Tuesday, April 29, 2014

tunes on tuesday 4-29: temples, parker millsap, t.rex, declan o'rourke, the pretenders

Tunes on Tuesday is a fun project. Each week I'll try to bring you some fun videos or audio files, each one focusing on a song, group or collaboration that just might pique your interest! If you have someone for possible spotlight then shoot me a private e-mail and we'll give it a listen. Hope you enjoy Tunes on Tuesday! 

NOTE: All videos may be expanded to full screen. Hit play then click on the icon at lower right.

Ok, so I can immediately think of about 5 classic bands that this group has adopted sounds from, but it's kind of refreshing to hear new music that has a nostalgic feel. Temples is a Britpop group that just released their debut album Sun Structures. The group has played a couple of larger UK music festivals and have just announced some dates in the US and Australia. Find out more, see a few of their psychedelic videos and hear a couple more songs at their website. Here is a fun one: Shelter Song.

Parker Millsap is 21 years old, from a tiny town in Oklahoma, raised in a Pentecostal home, and has the voice of a man with many years and some hard living under his belt. Howlin' Wolf meets Tom Waits meets Lowell George, Delta Blues mixes with folk, country and a knack for red-dirt story-telling. That's Parker Millsap. His debut album, released just a little over a month ago, is self titled and this song is Quite Contrary. I think you're going to like it. Expect more to come from Parker Millsap!


Though T. Rex was only in existence for 10 years, their impact was substantial in the music world. The band morphed as key personnel changed and the group developed their own unique sound, but they found themselves with the release of the very popular Electric Warrior and Slider albums. They appeared frequently on the popular British TV show, Top of the Pops, and after one particular performance where Marc Bolan appeared with glitter under his eyes and sparkling in the studio lights, the Glam Rock genre was born. Fast friends with such musical greats as David Bowie, Elton John and Ringo Starr, and with well earned recognition for his album releases and live performances, Marc Bolan was living his rock-n-roll dream. Tragically, he was killed in a drunk driving accident at the young age of 29 so we’ll never know of the great music that was to come, but the few albums we are left with are gems. Here is Jeepster from the Electric Warrior LP.  

Declan O'Rourke is a singer/songwriter from Ireland who has been slowly gathering much deserved attention in the US. This beautiful song is Time Machine from his US debut album, Mag Pai Zai, the third album he's recorded. He joined in a series of Transatlantic Sessions with Allison Krause and Jerry Douglas and though he's mainly touring in Ireland we can still enjoy his posted music and videos. See and hear more about Declan at www.declanorourke.com.

When I first heard The Pretenders back in the late 70's, I was immediately taken with Chrissie Hynde's voice. Male lead singers far outnumbered female rockers at that time and when Chrissie burst onto the scene she was not trying to be an imitator. She was confident, self-assured, pounding out songs with a crystal clear, emotional style that was all her own. The Pretenders have seen a lot of personnel changes throughout the years, two of them really important losses due to drug overdoses, but Chrissie has remained the constant driving force throughout. In 1972, Neil Young recorded Needle and the Damage Done, a song he wrote in reaction to seeing the effect that heroin use was having on his fellow artists, particularly the decline he was seeing in his Crazy Horse guitarist, Danny Whitten. It's a beautiful, acoustic hymn that still sends chills to listeners today. Add Chrissie Hynde's take on this classic and the result is awesome.

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