Friday, June 29, 2012

Beach Boys at No. 23 on Billboard

"That's Why God Made the Radio" continues to do well! Three weeks in, and it is selling enough to still be in the Top 30! In this modern age, when many artists (not just classic ones) slide right off the Top 200 after a week or two, the No. 23 placing is pretty fantastic! (Want proof that they're at No. 23? You can see it HERE [Click Words].)

The album debuted and peaked at No. 3, then went to No. 14, then No. 23. A fantastic showing for a fantastic album by a fantastic group. It's pretty fantastic, in case you couldn't tell.

Congrats Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston and David Marks!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Blogging: Ups and downs

My blog celebrates its first birthday/anniversary later next month (around the middle of July), and it's been pretty dang successful. I define success in, "Wow, a lot of people are visiting my blog and I didn't expect that."

Truth be told, when I started this li'l blog, I figured I'd be lucky to get a handful of visits a month. Maybe a hundred visits in a year. Something like that. And honestly, traffic wasn't the point. But everyone has an ego, and I did have that hope that others would find my words worthwhile.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Washing away that work vibe

I'm working today, and I doubt I'll get much time to do a proper blog entry.

But that got me thinking ... Listening to music at work isn't rare, by any stretch. Some folks hear it over the intercom at some stores. Others get radios at their desks. Some do the headphones thing. CDs. YouTube. MP3 players. Those iPhones and iPods. Music is more portable and present than ever.

I figure that's a good thing. I certainly rely on music a lot to keep me balanced and get me through the days.

If you listen to music at work, how do you do it? Does your place of business allow it? I'm curious just how permissive different fields are, and different countries are, with the practice of listening to music while working.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Just for fun: 70 for Brian Wilson's 70th

It struck me that it might be fun to assemble a list of 70 songs that Brian Wilson wrote/sang and share this list as a possible fan's guide to Brian Wilson. Since he's 70 years old today, 70 songs seems like a good number. 

No such thing as "free music"

I was reading some stuff online and came across an article that I think addresses music downloads (and those who choose to download "free" music rather than pay for it) pretty well.

I would ask everyone who visits my blog (especially those who are looking for download links) to read it, as it is AT THE VERY LEAST food for thought. Check out the rest of this post to read it.

Happy 70th birthday, Brian Wilson!

Brian Wilson's 70th birthday is today, two days after Sir Paul McCartney's own 70th. What a week for popular music, right?

Brian is on tour with The Beach Boys as they continue their reunion run. The latest Beach Boys album "That's Why God Made the Radio" debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 charts. Critics and fans alike have applauded both the album and the tour.

So, basically, Brian's 70th comes at a time when he's doing well professionally and is seeing the fruits of his labors being loved at sold-out venues. Not too shabby!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Almost a week and no post? Sorry!

Hey all,

I'll be back to posting soon, I've just been preoccupied lately. I've been listening a lot to the new Beach Boys album, but I figure I've posted quite a bit on that lately. Unless there's some big breaking news (an expanded edition, it hitting No. 1 on the charts, a new single with video, etc.), I'll probably lay off doing more "That's Why God Made the Radio" posts for a bit.

Got a few reviews started (none are very far along yet). Sharon Van Etten's "Tramp" is one, as is Paul and Linda McCartney's "Ram" (a review of the 2-disc deluxe edition). I enjoy both albums a lot, but haven't been struck by the "gotta write this NOW" bug for them. If something grabs me more forcefully in the near future, those may get knocked aside for a bit.

Hope you're all doing well!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Worst reviews? Could be!

Some friends of mine uncovered this gem of a link, and I wanted to share it with you folks.

This isn't any of my own work, and I give full credit to the compiler (apparently, a writer going by the username of schmidtt).

I give you: Rolling Stone's 500 Worst Reviews (click the words).

There's a lot of brilliance, analysis and bile there. It's a great read! You can pick it up and put it down, come back later, read a few at a time ... But it's worthy of perusal!

Let me know what you think!

Proof: Beach Boys No. 3 on Billboard 200

Here it is!

Congratulations, Beach Boys!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Summer far from gone: Beach Boys hit No. 3 on Billboard

The new Beach Boys album "That's Why God Made the Radio" has debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 albums chart!

How huge is this? It's HUGE.

From Billboard's article (which you can read HERE):

At No. 3, the Beach Boys notch its highest charting album since 1974 as "That's Why God Made the Radio" debuts with 61,000. It's the group's highest-debut ever, and best rank since 1974's "Endless Summer" greatest hits set hit No. 1. In terms of studio albums, "That's Why God Made the Radio" is its highest-ranked since 1965's "Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!)" reached No. 2. "That's Why God Made the Radio" is the group's 14th top 10 album overall, and first since 1976's "Big Ones" (No. 8).

"That's Why God Made the Radio" is the band's 29th studio album and was released as part of the group's 50th anniversary celebration. Its 61,000 sales start also includes nearly 20,000 copies that were pre-ordered during the band's concert appearance on the QVC shopping network on May 16.

It's quite a time for Beach Boys fans. From "The SMiLE Sessions" to the reunion, from the concert tour to the late-night television appearances, from the new album and the great songs ... It's been a long time coming, and fans worldwide have every reason to celebrate. "From There to Back Again" indeed!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Billboard: Beach Boys album and the charts

Kind of interesting:

The Beach Boys' new "That's Why God Made the Radio" will perhaps give the legendary act its highest debut ever and first top 10 album since 1976. The album is on course for a start in the range of 60,000 to 65,000 and should easily become the group's first top 10 since 1976's "15 Big Ones" hit No. 8.

You can view the rest of the article HERE (click words).

Thursday, June 7, 2012

RIP, Bob Welch of Fleetwood Mac

Saw this come across a news feed, and it's some sad news.

I am not what you'd call a big fan of Fleetwood Mac (I like plenty of their songs, but I only own a couple of the big albums and a greatest hits ... that's all I've ever needed). I don't know really any of their stuff from before Buckingham and Nicks joined the group (I know some Peter Green stuff, but not a lot of it).

I know Fleetwood Mac was a good blues group before they became the big group of the Seventies. And I knew they had a lot of great guitarists throughout the years. But that was about the extent of my knowledge on their lineup.

I'd come across Bob Welch vinyl in the past, but I didn't recognize the name and never gave the stuff a chance. I'm sure it was good content, it just wasn't anything I'd had brought to my attention by family or friends or peers. I mean this man no disrespect, and I'm certain his artistry and skill were impressive ... And I hope his passing has brought him peace.

The circumstances of his death are unfortunate, and his family and friends have my genuine sympathies.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Video: A Google interview with The Beach Boys

Strap in for 40 minutes of awesomeness!

Humor, involvement with all 5 guys and some good insights ... It's worth the watch!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Another Beach Boys post: Buying the new album

I've bought a handful of copies of the new album at Target. Today, they were $7.99 each. Pretty great! I'll be sharing them with friends and family and hoping they enjoy the music as much as I do.

I looked at other retailers to see if there were competitive sales. Walmart and Best Buy also had the album on sale ($9.99 each). So, for big box stores, Target won.

Add in my other orders (vinyl, etc.) and the digital downloads, and I think I've been doing my part to promote and support the group and "That's Why God Made the Radio."

Want to listen to the album before you buy it? AOL is streaming the entire album. You can listen to that stream HERE (click these words).

I really hope The Beach Boys enjoy some commercial and critical success with this new album. It deserves it, and so do they. They manage to sound classic and fresh at the same time, and that isn't easy to do.

Have you folks bought the album yet? Downloaded it from Amazon or iTunes? What are your thoughts?

(I'll be trying to get some reviews on material that IS NOT Beach Boys soon. Sorry, but you'll have to bear with me. I loves me some Beach Boys, and a new studio album is a big deal to me!)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

"Summer's Gone" by The Beach Boys

YouTube has seen a lot of entries in the last several days as the new Beach Boys album "That's Why God Made the Radio" has started to make its way to fans (either through legitimate orders and early deliveries, or through leaks).

A lot of these have been taken down fairly quickly, and I'm sure this one will too ... Since this post is strictly about the YouTube video, I'll remove this post if I see the video was taken down.

So enjoy it while you can: The final song from the new album, "Summer's Gone."

That's some good music (that whole suite that caps the album, those final three songs ... whew).

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Album review: Beach Boys, "That's Why God Made the Radio"

In 1985, The Beach Boys released a self-titled album. It was the first new record the group released since the drowning death of drummer and founding member Dennis Wilson.

It also was the last group album of new studio material to feature Brian Wilson in any sort of dominant fashion.

There came an album of odds and ends, called "Still Cruisin'." Then there was the studio disc (sans Brian) called "Summer in Paradise." Following that was the lamentable "Stars and Stripes Vol. 1" album that featured country stars singing the lead vocals, with backing vocals from The Beach Boys.

There were compilation albums, a live disc and an album of live and solo tracks released through Hallmark stores. Then came the wonderful "The SMiLE Sessions" materials.

But modern work, with all the surviving members, contributing actively (whether in songwriting or singing or playing)?

It's been a long time.

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