Friday, October 22, 2010

Taking the Beastie Boys literally

As long as I'm looking at literal videos, I should share this literal version of the Beastie Boys' "Sabotage." (Embedding disabled by request, so you'll have to follow the link.)

The original video itself is of course a homage to the Quinn Martin productions and other television fare of the Beastie Boys' (and my) youth, and the literal version plays this up with references to Greg Brady (although Screech is technically outside of the period in question).

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Taking David Byrne literally

I recently wrote a post in my Empoprise-BI business blog that includes a lot of linktext. If you follow one of the links in the text, you ended up at a YouTube video of Talking Heads' "Once in a Lifetime."

While searching for that video, I happened to find another version of the song - the literal version.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

First Feldman posts Jesse Stay is posting mashups!

Although in this case, Stay has half a right to post this one. After all, Stay calls his blog "Stay N' Alive." (He also takes Staycations, even when he leaves the house.)

So what musical stuff is Stay placing in one of his latest blog posts? In his case, a mashup - one that he refers to as the Best. Mashup. Ever. This one required one of the songs to be sped up a little, but when you do that, you end up with a mashup of two of the 1970s biggest songs - "Stayin' Alive" and "Another Brick in the Wall":

According to the Wax Audio website, "Stayin' Alive in The Wall" was originally released in 2007, as part of a collection called Mashopolos:

It's a pop, hard-rock, metal, disco, movie-soundtrack, hindi-pop, bhangra type album put together using other people's music. Each pairing was achieved by loving cajoling and violent contortion of the source materials and was produced here in Athens, Greece (hence the album title) throughout February and March 2007. I was supposed to be resting and recouperating after 15 months hard overland slog across Asia - but just couldn't resist getting my hands dirty again.

I definitely want to check out Kate Rogers Nelson and "Mashing Up That Hill."

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Loren Feldman posts Adele video - is he encroaching on Empoprise-MU territory?

I've written about Loren Feldman of 1938 Media many times in the past (here's an example and here's another, and here's a more recent example). For those of you who are not familiar with him, Feldman is a rare champion of realism in the world of social media - for example, in advocating that the social media tools should be used to provide a return on investment for the businesses who employ them. Feldman spreads his message through a variety of avenues, ranging from speeches at conferences to micromessages on Twitter to puppet shows on video.

In the past I've appreciated Feldman and his observations.

That is, until he started barging in on my territory.

You see, if there's one thing that I frequently do here in the Empoprise-MU music blog, it's the sharing of music videos that I find (primarily on YouTube). Some of them are original videos from the artists themselves, while others are fan videos - some creative, some not-so-creative.

So what does Feldman do? He posts a similar post - in this case, sharing a song from Adele.

OK, Feldman may be honing into my territory by sharing videos, but I'll tell you one thing that I do that Feldman doesn't do - I write about things even though I don't have the slightest clue about them.

Yes, I had to read up on this song, courtesy Wikipedia. To put it mildly, Adele isn't the only person who has performed this song. This Bob Dylan original has been performed by Adele, Billy Joel, Garth Brooks, Gamu Nhengu, Phil Keaggy, Trisha Yearwood, Neil Diamond, Joan Osborne, Timothy B. Schmit, Kelly Clarkson, Ronan Keating, Bryan Ferry, Taylor Hicks, Maria Muldaur, and many others.

Oh, and and if I'm going to be honest about things, Feldman has been sharing songs on his blog for YEARS - in fact, he was sharing songs before the Empoprise-MU blog even existed (this blog started in August 2008). For example, here's a March 27, 2008 video share of a song by the Shel Israel puppet. (Language warning.)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Oh George? (George Clinton Gone Country)

I found it.

Not embeddable, but George Clinton's performance of "What Time Is It" for "Gone Country 3" can be found here.

Oh Sheila? (or, where is Sheila E?)

Over the weekend, while not researching The Famous Al Gunn, I heard Ready for the World's "Oh Sheila" on the radio. Now I was never really impressed with Ready for the World back in the day, since they appeared to have Prince's smuttiness without the talent. "(pant) (pant) (pant) Oh Sheila," indeed.

But that got me thinking about another Sheila (who is supposedly not the subject of the song) - Sheila E. Directly associated with Prince, she was popularly perceived as the one Prince female protege who actually had talent. She certainly had her hits, but like most pop stars, she faded from view a few years later.

Where did she end up?

Well, like any self-respecting musician, she has her own website, And while she may not be topping the charts any more, she's certainly active. She's been out my way recently, appearing at the Thornton Winery in Temecula in August. And back in February, she appeared with her father, Pete Escovedo, in a concert in Ventura. And she's also performing with the purple one. As of now, their European appearances are as follows:


October 18th
Bergen, Norway

October 20th
Copenhagen, Denmark

October 22nd
Herning, Denmark

November 2nd
Rome, Italy

November 3rd
Milan, Italy

Her biography fills in the missing years between her 80s stardom and today.

After taking several years off for health reasons, Sheila's next project, the E-Train, started in 1994. The band that played a mixture of soul, Latin jazz, funk, fusion and gospel toured in Europe in 1994, and finally released a CD, entitled "Writes of Passage" in 1998.

In 1998, Sheila became the first female bandleader on late night television on Magic Johnson's variety show "The Magic Hour," and she co-wrote and co-produced the late night show's theme song.

Sheila has played on countless albums, including the soundtrack to "Prince of Egypt," featuring Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey, successful Japanese artist Namie Amuro (whom she also toured with in 1996 and 2002) and Gloria Estefan's hugely successful "Mi Tierra."

The complete biography is here. No word on whether Sheila officially played the conga when playing with Estefan. But the most interesting part of the bio was a cross-musical production with which I was not familiar.

Sheila E. participated in the third season of CMT's hit show, "Gone Country." With the goal of creating a hit country music single, each "Gone Country" cast member is uprooted to Nashville for an intense two-week challenge. Justin Guarini, Taylor Dayne, George Clinton, Tara Conner, Richard Grieco, and Micky Dolenz competed on the third season along with Sheila E. Each celebrity was paired with two of Nashville's finest songwriters with whom they wrote a country single. In addition to meeting with songwriters, the cast competed in challenges that tested them musically and physically to adapt to a life in country music, both on and off the stage. Sheila E. was the Grand Prize Winner of the third season and has gone on to release her first country single & video for her song, "Glorious Train.

When reading the cast list, all I can say is "wow." I still have to find George Clinton's country musings, but I did find "Glorious Train."

Monday, October 11, 2010

Nights With Alice Cooper radio show

I was reading a comment from my good Facebook friend Peter Frampton - oh, you've heard of him? - and he offered a comment about a website for a radio show entitled "Nights With Alice Cooper," found at

The show isn't carried by any Los Angeles radio stations, but you can listen on selected radio stations that carry the show on their websites. (Including Canadian radio stations, allowing The Famous Al Gunn to listen.)

The website is jam-packed with pictures, video, trivia, and other information. And if you are scratching your head and wondering who this Alice is that I'm talking about, here's his (yes, his) bio.

Without Alice Cooper, there might never have been the NY Dolls, KISS, Marilyn Manson, Nine Inch Nails, Motley Crue, Slipknot or Rob Zombie ... maybe not even David Bowie, or at least not Ziggy Stardust. The iconic hard rocker...literally invented the concept of the rock concert as theater....

With a schedule that includes six months of every year on the road, Alice Cooper is bringing his own brand of rock psycho-drama to fans both old and new, and enjoying it as much as the audience does.

Known as the architect of shock-rock, Alice (in both the original Alice Cooper band and as a solo artist) has rattled the cages and undermined the authority of generations of guardians of the status quo, continuing to surprise fans and exude danger at every turn, like a great horror movie, even in an era where CNN can present real life shocking images.

The "bio" above is extremely edited, since 90% of it is devoted to Alice's 25th album, "Along Came a Spider." You know, one of THOSE bios.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Well, of course "The Safety Dance" comes to mind at four o'clock in the morning

Yes, it's about 4:00 am in California.

No, I'm not in France.

I couldn't sleep, so I woke up, and I had a mad urge to listen to this song:

Now when you see a guy, a short guy, and a woman, you can be forgiven for thinking that you're watching an ABC video. This is, of course, Men Without Hats, doing the Safety Dance. This, incidentally, is one of the songs by this band which includes a French interlude just to prove that they're from Quebec.

But "The Safety Dance" is not my favorite Men Without Hats song. That designation belongs to "Living in China," with the best line in all rock. Speaking of the then-current changes in China, Ivan and his cohorts talked about "the Gang of Four, trying to make it as a western band." Here's an unofficial video with images from the country itself.

So where are Men Without Hats today? This page offers the rundown on just about every person ever associated with the band:

Ivan lives in Montreal, Stefan lives in a small town in the Laurentian mountains of Quebec about an hour north of Montreal, Colin lives in Victoria on Vancouver island, teaches voice and sings with the Victoria Opera Company, Lenny lives in Montreal and works in computers, Marika lives in southern California, Heidi lives in New Jersey, Allan died of AIDS about 6 years ago, Jerry Arrobas is in telemarketing and living in Mtl, John Gurin is a university professor, Jean-Marc writes jingles in Mtl, the still Famous Al Gunn hasn't left the island of Montreal since the tour in 1985, Bruce Murphy's a dentist in Ottawa, and Tracy Howe lives in Ontario and recently retired from music.