“Ceremony” is known in most music fans knowledge as the song that bridged Joy Division’s transition to New Order following the death of the former’s frontman. As one of the last songs Ian Curtis wrote, there are recordings of Joy Division performing it but there is sadly not a fully realised studio version out there. Continue reading »

They Say It’s Your Birthday celebrates an artist’s special day with other people singing his or her songs. Let others do the work for a while. Happy birthday!

The United States and Great Britain are two countries separated by a common language. – Unknown

Neil Innes turns 69 today. For more than forty years he has been acclaimed as a songwriter, musician, and performer, acclaimed by allmusic.com as “the most important figure in British musical comedy since the heyday of vaudeville.” He’s been on both sides of a plagiarism lawsuit – he has to credit John Lennon and Paul McCartney as co-writers of Rutles songs, while the Oasis song “Whatever” is now required by law to credit Innes due to lifting the opening of his “How Sweet To Be an Idiot.” So Innes has talent to burn and no-such-thing-as-bad-publicity to boot, but in the United States he remains relatively unknown. For all his accomplishments, Innes may be one of those whose peculiar talents simply aren’t appreciated as much on this side of the Atlantic. This is best described as “America’s loss.”
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They Say It’s Your Birthday celebrates an artist’s special day with other people singing his or her songs. Let others do the work for a while. Happy birthday!

If anybody deserves to be described as “X years young,” it’s Jonathan Richman, who’s been in this world for 61 years as of today. Robert Christgau famously called him “an almost powerless case of arrested development,” but that was before he wrote songs like “The Girl Stands Up To Me Now,” “Let Her Go Into The Darkness,” and “That Summer Feeling,” all of which have true maturity without ever giving up Richman’s trademark unaffected wide-eyed stance. Long after he made an undeniable impact on the rock world with the Modern Lovers, Richman’s become an acoustic troubadour, criss-crossing the country with his musical tales, and has won a fervid following doing so – when he appeared as the Greek chorus of There’s Something About Mary, his fans didn’t think of him as selling out, but congratulated the world on buying in. His is truly a birthday worth celebrating – we’re doing so with the following covers… Continue reading »

Ryan Adams is a prolific musician. With his solo efforts, The Cardinals, and the now defunct Whiskey Town, Adams has proven himself to be indelible on the music world. Going beyond studio albums, tours, and collaborative endeavors, Adams also reveals his diverse talents through cover songs, many of which you can listen to here. The most recent song he covered was “Blue Thunder” by the masters of all things spacey and cerebral, Galaxie 500, which he debuted at the Orpheum Theater in Boston. Continue reading »

Quickies rounds up new can’t-miss covers. Download ‘em below.

NYCTaper delivers yet again on this soundboard recording from Deer Tick’s recent show in Wantaugh, NY. The show benefited the Tommy Brull Foundation for disabled children, so if you enjoyed the tune, donate here.
MP3: Deer Tick – Waitress in the Sky (The Replacements cover) Continue reading »

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