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Birthdays

Stan Laurel

Stan Laurel, circa 1920s

On this day in 1890, in Ulverston, Lancashire, comedian and writer Stan Laurel was born. One half of the Laurel and Hardy comedy team, his contribution to film history is immeasurable.

Categories
Comics

Just Say Uncle

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Welcome

Welcome!

Welcome to our new readers from Canada, Singapore, Egypy & Bosnia! Thank you for stopping by, we’re glad you’re here!

Categories
Comics

Just Say Uncle

Greg Lato / Create My Own World

Greg Lato

Create My Own World (GLM)

http://www.greglato.com

Although this is technically music for kids, my criteria when listening is the same as any other genre. The main point being, how does this make me feel? Within thirty seconds of the lead-off track, I Like Sprinkles, I realized that I had a big smile on my face. Turns out my face often knows how I feel before my brain even has time to process it.

Greg Lato must be around the same age as me, as his musical touchstones are obviously the pop records of the 1970’s and ’80’s. Nothing wrong with that! Lato has a pleasant voice and a general friendliness that kids will like. While he covers a wide variety of topics, everything from lost socks to exploring, I especially enjoyed Hi, Gene, which begins as an ode to an imaginary friend, and sneaks its way into being a list of tips on cleanliness. 

Create My Own World is light and fun. Extra points for eye-catching sleeve artwork!

Dan Pavelich

Why Be Kind?

Categories
Welcome

Welcome!

Welcome to our new readers from The UK, The Philippines, Romania & Singapore! Thank you for dropping in!

Categories
Comics

Just Say Uncle

Categories
Birthdays

Burl Ives

Born on this day in 1909, in Hunt City, Illinois, actor and singer, Burl Ives. While Ives had serious acting acting roles and was a popular folk singer, we remember him most fondly as the voice of Sam The Snowman, in the Rankin/Bass Christmas special, Rudolph The Red- Nosed Reindeer.

Categories
Quick Spins

The Kinks / Word Of Mouth

The Kinks

Word Of Mouth (Sony)

http://www.thekinks.com

The music of my teenage years will stay with me unlike any of the other music I’ve enjoyed in my life. It is forever entwined with first love and loss, disappointment and doubt, Spring break and Fall football games, dances attended and dances sat out. These songs are as indelible as my most personal memories, and as inescapable as each mornings’ new gray hair. This music is quite literally in my heart.

Word Of Mouth was released in 1984, and fell on my ears as junior year in high school was turning into senior year. My band played Do It Again in the school talent show, and I remember just loving the hell outta that song, from the first time I heard it. I worked overtime trying to get Dave Davies’s guitar parts down, and our little group sounded pretty damn good. Our singer forgot the lyrics, but I didn’t even notice. I was too busy pretending I was a guitar hero like Dave, bashing out those power chords.

I was happy to find that my friend Robert was into Word Of Mouth, and I’m sure that one of us had a cassette of it that was always getting shoved into the tape player in his Pontiac. We did a lot of driving, sometimes with our friend Cheryl. Just like in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, we’d cut class, stop at 7-Eleven to pick up a bag of cheese popcorn, jerky and soda. And we’d head for Chicago, which was about 45 minutes south of us. The sun was always shining.

Living On A Thin Line was released as a single, cementing my love of this record. There are some songwriters, Ray Davies & brother Dave being two, that have the ability to write a song that pulls multiple emotions out of you, and, boy, Living On A Thin Line does that to me. It’s love, regret, hope and sorrow, all tangled up in a seemingly-simple pop song.

Sold Me Out and Guilty are both top-notch rockers, and sound unbelievable cranked in the car, on a warm, Spring day. I love every song here, but these two really lift my mood. Every time.

Closing out the record are two songs that are perfectly suited to close it out. Knowing that Robert, Cheryl & I really only had one more summer together (before the reality of adulthood seriously began), I felt like Summer’s Gone was being sung directly to the three of us. Regardless of what the meaning behind Ray’s lyrics might have been, I took the feeling of this one personally.

The very last song is Going Solo, which is what every member of our trio would soon be doing. Although it’s an upbeat song, it’s theme of separating from the people you love always chokes me up.

By Dan Pavelich