Sometimes you just gotta know when to give up.
Garth Brooks joined the Pittsburgh Pirates this spring after previous failed attempts to make the majors with the San Diego Padres, New York Mets, and Kansas City Royals. While he actually got into a few games with those teams, and collected a hit with the Padres and Royals, he failed to even step up to the plate with the Pirates. Some players have a reputation of “all hit, no glove” or “no hit, all glove.” Brooks is best described as “no hit, no glove.” Not surprisingly, he only lasted a week before the Pirates sent him packing.
I really hope this guy has another talent to fall back on. At 57 years old, the window on a professional baseball career has been slammed shut. I hear McDonald’s is hiring. Or maybe he has a hidden talent like singing; he could audition for American Idol. Luke Bryan would be happy to give him some pointers.
In all seriousness, Brooks’ various appearances have been in conjunction with his “Teammates for Kids Foundation,” which has raised over $100 million for children’s charities. Whether you like his music or not, that’s kinda awesome.
One of the greatest American rock bands of all time, Aerosmith raised the bar for hard rockers in the 1970s and shocked the music world with a massive comeback in the late 1980s. More than three years ago, I gave the band the “Ultimate Mixtape” treatment, picking my favorite song from each album released by the group.
Countless artists have offered up their renditions of the Bad Boys of Boston’s greatest hits. In this Ultimate Mixtape, I will attempt to collate some of the greatest and most interesting Aerosmith songs covered by other bands. I’m sticking only to officially released songs, and my personal preference is to avoid live versions. While tribute albums are fair game, only one song per tribute is allowed on this compilation. Further, no artists will be duplicated, and each song will only be represented once. So hit play on the YouTube videos below, click the links to buy some records, and rock out like you’ve never rocked out before!
JT’s Ultimate Mixtape: Aerosmith covered edition
- “Walk This Way” (Run DMC, Raising)
- “Sweet Emotion” (Leo Kottke and Mike Gordon, Sixty Six Steps)
- “Dream On” (Ronnie James Dio and Yngwie Malmsteen, Not The Same Old Song & Dance)
- “Toys in the Attic” (R.E.M., Dead Letter Office)
- “Same Ol’ Song and Dance” (Black ‘n Blue, Without Love)
- “Seasons of Wither” (Tesla, Real to Reel, Vol. 2)
- “Draw the Line” (Testament, Signs of Chaos: The Best of Testament)
- “Back in the Saddle” (Sebastian Bach featuring Axl Rose, Angel Down)
- “Rock in a Hard Place (Cheshire Cat)” (Puny Human, Revenge is Easy)
- “SOS (Too Bad)” (Eric Singer Project, ESP)
- “Fever” (Garth Brooks, Fresh Horses)
- “Cryin'” (Otis Clay, Sweet Emotion: Songs of Aerosmith – Blues on Fire)
- “Living in the Fridge” (Weird Al Yankovic, Alapalooza)
by Larry Cordle & Lonesome Standard Time
Mighty Cord Records, 2014
The list of artists who have recorded songs written by Larry Cordle reads like a who’s who of country music royalty. Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood, Kenny Chesney, George Strait, Travis Tritt, the Oak Ridge Boys, Reba McEntire, and the late George Jones are just a handful of the household names that have recognized Cordle’s enormous talent and used his songs on their records. On his latest release, All-Star Duets, Cordle calls in a few favors and some of those legends join him on his most popular songs.
One of Cordle’s earliest compositions, “Highway 40 Blues,” was recorded by Ricky Skaggs and went to #1 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart in 1983. George Strait’s rendering of Cordle’s famous composition, “Murder on Music Row,” reached #38 on the Hot Country Songs chart despite never being released as a single. In addition to the unsolicited radio airplay, the song was named CMA’s Vocal Event of the Year in 2000 and Song of the Year in 2001. Both songs are included on this release, Skaggs joining Cordle to sing his #1 hit, while Daryle Singletary and Kevin Denney team up with the songwriter to tackle the song made famous by George Strait over a decade ago.
Another high-charting song featured on All-Star Duets is “Mama Don’t Forget to Pray For Me,” which peaked at #9 in the early 1990s for Diamond Rio. Marty Roe, Gene Johnson, and Dana Williams reprise their vocal parts during the chorus of the re-recording, with Cordle himself handle vocals during the verses.
Each of the twelve tracks on All-Star Duets is a reminder of Cordle’s abilities as a songwriter, and displays his ability as a singer as well. There is no doubt that he deserves induction into the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame, and honor that will be bestowed on him April 10 in Lexington. Country music fans would do well to recognize the talent behind some of their favorite songs as displayed on Larry Cordle’s All-Star Duets.
1. Against the Grain (with Garth Brooks)
2. Mama Don’t Forget to Pray For Me (with Diamond Rio)
3. Highway 40 Blues (with Ricky Skaggs)
4. Lonesome Dove (with Trisha Yearwood)
5. The Bigger the Fool (with Del McCoury)
6. The Fields of Home (with Kenny Chesney)
7. Lonesome Standard Time (with Kathy Mattea)
8. Murder on Music Row (with Daryle Singletary and Kevin Denney)
9. You Can’t Take it With You When You Go (with Dierks Bentley)
10. Cure for the Common Heartache (with Terri Clark)
11. Rough Around the Edges (with Travis Tritt)
12. Two Highways (with Alison Krauss)
Back in the late 1990s and early 2000s, I worked for Cingular Wireless. “Worked” meaning I went in, sat at a desk, and played on the computer. During this time, I created “fun cards” of current baseball players on classic card designs. Below are some of the fruits of that effort (you can click on the thumbnails for larger versions)…
I printed two of some of these cards and sent them to the players, asking them to autograph one and return the other. I got responses back from Kerry Wood, Josh Hamilton, Jason LaRue and Pokey Reece among others.
But my time was not wasted entirely on baseball. I also created some Star Wars Jedi cards based on the 1986 Topps baseball design. I never got around to making the Sith cards though. Here are the Jedi…