Monday Night Music Byte
Lynnrockets recently watched the film Julie & Julia about a thirty year old New Yorker who decided to cook every dish in one of Julia Childs’ cookbooks and to blog about it. It was a novel idea so we decided to copy it. No, we will not be cooking in the usual sense (that could start a fire). Rather, we will adapt the recipe a day concept to our nightly music bytes. From now to infinity (didn’t somebody else coin that phrase?) we will post a music video and brief description of the artist or song in a sort of alphabetical order as culled from Tom Moon’s wonderful reference book, 1,000 Recordings To Hear Before You Die (A Listener’s Life List). The book describes both whole albums (remember those) and individual songs from all music genres that are essential listening. Do yourselves a favor and purchase this book. Where the book deals with an individual song, we will post that song, but when an entire album is the subject, we will exercise judicial discretion and post a single song therefrom. So what do you say, let’s get cooking…
Dick Dale and his Del Tones King Of The Surf Guitar – “Miserlou (1995)
The rapid-fire staccato blasts and careening slides that electrify these songs were not in the guitar vocabulary until a surfer kid of Polish and Lebanese descent, Richard Monsour, put them there. Monsour, rechristened Dick Dale by a music-biz impresario created the first surf-guitar instrumental in 1961 (“Let’s Go Trippin'”) and during the subsequent “craze” proved to be the key trailblazer in terms of tricks and techniques to make the guitar go zoom.
This collection begins with Dale’s early trailblazing singles, as well as adaptations that are far from surf music. Using half-step melodies and exotic Middle Eastern scales that he heard growing up, the guitarist and his band the Del-Tones, conjure a world where everything, even “Hava nagila” can be amped way up. Country fans won’t want to miss his treatment of “(Ghost) Riders In The Sky”, while anyone who loves a good chase should seek out “Miserlou”, Dale’s galloping masterpiece.