l.a records

Drab Majesty - Oak Wood b/w Egress

“Oak Wood" was a song received a couple weeks following the Ghostship tragedy in Oakland.  The DAIS family lost one of it’s most beloved members, Cash Askew, and its song title is a literal translation of her last name; In Old Norse being Eiki (oak) Skogr (wood) thus making Oak Wood.  I found the name to be symbolically poignant in light of the events and wanted this to be a tribute piece.  The lyrics grapple with the existence of a god in a time of such utter sadness, hopelessness, and confusion.

“Egress" is meant to serve as a faint departure or daydream; spaces I often find myself drifting to as a means of escape when disturbing thoughts cyclically plague my brain.  Side A confronts the issue and Side B acts as a mental respite.  Making instrumental guitar pieces has always been an act of meditation and I hope if only for a brief moment, the listener can wander and lose themselves within the sonic imagery offered in this piece.  

released September 1, 2017

latimes.com
After a rocky year, Fifth Harmony is in control — and tighter than ever
Fifth Harmony is at a crossroads. Having lost a member in a public fallout right after the group brokeout, the girls are in full control of their sound and brand. Will they finally make it big?
By Gerrick D. Kennedy

Inside a Burbank rehearsal studio, the women of Fifth Harmony — surrounded by the thousands of album booklets they’ve autographed for fans, the most dedicated of whom are known as “Harmonizers” — are having an emoji debate.

They want to use the digital icons to accompany the online reveal of the track list for their upcoming self-titled album, due Aug. 25 via Syco Music/Epic.

Dinah Jane Hansen, 20, suggested a finger pointing downward as a clue for the album’s lead single, “Down,” but the rest weren’t as easy.

“We need to go quicker, guys,” Ally Brooke Hernandez, 24, instructed as they struggled to stifle giggles.

After all, there’s other, more important business for Fifth Harmony to convey in 2017.

“We should mention we wrote most of these,” said Normani Kordei, 21.

Co-writing and ownership of records is a first for these women — since being put together on the U.S. edition of the televised singing competition “The X Factor,” the members of Fifth Harmony, which also includes Lauren Jauregui, 21, have struggled to assert their independence and prove they’re singular artists who are not just a made-for-TV creation.

We’re so in sync, the four of us. When you have a strong unit, there’s no stopping you.

— Lauren Jauregui

That Fifth Harmony even made it to album No. 3 is something of a feat. Just a few months ago, the group was parting ways — acrimoniously — with one of its founding members as rumors of conflict hit a fever pitch.

And yet in recent weeks, the act has filmed two music videos — including a sexy, lo-fi clip for “Angel,” its new single that was produced by Skrillex and carries hip-hop-inflections — and its members are rehearsing for a tour and Fifth Harmony’s debut at the MTV Video Music Awards on Aug. 27.

“It’s the most monumental moment of our careers,” Kordei said. And the turnaround couldn’t have come quicker. Though the act seemed to be coming into its own with last year’s well-received release “7/27,” there was enough behind-the-scenes drama to fill a whole other reality show.

In December, the group appeared to be in crisis when it announced that singer Camila Cabello had exited just hours after a performance.

The group claims Cabello informed them via her representatives that she was out, something Cabello has rebutted.

And then things got messier.

Shortly after news of Cabello’s departure broke, a recording was leaked of Jauregui tearfully telling Hernandez that the group was being treated like “literal slaves.”

They were exhausted from touring — a period in which more than one member lost loved ones — and frustrated by a lack of creative fulfillment. From the beginning, Fifth Harmony has said that it had zero say in collaborators or the creation of its music, often receiving songs the day before studio sessions.

Often, its members say, the anxiety was crippling, and they started to resent performing. The dream of being the preeminent girl group of its generation was proving to be anything but.

We’ve been taking leaps of faiths — and trusting ourselves.

— Dinah Jane Hansen

“We lost the magic of it all,” Hansen added. “We were doing songs just to do songs.”

The magic, such as it was, began in 2012 when the thenteens entered the short-lived U.S. edition of “The X Factor” as solo contestants. They fizzled out but were then packaged as a group by Simon Cowell and then-Epic Records Chairman L.A. Reid.

Fifth Harmony took third place in the competition, scoring a joint deal with Epic Records and Cowell’s Syco Music.

Though a wave of boy bands had found recent success — including One Direction (assembled on the British version of “X Factor” — no girl group had managed to hit it big like Danity Kane, Pussycat Dolls, Destiny’s Child, the Spice Girls or TLC did in their prime.

Today, pop is dominated by assertive yet solo female artists, and Fifth Harmony risked looking like a relic from another era. And that doesn’t even consider the simple challenge of cultivating chemistry among a group of teenage girls who met on a TV show.

“When you get in a group, you have to go in understanding it’s not just about you and your ideas. It is a collaboration,” said TLC’s Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas. “When you think of [girl groups], most of them don’t stay together, because it’s not easy at all. Chemistry is something you either have or don’t have.”

Epic worked heavily to sell Fifth Harmony, keeping the group on the road constantly, often booking concerts at malls. “Every season, for 4½ years … I was a zombie,” Jauregui recalls.

From the outside, there was much to celebrate.

Fifth Harmony’s 2015 debut, “Reflection,” saw the group pick up where Destiny’s Child and TLC had left off, with an album full of slinky dance-pop and R&B/hip-hop-informed girl power anthems — with breakout single “Worth It” becoming one of the year’s biggest earworms.

The act then made history last year as the first girl group to score a top 10 Billboard Hot 100 smash in nearly a decade with the snappy “Work From Home.”

Yet the women in Fifth Harmony said they it felt burnt out and controlled by the label — like “puppets,” they agree. The women pushed though teary onstage breakdowns, infighting and family feuding.

“It came to a point where I’d catch myself onstage and realize, ‘I’m not feeling this,’” Kordei said. “It scared me, because this is what I want to do for the rest of my life.”

Today, the women are relaxed and comfortable discussing their recent history. They’re dressed in active wear — Kordei’s shirt has “Phenomenal Woman” emblazoned across it, while Jauregui is wearing the anti-discrimination top Frank Ocean recently made famous — and their faces are makeup-free.

Jauregui reflected on the stress of the past.

We’ve been grateful to have a machine behind us. But we definitely needed respect — and we had to demand it.

— Ally Brooke Hernandez

“You’re in front of so many people that you know love you,” she said. “To be in a space where you don’t connect or when you feel bored in that kinda setting …”

“You feel guilty,” Kordei offered.

“It’s overwhelming to have your whole, entire life planned for something you don’t feel passionate about,” said Jauregui, the room falling silent. “You’re not seeing your family, your friends. You’re not doing anything for yourself. It was depressing, draining and sad. Now, it’s a whole different thing.”

In fact, the members of Fifth Harmony had long been fighting for the autonomy and respect that they are only now receiving. In late 2015, Hernandez contacted outspoken L.A. music lawyer Dina LaPolt, who helped the group clean house.

LaPolt got them new management with the powerhouse firm Maverick and helped transfer the Fifth Harmony trademark from Cowell to its members, giving them complete ownership of the brand.

A more favorable contact with Epic was then negotiated, but the women still weren’t in the driver’s seat when it came to music.

Everything we’ve been through, the ups and downs, I really believe it was to shape and mold us for this moment.

— Normani Kordei

“We were 15, 16 and 19 when we started,” Jauregui said. “We didn’t have any basic understanding of business, and we’re being thrown into this world of wolves where they really screw you over with contracts. We were really in a line of adversity.”

After Cabello’s departure, the women realized they wanted to work on repairing the group’s dynamic as well as its relationship with the label in order to become more vocal about its career ambitions. “We all got on the same page … and fought for our say,” Hansen said.

A key ally was Epic A&R executive Chris Anokute, who joined their team during the recording of “7/27.”

“They were uninspired, beaten up, bruised. They weren’t gelling,” Anokute said. “You could tell there were some things going on between the girls … issues with management. They started venting their insecurities and desire to write songs, and I realized they were never a part of it.”

Anokute pushed Reid to commit to another album after the turmoil with Cabello (Reid left the label in May), bolstering the group’s confidence.

“We are being more respected this time around,” Hansen said. “We are in a place where we know what we want and who we are. We’ve recognized our truth and what we have to offer — and our power.”

I love these girls and consider them sisters. I have such high visions for us, the four of us. Everything that has come true this year has been validation.

— Ally Brooke Hernandez

Fifth Harmony finding its voice shows on the new album — its title a nod to the group’s newfound independence.

The album was recorded in seven weeks at Santa Monica’s Windmark Recording, and the women co-wrote more than half of the songs on the project — splitting into pairs and penning the type of tunes they’ve wanted to do alongside handpicked producers, including Dreamlab, the Stereotypes, Harmony Samuels, the Monsters & Strangerz and Tommy Brown.

The record is raw, soulful, sexy and fully the group’s own vision.

On a recent afternoon, the pop of a Champagne bottle echoed around a boardroom inside Epic Records’ headquarters on the Sony lot in Culver City.

Cheers, air kisses and hugs awaited the ladies as they filed into a room stuffed with label staff gathered to hear Fifth Harmony’s new album — a mountain of tacos and bottles of tequila and Champagne awaiting them.

Before the music began, acting Epic President Sylvia Rhone led the room in a toast.

“To the baddest ladies in the business — it’s a pleasure to have worked with you guys,” Rhone said, her glass of Champagne hoisted high above her head as the women looked on with glassy eyes, clutching one another’s hands.

“It finally feels like we are living our lives. We’ve taken ownership,” Kordei said. “It’s been there all along, but maybe we weren’t confident enough or bold enough. This time, we’ve got the extra fire … and we don’t care what anyone else has to say.

“I kinda wish it could have been like this all along,” Kordei said with a sigh.

Jauregui, unarguably Fifth Harmony’s most outspoken member — she’s the first to admit group members barely listen to their earlier work — takes a bolder stance.

“We would have freaking dominated,” she said.

4

Willie Mae “Big Mamma” Thornton (December 11, 1926-July 25, 1984) -was an American rhythm-and-blues singer and songwriter. She was the first to record Leiber and Stoller’sHound Dog”, in 1952,[1] which became her biggest hit, staying seven weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B chart in 1953[2] and selling almost two million copies.[3] However, her success was overshadowed three years later, when Elvis Presley recorded his more popular rendition of “Hound Dog”.[4] Similarly, Thornton’s “Ball ‘n’ Chain” (written in 1961 but not released until 1968) had a bigger impact when performed and recorded by Janis Joplin in the late 1960s.

Thornton’s performances were characterized by her deep, powerful voice and strong sense of self. She tapped into a liberated black feminist persona, through which she freed herself from many of the expectations of musical, lyrical, and physical practice for black women.[5] She was given her nickname, “Big Mama,” by Frank Schiffman, the manager of Harlem’s Apollo Theater, because of her strong voice, size, and personality. Thornton used her voice to its full potential, once stating that she was louder than any microphone and didn’t want a microphone to ever be as loud as she was. She was known for her strong voice.[6] Joplin’s biographer Alice Echols said that Thornton could sing in a “pretty voice” but did not want to. Thornton said, “My singing comes from my experience.…My own experience. I never had no one teach me nothin’. I never went to school for music or nothin’. I taught myself to sing and to blow harmonica and even to play drums by watchin’ other people! I can’t read music, but I know what I’m singing! I don’t sing like nobody but myself.”[7]

Her style was heavily influenced by gospel music, which she grew up listening to at the home of a preacher, though her genre could be described as blues.[5] Thornton was quoted in a 1980 article in the New York TImes: “when I was comin’ up, listening to Bessie Smith and all, they sung from their heart and soul and expressed themselves. That’s why when I do a song by Jimmy Reed or somebody, I have my own way of singing it. Because I don’t want to be Jimmy Reed, I want to be me. I like to put myself into whatever I’m doin’ so I can feel it”.[8]

Thornton was famous for her transgressive gender expression. She often dressed as a man in her performances, wearing work shirts and slacks. She did not care about the opinions of others and “was openly gay and performed risque songs unabashedly.”[9] Improvisation was a notable part of her performance. She often entered call-and-response exchanges with her band, inserting confident and subversive remarks. Her play with gender and sexuality set the stage for later rock-and-roll artists’ plays with sexuality.[5]

Scholars such as Maureen Mahon have praised Thornton for subverting traditional roles of African-American women.[5] She added a female voice to a field that was dominated by white males, and her strong personality transgressed stereotypes of what an African-American woman should be. This transgression was an integral part of her performance and stage persona.[10] Elvis Presley and Janis Joplin admired her unique style of singing and incorporated elements of it in their own work. Her vocal sound and style of delivery are key parts of her style and are recognizable in Presley’s and Joplin’s work.[7]

Thornton’s birth certificate states that she was born in Ariton, Alabama,[11] but in an interview with Chris Strachwitz she claimed Montgomery, Alabama, as her birthplace, probably because Montgomery was better known than Ariton.[12] She was introduced to music in a Baptist church, where her father was a minister and her mother a singer. She and her six siblings began to sing at early ages.[13] Her mother died young, and Willlie Mae left school and got a job washing and cleaning spittoons in a local tavern. In 1940 she left home and, with the help of Diamond Teeth Mary, joined Sammy Greens Hot Harlem Revue and was soon billed as the “New Bessie Smith”.[12] Her musical education started in the church but continued through her observation of the rhythm-and-blues singers Bessie Smith and Memphis Minnie, whom she deeply admired.[14]

Thornton’s career began to take off when she moved to Houston in 1948. “A new kind of popular blues was coming out of the clubs in Texas and Los Angeles, full of brass horns, jumpy rhythms, and wisecracking lyrics.”[15] She signed a recording contract with Peacock Records in 1951 and performed at the Apollo Theater in 1952. Also in 1952, she recorded “Hound Dog” while working with another Peacock artist, Johnny Otis. The songwriters, Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller,[4] were present at the recording, with Leiber demonstrating the song in the vocal style they had envisioned.[16][17] The record was produced by Leiber and Stoller. Otis played drums after the original drummer was unable to play an adequate part. It was the first recording produced by Leiber and Stoller. The record went to number one on the R&B chart.[18] The record made her a star, but she saw little of the profits.[19] On Christmas Day 1954 in a Houston, Texas theatre she witnessed fellow performer Johnny Ace, also signed to Duke and Peacock record labels, accidentally shoot and kill himself while playing with a .22 pistol.[8] Thornton continued to record for Peacock until 1957 and performed in R&B package tours with Junior Parker and Esther Phillips. Thornton originally recorded her song “Ball ‘n’ Chain” for Bay-Tone Records in the early 1960s, “and though the label chose not to release the song…they did hold on to the copyright—which meant that Thornton missed out on the publishing royalties when Janis Joplin recorded the song later in the decade.”[14] 

As her career began to fade in the late 1950s and early 1960s,[1] she left Houston and relocated to the San Francisco Bay area, “playing clubs in San Francisco and L.A. and recording for a succession of labels”,[14] notably the Berkeley-based Arhoolie Records. In 1965, she toured with the American Folk Blues Festival in Europe,[20] where her success was notable “because very few female blues singers at that time had ever enjoyed success across the Atlantic.”[21] While in England that year, she recorded her first album for Arhoolie, Big Mama Thornton – In Europe. It featured backing by blues veterans Buddy Guy (guitar), Fred Below (drums), Eddie Boyd (keyboards), Jimmy Lee Robinson (bass), and Walter “Shakey” Horton (harmonica), except for three songs on which Fred McDowell provided acoustic slide guitar.

In 1966, Thornton recorded her second album for Arhoolie, Big Mama Thornton with the Muddy Waters Blues Band – 1966, with Muddy Waters (guitar), Sammy Lawhorn (guitar), James Cotton (harmonica), Otis Spann (piano), Luther Johnson (bass guitar), and Francis Clay (drums). She performed at the Monterey Jazz Festival in 1966 and 1968. Her last album for Arhoolie, Ball n’ Chain, was released in 1968. It was made up of tracks from her two previous albums, plus her composition “Ball and Chain” and the standard “Wade in the Water”. A small combo including her frequent guitarist Edward “Bee” Houston provided backup for the two songs. Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company’s performance of “Ball 'n’ Chain” at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 and the release of the song on their number one album Cheap Thrills renewed interest in Thornton’s career.[5]

By 1969, Thornton had signed with Mercury Records, which released her most successful album, Stronger Than Dirt, which reached number 198 in the Billboard Top 200 record chart. Thornton had now signed a contract with Pentagram Records and could finally fulfill one of her biggest dreams. A blues woman and the daughter of a preacher, Thornton loved the blues and what she called the “good singing” of gospel artists like the Dixie Hummingbirds and Mahalia Jackson. She had always wanted to record a gospel record, and with the album Saved (PE 10005), she achieved that longtime goal. The album includes the gospel classics “Oh, Happy Day,” “Down By The Riverside,” “Glory, Glory Hallelujah,” “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” “Lord Save Me,” “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,” “One More River” and “Go Down Moses”.[12]

By then the American blues revival had come to an end. While the original blues acts like Thornton mostly played smaller venues, younger people played their versions of blues in massive arenas for big money. Since the blues had seeped into other genres of music, the blues musician no longer needed impoverishment or geography for substantiation; the style was enough. While at home the offers became fewer and smaller, things changed for good in 1972, when Thornton was asked to rejoin the American Folk Blues Festival tour. She thought of Europe as a good place for her, and, with the lack of engagements in the United States, she agreed happily. The tour, beginning on March 2. brought Thornton to Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Finland, and Sweden, where it ended on March 27 in Stockholm. With her on the bill were Eddie Boyd, Big Joe Williams, Robert Pete Williams, T- Bone Walker, Paul Lenart, Hartley Severns, Edward Taylor and Vinton Johnson. As in 1965, they garnered recognition and respect from other musicians who wanted to see them.[12]

In the 1970s, years of heavy drinking began to damage Thornton’s health. She was in a serious auto accident but recovered to perform at the 1973 Newport Jazz Festival with Muddy Waters, B.B. King, and Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson (a recording of this performance, The Blues—A Real Summit Meeting, was released by Buddha Records). Thornton’s last albums were Jail and Sassy Mama for Vanguard Records in 1975. Other songs from the recording session were released in 2000 on Big Mama Swings. Jail captured her performances during mid-1970s concerts at two prisons in the northwestern United States.[12] She was backed by a blues ensemble that featured sustained jams by George “Harmonica” Smith and included the guitarists Doug Macleod, Bee Houston and Steve Wachsman; the drummer Todd Nelson; the saxophonist Bill Potter; the bassist Bruce Sieverson; and the pianist J. D. Nicholson. She toured intensively through the United States and Canada, played at the Juneteenth Blues Fest in Houston and shared the bill with John Lee Hooker.[12] She performed at the San Francisco Blues Festival in 1979 and the Newport Jazz Festival in 1980. In the early 1970s, Thornton’s sexual proclivities became a question among blues fans.[15] Big Mama also performed in the “Blues Is a Woman” concert that year, alongside classic blues legend Sippie Wallace, sporting a man’s three-piece suit, straw hat, and gold watch. She sat at stage center and played pieces she wanted to play, which were not on the program.[22] Thornton took part in the Tribal Stomp at Monterey Fairgrounds, the Third Annual Sacramento Blues Festival, the Los Angeles Bicentennial Blues with BB King and Muddy Waters. She was a guest on an ABC-TV special hosted by the actor Hal Holbrook joined by Aretha Franklin and toured through the club scene. She was also part of the award-winning PBS television special Three Generations of the blues with Sippie Wallace and Jeannie Cheatham.[12]

Thornton was found dead at age 57 by medical personnel in a Los Angeles boarding house[23] on July 25, 1984. She died of heart and liver disorders due to her longstanding alcohol abuse. She had lost 255 pounds (116 kg) in a short time as a result of illness, her weight dropping from 350 to 95 pounds (159–43 kg).[14]

Literature: Spörke, Michael: Big Mama Thornton - The Life And Music. Jefferson: McFarland, 2014. ISBN 978-0-7864-7759-3 

During her career, Thornton was nominated for the Blues Music Awards six times.[5] In 1984, she was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame. In addition to “Ball 'n’ Chain” and “They Call Me Big Mama,” Thornton wrote twenty other blues songs. Her “Ball 'n’ Chain” is included in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame list of the “500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll”.[18]

It wasn’t until Janis Joplin covered Thornton’s “Ball 'n’ Chain” that it became a huge hit. Thornton did not receive compensation for her song, but Joplin gave her the recognition she deserved by having Thornton open for her. Joplin found her singing voice through Thornton, who praised Joplin’s version of “Ball 'n’ Chain”, saying, “That girl feels like I do.”[24]

Thornton subsequently received greater recognition for her popular songs, but she is still underappreciated for her influence on the blues and soul music.[25] Thornton’s music was also influential in shaping American popular music. The lack of appreciation she received for “Hound Dog” and “Ball 'n’ Chain” as they became popular hits is representative of the lack of recognition she received during her career as a whole.[26]

Many critics argue that Thornton’s lack of recognition in the music industry is a reflection of an era of racial segregation in the United States, both physically and in the music industry.[5][26] Scholars suggest that Thornton’s lack of access to broader audiences (both white and black), may have been a barrier to her commercial success as both a vocalist and a composer.[5][26]

The first full-length biography of Thornton, Big Mama Thornton: The Life and Music, by Michael Spörke, was published in 2014.[12]

In 2004, the nonprofit Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls, named for Thornton, was founded to offer a musical education to girls from ages eight to eighteen.[5]


Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Mama_Thornton

Acoustically Gifted - Conor Maynard

Request: can you do a imagine where joes younger sister is a singer and she’s well known in the music industry and she has a little thing going with conor; she stays over at conors and the boys are there surprising him as he just came back from tour and they are shocked when she comes out in conor top and his boxers, jack makes a joke about what does conor have that he doesn’t and she sarcastically replies “he has a good sounds system” making joe groan because he doesn’t want to know that

Smut: No

Requests are OPEN!

A/N: I know, I’m shit lol! My cousin’s here until the 17th so updates will be slow until then but I promise I’ll try! I actually REALLY like this one so I hope you like it as well! :)

Masterlist

Being away from him was hard but something you knew too well. It had been going on for months now; he’d come back from somewhere, you two would get close and then he’d leave again. It’s just the way things were. You understood it though. He was going through the same thing. Seeing someone in the same industry as you definitely helped your relationship. You both understood the pressures of it and how long your days really were. Although you loved every part of it, you just wished you could spend more time with him.

“I love that you’re here for a whole month.” You said, as you tightened your grip around his waist. Conor had just come back from L.A., having to spend some time recording and writing with Anth but now he was back in London and you couldn’t wait to spend every day with him.

“I know, I’ve missed this.” He said, talking about how you two would constantly cuddle in bed and watch movies. You two began seeing each other a couple of months ago when you finally moved back from L.A. You record label insisted you move there to have a better understanding for what was happening in your career and to have easier access to the label. You hated it. England was your home. You missed being able to live with your brother, Joe, see your sister, Zoe and spend time with your friends. They were what made you the happiest.

“I’ve missed a lot more than just this.” You said, propping yourself up and straddling him. Although Joe didn’t quite like the idea of you sleeping with one of his best friends, he knew you were going to do it anyway so he tried to keep his mouth shut.

“I mean…I wasn’t going to say it.” He said, smirking.

“That’s a first.” You smiled as you connected your lips hungrily, missing the feeling of being so close to him. Conor was someone you loved being intimate with. It was always a surprise when it came to him. One day he was passionate and gentle and others, he knew exactly what he wanted and how he wanted it. You loved being surprised every single time.

“Conor!” You groaned as Conor stopped what he was doing when he heard Jack’s voice. You looked up at him and you knew you didn’t have to say anything; he already knew what you were thinking.

“I’ll take the spare key back.” He said, placing a soft kiss on your forehead before climbing off you and pulling a shirt and some pants on. “Really mate?” You laughed, picturing the look he was giving his brother as you pulled one of Conor’s shirts over your head.

“Damn, wouldn’t mind waking up to that every day.” Jack said, eyeing you as you came out into the living room. “Seriously though? Why Conor? What does he have that I don’t?”

“He’s got great acoustics.” You said, laughing but your smile faded as soon as you fully entered the living room.

“Information I did not need.” Joe said, not removing his eyes from his phone. You scrunched your face in embarrassment as you looked over at Conor, who was failing miserably at trying not to laugh.

Nat King Cole Trio
Nature Boy
Nat King Cole Trio


Nat King Cole Trio - Nature Boy (recorded in L.A., August 22, 1947)

Nat King Cole - piano, vocal, Oscar Moore - guitar, Johnny Miller - bass
(with orchestra) 
Harry Bluestone - violin, Julie Kinsler - reeds, Frank DeVol - arranger, Buddy Cole - celeste

The greatest thing you’ll ever learn
Is just to love, and be loved in return

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On this day in music history: April 29, 1971 - “L.A. Woman”, the sixth studio album by The Doors is released. Produced by The Doors and Bruce Botnick, it is recorded at The Doors Workshop in Los Angeles, CA from December 1970 - January 1971. After the departure of their producer Paul A. Rothchild (leaving after having differences with the band over musical direction), The Doors along with recording engineer Bruce Botnick handle the production duties on their sixth studio release. Unlike past albums, much of “L.A. Woman” is recorded live with few overdubs. They will be augmented by bassist Jerry Scheff (Elvis Presley) and rhythm guitarist Marc Benno (aka Leon Russell). It is the bands last album with lead singer Jim Morrison who dies three months after its release. The first press run of the LP features a die cut cover (with rounded corners similar to a photographic slide) with a portrait of the band printed on transparent yellow acetate plastic with the title and band name embossed on the front. Subsequent re-pressings of the LP are printed on standard cardboard stock without the die cutting and plastic window. It spins off two singles including “Love Her Madly” (#11 Pop) and “Riders On The Storm” (#14 Pop). To commemorate the albums’ fortieth anniversary, it is remixed, remastered and reissued as a double CD set. On the first disc, some tracks are extended, running past the fade out point of the original mixes. The second disc includes alternate versions of several songs and previously unreleased tracks. The album is also reissued in 2009 as a 180 gram vinyl LP, restoring the original cover artwork featured on the initial pressing. “L.A. Woman” peaks at number nine on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: June 17, 1978 - “Shadow Dancing” by Andy Gibb hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 7 weeks, also peaking at #11 on the R&B singles chart on July 15, 1978. Written by Barry, Robin, Maurice and Andy Gibb, it is the third consecutive chart topper for the singer and songwriter from The Isle Of Man, UK. While his debut single “I Just Want To Be Your Everything” and the accompanying album “Flowing Rivers” are steadily climbing the charts in the US and abroad, singer Andy Gibb, with the assistance of his older brothers the Bee Gees begin work on his second album. All four brothers collaborate on “Shadow Dancing” while the Bee Gees are filming “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in L.A. in mid 1977. Recording begins at Wally Heider Studios in Los Angeles, CA, with overdubs and final mixing completed at Criteria Studios in Miami, FL. Released as a single in April 1978, it becomes another smash for the youngest Gibb brother. Entering the Hot 100 at #69 on April 15, 1978, it climbs to the top of the chart nine weeks later. At only twenty years old, Andy Gibb becomes the first solo artist in history to have his first three singles reach number one in the US, achieving this feat in just eleven months. The song is ranked the top single of 1978 by Billboard Magazine. "Shadow Dancing” is later used on the long running animated series “South Park”, in the episode “Tom’s Rhinoplasty” originally airing on February 11, 1998. The song humorously underscores a scene where the boys teacher Mr. Garrison is strutting down the street after having cosmetic surgery, that makes him look like actor David Hasselhoff. “Shadow Dancing” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

Universal Mind
The Doors
Universal Mind

I was doing time
In the universal mind,
I was feeling fine.
I was turning keys,
I was setting people free,
I was doing alright.

Then you came along,
With a suitcase and a song,
Turned my head around.
Now I’m so alone,
Just looking for a home
In every face I see.

I’m the freedom man,
I’m the freedom man,
I’m the freedom man,
That’s how lucky I am.

I was doing time
In the universal mind,
I was feeling fine.
I was turning keys,
I was setting people free,
I was doing alright.

Then you came along,
With a suitcase and a song,
Turned my head around.
Now I’m so alone,
Just looking for a home
In every face I see.

I’m the freedom man.

I was doing time
In the universal mind,
I was feeling fine.
I was turning keys,
I was setting people free,
I was doing alright.

Then you came along,
With a suitcase and a song,
Turned my head around.
Now I’m so alone,
Just looking for a home
In every face I see.

I’m the freedom man.
Yeah, that’s how lucky I am.
I’m the freedom man.  I’m the freedom man…. The Doors/Absolutely Live
Tonight Belongs To Me

Pairing: Gerard Way x Reader

Genre: Fluff

Summary: Request fic for @streetlightthisdarknight . “please a do part three for sing a song for california plEASE PLEASEEE// iloveyousomuch bye.”

A/N: OK FINE HERE YA GO lol

And for any readers that aren’t caught up, here’s part 1 (x) and part 2 (x). 

The plane ride was five hours long.  You didn’t care. You were going to see your boyfriend, Gerard, for the first time since October, and that was all that mattered.

You’d spent the last hour or so of your flight listening to I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love. You remembered two years ago, when Gerard had excitedly handed you one of the first copies of the CD ever made. Back then, he was just so happy to have made an album, at all. You nostalgically recalled the laughably janky studio he and the band had recorded it in. It was in the basement of their friend’s house, who still lived with his mom. You chuckled to yourself as you remembered the older woman, in a thick Jersey accent, shouting down the stairs that “yous guys” were going to have to pause the recording, because she had to run the vacuum.

Now, Gerard was in a real, professional studio in L.A., recording his sophomore album with a major label that had signed incredible bands in the past, like Green Day. He’d come such a long way. You were so proud of him.

“Attention passengers, this is your captain speaking,” said the pilot’s voice over the flight’s intercom. “We will be landing shortly in Los Angeles. Please keep your seatbelts securely fastened as we make our descent. Thank you for flying with American Airlines.”

You looked out your window, eager to catch your first glimpse of the West Coast. You smiled with anticipation as you thought of Gerard, waiting for you in the airport below.

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On this day in music history: October 19, 1981 - “The Poet”, the thirteenth album by Bobby Womack is released. Produced by Bobby Womack, it is recorded at Kendun Recorders in Burbank, CA, Hit City West in Los Angeles, CA from Early - Mid 1981. After experiencing great critical and commercial success during the first half of the 70’s, R&B star Bobby Womack begins to experience a major downturn in his recording career in the second half of the decade. Leaving United Artists Records in 1976, brief stints at Columbia and Arista between 1976 and 1979 do not produce any hits. Womack also is beset by personal tragedy with the losses of his brother Harry (aka “Harry Hippie”) in 1974, his infant son Truth Bobby in 1978, and a battle with drug addiction. Womack remains resilient, staying in the public eye with various musical collaborations, most notably on Wilton Felder’s (The Crusaders) “Inherit The Wind” album in 1980. In 1981, Bobby signs with L.A. based Beverly Glen Records and begins writing new material for his first release for the label. In the studio, he is backed by a solid rhythm section of top studio players including James Gadson (drums), Nathan East, David Shields (bass), David T. Walker (guitar), Dorothy Ashby (harp), Eddie “Bongo” Brown, Paulinho Da Costa (percussion), Patrick Moten, Dale Ramsey (keyboards) and The Waters (Julia, Maxine, Luther and Oren) (backing vocals). Members of Womack’s family including then wife Regina, son Vincent (handclaps) and brothers Cecil, Friendly, Jr. and Curtis (backing vocals) also participate in the sessions. An R&B tour de force, “The Poet” returns Bobby Womack back to his hit making glory, becoming one of the best selling albums of his career. The first single “Secrets” (#55 R&B) is overtaken by the B-side “If You Think You’re Lonely Now” (#3 R&B) after its release in August of 1981. An instant classic, “Lonely” is the R&B veteran’s first major hit in over five years. It is later covered by K-Ci Hailey of Jodeci (#11 R&B, #17 Pop) for the soundtrack of the film “Jason’s Lyric” in 1994. Pop superstar Mariah Carey also interpolates part of the chorus from “If You Think You’re Lonely Now” into her smash hit “We Belong Together” (#1 Pop and R&B) in 2005. The album spins off another single “Where Do We Go From Here” (#26 R&B). The success of “The Poet” spins off a sequel, “The Poet II” in 1984 which lands another major hit with “Love Has Finally Come At Last” (#3 R&B, #88 Pop) with Patti LaBelle. With the demise of Beverly Glen Records in 1985, “The Poet” goes out of print for nearly a decade, when it is reissued on CD by Razor & Tie Records in the US in 1993 and in 1994 by Music Collection International in the UK. It is reissued again by The Right Stuff/Capitol/EMI Records in 1999. “The Poet” spends five weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, and number twenty nine on the Top 200.

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Gregg Miller:  Original DOGSTAR Unreleased Studio Recording “Sign of the Trees”  

Recorded in L.A. Produced by Earl Martin
Original members Gregg Miller, Keanu Reeves and Rob Mailhouse
Music by Keanu Reeves

Gregg Miller:  DOGSTAR Unreleased studio recording/Tried To Say So

Dogstar made several studio recordings with Gregg Miller never before released this one entitled “tried To Say So” was originally called “round C”

Gregg Miller:  DOGSTAR Unreleased Studio Recording- “Morning Comes”

“morning Comes” recorded in the valley 1994
Music and Lyrics by Gregg Miller
Keanu reeves on Bass

Gregg Miller:  DOGSTAR Unreleased Studio Recording- “Visions Gone”

Unreleased Dogstar material written by Gregg Miller / guitar and vocals
Keanu Reeves on Bass Guitar
Rob Mailhouse on Drums