. I’m doing my best to steer clear of spoilers, and I plan to go “radio silence” mode next Thursday night since I can’t see the movie until Friday morning. But there is so much awesome Star Wars-related merchandise out, from the classic trilogy to the awful prequels to the exciting new releases. Here are a few ideas for those Force-sensitive beings you love…
- Episodes I-VI on DVD or Blu-Ray
- Episode VII: The Force Awakens on DVD or Blu-Ray
- Rogue One (or Episode 3.95, if you prefer) on DVD or Blu-Ray
- Topps “Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi” Trading Cards
- Topps trading card books for Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, or Return of the Jedi
- Hasbro action figures
- Funko Pop
- William Shakespeare’s Star Wars Trilogy (parody books of Episodes IV-VI in Victorian English)
- William Shakespeare’s The Force Doth Awaken: Star Wars Part the Seventh
The Shakespeare books are perhaps the most unique items on this list. I have the books for Episodes I-VI and absolutely love them. The only reason I don’t already have “Part the Seventh” is because I didn’t realize it was out! It has been added to my Christmas list, and if I don’t get it from someone else, I’ll buy it myself!
Last week I picked up a wax box of 1991 ProSet Super Star MusiCards at an antique mall for $4. This was the second box I have purchased in the past couple of years. After ripping through all the packs with my wife, I am only eight cards short of a full set of series one cards, but I have hundreds of doubles and triples. If you have any of the cards listed below, I will gladly trade whatever you might want from the stacks of doubles. Soundgarden, Tom Petty, Led Zeppelin, Dread Zeppelin, Janet Jackson…name it, and if I have it, it’s yours!
1991 ProSet MusiCards Series 1
- 8 Legends: The Doors
- 26 Paula Abdul
- 90 The Party
- 132 Perfect Gentlemen
- 160 D.A.D.
- 183 Heart
- 187 Billy Idol
- 250 Historic Concerts: Muddy Waters at the Fillmore Auditorium, San Francisco, November 4-6, 1966
There are several variations, mostly related to the logo placement. I am not going to chase a “master” set of all the variations; just one of each card is all I want. I will also consider trading for series 2 or cards from the UK set, but I am not attempting to complete those sets yet. Series 1 is my focus. Please shoot me an e-mail if you want to work out a trade for any of the cards listed.
The most underrated member of the Traveling Wilburys is arguably Jeff Lynne. He is a producer extraordinaire and excellent songwriter, but was the last of the Wilburys to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His group, Electric Light Orchestra, was finally honored by the Rock Hall in 2017. The band was introduced by Dhani Harrison, also known as Ayrton Wilbury, who played the guitar solo on “Like A Ship” from the vinyl edition of The Traveling Wilburys Collection. Lynne produced George Harrison‘s 1987 album, Cloud Nine, which included the #1 hit “Got My Mind Set On You.” He also produced Roy Orbison‘s 1989 release Mystery Girl, featuring the top 40 hit, “You Got It,” and co-produced Tom Petty‘s Full Moon Fever. And of course, Lynne—or rather, Otis Wilbury—co-produced Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1 with George Harrison (er, Nelson Wilbury). The Wilbury’s 1990 follow-up, Traveling Wilburys Vol. 3, was produced by Clayton and Spike Wilbury (Jeff and George, respectively).