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"The mechanic in me wants to
pull your turntable apart and shine a
fluorescent light at the calibration ring."

March 9, 2004

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Elton John Lennon

Okay, okay, alright already. The suspense is over. Pigdump is moving its head office. That's right. The little storefront office on a sweet little lake two hours north of Hogtown will become the new headquarters for the crack Pigdump strategic team. Phew.

So of course that means facing that ugly four-letter word we hate so much: P-A-C-K. UGH! But as always, a purge, a pack and a move always brings about a couple of weeks worth of Top Quality Content™. Especially when it converges with a different sort of purging project - in this case the digitizing of vinyl so i don't have to move so gosh darn much stuff! (See how it all comes together?)

Last night, for instance, I was packing boxes and going through some old Nick Lowe, English Beat and Stan Ridgeway stuff when I stumbled upon an old 45. It was Elton John and John Lennon singing "I Saw Her Standing There" live in 1975. It made me quite nostalgic. It made me a little dewy-eyed. It made me want to share.

You see, through the years (and all that damn vinyl) it has occurred to me that there are four huge musical influences on my life. Whether these four inspired me to play music, to write music, to analyse music, to analyse life, these are the biggies. In order.

  • The Beatles
  • Elton John
  • Steely Dan
  • R.E.M.

The Beatles taught me about melody mixed with simplicity. Elton John (early stuff of course) made me teach myself the piano, made me play by ear. Steely Dan showed me how impossible musical structure could be made possible - and thrilling. And R.E.M. inspired me to buy a bass and reminded me of the simplicity of a 3-4 minute song.

Oh sure, Neil Young, Paul Westerberg and Ella Fitzgerald are all in there. So is XTC, Joni Mitchell and Kirstie MacColl. All these other great influences, though, were somehow a result of my listening to one of the four mentioned above. Somehow. In a six degrees kinda way.

Okay, that's all I'm going to say about that now. Because it's time to share. For your listening pleasure - even though you all know how I feel about those mp3 thingies - I invite you to share in my nostalgia. Share in a convergence of Pigdump influences (don't hold your breath for a Michael Stipe - Donald Fagen duet anytime soon.) A live version of Elton John and John Lennon singing "I Saw Her Standing There."

You're welcome.

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