Let's face it -- tribute albums can be hit or miss. If an artist is well known enough to merit a whole album of other artists covering their songs, their songs are probably so ingrained in our collective consciousness that it sounds weird to hear other people do them.
Which brings us to Just Tell Me That You Want Me: A Tribute to Fleetwood Mac. First of all, the band has over 40 years of music to cover, and that spans many phases of the band, from straight-ahead British blues to impeccably crafted pop songs. Most of the artists on this collection weren't even born when most of this music was new, and many of the artists will be unknown to anyone over 30: Tame Impala, Best Coast, Lykke Li, MGMT, Washed out, The Crystal Ark . . . .but there's Marianne Faithfull, Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top and Vancouver's New Pornographers, too.
The album's not coming out until August 14, but you can listen to all 17 tracks, from "Oh Well" to "Tusk," because they're streaming right now, right here, or click the band's picture below.
Auto Trader magazine has compiled the Greatest Driving Songs of All Time.
Says Auto Trader's Nathan Coe, "We all have a favorite driving song and it's interesting to note that although Auto Trader's customers are from all age groups, it is the hits from the 1970s, with four out of the Top 6, that dominate, with only one recent hit making it into the Top 10. Maybe they just don't make them like they used to anymore."
And the list is:
1) "Sultans of Swing" - Dire Straits
2) "We Will Rock You" - Queen
3) "Another One Bites the Dust" - Queen
4) "Good Vibrations" - Beach Boys
5) "Go Your Own Way" - Fleetwood Mac
6) "All Right Now" - Free
7) "Born in the U.S.A." - Bruce Springsteen
8) "Rolling in the Deep" - Adele
9) "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" - Marvin Gaye
10) "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" - Rolling Stones
I think the Fabulous Thunderbirds got snubbed. Have you driven to Tuff Enough?!So great. What else is missing?
Someone called this little masterpiece "a bleaker, weirder, Where The Wild Things Are." It's the just-revealed video for "It's Only Life," a song from the latest Shins album Port Of Morrow. It's got a little boy, a dog, a scary suburban landscape and, if you're not a Shins fan, you'll enjoy seeing James Mercer dragged along the ground by a gang of monsters.
Here are a few new releases that caught my ear this morning:
JJAMZ is the side project of Maroon 5 guitarist James Valentine and his indie-pop pals from Phantom Planet and Rilo Kiley, and their debut album Suicide Pact is out today. This is mellow, fresh-scrubbed SoCal pop . . . and you’ll be able to see Jjamz at the Tractor Tavern on September 7. My only isue with the band is their rather lame name, but the truthis that the first names of the members of the band start with the letters J, J, A, M and Z., so I guess we'll let it slide. Here's the video for their song "Never Enough."
Here’s a cool reissue . . . in 1981 when the Rolling Stones were doing three dates at a big arena in Chicago, they snuck off for a late-night rendezvous at a little club with blues legend Muddy Waters. I lived in Chicago then, and I remember the buzz : "Did you hear? The Stones are playing a club date? Are you in?" Anyway, it’s all on a CD/DVD called Checkerboard Lounge Live Chicago 1981. You gotta see Mick Jagger and Muddy Waters trading vocals – it’s like the blues master and the eager young intern from London. Here's a sample:
And then there are three new releases today from one of rock’s most prolific artists – and he’s been dead for 42 years. Yes, more from the Jimi Hendrix vaults – the most important one is Live At Berkely, the Second Set. Worth it for the music, sure, but even more for Jimi’s stoned stage banter.
It's great to have access to some of these long-lost performances. But it also reminds me about how much money Jimi's family is still trying to squeeze out of his music, and it makes me a little sad.
Mountain favorites Dave Matthews and Brandi Carlile are on tour together right now, and Brandi has revealed that Dave has a special name for her.
Says Brandi, "Ah, I love Dave Matthews. I think he's a really special person, even though he calls me a 'big fat trumpet head.' No, he's really fantastic, he's been a good friend for a long time. I really enjoy playing with him and we sing a song together every time we see each other."
This isn't "typical" Mountain Music, but I wanted to put it out there anyway. Amy Winehouse is sampled in a new song from the rapper Nas called "Cherry Wine." It's definitely hip hop, but I really like the way Amy's voice was used.
You may have heard of Nas because he does have a Mountain Music connection of sorts - because he canceled his appearance on Later... with Jools Holland, an unknown artist named KT Tunstall got the phone call to fill in and kick started her career.
Anyway, Nas featuring Amy Winehouse "Cherry Wine:"
Twenty-four years after releasing her debut album, Melissa Etheridge says she's hit her creative stride. "To actually be creating at the peak of my creative abilities is very exciting for me," the 51-year-old rocker, who will release her 12th studio album, 4th Street Feeling, on September 4th, tells Rolling Stone. "This has been my favorite, most enjoyable time in the studio. I believed in myself more in this album than I ever have." The 12-track follow-up to 2010’s Fearless Love was recorded this spring in Los Angeles at HOB Studios with producers Jacquire King (Kings of Leon, Norah Jones) and Steve Booker (Duffy.)