In 1968 performance artist Arthur Brown brought his Faustian nightmare journey through hell to music audiences via his album “The Crazy World of Arthur Brown” and became the godfather of “shock rock.” Through his high pitched wails and the helmet that shot flames from his head, Brown would be considered a “one hit wonder,” but changed the face of rock performance forever. A look at the career of “The God of Hellfire,” the birth of shock rock and Arthur Brown’s continuing influence on the rock n’ roll landscape today.
Is Stevie Nicks a witch? Since her first commercial breakout on 1975’s “Fleetwood Mac,” rumors that the pop icon has a connection with old world magik have continued to be a part of her mythos. But, while she has denied being involved in witchcraft on many occasions, she leans into it in her lyrics, aesthetics and lifestyle. A look at her 1976 hit “Rhiannon” and an exploration into the spell that Stevie Nicks has her fans under.
In 1967 country storyteller Red Sovine released a different kind of truck driving story about a different kind of dead person. The story of Big Joe and “Phantom 309” would become a spooky tale beloved by music fans But is there truth behind the tale? The heartbreaking true story of heroism and sacrifice that inspired the song “Phantom 309.” Extra: Tim Burton, Pee Wee Herman and Tom Waits’ tributes to Big Joe and “Phantom 309.”
When Duane Eddy met Lee Hazelwood in 1954 Lee was a country music disc jockey in the small farming community of Coolidge, Arizona and Duane was a high schooler looking to score free records. But pooling together their individual talents, by the end of the decade the pair joined forces and changed the shape of guitar rock with their hit collaboration “Rebel-‘Rouser.” The story of the Duane Eddy and Lee Hazelwood partnership, and its continuing influence on rock n’ roll.
In 1967 Frank and Nancy SInatra scored an unlikely hit with “Somethin’ Stupid,” becoming the only father/daughter team to ever reach #1 on the charts. A look at the unique bond between Frank and Nancy, and the historical, albeit it problematic, legacy of the song they recorded together. Extra: In 1998 Sam Tweedle says goodbye to his hero. A look back at the death of Frank Sinatra, and the gift that the Sinatra Family gave to his fans,.
In 1966 Nancy Sinatra became one of the biggest pop artists in the world when her mega hit “These Boots Are Made For Walkin'” soared to the top of the charts in nations worldwide. However, the song wasn’t originally supposed to be hers until Frank made writer/producer Lee Hazelwood see his point of view. A look at the far reaching success of “Thee Boots Are Made for Walkin” and how it made Nancy Sinatra a cultural icon.
In 1980, to celebrate his 40th Anniversary, Frank Sinatra blasted off into outer space for a kooky intergalactic song cycle called “The Future” on his album “Trilogy: Past Present Future.” A divisive recording amongst critics and fans, it’d be the biggest recording session of Sinatra’s career. A look at this bizarre entry into the Sinatra songbook. Extra: The release of “New York, New York” and how it recentered Sinatra’s legacy.
When Bruce Springsteen released “Born in the USA” he went from struggling singer/songwriter to a rock n’ roll icon. But when President Ronald Regan name dropped The Boss, perhaps he should have listened to Springsteen’s lyrics first. A look at “Born in the USA” and the history of Republican politicians who have foolishly tried to use it. Extra: How Bruce Springsteen keeps Sam Tweedle’s spouse up at night.
When Sonny met Cher in 1962, he was a struggling songwriter working as an underdog in Phil Spector’s studio, and she was a teenage runaway with dreams of stardom. Ambitious and in love, the pair spent three years being kicked around the LA scene until 1965, when Inspired by the love that bonded them together, Sonny Bono wrote one of pop musics greatest love songs, “I Got You Babe,” catupultiing them to the top of charts and international stardom. A look at the early days of Sonny and Cher.
In 1986 The Monkees had a resurgernce of popularity on MTV, and at eleven years old Sam Tweedle fell into Monkeemania when discovering them vai a TV commerical. How he fell in love with the Monkees, and the heartbreaking moment he found out not everyone felt the same way.. A personal tribute to Monkee fandom, and how the Monkees became an important, albeit unlikely, gateway band.
If Jethro Tull and The Doors had a love child, it’d be Mashmakhan. Montreal based prog-rockers Mashmakhan had a massive hit in Canada and Japan with “As Years Go By” but the less commerical psychadelic infused tracks that made up the remainder of their 1970 debut album confused radio programmers and record buyers, making them a “one hit wonder.” An appreciation of one of the best underappreciated Canadian albums ever recorded.
Despite being one of the best American bands of the 1960’s, Paul Revere and the Raiders never found the legacy they’ve deserved. Was it the gimmicky costumes, their association with Dick Clark Productions or the animosity between Paul Revere and front man Mark Linsday which prevented them from becoming top tier rock legends? A look at the rise and fall of Paul Revere and the Riaders, and why they need to be rediscovered.
40 years after her self exile from the music industry, singer/songwriter Bobbie Gentry has finally found appreciation amongst modern music fans. Too honky tonk for rock fans and too progressive for country fans, Bobbie was perhaps too ahead of her time in the 60’s and 70’s, but is finally gaining a modern cult following for her swampy blues-country originals and genre spanning crossover masterpieces. However, while the world finally listens, Bobbie doesn’t want to be found.
In 2022 Kate Bush hit the mainstream for the first time when a new generation discovered her via the hit Netflix seriesd “Stranger Things.” Sam Tweedle travels back to 1989 when he disocvered Kate Bush at age fifteen with her album “The Sensual World” and how it changed the way he listened to music forever.