I planned on this being another random playlist type of week, and it is for the first half, but some notable deaths in the music world in the last couple of weeks changed that in part. I didn't have time to put together the kind of tribute I would have liked, but I did a little something.
The first loss was Alex Chilton, on March 6th. He died of a heart attack in New Orleans after complaining of poor health. Chilton was, of course, the heart of the legendary band Big Star, in addition to fronting The Boxtops beforehand and an eclectic solo career for years afterwards. He (mostly via Big Star) was an influence to multitudes of bands from the early eighties through today, and his loss is a tragic one, particularly since he had gathered the remaining members of Big Star for a performance at SXSW this week. That show will go on as a tribute to him, with other musicians and friends joining in.
Mark Linkous took his life on March 17th with a shotgum to his chest. Linkous started his career in the eighties with Dancing Hoods, but they never achieved much success and eventually split up. Then in the early nineties he started/formed/became Sparklehorse, a project which yielded 4 albums, multiple collaborations, and the critical acclaim and respect of a large portion of the musical world. He battled depression for years, and finally succumbed to it this month.
They both left us with some really great music, however, and this week I will share a small sampling of that with you in the second half of the show. The first half is pretty decent it's self.
Player at the top, download at the bottom, as always.
On the Way Out - Freedy Johnston - Power pop from the NYC singer-songwriter's 1997 album Never Home.
Bend and Break - Keane - From the British popster's first album, Hopes and Fears.
Cellphone's Dead - Beck - Beck is a musical genius, in case you didn't know. This was the first single from a great album, The Information.
The Blues are Still Blue - Belle and Sebastian - From one of the best albums of the last decade, The Life Pursuit.
Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse - Of Montreal - If the song title wasn't high-brow enough, the album is Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?
Better - Regina Spektor - NYC folk-popster from her album Begin to Hope.
Well Thought Out Twinkles - Silversun Pickups - from the obviously-Smashing Pumpkins-influenced band's first album, Carnavous.
Kool Thing - Sonic Youth - Musical slam of rappers treating women as their playthings ("I don't wanna, I don't think so") from the album Goo.
Tantalized - The Church - From my favorite Church album, Heyday, way back in the mid eighties.
Torn Away - Dancing Hoods - The opening track from Hallelujah Anyway, the 1988 release from Mark Linkous' first band, Dancing Hoods.
Someday I Will Treat You Good - Sparklehorse - Linkous' 2nd incarnation, critically acclaimed time and time again. From the first album, Vivadixiesubmarinetransmissionplot.
Baby's Got Rockets - Dancing Hoods - The one song from Hallelujah Anyway that got some attention and play on Mtv.
Feel - Big Star - The opening track to the album that influenced a thousand bands, #1 Record.
When My Baby's Beside me - Big Star - Perhaps my favorite song from the band headed by the legend Alex Chilton.
Alex Chilton - The Replacements - The 'Mats recorded Pleased to Meet Me at Ardent Studios in Memphis and included this song, a tribute to Chilton and Big Star.
I'm having link problems for the download, so just stream it.
**UPDATE** Download the show here.