Friday, July 21, 2017

AUSSIE SINGER PLAYS TO THE RHYTHM OF FANS' HEARTS


There's a young country performer - new to many of us in America - that is definitely chart-bound here! He's got it all: charisma, stage presence, great pipes, dynamite songs -
 and, yes, girls, he's single! 
While y'all know me as (mostly) rock-n-roll, I dig a lot of country-rock, too; and this guy just knocked my size 10 Rockport Westerns (yeah. I know.  Smallish feet. But big heart, though ...) off when I first heard him!
You're bound to become a quick fan once you hear his music (which, by the way, you oughtta be hearing on CMT, GAC or RADIO regularly soon!).

Here's part of an article about him:

Steve Eales (Driftin' On) is one of Australia's leading Country Rock artists. - one whose energetic performances are already beginning to make an impact in both the United States and England.
As both performer and songwriter, Steve has led the way with some of his nation’s  harder hitting music and grittier rural stories. And he comes complete with all the charm of an authentic country boy. 

He's collected a huge swag of awards during his years as lead vocalist and songwriter including:

•2001 Song of the Year at the Victorian CMA 
•2004 2x Golden Guitar nominations for Country Band as well as Best New Talent of the year for Tooraweenah Cowgirl and It’s My Town
• 2004 Male Vocalist of the Year for Tooraweenah Cowgirl
• 2004 Album of the Year Award for Wild One
• 2008 Tamworth People's Choice Awards for The Battler
• 2008 Album of the Year award Vic CMA
• 2008 Vocalist of the Year Award Vic CMA
• 2010 APRA Country Song of the Year Award
• 2010 Fifteen-time World Championship Performer Awards in LA

He’s already played festivals and major venues, both in Australia and the United States, such as:

• Rod Laver Arena
• SydneyMeyer Music Bowl
• Gympie Muster
• Tamworth Town Hall
• TREC (Tamworth)
• Adelaide Festival Theatre
• Boyup Brook Festival WA
• Deni Ute Muster
• Grand Ole Opry TN USA

Now, I had the chance to interview Steve recently, and you'll get that interview in our next post (Saturday.  This puppy's gonna bark more often after this post).  But, for now, here's Steve doing his hit, Driftin' On.  Enjoy:



If you wanna know more about this awesome superstar, just click onto his website (behind that link you just saw).  You're really in for a great country treat!

Stay tuned ...



Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Memories Are Made Of This ...

Think you dread going back to work tomorrow?? Think about these guys ... and be thankful ...

Now ... where were we?? AHHHH, yes ...

Y'know, it seems that, as we get older and wiser, we're more apt to hark back to those thrilling days of yesteryear, when things were groovy, innocent and cool (Ah, I remember them well: I was a wild, crazy kid with tremendous sex appeal and a head full of lavish hair.)

ANYWAY ... SEE IF YOU REMEMBER ANY OF THESE GEMS:

This little dude showed up almost every Sunday night with the rrrrrreally-big-shhhhhhhewwwman himself, Ed Sullivan.
I understand he's still around, but, having been passed over for the role of "Mr. Jingles" in The Green Mile, he's a bit despondent these days.
Hey ... got an idea here, Mousers. LET'S DRAFT HIM AS OUR MASCOT!! I mean, this is the Mouse House, right??

Think of the clout it'd give us! Topo Gigio  was an icon (okay, he was a mouse. But stretch it a little, okay?), and everyone who camembert him would come. It'll do us gouda, I think ...

These flash bulbs (remember the old blunderbuss of a camera that used them?) were never fully appreciated until you'd step on one in your bare feet! And, just after the shot, you'd hear a little "sizzle", followed by a loud cussword when you tried to take 'em out (they were blazing hot!!).

When my mama was moving from Morrow Ave. to Park Ave. back in Pineville (this was just after daddy passed away), we were packing up some boxes from the top shelf of her closet, and these fell out!
S&H Green Stamps were the coupons of the day! Saving those up could buy a 1966 Cadillac (not really. Just wanted to see if you're still with me here). Actually, it'd open a whole new world of merchandise (read: salt and pepper shakers and the occasional toaster) to your mailbox!

HONORABLE(?) MENTIONS

And who could ever forget those little Clacker Balls? The trick was to move 'em back and forth until they started knocking against each other, making a terrible racket in the process.  Sort of like your own personal protest movement.

Of course, sometimes a clacker would break off and clobber someone in the vicinity of the clackee (how do ya think I got the nickname knot-head back in 1965?).

Then there was the "story" game.  You knowwww: one person would make up a crazy story but leave words out of it.  Then, without reading them the story, they'd ask somebody to give them a noun or adjective to fill in the blanks?  The resulting "story" would be far-fetched and often hilarious!
Today, that technique is called "Newsbreak" on CNN, I think ...

Stay tuned ...

Monday, June 19, 2017

GRRRAND (okay, pretty good ...) RE-OPENING!!

Hey ...
welcome back to the Mouse House! Sure, I've been away for awhile, but there are some pretty cool reasons.

FIRST, A QUICK UPDATE: Since our last confab, I've opened the new RockRelic Music™, where I promote some of the best new acts on the planet annnnnd scout for new, undiscovered talent in the rock, country, Americana (or any mix thereof!) genres.

Now ... that being said, lemme introduce ya to one of the gang.

Hailing from Liverpool, England - and fronted by Keith Xander, a young guitarist that some have called "England's answer to Stevie Ray Vaughn" - are Xander and The Peace Pirates. Already in-demand all over the British Isles (and points east), they also have a unique backstory.

Y'see, Keith (lead guitar and singer) was born without a right arm, so he plays his axe with a hook! But the licks that he makes on that six-string machine is nothing less than awesome!

Now, over the next posts, you'll meet more of the roster, including Australian country music superstar Steve Eales, amazing Americana belter Robert Vincent and one of the very best undiscovered voices in rock, period: A Liverpudlian chap named Gary Brown!
But, for now here's Xander and the Peace Pirates with the official vid of their hit, THIS CITY:



These. as well as the other mic heroes you'll be enjoying, really deserve the breaks and exposure that today's Top Acts already are digging! And your fanship can definitely help! So come back early-and-often, and be sure to make some noize in our "comment" section, okay? (I'll be watching ....)

Natch, I'm also gonna continue spotlighting the Master Mouser himself - the dude who actually started this Clique about ten years ago or better: the late legend himself, Lloyd Thaxton!

So stay tuned, at least once a week, for more. Til then, I'll see ya on the flip side!!

Monday, April 24, 2017

The Day The Beatles (Almost) Reunited!

APRIL 24, 1976 - Forty-one years ago from the date of this here blogpost, the greatest band that ever hit the airwaves, stadiums and our earpans were presented with an offer they couldn't refuse:

Play a three-song set on NBC's new Saturday Night Live ... for three thousand dollars!!

The Beatles were offered, on the live TV show, the certified check from NBC by SNL producer Lorne Michaels himself.

As he held up the check for a camera shot, he said,

“Now, we’ve heard and read a lot about personality and legal conflicts that might prevent you guys from reuniting. That’s something which is none of my business. That’s a personal problem. You guys will have to handle that. But it’s also been said that no one has yet to come up with enough money to satisfy you. Well, if it’s money you want, there’s no problem here. The National Broadcasting Company has authorized me to offer you this check to be on our show. A certified check for $3,000.”

Sure, it was played up for comedy - but it got the attention of two guys who were visiting each other that night and had tuned in:
Paul McCartney and John Lennon!
Michaels continued:

“All you have to do is sing three Beatles songs: ‘She Loves You,’ yeah, yeah, yeah — that’s $1,000 right there. You know the words. It’ll be easy. Like I said, this is made out to ‘The Beatles.’ You divide it anyway you want. If you want to give Ringo less, that’s up to you. I’d rather not get involved.”

Well, both Lennon and McCartney decided, just for the heck of it, to take them up on their offer. According to Paul:

“John said, ‘We should go down, just you and me. There’s only two of us so we’ll take half the money.’ And for a second. But it would have been work, and we were having a night off, so we elected not to go. It was a nice idea – we nearly did it.”

Since they ultimately backed away from it, on May 22 Michaels sweetened the deal:

"John, Paul, George and Ringo, we are now prepared to up the original offer to $3,200!”

But there's more!!  In a tongue-in-cheek attempt to sway the lads, they were offered free lodging as well! Famed SNL announcer Don Pardo then described the amenities at the Cross Town Motor Inn with the same verve as he did on The Price Is Right: “round-the-clock elevator service,” water glasses that have been “sanitized for their convenience,” “48-hour dry cleaning” and free room-to-room calls.
Unfortunately, it wasn't enough to tempt The Fab Four to reunite. Wonder what it would've been like if they'd taken him up on the offer?

Imagine ...




Thursday, April 13, 2017

Keep Your Fan Base ...

Yup ... I'm back.  Just had some work to catch up on (y'see, I also publish a new online newsmagazine now), run errands, write a few articles, and trim my toenails.  But I ain't about to let the Mousers (or Uncle Lloyd's memory) down ...

Besides, we of the rock persuasion have to stand united, right? (er, no, not ... that ... "United". er ... ahem! ... different story ...). 

So let's kick this off (UNH-unh!! I'm still not referring to ... awww, fuhgidabouddit ...) with a brand new post:

One of the first things that every musical act knows is that, no matter where they are in their career, they have a fan base they need to consider and stay in touch with.  Unfortunately, a lot of those on the "oldies" circuit seem to forget that.
I mean, sure, they work their jobs, collect their pay, but go slip-slidin' away into anonymity until the next show.  No "one-on-one" with fans beyond the actual gig itself.  And, if they do, it's for a little PR to hype their next show.

But there are exceptions:  superstars like Mike Lane, Spencer Hannabuss and John Ford Coley (of solo act, The Fore and The 286 and the legendary England Dan and John Ford Coley fame respectively) are lads that, I know for a fact,  take time for any and all of their fans.  All three of these are on Facebook, btw, so you can follow and even chat with them there.

Basically, troops, it's like this:  If they ain't gonna forget you, then don't you forget them (NOTE: the preceding statement does not apply to tax men, bill collectors or telemarketers ...).

But, y'know, it's really the same thing in norml, everyday life with norml, everyday, non-musicminded people.  If they are of the mettle (not heavy mettle, but I digress. I'm not discriminatory ...) that they've stood with you since your salad days, they deserve you being there for them even though you've had a taste of the entree!!
As one singer out of Charlotte, NC told me once:  "Some singers act like their fans don't really exist.  But, without them, their records wouldn't really exist; their shows wouldn't really exist; and the only popularity they'd get would be if the papers ran their obituary.  Or wedding announcement, whichever comes first." 

It doesn't matter if you're in the music business or a dishwasher, the same thing holds true, right?

MUSIC! MUSIC! MUSIC!!

If you are a guitarist (or just have a hankering to play one), you know that there's more to those stringed wonders than just a fingerboard, frets, strings and a soundhole (or pickups).
You need quality!
And today's guitarist requires more than just the ax itself (ax=slang for "electric guitar"; down South, they're often called "gitfiddles"!).  From capos to tuners, cables, effects and more, guitars often require more equipment to produce a better sound.

To get just the right effect you want, all you need is to shop for your pedal board at musiciansfriend.com . For the best effects at unbeatable prices, just click that link you just saw.
You'll be able to shop by brand, condition, savings, new arrivals and more! So visit them now - and find out why they're truly the "Musician's Friend"!





Friday, March 24, 2017

Don't FIX Somethin' (If It Ain't Broke!)

Ahhhh, the good old days ...
It was my very first car -- just like you see it here. Except green. And dull. And with rust spots. And with someone's cigarette burn in the back seat.

But it ran great ... until the day my family told Ol' Fimblefingers (now known as me ...) to go out and put the oil and water in it!
Now, I knew more about brain surgery than I did about cars, but ...

Chuck, circa 196something: "W-well (gulp!), h-here goes: First, ummm, open the hood. Okay, now (tremendous crash, followed by searing pain) ... RAISE the hood and extract my fingers from the front."
A few hours later ...
"The doc said they're alright, just bruised. Now ... where were we? Ahhh, yes! Up with the hoodANDPUTUPTHATBARTOHOLDIT THERE!
Now ... ummm, that ... that fan in front can't afford to rust, soooo ... the oil goes ... I guess in ... that radiator hole! THERE! That'll keep it from jamming up!"
"And since the motor gets hot -- wellll, it'll have to cool down, and what better than water, right?? So the waterhose goes into that shiny-capped hole on the engine block!"

After a few minutes, Curly ... er, Shemp ... er, I went into the house and proudly announced that I'd done it! I'd filled it with water and oil!

(HEY!! Stop snickering, okay?? I'm older now and know better. Besides, you get a lot of fresh air by walking!)

Yeah, I took it for a spin. Of about fifty yards ...
and after the laughter subsided (a few hours later), my dad told me, Son, if it ain't broke, don't FIX it!"

And, Mousers, that's why I look so studious and pensive whenever I watch The Three Stooges now. I can identify!!

In a way, it reminds me of when some stations wanted Uncle LL to make his show more "sophisticated" (read: uppity). According to the MetTimes, they also meant cutting the lip-synching and "goofing off". Fortunately, Lloyd just kept on doing what he did best -- being himself -- and never changed what he did!

Y'see, just like my daddy said about the now-deceased BoltBucket, If It Ain't Broke, Don't FIX It!" Our Head Cheeser proved, time and again, that if you've got a winning combination in your career, life or both, stick with it! Don't let anybody tell you how to change it! Maybe they're good at their thing, but that doesn't mean they're experts at yours!
And Lloyd -- well, if anybody knew how to bring good vibrations to both the KCOP stage, the small screen and to hearts around the country, it was him!

Stay tuned ...

Monday, March 13, 2017

TODAY IN ROCK (It's March 13, btw)

Beginning with this post, we're gonna add some new segments to keep it fresh (now, if I could just do that with my store-bought bread, I'd be set ...)

Actually, I've cranked up the Way-Back Machine to (awww. if ya don't remember, I'll refresh your memory in a minute) to see what happened in R&R decades (or so) ago.

On this date in 1971, for example, a controversy surrounded one of the most tightly-harmonic top-charters of the decade.  Michael Brewer and Tom Shipley (collectively known, of course, as Brewer & Shipley) released a fantastic folk-rock tune called One Toke Over The Line.
Almost as soon as the song was released, a lot of ultra-conservatives (read: older folks) said that they were talking about drugs (ie, "toke" being slang for a hit from a marijuana joint).

But, people, I'd been bus/train human-cargo for some time, and can tell ya "'Tain't so!!"  You see, when you were thinkin' about going somewhere by either conveyance, you were coming close to "drawin' the line".  When I was actually sittin' in the railway station, got a ticket for my destination (whoops!  Heh-heh ... sorry.  Wrong song ...), I'd already gone (ready?) "over the line".  Meaning: I'd gone beyond deciding, and was on my way, having already bought the ticket!
Here .... listen for yourself, then I'll be back with more:

Now ya see? btw, if you hear a little steel guitar in the mix, thank the musician - a chap named Jerry Garcia!

DANCIN' WITH THE BB's: On this date in 1965, the Beach Boys released a cover of "Do You Wanna Dance?", the Bobby Freeman classic that hit #12 in the Billboard charts. The lead singer on this one was drummer Dennis Wilson. In his place on the skins was Wrecking Crew member Hal Blaine - with Leon Russell on organ and future Bread winner Larry Knechtel on bass.

OH, WHAT A NIGHT: And coming in at #1 on this date in 1976 was The Four Seasons with their hit December 1963 (Oh, What A Night) - a song originally written about the Prohibition era (ergo, "1963" was to be "1933". The producers thought it'd flop, though, so the crew got new lyrics and did a date-change on it). Unfortunately, it was the last hit of the FS.

THE WAYBACK MACHINE? Okay ... who remembers Rocky and Bullwinkle? Then you probably know about the eclectic, professorial and smart-as-all-get-out bowwow Mr. Peabody who, along with his hyoo-min sidekick Sherman, rode the time-space continuum (man, I love those Trekkie words!) to wherever they wanted. Preceded Marty McFly''s Delorean by a quarter-century!

Oh ... one more thing: In England, a chap by given name Peter Blair Denis Bernard Noone decided to take that hyoo-min's name and call himself Herman. Then he hooked up with a fledgling band known as The Heartbeats and, voila - Herman's Hermits came to pass!
So now ya know!

Okay ... more coming up in a day or two, so stay tuned ...