Bob Quickly Ties Up Loose Ends….and Finally Finishes that Beatle/Rolling Stone Thing-y

Let’s see…where were we? Gimme a sec…hold on…oh yeah!

Let’s clear up the silly stuff going on right now before we wrap up the whole “Beatles/Stones” thing.

Yanny vs Laurel – Didn’t click on it, don’t know what it means, don’t give a fuck.

Politics – Trump and Ford. I don’t bother anymore. They both say/do stupid shit, then everybody argues. Shut up about the Conservatives/Republicans and vote the bastards out of office so I can see something besides the constant, boring, whiney, bullshit all over social media, and return to the joy of Kitties and Puppies Riding Roombas, Cheesecake pictures from the past, and videos of women who drive away from gas stations (or electrical stations) with the hose still dragging behind their car, and pictures of your kids/grandkids being used for everything from doorstops to pillows when their Dad’s and Grand Dad’s babysit. With the ability to scroll past the constant stream of Political debate, I now use the time to get in some quality Angry Birds action….

Another School Shooting – Try this; Every Student has to give his Internet Passwords to the High School Administration, including access to all their social media sites. Once a month, their cell phones are submitted and checked. The little damaged assholes leave clues everywhere…why don’t we fucking LOOK at them. And Facebook should use their analytic AI to target suspicious activity and browsing history for Middle and High School Students, which the ‘bot would forward to the high school. The fucking NRA isn’t going to do anything, so why don’t WE use the tools at hand to find these kids before they act and try and PREVENT this shit.

Entertainment – Regardless of attendance, reviews to the contrary, and your Pop Culture dismissive friends, “Ready Player One”, “Game Night”, and “Deadpool 2” are enjoyable, wicked fun, movies. “Roxanne”, “Archer”, Bob’s Burger’s” and the rest of Fox’s Sunday Night shows are genius, and for GUILTY PLEASURES, you cannot beat “Southern Charm New Orleans”, Below Deck”, or “Mike Tyson Mysteries”.

Music – Go hear it live.

Radio – Hahahahahahahaha

Bicycles VS Cars – Tell you what…You get on your bike, and I’ll get in a car, and I’ll SHOW you why they shouldn’t be stuck together on busy main arteries. Throw in some pedestrians, and I’ll win the argument for All-at-once Scramble Crosswalks, too.

Herbivores VS Carnivores – You stay over there and graze, and I’ll stay over here and consume seared flesh and the odd potato and maybe something green and a fruit of some sort so I don’t get scurvy or rickets.

Conspiracy Theories – Shut the fuck up or write a book.

Smoking – How about YOU go outside or out on the street when WE smoke? Huh? Why don’cha” Huh? Why do you have ALL THE PATIOS AND BARS AND RIGHTS? Jesus, smokers and drinkers and people who own cars pay a gazillion dollars more a year in taxes and YOU get all the breaks? I’m stumping for big tax increases on Kale, Tofu, Bottled water, Organic Veggies, and air fresheners…not to mention up-turned noses, disgusted appraisal, and arrogant posturing.

The TTC – It’s better than most of us deserve, has room for improvement, and Streetcars are cool and fun and leave them alone.

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Finally, the last installment of the “I (Still Kinda) Like the Beatles and MacMillan Loves the Rolling Stones” – Cliff Notes Edition.

In a nutshell, so much has happened since the “Classic Rock” era, that I find it sad and difficult to understand that so many people think that music somehow quit being interesting almost 50 years ago.

To put it in perspective, when the Beatles and Stones broke out, why weren’t your parents/grandparents going out to see John Philip Sousa Tribute Bands and enjoying Eddie Cantor impersonators?

Why were the Stones considered ‘street’ and ‘edgy’ when they were insanely middle class and moderate to conservative thinkers and dressers.

Why were the Beatles considered wholesome and sweet, witty and well behaved, and lovable for everyone from baby to grandma?

Here’s a list….

Branding

Marketing

Publicity

Supply and Demand

Genius Svengali’s

The boys in the bands were. of course, very important, and the writing skills of both groups, when put into action, not only made a huge difference in their success, it was the single most important thing they did that enabled the popularity that continues unabated to this day.

But that’s about all they did.

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THE BEATLES

What I am about to write is verifiable, easy to research, and readily available to you if you so choose.

Everything the Beatles did was inspired by other artists, from George Formby to Broadway Shows, to the fathers of rock and roll.

They were a skiffle group, then a cover band.

They were in the right place and the right time.

They conquered England, then Europe, then Canada, then, finally, the United States. In the US, it took the record company and radio stations to make it happen. All those kids at the airport when they arrived…bussed in by Capitol Records, paid 5 bucks each, and were given the signs they held.

The radio stations let the kids know where they were staying.

The Greatness of the Beatles?

They delivered 100%. Lived up to the hype, and the expectations of every little girl on the planet…and most of the boys.

They were a Boy Band. Just like the Mills Brothers before them. Just like all the Boy Bands after them.

Why that nametag infuriates people is beyond me. There is nothing negative about it.

Just to be clear, all those wonderful, landmark studio tricks attributed to them was actually the work of George Martin and a bevy of seasoned, veteran engineers and their younger assistants. The video interviews with those people are easy to find on You Tube.

They also used studio musicians on occasion, but were largely unaware of it. Martin, understanding the egos of young men and especially the current rulers of Earth, would wait until they were gone and then call the players in to re-cut a part or repair an existing one. …and again, EVERYBODY has done that, why such a negative response when people are confronted with the fact their heroes used them too?

I had plenty of opportunities to meet them in L.A two summers in a row, ’65 and ’66. They based themselves in rented houses and flew out to the tour dates from there. They were underfoot all summer both years.

I’m glad I didn’t meet them.

Came close, but, no.

I wanted them to remain heroes at the time, and I had met enough of my heroes to know that being disappointed was a very real possibility. Years later, I was more than happy with my decision. George, the sweet and spiritual nice guy, Paul’s egotistical posturing and ability to not offend, Ringo’s defensive position fueled by always being labeled the least talented, and John, and angry, violent street kid with a chip the size of a compact car on his shoulder…I would have been uncomfortable around any of them.

I will always love what I learned from them as far as writing goes, I will always recall them fondly as a big part of my early musical career, and I will always respect the music they made and the support team that helped them make it all happen…but I am much more engaged by other artists, other songs, other styles and ideas.

Don’t get me wrong. The Beatles played well, looked good, and sang wonderfully…

…but for many gigs during the Beatlemania era, they didn’t even bother to plug in their instruments.

No one could hear them.

And they stopped touring because they didn’t think they could recreate their records live…and without the studio support teams and additional musicians, they couldn’t have.

I am grateful I got to experience the era as it happened and was a part of the fabric the zeitgeist was woven from. Truthfully, I like being in the here and now, and I hope with all my heart I can say that for many years to come.

I do not long for the past.

I long for the future.

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THE ROLLING STONES

After the  Beatles, music criticism slowly became hip, youthful, and fun. The critics themselves got caught up in both the YAY Beatles and BOO Beatles camps, embraced the style and fashion, grew their hair, and hung out. some even, finally, got laid…and eventually, this pioneering clot of Critics gave birth to Lester Bangs and others, and the world became a better place…and the first thing this clutch of free-at-last journos did…is legitimize the Rolling Stones.From Part Three of  I (Still Kinda) Like the Beatles and MacMillan Loves the Rolling Stones

Whereas the Beatles were from a backwater Northern city like Liverpool, they embraced rock and roll and changed everything.

The Rolling Stones were from London, the Centre of the Universe for many, and embraced the blues.

Go figure.

 

Of the two, The Stones were most pure when it came to the music and why they wanted to play it. They were strictly into covers and paying homage to the blues icons they heard on scratchy 78s and 45s, and the local groups who played this music as authentically as they could, spreading the word in small smoke filled clubs, and local dance halls, this is what the Stones wanted to do…become part of the small, but elite, blues community and not only spread the word, but create a market for their blues heroes to play to, to want to make the trip and play in England to the devout followers who lived there. They accomplished that and much more.

When the Stones street cred started to swell, one of the first things that happened that elevated their reputation further afield, was McCartney penning a tune for them and shopping it to them at a gig.

Now, the Rolling Stones had a ‘higher calling’ when it came to their musical interests and motivation. The Beatles, (specifically John and Paul) once they understood where the money was, started writing songs for every British recording artist they could reach…and they could now reach ALL of them. They made no secret of it, but their prime motivation wasn’t to elevate anything anywhere…they were enjoying the fact that if they needed anything, money, a bigger house, another car, all they had to do was write another song. At one point, Lennon went to Paul and sat down and said, “Let’s write a swimming pool”…and they did.

Mick and Keith only started writing in earnest during a ‘Caravan of Stars’ type tour somewhere near the bottom of the bill, and either Freddy Garrity or Peter Noone’s popularity with the screaming fans because they had singles high in the charts, drove them to want a HIT record. Last Time was the first, Satisfaction was the 2nd.

Brian Jones with Peter Noone

You know what happened after that.

L-R: Mick Jagger, Charlie Watts, Andrew Loog Oldham, Hassinger, Bill Wyman, Keith Richards in the RCA Studios. 

When they were recording “Aftermath” at RCA in Hollywood with the label’s Prim donna engineer, Dave Hassinger, they were everywhere just like the Beatles were when they stayed in town.

I stumbled across a Stone or two, noting they had kind of a pale green tint to their skin while Hassinger glowed with the tan of a Coppertone baby, but they seemed affable, tiny, and very well turned out…these guys had terrific fashion sense.

Opened for them a few times, memorably at the Cow Palace near San Francisco, when a herd of teenage girls tried to lift me into the stands by the rings on my fingers. Scared the piss out of me and hurt like hell…all because my hair was long and I was wearing an Edwardian cut coat made out of fabric better used on Grandma’s couch.

Years later, went to a few Stones rehearsals at Panasonic, Mick was never there, but I met Keith and Anita, and Bill, who, almost as tall as me in his Cuban heeled lifted boots remarked that we looked like one another (which, at the time, we did) and Ron Wood still owes me 50 bucks for a chunk of hash. They were easy going and cool to be around.

The love and worship afforded these two bands has survived 50 years of other artists, other music, and other interests. Like Elvis fans, the adoration, handed down and instilled in children by the parents or grandparents who lived through the period, is a testament to the music and the social changes that came with it. The ex-Beatle’s records don’t sell very much, the Stones records don’t even seem to sell at all, but try and get anywhere near a venue where any of them perform.

Just don’t expect to hear much written since 1979 or so.

It is the desire to experience their youth that draws the majority of fans to these shows. It is a sweet and dwindling blessing to be able to go and close your eyes and drift back to such warm memories and good times.

To see your heroes in person while they’re still here and you still can.

I get it more than you know.

…but at least admit it is about more than the music.

It is about your life.

I am fond of all of it as well, but I am never going to pay to see any of it.

Why start now?

BONUS!

THE GREATEST ARTICLE EVER WRITTEN ABOUT THE BRITISH INVASION

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I have one song from the Beatles and one song from the Stones that I will never tire of.

These are them.

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Segarini’s regular columns appear here every time somebody does it in the road

Contact us at segarini@rogers.com

dbawis-button7giphyBob “The Iceman” Segarini was in the bands The Family Tree, Roxy, The Wackers, The Dudes, and The Segarini Band and nominated for a Juno for production in 1978. He also hosted “Late Great Movies” on CITY TV, was a producer of Much Music, and an on-air personality on CHUM FM, Q107, SIRIUS Sat/Rad’s Iceberg 95, (now 85), and now publishes, edits, and writes for DBAWIS, continues to write music, make music, and record.

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