What you're about to read is a collection of pointers to some of the music I've discovered on the iTunes Music Store, music I like enough that I want to share it. If you're an iPod owner and an iTunes fan (and if you aren't, what are you doing here?), maybe you'll find something new. Click on any of the CD covers to bounce over to the store and sample a few tracks. And then maybe stop by my other blog for a few well chosen words (and maybe a random snark or two).RSS feed
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Have some music to recommend? I can always use a few pointers. Use the comments link at the bottom of the page.
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Fri, 21 Jan 2005

Ultra-Lounge: On the Rocks, Part 1
Ultra-Lounge: On the Rocks, Part 1 Writing a blog is fun, although this one is especially entertaining. (For me, at any rate. You will have your own view on this point.) But I'm not sure which I enjoy writing about more: really interesting good music, or really disastrously bad music. At the moment I'm leaning toward the latter, but that may just be because I've found such a sterling specimen.

I've owned several CDs in the Ultra-Lounge series. These are collections of tracks from the vaults at Capitol Records that have been organized around some theme. The theme doesn't much matter, at least to me. But what does matter is that the music itself is fun, performed very well, and rarely the original performance. Well, two out of three isn't bad...

Because On the Rocks is exceptional, and not in a good way. This album contains the most regrettable set of covers I've ever encountered in one place. And you're listening to somebody with a CD of a dozen versions of Stairway to Heaven. That I've listened to. Several times. Voluntarily.

Don't believe me when I say this is the worst? Try sampling a few tracks. Like Mel Tormé singing Sunshine Superman. Or Wayne Newton on Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes). Or David McCallum (yes, that David McCallum) performing a medley of Mellow Yellow/We Gotta Get Out of This Place. But I've saved the best worst for last: a very special version of Daydream Believer. On a sitar for God's sake.

All of this cover horror is, I suppose explained easily enough. Take popular songs of the 60s and cover them by artists beloved of the parents of those 60s teens and preteens, who won't realize what horrors they're receiving. It's the same impulse that led the Ed Sullivan Show to once do an entire program of Beatles covers. Imagine Peggy Lee doing Maxwell's Silver Hammer. Just try; it can't compare to the reality.

Sample a few of these Ultra-Lounge tracks. Go ahead; it'll only hurt for a little while. But beware: this collection is labeled part one. And you know what that means.

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