Archive for Lynyrd Skynyrd

Great Rock Albums of 1984: Molly Hatchet- The Deed is Done

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2017 by 80smetalman

In the mid and late 1980s, there was a belief that whenever a hard rock or heavy metal band incorporated keyboards into their sound, they had sold out and were trying to sound more commercial friendly. Yes, this was the case for a good number of bands back then and Molly Hatchet were accused of the same when guitarist Steve Holland was replaced with keyboards player John Galvin, who had played with Danny Joe Brown when he had his own band. Sure, the band moved away from their Southern Rock stylings to a more commercial friendly arena rock sound but their 1984 album, “The Deed is Done” is by no means in any shape or form a sell out.

While there are notable differences with this album and their very famous hard smashing album “Flirtin’ With Disaster,” the hard rock sound is there for all to hear. Even with two guitars, Molly Hatchet really rock out on the album, the keyboards only give it a more melodic back ground. The most prominent examples are the two tracks released as singles, “Satisfied Man” and the one I prefer slightly more, “Stone in Your Heart.” These are both rockers with John’s keyboards providing excellent melodic back up. Unlike so many bands who tried using keyboards, Molly Hatchet does it right here and unfortunately, this is why the album didn’t sell as well as the fore mentioned biggie. Some metalheads scoffed at the use of keyboards while mainstream trendies were put off by the hard guitars and labelled them heavy metal. That’s another issue about the 1980s, but I’ll save that for another time.

As for the rest of the tracks, they cook as well and the now guitar duo of Duane Rolands and Dave Hlubeck show that even with two guitars, they can still kick ass. There is many a good hard rock song on “The Deed is Done” to be heard. However, if someone moaned about them using keyboards, then that person might have really been freaked out by the use of a saxophone on the track, “She Does She Does.” What younger metalheads didn’t understand in the 80s was that saxophones were employed very well in many a good rock song throughout the ages and it is done very well on this track. And while Molly Hatchet may have moved a little away from their Southern Boogie Rock sound, it is still there in the tracks, “Heartbreak Radio” and “I Ain’t Got You”. In fact, the second half of the album really rocks. “Good Smoke and Whiskey” wasn’t only a great track, it was my theme song for a while. However, my personal favourite on this album has to be “Man on the Run.” The old style of Molly Hatchet is stamped on it from the very beginning and the keyboards, like on the hits, provide the necessary support. This song is probably the best example of how you can incorporate the old Hatchet with the new. So what you do get with “The Deed is Done” is a more melodic hard rock sound in places but with the traditional southern sound not completely forgotten. It does make an excellent combination to the open minded.

Going on a little more about the keyboards, John Galvin is definitely underrated in this position. Some have compared him to Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Billy Powell, probably because their both from Southern Rock bands. Like Southern Rock bands, the piano is given that honky tonk sound which only works with bands like these two giants. However, John’s work with organs and synthesizers can’t be ignored because he plays them well. Oh yes, with all the talk about keyboards, I forgot to mention that the album also marked the return of Bruce Crump on drums. It was good to hear him return on the album.

Track Listing:

  1. Satisfied Man
  2. Backstabber
  3. She Does She Does
  4. Intro Piece
  5. Stone In Your Heart
  6. Man on the Run
  7. Good Smoke and Whiskey
  8. Heartbreak Radio
  9. I Ain’t Got You
  10. Straight Shooter
  11. Song For the Children

Molly Hatchet

Danny Joe Brown- vocals

Duane Rolands- guitar

Dave Hlubeck- guitar

John Galvin- keyboards

Riff West- bass

Bruce Crump- drums

Additional Musicians

Jim Horn- saxophone

Jimi Jamison, Tom DeLuca, Steve Bassett, Terry Manning- background vocals

I think that I’ve established before the metal court that “The Deed is Done” album was in no way a sell out for Molly Hatchet. While the album marks a departure from their traditional Southern sound, it still rocks and rocks hard. It’s just a shame there were too many musically narrow minded people around in the mid 1980s who didn’t give the album a chance.

Next post: Blackfoot- Vertical Smiles

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://www.amazon.com/Rock-Roll-Children-Michael-Lefevre/dp/1609763556/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1503214910&sr=8-7&keywords=michael+d+lefevre

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Albums That Were Lost in the Cassette Player

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 6, 2017 by 80smetalman

For those who have been following me for awhile, you will know that back in the early 198os, I owned a lot of cassettes due to my very limited living space when I was in the marines. Even after I got out, while I began buying vinyl again, I still bought a good amount of cassettes. My logic at the time was you couldn’t play records in the car and I need my travelling music. While cassettes had the advantage of being very compact, you could fit one in your shirt pocket, they had the disadvantage of being susceptible of destructing. They could easily get mangled in the player and often times brake. I found this extremely frustrating. While the percentage of cassettes lost was small compared to the number I owned, it still upset me when I lost one to the machine. So, as an in between the years post, I will play homage to all the great albums that were mangled by a tape player.

The famous ammo cans . I thought this would be a good excuse to put this picture in the post.

Others that succumbed but I don’t have pictures for

Slayer- South of Heaven

The Dreggs- Unsung Heroes

The Who- recorded from the radio

Copperhead

There could be more but these are the ones I definitely remember. However, other cassettes weren’t mangled in the machine but wore out another way. When played they began to have a hiss sound on them. Eventually, this hiss got louder and present on more of the tape until it was unplayable. There was the odd tape where that started but it stopped and played normal again. Unfortunately, others didn’t so here is a tribute to those cassettes that were lost in this manner.

As you can see, many a great album fell victim to the dreaded tape player one way or the other. Thank God for CDs and more modern means of listening to music as I don’t have that problem anymore.

Next post: 1984

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

Great Rock Albums of 1983: 38 Special- Tour de Force

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 10, 2016 by 80smetalman

38_Special_-_Tour_de_Force

“Tour de Force” proves what I probably said about albums by 38 Special in previous posts. Each new album is not as good as the ones before. Going back to the very first 38 Special album I listened to, “Rockin’ Into the Night” was outstanding, their best album ever. The next one, “Wild Eyed Southern Boys” was an excellent album and “Special Forces was somewhere between good and very good. However, the 1983 “Tour de Force” album was just good.

Another thing which I have said in the past was my belief that if the single opens the album, then the album may not be up to much because that has always been a trick of one hit wonders. In the case of this album, the first three tracks are the singles that were released on the album. Of those three, the middle one, “Back Where You Belong,” is the best. That song is more the 38 Special I had come to know and love back then. A good opening hard riff with a cool guitar solo, full marks there. Saying that, “If I’d Been the One” is a decent enough song but I’ve never been impressed with the third track, “One Time for Old Times.”

Here is a case where instead of one song not making an entire album, it’s two. I won’t include “Back Where You Belong” because it is a great song. However, after those three singles, things definitely turn up a few notches for the good. “See Me In Your Eyes” starts to return things to a normality with 38 Special and then “Twentieth Century Fox” is a complete rocker. The exact same thing can be said for the tracks that follow on after that. “Long Distance Affair” and the closer, “Undercover Lover” are fine rocking tracks with the latter song, when it closes out the album, leaves you with an all’s well that ends well feeling towards the album.

I must also add that “I Oughta Let Go” is more of a Southern boogie number which proves that at this time, the band hadn’t completely abandoned their Southern Rock roots. But my brain has me wondering if the decline in each album is down to cause and effect. With “Rockin’ Into the Night,” Donnie Van Zant sings lead on five songs and Don Barnes three and one cracking instrumental. On the ensuing albums, the number of Van Zant leads lessen and Barnes sings lead on more. On “Tour de Force” Donnie Van Zant only sings lead on three songs with Barnes the other six. Now, I’m not knocking Don Barnes, he is a great vocalist and I should have included him in my list of great rhythm guitarists but Donnie Van Zant definitely brings an energy to the songs he sings. So, I wonder that if they kept it as it was on the first album, there wouldn’t have been such a noticeable decline. Oh yes, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again because it remains true on “Tour de Force.” Jeff Carlisi is a very underrated guitarist.

Track Listing:

  1. If I’d Been the One
  2. Back Where You Belong
  3. One Time for Old Times
  4.  See Me in Your Eyes
  5. Twentieth Century Fox
  6. Long Distance Affair
  7. I Oughta Let Go
  8. One of the Lonely Ones
  9. Undercover Lover
38 Special

38 Special

Don Barnes- lead vocals, guitar

Donnie Van Zant- lead vocals

Jeff Carlisi- lead guitar, steel guitar

Larry Junstrom- bass

Steve Brookins- drums

Jack Grondin- drums

Carol Bristow- backing vocals

Lu Moss- backing vocals

Jimmy Markham- harmonica

38 Special were at a cross roads at this point in time. I remember tearing my hair out trying to convince my friend that they were not a top forty band and that they were a cool Southern Rock band like Lynyrd Skynyrd and Molly Hatchet. I’m not sure if he ever believed me but while this album may lead one to think that they had sold out, there is enough on this good album to show that hadn’t.

Next post: Rolling Stones- Undercover

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

 

 

80smetalman’s Choices for National Anthems

Posted in Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 4, 2015 by 80smetalman

National Anthems inspire love for one’s country. Every one I’ve heard definitely does that. Some are hard driving like the US, UK or Canada while others are more somber like Japan or Wales. Even Italy’s which reminded me of a parade or Spain’s which sounds like a sixteenth century dance still can inspire love for the country. However, most national anthems are over a century old and while there’s nothing wrong with that, since they still inspire nationalistic feelings, I wonder if more modern ones could be used. See, I have come to associate certain songs by certain bands with the country they come from and that has me thinking. Maybe these songs should be national anthems for their country.

Lynyrd Skynyrd

Lynyrd Skynyrd

USA: Freebird by Lynyrd Skynyrd (I’m talking the full fifteen minute live version)

Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin

UK: Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin

Rush

Rush

Canada: Tom Sawyer by Rush

Bonfire

Bonfire

Germany: Proud of My Country by Bonfire

TNT

TNT

Norway- Seven Seas by TNT

Yngwie Malmsteen

Yngwie Malmsteen

Sweden- As Above, So Below by Yngwie Malmsteen

Hanoi Rocks

Hanoi Rocks

Finland- Tragedy by Hanoi Rocks

Golden Earring

Golden Earring

The Netherlands: Radar Love by Golden Earring

U2

U2

Ireland- Sunday Bloody Sunday by U2

Loudness

Loudness

Japan- Crazy Nights by Loudness

AC/DC

AC/DC

Australia- Highway to Hell by AC/DC

Note: For Brazil, it would definitely be something by Seputura and France would be a suitable song by Gojira.

While this is meant to be a little bit of fun, I’m sure some of you are cracking your knuckles and limbering your typing fingers to contribute some of your own suggestions. Well, I’m waiting.

Next post: The Scorpions- Blackout

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

My Top 15 Albums

Posted in Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 15, 2015 by 80smetalman

Typical me of my school days. I was always forgetting to do assignments which often got me in trouble with teachers. I almost missed the one set by a fellow blogger to list my 15 favourite albums. Looks like I’m just going to make the deadline here so don’t give me a detention. Well here they are:

sod

  1. Stormtroopers of Death- Speak English or Die

stend

2. Suicidal Tendencies

 kdbd

3. Killer Dwarfs- Big Deal

dio

4. Dio- Holy Diver

FreedomAtPointZero

5. Jefferson Starship- Freedom at Point Zero

 OneMoreFromTheRoad_LynyrdSkynyrdalbum

6. Lynyrd Skynyrd- One More From the Road

 imlad

7. Iron Maiden- Live After Death

 paranoidt

8. Black Sabbath- Paranoid

Aerosmith-Toys_in_the_Attic

9. Aerosmith- Toys in the Attic

tsyou

10. Twisted Sister- You Can’t Stop Rock And Roll

dv-ssor

11. Vaughn- Soldiers and Sailors on Riverside

hotdrise

12. Hair of the Dog- Rise

220px-Molly_Hatchet_-_Flirtin'_with_Disaster

13. Molly Hatchet- Flirtin’ With Disaster

nzhotd

14. Nazereth- Hair of the Dog

220px-REO_Speedwagon_-_Nine_Lives

15. REO Speedwagon- Nine Lives

Honourable Mentions

38 Special- Rockin’ Into the Night

Jefferson Starship- Winds of Change

Kreator- Pleasure to Kill

Van Halen- II

Dio- The Last in Line

Twisted Sister- Under the Blade

AC/DC- Back in Black

AC/DC- Highway to Hell

Pink Floyd- Dark Side of the Moon

Blackfoot- Highway Song

Damned Nation- Grand Designs

This is my list respectfully submitted on 15 September, 2015.

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Johnny Van Zant Band- The Last of the Wild Ones

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 2, 2015 by 80smetalman

jvz-wildones

 Owing to the fact that I spent two thirds of 1982 overseas combined with the expectations of the military, I only managed to attend one concert in 1982. It was at a local club in Jacksonville, North Carolina called the Chateau Madrid. It’s not there any more and unlike the Driftwood, I couldn’t find any pictures of it on line. Anyway, there are no prizes for guessing who it was I saw that night as I am visiting the album from that tour of the Johnny Van Zant band right now. I remember it being a good night and Johnny and Co were on form and I loved when they played Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “I Ain’t the One.” However, what could have ruined that night was the fact it was in a club full of drunk marines, yes I was one of them but I didn’t get involved in any scraps that night. No kidding, while I was enjoying the show, two marines to my right suddenly went to the floor in a heap and started hooking and jabbing. A few minutes after the bouncers broke up that fight and ejected the participants, two more guys on my left engaged in similar festivities. Those weren’t the only two bouts on the card that night but I didn’t let it spoil my enjoyment of the evening.

“The Last of the Wild Ones” is the third album from the Johnny Van Zant Band and it is definitely a power Southern Rock album. Some of the tracks are almost metal such as the opener and “Can’t Live Without Your Love.” Both of these are some very heavy songs where Robbie Gay and Erik Lundgren show what they are capable of with a guitar in their hands. The track “Inside Looking Out” sounds like what I think Boston would have sounded like if they had come from south of the Mason-Dixon Line. The power ballad, “Still Hold On” is the one song of such genre that comes closest to the bar set by April Wine the previous year as to what a power ballad should sound like. “It’s You” is the one song I remember getting air play at the time and it’s not your standard made for radio single. This song rocks and I can’t believe how much I had forgotten of the song, shame on me I know. My question is why this album didn’t break the band out of the Southeast as had it gotten more notice up North, it would have done well.

Track Listing:

1. Good Girls Gone Bad

2. It’s You

3. The Last of the Wild Ones

4. Still Hold On

5. Can’t Live Without Your Love

6. Danger Zone

7. Together Forever

8. Inside Looking Out

9. The One and Only

Johnny Van Zant Band

Johnny Van Zant Band

Johnny Van Zant- vocals

Robbie Gay- lead guitar

Erik- Lundgren- lead guitar

Danny Clausman- bass

Robbie Morris- drums

Maybe it was because the corporate record companies had made their millions out of Southern Rock the previous year the reason for why this album seems virtually unknown outside the Southeast of the USA. This is a shame because they alone got to enjoy what a great album “The Last of the Wild Ones” really is and many got to do it without having drunk marines fighting around them.

Next post: Greatest Hits of the Outlaws- High Tides Forever

To Buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Rossington/Collins- This is the Way

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 16, 2015 by 80smetalman

220px-RossingtonCollinsBandThisIsTheWay

One of the best things about being in the Southeastern part of the US in 1982 was that while the rest of the world seemed to be getting into new wave and synth pop was starting to rear its ugly head, Southern rock was still going strong there. Of course heavy metal was growing into a monster out of control but that’s another story. As I have said many times before, Southern Rock had stamped its authority in 1981 but while most of the trendy world may have moved on, Southerners were still true to their music. The result being that there are still quite a few more albums in this vein for me to visit and one of the major ones was the second album from Rossington/Collins, “This is the Way.”

For me, “This is the Way” is as every bit as good as their debut album “Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere.” It has that very pronounced Southern down home boogie vibe that is synonymous with Southern Rock. Plus, having several ex Lynyrd Skynyrd members in the band, you can definitely hear their influence on the album. What is different about Rossington/Collins is the lead singer, Dale Krantz- Rossington. Not enough mention is given to her vocal ability which is very high indeed. She really shines on the acapella “Pine Box.” Her vocals are just as noteworthy in the songs that have music with them but they have the additional bonus of some of that great Skynyrdesque guitar play from Gary Rossington and Allen Collins. Great examples to this are “Gotta Get it Straight,” “Gonna Miss It When Its Gone” and “Means Nothing to You.” “Don’t Stop Me Now” has an added bonus of the piano work of Billy Powell proving that he could still tinkle the ivories. It beats me why he doesn’t get the respect he deserves as a keyboardist. The best example, though, is the more bluesy ballad “Tashauana.” This song puts together all of the things already mentions and makes a really good song. Dale’s vocals are superb, their is some great powerful guitar and you can hear Powell’s well done efforts as well. “Tashauana” demonstrates why “This is the Way” is such a great album.

Track Listing:

1. Gotta Get it Straight

2. Tashauana

3. Gonna Miss It When Its Gone

4. Pine Box

5. Fancy Ideas

6. Don’t Stop Me Now

7. Seems Like Every Day

8. I’m Free Today

9. Next Phone Call

10. Means Nothing to You

Rossington/Collins

Rossington/Collins

Gary Rossington- guitar

Allen Collins- guitar

Dale Krantz- Rossington- vocals

Billy Powell- keyboards

Barry Lee Harwood- guitar, vocals

Leon Wilkeson- bass

Derek Hess- drums

“This is the Way” would be the second and final album from Rossington/Collins. They would disappear after this for reasons I will never fully understand. Maybe it was because I didn’t appreciate them enough back then. If that’s the case, then that’s not good, because if they kept putting out albums like this one, I would have been listening to them for years.

My stepson Teal holding his concert tickets

My stepson Teal holding his concert tickets

On a personal note, this Sunday my stepson and I will be going to see Amon Amarth, Huntress and Savage Messiah at the Thekla Club in Bristol. I will provide full details of the expected mayhem that is gong to happen in my next post.

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London