Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Happy Endings

Holding pattern. Sort of.

We will have an official announcement on our next post (which is almost completed, believe it or not...should be coming soon, and it's well worth your time). What's the announcement, you ask? Well, if you're clever you might guess (and if you're like me, and not clever at all, try looking at my "profile"...that's all I'm gonna say.)

Truth be told, it's harder to make a mix than to hunker down and write an actual post. But it's probably more fun to make that mix. And, well, the following mix has a clue to the next post. So there you are. How exciting is that?

The following mix is a special tribute to all y'all who've stuck with us for the past few years, through my sporadic posting, rants'n'raves, political excursions (which I make no apologies for), obsessions, pecadillos, and whatnot. I honestly can't believe some of y'all have stuck around this long..."and death will have no dominion..".

Key tracks: "Willin", "Cemetary Row", "Cancion Para Mi Padre", "Barstool Mountain", "L.A. Freeway", "Blues Run the Game", and, of course, "We Believe In Happy Endings". But, really, every damn song stands on it's own. It's all fiddles and organs, innit?

Despite the title, we're not going away. Yet. We're stubborn that way, and we've got some more ground to cover, and Xmas is coming soon, believe it or not, and you know what that means. Good times and sparkly lites.

Please enjoy the following mix, then, created especially...for you.

I do not know when it was
that you promised to stay,
only that, in the morning,
when you stayed,
the sun rose a little brighter,
fragile in it's illumination
and brighter than ten thousand fireflies.
You shone like the seven seas, then,
caught between the dipping of the moon
and the turning of the globe.
And something brighter
than these poor misted eyes can fathom,
a spark of life lived, plucked,
and held in calloused palms,
forever in now.
You were the stars I travelled,
The mountain I climbed,
until the rarefied air of ascent
took my breath away.

Big Rock Happy Endings Mix
(MP3 link follows track listing, of course)

1. Send Down That Rain (Brother Claude Ely)
2. Everybody Wants to See Heaven, Nobody Wants To Die (Black Oak Arkansas)
3. I Only Know (Tom House)
4. Take A Drink On Me (Charlie Poole)
5. Alcohol and #2 Diesel (The Willis Brothers)
6. I Gotta Get Drunk (Joe Carson)
7. Your Squaw Is On the Warpath (Loretta Lynn)
8. Saturday Satan, Sunday Saint (Ernest Tubb)
9. Sleepy-Eyed John (Johnny Horton)
10. Hey Me, I'm Riding (Lee Hazlewood)
11. Salt Lake City (The Dwarves)
12. El Paso City (Marty Robbins)
13. Porch Song (Trailer Bride)
14. Water Into Wine (Slim Cessna's Auto Club)
15. Willin' (Little Feat)
16. Pecan Pie (Golden Smog)
17. Cemetery Row (Minus 5)
18. Good For Nothing (Freakwater)
19. Cancion Para Mi Padre (Sally Timms)
20. Visit Me In Music City (Bobby Bare Jr.)
21. (We're Not The) Jet Set (George Jones and Tammy Wynette)
22. Barstool Mountain (Johnny Paycheck)
23. Drinkin' and Dreamin' (Waylon Jennings)
24. L.A. Freeway (Guy Clark)
25. Blues Run The Game (Jackson C. Frank)
26. Border Radio (Dave Alvin)
27. On My Way Downtown (Peter Case)
28. Begin (Lambchop)
29. We Believe In Happy Endings (The Dry Branch Fire Squad)

Big Rock Happy Endings (mp3)

Please support your local, independent, whatever....

Friday, September 05, 2008

Heaven Is A Truck


We lost another one. I'm a few days late on this, but couldn't let the passing pass. Shit, I've got a memorial to another, and forgotten, legend that I've been working on since May.

But today it's all about Jerry Reed, who died on August 31st.

I posted about Reed a couple of years ago:

"Born and raised in Atlanta, Reed was already a shit-hot guitarist (dubbed "The Guitar Man" during his subsequent time in Nashville) by the time he recorded his first songs at the age of 18. He recorded some forgotten, or forgettable, country and rockabilly sides in the 50's, with his best success coming off a Gene Vincent treatment of his song "Crazy Legs". During the 60's he released some pretty solid singles and spent his downtime doing session work as a guitarist.

Finally the 70's dropped and Reed hit his commercial and artistic stride with such classics and "Amos Moses" and "When You're Hot You're Hot", amongst others. Reed mixed modern Country and Cajun swamp trash, brewing a moonshine still's worth of tonky love.

Reed was never really included in conversations involving the Outlaw movement circling around Willie, Waylon, et. al, and his flirtation with Hollywood, with the exception of the immortal Smokey and the Bandit (from which I chose my avatar, obviously), suggested that maybe he wasn't too concerned with working outside the carefully drawn lines of the established entertainment industry. Who knows? But somehow his songs sounded different, more raw and alive than the usual Nashville fare. It's music for southern country roads, topping the century mark in a hopped up muscle car round dangerous curves. Or maybe it's music for beater pickup trucks, with the gun rack barely holding on. Better yet, a pontoon boat hauling illegal whatnot through a Louisiana swamp."

Not sure how much I have to add to that. "East Bound and Down" is one of our favorite songs here at the Mountain, certainly one of the greatest Truckin' songs ever laid to wax. And regular visitors will know how highly we rate the Truckin' song.

Safe travels, Jerry Reed.

Jerry Reed: East Bound And Down (mp3)

Jerry Reed: Texas Bound and Flying (mp3)

Jerry Reed: Alabama Wild Man (mp3)

Jerry Reed: Free Born Man (mp3)

Jerry Reed: That Lucky Old Sun (Just Rolled Around Heaven All Day) (mp3)

Jerry Reed: Amos Moses (mp3)

Jerry Reed: Guitar Man (mp3)

Please support your local, independent Guitar Men and Women.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Beaumont to Lake Charles

Personal opinion and mp3's to follow. You've been warned.

God Damn and Mother Fuck the Republicans for politicizing this. How dare they. The hypocrisy is palpable, and I don't think the American public is so gullible as to fall for this brand of horse shit. Our memories may be short in this country, but I don't think we can forget "Heck of a job Brownie" that easily. You fucked up with Katrina, and we're expected to give you kudos this time around for doing your job, like you couldn't three years ago? Fuck that bullshit. And to celebrate how attuned you are now, and what great things you're doing for the people of Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, Florida, and Alabama is facile and pure political manipulation. Fuck you. You're doing your job, and we're supposed to be impressed? We don't think so.

And fuck the Democrats if they try to pull the same bullshit.

It's about people, innit? Their livelihoods, homes, photographs, possessions,jobs, pets,lives. Not some political maneuvering for election year wrangling. Christ, what's wrong with our so-called leaders? Just do your job, help the people who live in our country, without patting your fucking selves on the back. Is that so goddamned hard? Apparently.

If you want to respond to this with some jingoistic Fox News/Rush Limbaugh-approved bullshit, feel free. I'll deconstruct your ass in public. I don't give a rat's ass. How dare you make this political. Disgusting.

How do you leave your home, when you live paycheck to paycheck, and all that you are is small plot of land and series of planks?

Please note that one of the following tunes, James McMurtry's "Hurricane Party", is not remotely a party song. It's one of the saddest, most prescient surveys of lives in the balance, and features the haunting line, "...there's no one to talk to, when the lines go down".


James McMurtry: Hurricane Party (mp3)

Lucinda Williams: Lake Charles (mp3)

Blue Mountain: Banks of the Pontchartrain (mp3)

Hayes Carll: Beaumont (mp3)

Please support any relief agency that's not interested in any political affiliation, but is only concerned with helping folks in need.