early rock and roll

Slash, third row, second from left.
Marc Canter, first row, on end.

“I first met Slash in 1976 when we were in the fifth grade and we became good friends.
At that time, I noticed that he had a great talent for sketching on school projects.

By 1978 we were riding bicycle motocross. The tricks that he performed were ahead of the time.
Slash was a star.
Camera flashes would go off when he took his jumps. He approached bicycle motocross with the same style and flash as he did everything else, including the guitar, which he took up in 1980.

By 1981, he was flying again, but with guitar, and I would always push him to learn tough solos. He understood how to get the right tone.
In trying to contribute to his success, I always helped out in any way I could. I would help him buy guitar strings, I’d help him with the effects that he might be interested in.
He worked a lot, like twelve-hour days at a clock company and he got by on very little wages, but he did buy his own guitars. The twelve-hour days at a clock company supported his guitar habit.

Slash wanted to play the bass, but when his teacher, Robert Wolin, pointed out that the bass had four strings, whereas the guitar had an alluring six, Slash characteristically went for the more challenging instrument.
A quick study, he didn’t need many lessons to master the basics and achieve his own expressive style.

He had a lot of respect and admiration for Wolin’s playing and credits him with inspiring his own ambitious approach for the instrument.

-Marc Canter, Reckless Road


Hi! @butterfliesforchubbyguys called for anyone interested to do this and so here it is! I put my iTunes music on “Shuffle all” and this is what happened - no skips I promise! (ps i have over 12,000 songs on there so this is a raindrop in an ocean):

Breakfast at Tiffany’s - Deep Blue Something

Deep River Woman - Lionel Richie

Star Wars and Other Galactic Funk - Meco

Life’s A Happy Song - The Muppets 

Crazy Swing - !DelaDap (alternate 2012 Eurovision entry from Austria but it didn’t get selected)

The Wanderer - Dion

A Sunday Kind of Love - Etta James

Here Comes Santa Claus - Elvis Presley

For Your Eyes Only - Blondie (alternate Bond theme it’s so great)

Get Rhythm - Johnny Cash 

(ps I have 622 beatles songs and I wanted to see how long it took until I got to one. The answer was 34 songs in)

(pps i am not surprised the only songs from the past 20 years are from eurovision and the muppets)

I’ll tag anyone interested as well! Anyone procrastinating or otherwise

Black history month day 19: musical pioneer Sister Rosetta Tharpe.

Rosetta was born on March 20, 1915 to a pair of musicians in Arkansas. Her parents were also active in the Church of God in Christ (COGIC). This denomination encouraged musical expression, rhythm and dancing, and female preaching. Rosetta’s mother was a preacher and, at her encouragement, Rosetta began singing and playing the guitar as Little Rosetta Nubin at the age of four and was cited as a musical prodigy. By the age of six, Rosetta became a regular performer in her mother’s traveling evangelical troupe.

Rosetta became well known for her music in an age where prominent black female guitar players were a rarity. At the age of 23 she begin her recording career and became one of the first gospel performers to have the mainstream success. She performed with prominent musicians like cab Calloway and was one of only two gospel singers who was able to send records to the troops overseas during World War II.

Rosetta Tharpe has been referred to as “the godmother of rock ‘n’ roll” and her style of music heavily influenced early rock-and-roll musicians, including Little Richard, Johnny Cash, Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley and Jerry Lee Lewis.

And because I just can’t justify posting this without an actual example of how talented she was, click this link to hear one of her classic songs: https://youtu.be/SR2gR6SZC2M


On this day in music history: July 2, 1971 - “Get It On” by T.Rex is released. Written by Marc Bolan, it is the ninth UK and fourth US single release for the glam rock band from London, UK fronted by musician Marc Bolan. One of the pivotal figures and icons of the glam rock movement of the 70’s, like his friend and some time rival David Bowie, Marc Bolan finds himself going through numerous musical transformations before achieving stardom. Born Mark Feld in Stoke Newington in the North East London borough of Hackney in 1947, Marc becomes infatuated by the first wave of rock & roll while still a school boy. By the 60’s, he is making moves toward making his dreams of becoming a rock star come true. However, there are numerous set backs and stumbling blocks along the way, making folk rock recordings inspired by his musical hero Bob Dylan, none of which make the charts. Changing his name to Marc Bolan, he forms the band Tyrannosaurus Rex in 1967, at first creating a hybrid of psychedelic folk rock, before evolving into their trademark glam rock sound. In 1970, after shortening their name to T.Rex, Bolan finally makes his major breakthrough with the single “Ride A White Swan” which hits #1 on the UK singles chart in January of 1971. While writing songs for T.Rex’s second album, Bolan takes inspiration from another one of his early rock & roll heroes, Chuck Berry. The initial idea for what becomes “Get It On”, comes when Bolan initially intends to record of cover of Berry’s song “Little Queenie”. Eventually, he changes his mind and writes a new song with that same feel, finishing off “Get It On” quickly. Paying further tribute to Berry, Bolan quotes the lyric “meanwhile, I’m still thinking” (from “Little Queenie”) at the end of “Get It On”. The track is recorded at Wally Heider Studios in Hollywood, CA and Trident Studios in London with producer Tony Visconti (David Bowie), and features T.Rex members Steve Currie (bass) and Bill Legend (drums) and Mickey Finn (congas). Also on the song are Blue Weaver (Bee Gees) (piano), King Crimson saxophonist Ian McDonald and former Turtles members Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman (aka “Flo & Eddie”) on backing vocals. The single is an immediate smash in the UK and rockets to the top on July 24, 1971, spending four weeks at the top. In the US, the record does not have such a fast trajectory. Re-titled “Bang A Gong (Get It On)”, it languishes for five long months before finally charting. Entering the Hot 100 at #87 on January 1, 1972, it peaks at #10 on March 4, 1972. Along with its accompanying album “Electric Warrior”, “Get It On” turns Marc Bolan into a glam rock icon, and becomes one of the definitive songs of the movement. The song has a long life after its run on the charts. In 1985, The Power Station cover “Get It On”, with their version peaking at #9 on the Hot 100 in August of 1985, one position higher than T.Rex’s original.