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The CHIRP Blog

Entries on the topic of “Mp3” 183 results

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Tom Petersson Edition

Today is the birthday of the man with the 12 string bass, Cheap Trick’s Tom Petersson. Before he even started playing that special bass, Petersson’s presence as a player was obvious. On Cheap Trick’s debut album, his bass playing on songs like “He’s a Whore” and “Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace” showed that he was already a master of the instrument. He finally unleashed his signature instrument (designed by Hamer Guitars) on the band’s third album “Heaven Tonight”. His style truly fit the power pop style, as he has such a strong rock presence, but can play as melodically as needed. Tom had a hiatus from the band as he tried to start a solo career, but eventually came back and still rocks out at shows all over, getting his turn in the spotlight on his one Cheap Trick lead vocal, “I Know What I Want”. In Tom’s honor, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, tom petersson

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Link Wray Edition

Some say he’s the man who invented the power chord. Today is the birthday of Link Wray (full name Frederick Lincoln Wray), one of the early rock ‘n’ roll guitar innovators. The distorted instrumental classic “Rumble”, a 1958 hit, was his calling card, and his career had its ups and downs, but found him collaborating with ‘70s rockabilly revivalist Robert Gordon, singing back up on an NRBQ record, playing live on stage with Jason & The Scorchers and many other things. Pete Townshend once said that if it wasn’t for Link Wray he would never have picked up a guitar, and many other great players (and not-so-great ones) would say the same thing. Let’s pay tribute to Link by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, link wray, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Jim Ellison Edition

Are you ready? Are you ready, are you ready, are you ready, are you ready, are you ready....at the close of yet another fantastic show, as drummer Mike Zelenko would launch into the famed drumbeat of Sweet’s “Ballroom Blitz”, Material Issue frontman would pick out someone from the audience and point at him or her, insistently asking “Are you ready” until that person said yes, and the band would then launch into a rocking cover of a glam classic. Skinny, arrogant, passionate and talented as hell, Ellison led one of the best power pop bands of the era, a power trio out of the suburbs of Chicago. Ellison loved the classic tropes of the genre, but injected them with the inspiration of Cheap Trick, glam rock, punk and even some classic ‘60s acts like the Bee Gees. The music was sharp, forceful and hooky as hell, with lyrics that were often as astute as Chuck Berry’s, if he was a teen growing up in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. Their first album, International Pop Overthrow seemed to be the start of something big and is an acknowledged power pop classic. The next two albums had tons of great tunes but never caught fire. But even when their national profile descended as fast as it had flashed brightly, Material Issue was still a giant here, playing to packed houses. Sadly, for reasons no one really knows (the contents of a note have never been revealed by his family), on April 18, 1996, Jim Ellison took his own life. Very few rock deaths have affected me more – he was such a talent. On the first Material Issue song I ever heard, “She’s Goin’ Thru My Head”, he brags about the girl who is “playing my very most favorite Sweet record.” Years later, Sweet (well, half of the band, guitarist Andy Scott and Mick Tucker with some other guys) came to Cubby Bear, and at the side of the stage, there was Ellison. And he was rocking out with total abandon, just as I was, at seeing an all-time favorite. It made what was already obvious even clearer – he lived for rock ‘n’ roll. On the anniversary of Jim’s birthday, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, jim ellison, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Stuart Adamson Edition

The legendary BBC DJ John Peel once referred to this man as “Britain’s answer to Jimi Hendrix.” I don’t know how many people shared that opinion, but there is no doubt that Stuart Adamson could do so amazing things on his guitar. Adamson got his start in the post-punk band Skids, playing fantastic songs such as “Working For the Yankee Dollar”. Once Skids ran its course, Adamson really hit the big time, fronting the powerful Big Country. Big Country may have been a victim of “amazing first single syndrome,” as “In a Big Country” was so powerful, it was tough for the band to match. But Adamson and crew put out some fine records and he continued to grow as a guitarist (and, of course, he was famous for making his guitar sound like bagpipes). Sadly, Adamson passed away in 2011. In honor of Adamson on his birthday, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, stuart adamson

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Muddy Waters Edition

Today is the birthday of a man who made Chicago his home (and later, Westmont) and became one of the giants of the blues. McKinley Morganfield was 30 years old (or so) when he finally made his way from Mississippi to Chicago. He had been to the city before and had done some recordings for Alan Lomax. Muddy was looking to make it here. It took a few years before Muddy (who got the nickname from his grandmother and added the surname later on) finally hooked up with a label, run by the Chess brothers. In 1948, he broke through with the songs “I Can’t Be Satisfied” and “I Feel Like Going Home”. He also became a big live attraction, with an ace band which included bass player Willie Dixon. This led to the creation of blues standards like “I Just Want to Make Love to You”, “Hoochie Coochie Man” and “I’m Ready”. With these songs, Muddy established an electrified version of the Delta blues sound that fit the urban, working class lifestyle of Chicago. These songs were popular at home and influenced future blues rockers on both sides of the Atlantic. Of course, as you probably know, The Rolling Stones took their name from a Muddy Waters song. After a brief dry patch, Muddy revived his career in the ‘70s and kept performing until he passed away in 1983. His legacy lives on both at home and abroad. Let’s celebrate his birthday by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, muddy waters

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Quincy Jones Edition

Today is the birthday of a giant in the music industry, Quincy Jones. Jones showed musical aptitude at an early age, getting a scholarship to the forerunner of the Berklee School of Music at 18. He left school a year later to tour in Lionel Hampton’s band. Within a few years, he was producing and arranging. For example, at the age of 22, he was producing Louis Jordan, trying to help the jump blues king adapt to the rock ‘n’ roll age (a project that was artistically successful, although a commercial flop). Having worked with a who’s who of jazz legends, by the time he was 31, he was an executive at Mercury Records. He worked on film scores, made his own records, produced Leslie Gore and did tons of other things. This set the pattern for his career. Make a few records, do some soundtracks and work with major artists such as Frank Sinatra. Of course, his legacy was cemented with his work with Michael Jackson on Thriller. In honor of Mr. Jones, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and please share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, quincy jones

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Arthur Lee Edition

Today, let’s celebrate the birthday of the frontman of a band that produced one of the best albums of the ‘60s. Arthur Lee was born in Memphis, but moved to Los Angeles when he was five and by high school, he met Johnny Echols and they played in bands together. He was soon writing songs, and one of his songs was recorded by a local R & B singer, with Jimi Hendrix playing guitar on the session. Love came together in 1965, with Echols and Bryan McLean, among others. The band soon became a top live attraction and garnered a local hit with their radical rearrangement of Burt Bacharach’s “My Little Red Book”. This led to a deal with Elektra Records. Love was a perfect band for the psychedelic age, mixing all sorts of genres together, but this didn’t yield any hits. Nevertheless, their first three albums are great, with Forever Changes one of the most essential albums of the era. Lee later went solo and then dealt with various substance abuse and legal (i.e. jail time) issues. In the early ‘90s, he got himself back together and began touring as Love with mega-fans Baby Lemonade backing him up. I saw this edition of Love twice, and Lee was fascinating and the music sounded great. Let’s honor Lee by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: arthur lee, ipod, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Brian Jones Edition

Today is the birthday of the founding member of one the biggest bands in rock history, The Rolling Stones. Brian Jones had a serious jones for the blues. After learning to play saxophone at a young age, he got his first guitar at 17, all the better for taking with him when he dropped out of school to busk through Europe. He eventually moved to London, where he was on the ground floor of a burgeoning blues scene, and he performed under the name Elmo Lewis. It was in 1962 when the pieces of The Rolling Stones came together, with Jones coming up with the name. Indeed, Jones was the original leader of the band, getting gigs, promoting shows and negotiating rates (for which he paid himself an extra five bob a week). While Mick Jagger and Keith Richards eventually supplanted Jones as the driving force of the band, Jones' multi-instrumental talents can be found all over the Stones' catalog. But he became further estranged from the band, began seriously abusing drugs and was out by 1969. Not long after, he was found drowned in a swimming pool. Jones' life took a terrible turn, but his contributions to music cannot be denied. In his honor, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: brian jones, ipod, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Jake Burns Edition

Today, let’s pay tribute to an original punk rocker, who spent some time in Chicago. I’m talking about Jake Burns, the lead singer for the incendiary Northern Irish punk rock band Stiff Little Fingers. Jake got his start in a covers band, but when punk hit, his band morphed into a group call The Fast. That didn’t last long, as they learned the name had already been taken, so they named themselves after a Vibrators song. They got good really quick – their first single was the classic “Suspect Device”. By early 1979, they charted with their first album, the first of a string of intelligent, socially aware punk albums. After originally splitting in 1982, they got back together in 1987 and have been around just about ever since with Jake being the one constant over the years. Jake lived in Chicago for a while, because he married a woman who lived here. One of my cooler rock fan moments was getting an email from Jack Rabid of The Big Takeover Magazine asking if I wanted to hang out. Turned out he was in town for Jake’s wedding, and the reception was held at Jake’s Pub on Clark St. in Lincoln Park. I ended up sitting at a table for a while with Jack, Jake and John Kezdy of The Effigies. Only in Chicago! So let’s celebrate Jake’s birthday by getting your iPod, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, jake burns, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Maceo Parker Edition

Today, let’s celebrate the birthday of one of the all-time great sidemen in rock and soul history, saxophonist Maceo Parker. When he joined James Brown’s band in 1964, he was basically a throw-in – James really wanted Maceo’s brother, Melvin, who played drums. Maceo turned out to be quite the bonus, playing on countless great sides with the Hardest Working Man in Show Business. Having been around for the invention of funk, it makes sense that George Clinton would want Maceo to play with Parliament-Funkadelic. And during the ‘70s, Maceo began recording his own records as well. He’s recorded 11 albums on his own and recorded with everyone from De La Soul to Prince. He’s one of the greats. Let’s pay tribute to Maceo by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, maceo parker, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday J. Dilla Edition

Today, we celebrate the birthday of an artist who left us too soon. J. Dilla was a musical prodigy of sorts, into music at a young age, getting his first record at the age of 2 and spinning records in a Detroit park as a child. He really got started with the hip hop group 1st Down and by the mid-90's, he helped form Slum Village. The first Slum Village LP got so much attention, Dilla was in demand, working with Janet Jackson, A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul and others. By 2001, J. Dilla put out his first solo work, and cemented his reputation as an innovative DJ. He then worked at a fast pace, until a rare blood disease slowed him down, and he eventually passed away. One morning while DJing at CHIRP, I played 10CC’s “Worst Band in the World” and within a minute, a listener instant messaged me – he didn’t know that the tune wasn’t a J. Dilla creation (he sampled it for “Workinonit”). Any DJ cool enough to sample 10CC deserves a birthday tribute. So please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

  1. Jerry Lee Lewis – When a Man Loves a Woman (Southern Roots): From Jerry Lee’s sort of rock ‘n’ roll comeback album, taking on the Percy Sledge classic. Jerry gives it his all, thought the production is a bit cheesy. Of course, this song gives Jerry Lee ample opportunity to be self-referential.
  2. Minutemen – This Road (What Makes a Man Start Fires?): A nice funky, post punk track with a bit of a Gang Of Four vibe. Mike Watt and George Hurley are both awesome on this tune.
  3. Roxy Music – Chance Meeting (Roxy Music): A ballad from Roxy’s debut, with Bryan Ferry leaning on the vibrato. Some cool saxophone from Andy Mackay on this atmospheric number.
  4. Dolly Varden – Balcony (Dumbest Magnets): Mark Balletto’s pedal steel gets things started on this excellent Steve Dawson composition. The lyrics contain evocative images, and once the full band kicks in, this is an inviting shuffle – the rhythm and melody mesh perfectly.
  5. The Last – I Saw Your Eyes (Confession): This is a great urgent jangle rocker from the first comeback album from this great urgent jangle rock band. Bill Stevenson of the Descendents helped spur The Last to get back together the first time, and he now plays drums for them in their most recent iteration.
  6. The Beatles – Maxwell’s Silver Hammer (Abbey Road): While I loved this song as a kid, it is weaker link on a classic album. But it gave Steve Martin something to sing in the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band movie.
  7. Sloan – It’s Not the End of the World (Never Hear the End of It): A sweet acoustic guitar tune from what might be Sloan’s best album, chock full of tunes (30 in all). This definitely has a bit of Beatles inspiration.
  8. UFO – Love to Love (Lights Out): I first knew this song from the live rendition on Strangers in the Night. The studio version is pretty good too. This is UFO’s epic ballad, with sweeping power chords and a chorus that really shows off Phil Mogg’s range.
  9. Hellfire Sermons – Not Nailed Down (Hymns: Ancient and Modern): This late ‘80s/early ‘90s Liverpool band seemed to pick up bits of C86 bands, earlier influences like Orange Juice, with a bit of the more contemporary Brit indie rock of the time. This excellent song has slightly dissonant verses melding into a nifty chorus, coming off like a mix of Orange Juice and early James.
  10. The Dave Clark Five – Whenever You’re Around (The History of the Dave Clark Five): Nice harmonies on this sickly sweet love song from the DC5.

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Topics: ipod, j. dilla, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday John Lydon Edition

He was discovered by Malcolm McLaren at designer Vivienne Westwood’s boutique, Sex. He snotty nosed fellow wearing a Pink Floyd shirt, to which he had painted on the words “I hate.” This earned him an audition for The Sex Pistols. Today is the birthday of John Lydon a/k/a Johnny Rotten, one of the most important figures in punk and post-punk music. Whether the Pistols were musically innovative can be debated. What isn’t debatable is that Lydon’s presence and lyrics fit the stance of a band challenging societal norms. He was someone who wanted to do more than entertain. And The Sex Pistols lit the fuse for a new music explosion. Hence, they burned out quickly, but Lydon moved onto Public Image, Ltd., with Keith Leven and Jah Wobble. PiL are really the starting point for post-punk, leading to all sorts of cross-breeding and experimentation, making the late ‘70s and early ‘80s perhaps the most fruitful period for rock post-mid-‘60s. Let’s pay tribute to Mr. Lydon by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle, and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, john lydon, johnny rotten, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Warren Zevon Edition

It’s Warren Zevon’s birthday today. Warren was born here in Chicago back in 1947. It must have been a fascinating childhood, as his father, a Russian immigrant was a bookie. By the time he was 13, Zevon briefly studied classical music under the tutelage of Igor Stravinsky. By 16, he quit school and tried to make it in music. He wrote from songs for The Turtles and his first record was stillborn. After a stint as the musical director for The Everly Brothers, Zevon made lots of cool friends, like Lindsay Buckingham, Stevie Nicks and Jackson Browne. The Browne connection led to a record deal, and Zevon’s first two albums for Asylum Records (Warren Zevon and Excitable Boy) are classics. Zevon had one foot in Laurel Canyon and one foot in a hard bitten world of down and out people and headless CIA men. And this was all filtered through his dark sense of humor. Zevon had his one hit, “Werewolves of London” and a fascinating career where he crossed paths with so many top flight musicians. Diagnosed with terminal cancer, he made another great LP and spent an hour on the David Letterman show, in what was truly memorable television, before passing on. In honor of Zevon, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, warren zevon

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Richard Hawley Edition

Today is Richard Hawley’s birthday. He first came to prominence with the band the Longpigs, who had a couple British hits in the 1990s. After they fell apart, he did sessions, including playing with Pulp, finally striking out on his own in the early aughts. His second album Lowedges got him some attention with his crooning voice (with a hint of Scott Walker) and lush, romantic songs. Further albums used titles based on places in his native Sheffield as he further perfected his classic sound. And each one climbed higher on the British charts. With his last two albums he began experimented with longer songs, and on last year’s Standing On The Sky’s Edge, he added some psychedelic sounds and wound up with a #3 UK album. Hawley also got to fulfill a lifelong dream by producing Duane Eddy. He is one of the most consistent artists of the past 10 years. In Richard’s honor, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, richard hawley

Mike Bennett writesJanuary 10, 2014 iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Jim Croce Edition

Today we pay tribute to one of my first favorite singers, Jim Croce. I got an AM clock radio (with a light up dial!) as a first communion present and it was tuned to the Top 40 stations and on a lot. Which meant I heard a lot of Jim Croce. He had a nice voice and could alter it to fit the mood of his song, singing with tenderness on love songs like “Operator”, while jiving on the song I loved, such as “You Don’t Mess Around With Jim” and “Bad Bad Leroy Brown”. His Life and Times album was my favorite of my dad’s 8-track tapes, where I heard his mix of love songs and story songs, often from a working class perspective. This perspective was earned – he did a stretch in the National Guard to avoid going to Vietnam and worked various trucking and construction jobs. And he drew from that environment in his music. Moreover, as I revisited his music as an adult, buying a 50 song compilation that had pretty much all of his studio work, I appreciated his facility with country, blues, pop and classical music. Songs like “Time In a Bottle” and the amazing, non-single “These Dreams” show a composer who combined directness and economy with subtle sophistication. His death in a plane crash in 1973 robbed pop music of someone who still had scads of untapped potential. Thankfully, his recordings still have the warmth and vitality they had 40 years ago. In honor of Mr. Croce, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle, and share the first 10 songs that pop up.

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Topics: ipod, jim croce, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday George Martin Edition

Today, let’s celebrate one of the most important producers in pop music history, Sir George Martin. (NOTE: If you haven’t read the new Tune In book about The Beatles and want to do so, this post will reveal a key fact from the book. So Spoiler Alert!). Martin had musical inclinations, and after serving his country, became the top assistant to the head of Parlophone Records, learning how to produce records with a label that was an afterthought in the EMI Music empire. While working on a wide variety of genres (and excelling at comedy records with The Goon Show with Peter Sellers and Spike Milligan), he developed an experimental bent. This served him well when, after originally turning The Beatles down, the head of EMI assigned the band to Martin and Parlophone as a form of punishment – the boss found out George was having an affair with his secretary. Martin quickly warmed to The Beatles on a personal level, but wasn’t sold on the material. But the success of the Fab Four’s first 45, “Love Me Do”, proved him wrong. But he soon found Lennon-McCartney material up to par and forged a new type of producer-artist relationship. Instead of finding material for the band, he helped them cultivate their own songs and sound. Basically, Martin and The Beatles were perfect for each other, because they both were innovators. He helped them accomplish any wild sounds they wanted depicted. Yet, one of the things I love about Martin is that in documentaries, as he sits at a mixing desk playing parts of Beatles tracks, he still is amazed that he was a part of it. And an essential part. So let’s pay tribute to Martin by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: george martin, ipod, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Lenny Kaye Edition

Today, we celebrate a real renaissance man in rock music history, Lenny Kaye. Kaye, first and foremost, was the lead guitarist in The Patti Smith Group, producing her earliest work and playing with her throughout the ‘70s, and then rejoining her in the mid-‘90s. He also played in other bands, including the Jim Carroll Band. Before his professional rocking days, he was a music critic and magazine editor, publishing some of Stephen King’s first work. He later put together the historic double album compilation Nuggets, spurring the first garage rock revival. He is also an accomplished historian and author, writing books about everything from Waylon Jennings to ‘20s and ‘30s crooners. In honor of this fascinating career, please grab your iPod or MP3 player, hit shuffle and share the first 10 songs that comw up.

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Topics: ipod, lenny kaye, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—R.I.P. Larry Lujack Edition

Born in Iowa and raised in Arkansas, Larry Blankenburg dreamed of going into wildlife conservation when he entered the University of Idaho. He got a job at a local radio station just to pick up some cash. His original dreams were put on hold as he worked his way up the ladder to become perhaps the biggest rock 'n' roll DJ in Chicago history. Along the way, he changed his last name to Lujack, after the star Notre Dame football player. Nine years after he got his start in radio, he made it to Chicago, ending up on both sides of the dominant rock stations of the late '60s and early '70s, WCFL and WLS. He started at CFL, quickly moved to WLS (both during 1967), and then jumped back to WCFL, where he was their afternoon drive time star. By the fall of 1976, he was back at WLS and became a morning star, and eventually created his popular Animal Stories feature. What made Larry Lujack great? In an era of fast talking, jiving DJs and nice guys, he dispensed with all apparent artifice. His style was relaxed yet commanding, as he'd praise songs he loved or go off on tangents about things bothering him. He mastered the skill of making it seem like he was talking one-on-one with the listener. This conversational approach became very influential and arguably paved the way for shock jocks, though Larry was merely irreverent. Larry Lujack passed away last night after a long bout with cancer and I went back and listened to some airchecks. Back in the day, he wasn't my go to DJ, but listening now I remembered how great he really was. Let's pay tribute to this Chicago radio legend by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, larry lujack, mp3

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Tom Verlaine Edition

Today it’s the birthday of one of the most talented performers from the incredible CBGB’s scene of the ‘70s, Tom Verlaine. Born Thomas Miller, the future Television guitarist made friends with Richard Meyers a/k/a Richard Hell in boarding school. They ended up leaving school, moving to New York City, where Tom appropriated the last name of French poet Paul Verlaine. After forming The Neon Boys with Hell and Billy Ficca, they eventually added guitarist Richard Lloyd and became Television. While uninformed writers, to this day, talk about the CBGB’s scene as punk, it was really where ideas from the ‘60s were retooled into something contemporary, and Television combined some Velvet Underground, some precision sophisticated composition and an amazing instrumental attack into two classic albums (and their later reunion album was quite good). When Verlaine left, he carried on with a terrific solo career, with great art-pop songs, amazing guitar playing and odd but compelling lyrics. Let’s salute Tom by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, tom verlaine

Mike Bennett writesFriday iPod/MP3 Shuffle—Happy Birthday Peter Buck Edition

Today we celebrate one of the major figures in ‘80s rock, Peter Buck, the lead guitarist of R.E.M.. The rise of R.E.M. is effectively the rise of college radio and indie music gaining a foothold in the mainstream. I first saw R.E.M. in a cafeteria in the student center at Southern Illinois University and it was about seven or eight years later that they were headlining the Rosemont Horizon. And they did it their way. Buck was a figurehead for how could maintain integrity while achieving commercial success. Along the way, Buck and his bandmates tried to help out fellow travelers, giving opening slots to great acts like The dB’s, Minutemen and Robyn Hitchcock & The Egyptians. Now that R.E.M. is no more, Buck still plays bass for The Baseball Project and does whatever it is he does. He’s just a cool guy. So wish Pete a happy birthday by grabbing your iPod or MP3 player, hitting shuffle, and sharing the first 10 songs that come up.

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Topics: ipod, mp3, peter buck

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