From sweet and smooth classics, to new names, to old names with new music...the focus here, is to shine a little light on some damn fine music.

I'll find it. You can listen, review, or tell me I wouldn't know good music if it kicked me in the ass. I personally don't give a shit.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Don't Want To Be "Running On Empty"

The past week or so has been sort of a blur. A fun blur with music (Springsteen) and interviews (Jamison), and ok, maybe a little alcohol induced bluriness... but I digress.

Anyway it's been a while since I went on a play date over at Lance's MyBlogCanBeatUpYourBlog and did the 100 Word Song Challenge. So this week Renee picked the song, and I think Lance knew this one would sucker me in, so let's just do it.

100 Words using the song as a prompt... however you want to. This week's song is "Running On Empty," by Jackson Browne. 

This time let's take the title literally.

At least twenty miles. Nothing between here and Towson. Not even decent cell service.

For the tenth time in as many minutes, Lenore checked the rear view mirror for the headlights behind her. Too close. Too close for too long.

The red light on the dash had also been on for too long. Not gonna make it.

Hoping he would pass, she slowed, but the hairs on her arms told her all she needed to know. She was in trouble. Capital T type trouble.

As the motor died, Lenore pulled over and watched the headlights behind her do the same.

So my Public Service Announcement for the day is... make sure the damn tank has gas in it.

My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog


Catching Up with Jimi Jamison

When you grow up in the shadow of such legendary recording studios as Stax, American, Sun, and Royal Studios, one can only imagine what a young singer from Memphis might dream. Starting out singing radio jingles and playing in a band or two, maybe. Singing live in front of more than a million people, and millions more globally over the internet… well, most of us don’t dream that big, let alone achieve it.

Jimi Jamison has.

The man who replaced Dave Bickler as the lead singer of Survivor, is currently back with the band, and sharing the vocal duties with Bickler, who returned to the group last year.

His first true taste of the rock and roll life occurred when Jamison, as part of the Memphis based band Target, recorded two albums for A&M Records. The band toured virtually non-stop in the late 70s, opening for bands such as Kiss, Black Sabbath, Styx, Robin Trower, Journey and Boston. From Target, Jamison joined Cobra and recorded First Strike for Epic Records in 1983. Soon after Cobra disbanded, Jamison was invited to audition for Survivor, when Bickler was forced to leave the band due to vocal issues. With Jamison as lead vocalist, Survivor then went on to record Vital Signs, which scored three hit singles.  Around this time MTV was changing the course of music history, and the video for “I Can’t Hold Back,” also off Vital Signs, was top in their rotation for several weeks, catapulting the band to another level of success.

After two more albums, Survivor went on hiatus, coming back with various different incarnations, both with and without Jamison. Over the course of his solo career, Jamison has released several  albums, including 2012’s critically acclaimed Never Too Late.

Jamison rejoined the Survivor lineup in 2011, and the band toured in 2012. The next year, original lead singer Dave Bickler was invited back to share the vocal duties, and the lineup of Jimi Jamison, Dave Bickler, Frankie Sullivan (lead guitar), Walter Tolentino (keys,guitar), Billy Ozzello (bass), and Marc Droubay (drums), is gearing up for a full schedule of tour dates in 2014.

After wearing out several pairs of running shoes, I caught up with Jimi Jamison, and we talked about life, looking back, and of course… music.

Kath Galasso: First what I’d like to talk to you about, is your approach to vocals. When you’re given a song to record, how do you begin the process of how you’re going to sing it?

Jimi Jamison: I really don’t form a judgment about it before I go into the studio and try to sing it. That’s how you find out if it’s something you want to do. I’ve been kind of lucky with the songs I’ve been doing. It’s really not a pre-planned thing. I listen to the song before I sing it, of course, but I always get in there and just sing it like I would sing it. That’s pretty much the only plan I have.

For the rest of the interview with Jimi Jamison, please jump over to Catching Up with Jimi Jamison over at


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Bruce Springsteen @ Uncasville CT 5/17/14

Though the thunderous applause quieted as he took the stage, the buzz continued as each member of the audience listened for the hint of what the first song would be. Roy Bittan started it off on the piano, then Bruce Springsteen stepped up to the mic and played the harmonica.

I got a sixty-nine Chevy with a 396…” By the second line, the crowd was singing along to “Racing In The Street.” Slowly, piece by piece, the band came in, adding layer upon layer, until the full depth of it seemed to explode.

This might be a very good night.

For the entire review, and you'll want to read it all, please jump over to Bruce Springsteen @ Uncasville CT 5/17/14 over at


Monday, May 12, 2014

Steve Winwood, Because With You I'm Stronger

Bass, tambourine, drum, then kick into an almost psychedelic organ, it sure didn't sound like most of the other stuff on the radio. But wait, let's get into the opening line... "HEY"

And that voice, I wasn't sure what to make of it, but I was instantly in love with it. The song was "Gimme Some Lovin" by the Spencer Davis Group, and the voice belonged to little "Stevie" Winwood, who was still a teenager at the time he first made his mark in music. His tenure with the Spencer Davis Group also included a song which would be a hit not only for himself, but for every garage band playing at that time. "I'm A Man," was later covered by Chicago for their first album The Chicago Transit Authority.

Next career step for Winwood was not too shabby. Along with Jim Capaldi, Dave Mason and Chris Wood, Winwood formed Traffic. Let's not even start on their vision and influence on rock music. Think "Feelin' Alright," or "Dear Mr. Fantasy," or "Pearly Queen," or the entirety of John Barleycorn Must Die and Low Spark of High Heeled Boys.

So where do you go from there? Well, I guess it's time to form a supergroup. Let's pull in some friends by the names of Ric Grech, Ginger Baker and oh, how about Eric Clapton, and see what happens. One album was what happened, the self-titled Blind Faith album. Without that album, we might never have heard "Can't Find My Way Home," and wouldn't our lives have been a bit less joyful, if we hadn't.

It was then time to take a break from the intensity of a major band, so Winwood did session work, got together with various incarnations of Traffic, even recording John Barleycorn during this period. Approaching the 1980s, Winwood went solo, not a bad career move at all. The timing could not have been better. First the Arc of a Diver album, followed by Talking Back to the Night and the extremely successful, Back in the High Life.

Steve Winwood was a boy when he began his professional music career. Today he turns 66.

Happy Birthday.


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Working on Some Night Moves

Bob Seger turns 69 today. It's been a while since I had y'all sit back and listen to some lyrics, so why not today.

While not complex or inspiring deep thought, Seger always had a way to hit the nail on the head. Whether it's the anthem to us baby boomers and our view of music "Old Time Rock n' Roll," or the life of an outsider on the road in "Turn The Page," Seger takes a familiar situation and makes it instantly personal. It's so easy to understand, because in one way or another, we've all had those moments in life.

Which brings us to today's lyric lesson. Can you remember hearing "Night Moves" for the first time? I do, and I remember thinking... what? Is he really talking about what I think he's talking about? Remember this was 1976, and songs about sex weren't really being played on Top 40 radio.

"I was a little too tall
Could've used a few pounds
Tight pants points hardly reknown
She was a black-haired beauty with big dark eyes
And points all her own sitting way up high
Way up firm and high"

Perfectly descriptive, setting the mood right off the top.

"Out past the cornfields where the woods got heavy
Out in the back seat of my '60 Chevy
Workin' on mysteries without any clues
Workin' on our night moves"

"Workin' on mysteries without any clues." Without just saying it, can you describe teenage sex better than that?

"And we'd steal away every chance we could
To the backroom, to the alley or the trusty woods
I used her as she used me
But neither one cared
We were gettin' our share
Workin' on our night moves"

Hormones. I guess they unraveled the mysteries... along with some clothes.

"And oh the wonder
We felt the lightning
And we waited on the thunder
Waited on the thunder"

As we all know, sometimes there was thunder, sometimes... eh.

 "Ain't it funny how the night moves
When you just don't seem to have as much to lose
Strange how the night moves
With autumn closing in"

Do we look back on those days with fondness, melancholy or embarrassment? Mostly I think, as a rite of passage. Lessons learned, memories half forgotten, mysteries solved.

Ain't it strange how the night moves?

Words and music by Bob Seger, all rights reserved.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Paul Rodgers @Bergen Performing Arts Center

Paul Rodgers is a rock star.

With a weather forecast predicting rain of biblical proportions, and the temperature closer to mid-October than the end of April, the crowd arriving at the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood NJ, was delighted to get to their seats before the deluge began.

The older crowd was ready to rock. I know this type of crowd very well. They want it loud. They want it to rock, and they want it to rock hard. They were not disappointed.

Opening for Rodgers was the New Jersey based Matt O’ Ree Band. When an audience filled with seasoned concert goers stays in their seats and gives props to the support act, you know the band was firing on all cylinders. O’ Ree on guitar, got his influences from the blues masters, but drop kicks rock rhythms like ashes flicking off the end of a cigarette. Pairing his guitar with Eric Safka as he uses and abuses his B3 organ, and you could see heads nodding in approval while feet were keeping the beat. The band was good and the crowd was sure to let them know.

As former Free, Bad Company, and Queen vocalist Paul Rodgers took the stage, the crowd was already standing. Taking the mic, Rodgers made eye contact with the audience then began to sing.

From the start of “The Sky Is Burning,“ it was evident he hasn’t lost a thing. Vocally, the distinct timbre is still there. Physically, he looks like he hasn’t eaten a cookie in his life. Commanding the stage with every step, Paul Rodgers is still a rock star.

For the rest of the review and why Paul Rodgers is a rock star, jump over to Onstage Magazine "Paul Rodgers @ Bergen Performing Arts Center"