Tag: XM

Our Furry Leader

The 50s on 5 channel on XM satellite radio, when Matt the Cat was on the air, was my favourite channel. Matt knows every square inch of some of the most influential, important music in recent history and he poured his heart and his soul into his shows ‘Night Prowl” and “Harlem”.

He’s put together a couple of videos that showcase both shows, though the Night Prowl video is bittersweet as it was his last show. Shortly after returning from his wedding and honeymoon to my sister, XM/Sirius laid him and around 80 other XM DJs (keeping most of their, frankly quite shite, Sirius DJs) off.

If I sound bitter, well, I am. But Matt the Cat will be back baby 🙂 He already sort of is, if you visit his website, mattthecat.com, every Friday you can still listen and vote in his popular Friday Night Cat Fight, where two artists who each recorded the same song, square off and YOU decide which one is the best.

But if you have a free 16-17 minutes, watch the videos and give your ears a real treat as Matt the Cat, our Furry Leader, spins some discs, imparts some knowledge and takes us all back to when music truly rocked.

Night Prowl:

Harlem:

MacArthur Park goes Disco

This is a general complaint about the 70s on 7 on XM radio. Not that anyone will care much, but I just want it out there in cyberspace (does anyone use that term anymore?)

For the past few months, I’ve been enjoying time with the decade channels on my XM. I was on 50s for several weeks before switching to 60s, got way too tired of Chicken Man and Motormouth making his listeners proclaim their love for his show and really they should just call it the Beatles channel for as much as they focus on the Beatles there. (Not that they aren’t worthy mind you, I lo-o-o-ove the Beatles.)

And now I’m on the 70s, after much resistance. I’ve mentioned my aversion to the 70s before. The clothes, the music… My perception of the decade I was born in is not good, and so I associate 70s stuff with unpleasant memories. Until we started doing Music Madness when I discovered that a great many songs that I love actually came out in the 70s. Go freaking figure. Songs like ‘Paradise by the Dashboard Lights’ and ‘Don’t Bring me Down’ by ELO. I loved those songs and similar ones as well. Listening to the 70s channel has lengthened the list of songs I need to grab on iTunes from that decade. The problem is, the 70s channel neglects whole chunks of the music scene in that decade in favour of the more popular and expected disco shite and Foghat-type stuff.

Oh sure they play the occasional Bowie or Marc Bolan. But just the popular tunes. Bowie has his whole glam era in there that they ignore. Most Glam is ignored on the whole. Also the late 70s brought the birth of punk. Completely ignored. I realise that the channel is playing to your average person’s perception of the 70s (mine included really. Will the 70s ever NOT be associated with disco?) but I believe that if you’re going to tout yourself as a decade channel, you need to play all genres from that decade. Not just the popular stuff.

It doesn’t need to be sprinkled in throughout the day. It would just be weird to go from The Carpenters to The Sex Pistols. But you could totally put together a show dedicated to specific genres. Look how hugely popular Matt the Cat’s Harlem show is. A show dedicated to rhythm and soul music of the 50s. You won’t hear Buddy Holly in there. Why not have a show dedicated to some big music movements from the 70s? Glam and Punk? It wasn’t all about doing lines at 54 back then you know.

/end rant

Waxing nostalgic

I’m listening to “Take Good Care of My Baby” on Matt’s show on XM5. I have strong memories about this song but it’s some kind of sense memory. I loved the song when I was younger, but I don’t think it was this Bobby Vee version. Or maybe it was. Just did some Googling. The Beatles covered it (who also factored bigtime in my youth as my mother was a big big fan) but I can’t see any other covers by anyone I really know. Weird.

I’m guessing it was a song my dad played a lot. He had a big collection of 45s and a beat-up old Seeburg jukebox he was always tinkering with. He loved all that 50s music and it was always around growing up that it was inevitable that my sister and I would love it too. And kind of fate that she would fall in love with a fantastic 50s DJ 🙂 Dad used to host a little 50s show on a tiny radio station in Santa Cruz. I loved going up there with him and hanging out (there was ping pong in the storage room) while he did his show.  And he never failed to, at least once, do his wonderful Wolfman Jack impression. He rocked it 🙂

See, listening to Matt the Cat’s show always does this to me – makes me remember dad and what a cool guy he was. Thanks Matt!

I miss that old jukebox too. Once – just once – for a wrap party I had after my drama class’s last play of the year, he let me put my own 45s in the juke (mostly consisting of 80s bands.) and we set it up in our family room with the patio just outside as the dance floor. We also had a normal stereo set up in the other living room with tunes out there, but the jukebox was where everyone congregated that night. They loved it. Was a fun party (well, except for being forced to watch the star of the play, whom I had an enormous crush on, make out with his little twit of a girlfriend on my couch, but I’m focusing on the tunes 🙂 )

So I didn’t have a real purpose for this post. I just felt an overwhelming need to blog something – anything. And this little trip down memory lane was it. It was a nice trip. I’m glad I can be at a point when I can look back at stuff like dad doing the Wolfman and enjoy it instead of feeling bad. Gosh, it’s been 16 years since he died. Wow. Shannon wasn’t quite 1 yet. Kelly was 12. That’s just freaky. I hadn’t thought about how long it’s been. Sometimes it seems so recent. It’s weird.

Er, I didn’t mean to get sniffly. Still boggling at the time. It’s getting late though, should hit the sack. I want to see if the dream about the magic chalk continues 🙂