K-Chuck Radio: But they’re not doing the Time Warp…

I’ve blogged in the past about my affinity for the 1970’s cult classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show.  I’ve mentioned about how I binge-watched it in college, using that and a purchased audience par-ti-ci-pa-tion record to learn the call and response cues.  I’ve penned a K-Chuck Radio blog post about the cultural affinity of the Rocky Horror Picture Show itself, how it’s been parodied and purloined over the years.

Today, I want to feature something special.  You know the songs of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, for sure, for sure.  And you also know the artists and performers who made the movie as excellent as possible.

But … have you ever heard those artists performing songs OUTSIDE of the Rocky Horror Picture Show?  Have you?  Huh, have you?

Continue reading “K-Chuck Radio: But they’re not doing the Time Warp…”

Advertisements

K-Chuck Radio: That time when Playboy went “after dark…”

If you haven’t heard by now, Hugh Hefner – the man who brought us Playboy magazine and all that came with it and after it – passed away last night at the age of 91.  And while there will certainly be plenty of tributes to the man and his publishing empire and the cultural revolution he created … for better or for worse …

I want to focus, for a moment, on his love for and promotion of music.  And with that, I’m bringing you sections of a 1969-1970 syndicated TV show called “Playboy After Dark,” where Hef and his bunnies and assorted guests hung around a stage and watched the top performers of the late 1960’s rock the place to the ground.

Continue reading “K-Chuck Radio: That time when Playboy went “after dark…””

K-Chuck Radio: Motown like you’ve never heard it before

Guys and gals, today I’m bringing you some of the rarest, most unique tracks out there from the Motown Records vaults.  Some of them are early recordings from your favorite artists and groups, some of them are radically altered versions, and some – well, I’ll just let you hear them.

As much as Motown was a super-powered record company for nearly 50 years, there were tracks that often fell through the cracks – they didn’t sell, or the artists moved on to bigger and better things.

Like, for example, how would you like to hear the Supremes in their earliest iteration as a doo-wop girl group?  Yeah?  With a Smokey Robinson track, no less?  here they are, with the song “Who’s Loving You” – which probably would have been a better fit for the Marvelettes, but we’ll talk about that later.

Continue reading “K-Chuck Radio: Motown like you’ve never heard it before”

K-Chuck Radio: Sedaka’s Back

What if I told you that one of the most prolific songwriters / singers / performers of rock and roll’s early years – a man who reinvented his career over and over and over again, whose music could be heard throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s – is inexplicably NOT in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame yet?

I’m talking about Neil Sedaka.

If you knew how many tracks are part of his rock and roll career, you too would be surprised that he has not received enshrinement yet – as a singer, or as a writer, or as an early influence.

He came out of the Brill Building songwriting conglomerate, teaming up with Howard Greenfield on songs that had more musical oomph than your usual teen idol tracks … that, and he could write tracks about fellow Brill Building songwriters, like “Oh Carol” – a song referencing songwriter Carole King – and have it become a hit.

Continue reading “K-Chuck Radio: Sedaka’s Back”

K-Chuck Radio: Studio 54 hangovers for a 54 year old man…

Last Friday, I turned 54 years old.  Wow.  Who would have thought I would have made 54 spins around the sun… or, as I’ve said of late … Damn, I’m old.

That being said, thank you to everybody who posted birthday greetings on Facebook.  Much appreciated.  See you again next year and we’ll repeat our greetings.

So let’s see what other kinds of 54’s I can come up with – including those cheese-tastic classics from the legendary New York City disco, Studio 54…

Starting with…

THE WALTER MURPHY ORCHESTRA
Flight ’76

Depending on your generation, you might recognize this track as an interpretation of Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Flight of the Bumblebee,” or maybe as the theme to the Green Hornet TV show.  I just remember this track as Murphy’s follow-up to his disco smash “A Fifth of Beethoven,” and it was kinda funky in its own right.

Continue reading “K-Chuck Radio: Studio 54 hangovers for a 54 year old man…”

K-Chuck Radio: I want a Beach Boys a cappella album right now!!

Right now, I want you to name as many vocal harmony a cappella groups – those who can create great songs without the need of an orchestral backdrop.  Ready, set, go.

Manhattan Transfer.

Pentatonix.

The Hi-Los.

The Nylons.

Take 6.

The Beach Boys.

Wait, Chuck, you said the Beach Boys?  Dude, you are aware that they have lots of musical instruments on their hit songs, right??

Well, yes, that’s true.

Continue reading “K-Chuck Radio: I want a Beach Boys a cappella album right now!!”

K-Chuck Radio: Music for a Great American Eclipse

So the big day is tomorrow … tomorrow afternoon, to be precise.

And as I drive towards the line of totality, I think to myself about what kind of a soundtrack I could craft in terms of music for an eclipse.  Especially one as special as this one.

So crank up the speakers, here’s a K-Chuck Radio featuring songs about sunshine, moonlight, and eclipses.  And let’s start with the obvious track…

BONNIE TYLER
Total Eclipse of the Heart

Here it is, in its nearly seven minute glory.  Gotta give Jim Steinman credit, he can craft AOR rock ballad masterpieces with the best of them.

MADNESS
The Sun and the Rain

Here’s what I want.  Lots of sunshine and no rain.  No rain at all.

BLIND MELON
No Rain

Yeah.  Like I said, no rain.  No rain at all.

DRAGON
Sunshine

Yes, I need a sunshine-like track from my favorite Kiwi / Oz Rock band.  You know I do.

ERIC CARMEN
Sunrise

Somewhere inbetween his Rachmaninoff riffs and his sweeping ballads, Eric Carman sounds awesome when he channels his original power-pop Raspberries heritage.  Like this track, for instance.

LEN
Steal My Sunshine

Look, if I can get a chance to channel the 1970’s Andrea True Connection riff, I’ll do it.  Even for a one-hit wonder like Len.

JOHN DENVER
Sunshine On My Shoulders

There was once a time when John Denver’s music was so square, it could be divided by four.  Thankfully, today John Denver’s tracks – including this one – have a new appreciation.  Which is always a wonderful thing.

THE SUNRAYS
I Live for the Sun

Think about this.  This was the band Brian Wilson’s father Murry managed when the Beach Boys fired him as THEIR manager.  One hit that barely sounds like a Beach Boys out-take.

SMASH MOUTH
Walking on the Sun

Yes, I put Smash Mouth on this playlist.  Keep things going, and I’ll add some Nickelback.  Don’t call my bluff.

SOUNDGARDEN
Black Hole Sun

I mean, technically, doesn’t an eclipse create a black hole in the sun?  You’re still missed, Chris Cornell.  Any world where Chris Cornell and Kurt Cobain isn’t alive – and Courtney Love is – is a miserable world.

THE GRATEFUL DEAD
Dark Star (Beautiful Jam)

And let’s end our playlist with this totally amazing 21-minute sonic jam by the legends themselves. No more words.

Enjoy the eclipse on Monday, with a soundtrack brought to you by sunbeams at K-Chuck Radio.