Category Archives: Music

Rock n’ Roll Therapy

So here we go again. I have a lot to say, and what better place to say it than on the interweb. Welcome to “Rock n’ Roll Therapy”. Don’t worry, I’m not the doctor, I am the one on the couch. So what is this all about?

I have been going through a lot of crap over the past few months. I mean a lot. So much so, I feel like a roll of Charmin, if you catch my meaning. So, I decided to let out my frustrations, fears, questions, rants, and melt downs for you, and the rest of the world to see. I am going to be honest. Brutally honest at times. I have decided to let it all out.

The oxymoron part of being honest  is, I have to be discreet about the particulars of what is going on. There are other people, places and things involved and, out of respect, I will keep somethings from public view.

But, as for me personally, I will be honest. Be warned, it will be ugly. I am sure there will be profanity. But, like with any surgical procedure, it is ugly and messy and nauseating, but is needed in order to make the sick well.

So, what is Rock n’ Roll therapy? Over the past few months, I have found a solace in music. As some of you know, I have always had a love affair with music. And this love has helped keep my stable and sane. Especially hard music. Bands like, Limp Bizkit, Metallica, Godsmack, Guns n Roses, Mortification, The Showdown, Chevelle, Motley Crue, Tool, (I think you get the idea.) These bands have become very therapeutic, they have become my shrink.

Hard, heavy music has helped me walk through some emotional shit. (See, there’s a swear!) There are times when screaming at the top of my lungs with thunder-crunching guitars and pounding drums kills some of the inner demons. Metal has always asked tough questions and dealt with emotional pain, but not in victimized, emo bullshit  fashion. No, metal has always been about “Things may suck, but I am still going to kick it’s ass!”

So over the next few days, weeks or months, I am going to invite you with me. I am going to introduce you to songs that have helped me. Songs that have become very close friends of mine. Hell, you may even need to sit on the couch next to me.

Above all else, you will see a very rough spiritual side of me. I am a Christian, and desire to live a life that is pleasing to Christ, but sometimes, a lot of times, I don’t. At least in my mind. I have been learning a lot about grace, and the fact that there is nothing I can do to make God love me more or love me less. This is humbling. I have also learned that God can take whatever I throw at Him. And I have taken Him up on his offer. God is never afraid to back down from a fight, nor back out of a wrestling match, just ask Jacob.

So that’s pretty much it for tonight. Stick around for a while. Tonights blog has been brought to you by:

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My Top 100 Albums:10-1

So here we are. The top ten, the main enchiladas, the big lebowski, the final countdown…you get the point. May I present to you my top ten albums ever made.

10. Metallica-Master of Puppets: I was introduced to Metallica in the 7th grade. I remember clearly hanging out with some friends in front of my house with an old cassette radio. We played this tape so loud, that my neighbor came over and told us to turn it down. Metallica is not your typical thrash metal band. They never used Satan as a marketing tool. (This was the thing to do back in the eighties.) Their songs tell stories. The title track, Master of Puppets is about being addicted to cocaine, for instance. There are only eight songs on here, but none of them are less than 5 minutes long.

Common Children-Skywire: The debut album from the best Christian alt-rock band of all time. CC only had three albums before becoming defunct. It’s a shame. None of their albums made a splash in the Christian Music industry, and that just goes to show that people have crappy taste in music. The song Broken Smile is one of my favorite songs of all time. Google it.

8. Johnny Cash-American IV: I was just listening to this CD today. JC is an icon. His voice is redeeming. Some of his songs are sad. Take Give my Love to Rose and I Hung my Head. There is also some fun ones like Sam Hall and We’ll Meet Again. This album is story telling at its best.

7. Metallica-S&M: Metallica is known for breaking barriers. They have a history of it. (Master of Puppets and The Black Album.)This one breaks them all. It’s a live concert of Metallica with San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. Thrash metal and classical never sounded better.

6. Cash-American V: I like almost every song on this album. It is classic Cash doing what he does best…singing stories.

5. Common Children-Delicate Fade: Their sophomore release introduced us all to their melodic side, although it still rocked.

4. Metallica-Death Magnetic: This is classic M at their best. Full of thundering guitars and shredding hooks, Metallica makes a come back. The song Broken, Beat, Scarred is my theme song for 2010. Google it. I have listened to this CD time and time again. I love it.

3. Common Children-The Inbetween Time: Their last, and greatest album. I miss them. That is all I have to say.

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2. Adam Again-Dig: I fell upon this album at a Christian bookstore in the early 90’s. I bought it because the album cover intrigued me. I thought that any band that had this as an album cover had to be good. I was not mistaken. Lead by the powerful, almost Michael Stipe, vocals of Gene Eugene, every song on this album is incredible. Sadly, Gene died of a heart attack on March 20, 2000. Gene, this one’s for you.

Now, the moment you have all be waiting for…my number on album of all time is….

1. Third Day: Only fans from the beginning of their career have this one. This self titled album was released on Gray Dot Records in 1995. Later, it was re-released (and remixed) on Reunion records. Most people know that one because of the bus on the cover. I picked this as my number one because of the memories I have. I was there at the beginning. My brother and I went and saw them every time they played. They are the nicest bunch of guys too. They personally called all of their fans and invited them to this albums release party. Imagine my surprise when my mom told me some guy named Mac Powell was on the phone. Every time we saw them, they went out of their way to thank us for coming. I remember being fresh out of high school, driving to Marietta, Ga to see them live and knowing all of their songs by heart. I even got to open for them with a small band I put together back in 1996.

You see, that is what music is all about. It’s how it touches you, and the way it releases a flood of memories to crash through your mind. Music is spiritual. It has a way of calming us, soothing us, and energize us. I want to thank you for tagging along the past couple of weeks. I hope you have enjoyed it. I know I have. It is now time for me to end this segment. Be on the look out for some up coming short stories. Don’t forget to sign up to follow my blog. And as always, thanks for your support! God bless!

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My Top 100 Albums: 70-61

The countdown continues…

70. Anthrax-State of Euphoria: I was in eighth grade when this album came out, and it’s title was hard for a chubby 13 year old to pronounce. But that didn’t matter. As long as it was loud, fast, and annoyed mom and dad. State accomplished all three.

69. Blink 182-Enima of the State: This is just a fun album. The band I was playing in when this first came out used to cover the song, All the Small Things. I could also relate to What’s my age again? And then there’s the album cover…

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68. Romeo and Juliet Soundtrack: Back in the day when Leonardo DiCaprio was cool and Claire Danes was hot, this soundtrack would rock your face off. With great 90’s bands like Garbage, Everclear, The Butthole Surfers, The Cardigans, and Radiohead, you were in for a Montague and Capulet punch out!

67. Dakoda Motor Co.-Into the Son: This Christian band was California surf rock at its best. It contained a great message, kickin’ jams and a cute lead singer. (No, not the bald guy.) DMC was adored by fans all across the country, dude.

66. The Matrix Original Soundtrack- Another killer soundtrack, also with great bands from the 90’s (although it was the late 90’s). This album has songs from Marilyn Manson, Ministry, Prodigy, Rob Zombie, Deftones, and Rage Against the Machine. Grab it, and see just how far down the rabbit hole goes.

65. Poor old Lu-Sin: One of the best Christian bands ever. Poor old Lu got their name from the character Lucy in C.S. Lewis’ Narnia book, “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.” Plus, they have a bunny peep on their cover!

64. The Prayer Chain-Whirlpool: Ladies and gentlemen, my I present the epitome of Christian alternative music. These guys mixed angst and hope just like a…whirlpool.

63. Third Day-Contagious: I was hooked the first time I heard this album back in 1994. The Christian bookstore I was working out got it in from a friend and I bought it as soon as the box was opened. It is not available anymore,a nd according to Wikipedia, only 1,000 copies were made. I’ve got one and you don’t. Ha ha!

62. T-Bone-Redeemed Hoodlum: He was the Christian Cypress Hill. Wurd.

61. Glassbyrd-Open Wide This Window: Glassbyrd consisted of the husband/wife duo Christine Glass and Marc Byrd. (Get the name now.) Marc was mentioned in Hamock at number 91. Byrd has a wonderful way of being melodic. This album contained him singing his hit song, “God of Wonders”.

Alright, only ten more to go before we wind up the top 50. Thanks for coming by and checking out my site. I invite you to leave a comment and tell me what you think. Don’t forget to sign up for my blog, and as always, thanks for your support! See you tomorrow.

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My Top 100 Albums: 80-71

Here we go with another ten. If you need to recap on numbers 100-81, please see my previous posts. Continuing with the countdown…

80. Circle of Dust-Brainchild: This was the second album of Circle of Dust and the first album of Brainchild. Here’s how that works. Circle of Dust first album was self titled. They changed names to Brainchild and released the above album and titled it Mindwarp. Then, skip a few years ahead, and they re-release it back under Circle of Dust with the title Brainchild. Confused? Regardless, this is a industrial album with Christian themes. Heavy drums and crunchy guitars mixed with distorted vocals. What’s not to like?

79. The Best of The Doors: This double CD is what classic rock is about. It captures Jim Morrison at his finest. Grab this album and a beer. You won’t be disappointed.

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78. Filter-Title of Record: You may remember the song off this album called Take My Picture. This album was released in 1999 and the whereabouts of this band today are unknown. I think they may be on Lost.

77. Guardian-Miracle Mile: These Christian rockers give Bon Jovi a run for their money, with rockin’ songs like Dr. Jones and the Kings of Rhythm, Shoeshine Johnny, and Mr. Do Wrong.

76. Luna Halo-Shimmer: I have a very fond memory of this album. It was back in 2000 and I had just spent a week in Myrtle Beach with my best mate, Craig. I was heading back home in the evening, not wanting to go back to work. I put this CD in and started listening to the song, Forgiveness. The sun was beginning to set and I was watching the vast fields of farmland roll by. It was very surreal, yet felt good. I kept playing this song over and over and over. Don’t know why it touches me so, but it does.

75. Anthrax-Among the Living: OK, enough with the sentimental bull crap. Anthrax was one of my favorite bands in middle school. My favorite shirt was the one with the “NOT” man. Trashin’ and thrashin’ (with Scott Ian’s killer goatee!)these guys are bad ass.

74. The Blackest Album-An Industrial Tribute to Metallica: Now there’s a mouthful! This CD crunches and punches! Great to listen to when you work out! HEYA!

73. Bush-Sixteen Stone: Another great grunge album. This is choc-a-block full of songs that defined the 90’s. Little Things, Come Down, Glycerine, and Machinehead. Those were the days when music was good. Damn auto tune!

72. Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan Bootleg: Somebody asked me, when they heard I was making this list, if Johnny Cash was going to be on here. Well, here he is making his appearance with Bob Dylan at 72. As far as I know, this was a bootleg album. I’m not sure. Someone gave me a copy of this a few years ago. It’s rough and gritty, much like the Man in Black. Thinkin’ about gettin’ me some o’ that mountain dew!

71. Chevelle-Wonder What’s Next: You want crunch? They got it. Chunky bass and guitars will rattle your ears. Kinda Toolish, but yet not. Make sense? Wonder what next closes out the first 30 on my list. Wonder what’s next? Come back tomorrow. Sign up for my blog, and as always, thanks for your support.

PS-Be sure to spread the word to your friends. I do appreciate it!

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My Top 100 Albums: 100-91

According to my iTunes library, I have 726 albums containing 5,542 songs. That comes out to about…16.7 days if I hit play and let it roll nonstop. That does not include the couple of hundred CD’s I have yet to save into my iTunes library.

So coming up with a top 100 list was not an easy task! But I dove right in and began to sift through the current of music that has carried me most of my 34 years.

This list was not determined by popularity or album sales. In fact, I bet there are several that you have not heard of. I based this list on my what I like, and since this is my blog and I can do whatever I damn well please, you will have to deal with it.

I will roll out 10 albums a day over the next 10 days. (That should add up to 100, somebody double check my math.) I will also provide commentary on why I chose the particular albums and the impact they have had on me. So, as Casey Kasem would say, “Beginning with 100 and moving down to number 1…”this is my count down. Leave a message each day and tell me why I’m right, or why you think I’m wrong. Let’s begin!

100.Jackson’s Thriller: One of the top selling albums of all time by the most successful pop star of our time only makes its mark on my list at number one hundred. This is the only album by Michael Jackson I like. (And that was when it came out when I was in 3rd grade!) I got this on cassette the day I went into the hospital to have my tonsils out. I listened to it nonstop the three days I was there. I used to think MJ was the coolest person ever, until I realized he wasn’t when I hit 4th grade.

99. Nirvana-Never Mind: Again, probably the only album to make a paradigm shift in music. Never Mind single handedly killed glam rock. The first time I heard “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, I knew something big was happening in music. However, though I still like to pop this CD in from time to time, it’s the lack of rotation in my library that put it at 99.

98:Applehead-Meaning: This is going to be the first CD you’ve probably never heard of. This was the second solo album from the Christian thrash metal band The Crucified guitarist, Greg Minier. It was released in 1992, and although Greg was a thrashin’ guitar player, this album had more of a rock/grunge feel. What turned me onto this disc was how Greg’s vocals reminded me of a young James Hetfield. I was lucky enough to stumble across this now out of print album several years ago in a Christian bookstore. I I still love rocking  this album in my Toyota Camry.

97. Apt Core-Rhythems of Remembrence: This is a trance/electronica CD that was released into the Christian market in 2001. Good grooves+scripture=One fun album to listen too. I like to listen to it when I go walking or on a long drive.

96. Beanbag-Well Adjusted: The second, and more mature, album of this Aussie rock band. It was released in 2001 on inPop records. What drew to this album was how much it reminded me of A Perfect Circle. Sadly, the band broke up after a van accident put their lead singer out of commission for a while in 2002.

95. Beastie Boys-Ill Communication: “Sure Shot”, “Root Down” and “Sabotage”. The only three songs I like on this album, but so fun to grove too.

94. E.D.L.:This was the Christian version of “Rage Against the Machine”. When you’re pissed off and want to worship God, this is the album of choice!

93. Eli-Things I Prayed For: Released in 1998, Eli had an incredible, gritty voice. That year was a good year for me and I have many fond memories. Everytime I think back to that year, I can’t help but hear Eli as one of the official singers of my soundtrack.

92. Fono-Goes Around Comes Around: A good rocking album from 1998. Some of the best music came out in the mid to late 90’s. I can tell I;m getting old. One of the best alternative rockin’ songs is the first track, “Collide”. I still listen to this album and sing at the top of my screeching lungs.

91. Hammock-Kenotic: The music on this album defies a catagory. Written by legendary singer and song writer Marc Byrd (Common Children, Glass Byrd…he’s the guy that wrote God of Wonders.)this album is very melodic with groove sprinkled in. It’s an instrumental album and great to listen to while smoking a pipe and having a good beer.

OK, so that concludes the first 10 albums of my top 100. Leave me a comment and let me know if you agree or disagree. Come back tomorrow for numbers 90-81. And please, sign up and subscribe to my blog. As always, thanks for your support!

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