Pink Floyd

Author: siggy

I saw Pink Floyd a year or two (before they released “Dark Side Of The Moon”) at the Philmore East in NYC on a Sunday afternoon and the theater was barely a third full. It might have been with the original guitarist Syd Barrett. I remember hearing stories that I never verified that they had a full time psychiatrist accompany them on their tours. They truly was a progressive sounding group at that point with long jams characterizing their music.

In fact, the best song they ever wrote was “Wish You Here” on the same titled album (released right after The Dark Side of The Moon) was about the disintegration of Syd Barret, who they loved and had to fire from the band. He went off the deep end. He died not that long ago.

In 1970 I saw Led Zeppelin there. They were great but the sound was somewhat “remote” (I did not have a great seat). In 1975 I saw “The Stones” there. They sounded good in the same arena. Then I realized they had the best sound equipment and the best sound people running them. So it is not always the size of the arena that determines how good the sound is going to be. It is more than that.

I never forgot seeing Neil Young with Crazy Horse at the Philmore East In the East Village.(maybe 1969) They had just come out with their first album. When he did his Buffalo Springfield song” I Am A Child” all alone on stage I felt he was pouring out his very soul. For two encores they did “Cinnamon Girl’ a second and third time during the concert. I have loved Neil Young since then. We got old together. Later on when he released “Old Man” (on his “Harvest” album) I thought he was talking about me for I was twenty-four then and my relationship with my Dad was very ragged then. The line in the song was ‘twenty-four and so much more’ and went on from there.

I wanted to see Linda Ronstadt badly. I talked my girl friend into coming with me all the way to Long Island Forum to see Linda Ronstadt in concert. I did not have yet have a driving license much less a car. She did but refused to drive there.

We took three trains to get there: The Lackawanna, Path And Long Island Railroad. What I did not tell her and conveniently omitted was we would miss our last connection back. This was probably in the early eighties.

We made it to the concert finally. Andrew Gold opened for her. He was Linda Ronstadt musical director. The guitar solos in “When Will I be Loved” and “You Are No Good” are his and he duplicated them perfectly during her concert. He was part of her band.

Linda Ronstadt was great. Now we had to take the trains back. We made it as far as Lackawanna Station in Hoboken.  We were stuck there until the morning train left.

All I remember about that night.  It was bitterly cold and the warmest place was the women’s bathroom and I kept getting kicked out of there.  Finally we made it back home and I called off and went to sleep.


My First Concert

Author: siggy

My first concert was at Carnegie Hall in 1965. I was a sophomore in high school. I saw Peter, Paul & Mary. It was “magical”. Even today when I listen to their first album (Peter, Paul & Mary)(1962) I can’t help but to sing along. To be, it is a spiritual experience listening and singing along to that album. I sent a ninety minute cassette of them I compiled from my record collection to L. when I was courting her. She finally listened to after I bugged her and fell in love with them again. I saw them later twice but nothing compared to my first concert. It was my first concert and at was at the famous concert hall Carnegie Hall.

Elegy To Paul Kantner

Author: siggy

This is an elegy to Paul Kantner, who died yesterday. He co-founded Jefferson Airplane. His most memorable song he wrote for them was “Crown Of Creation”. I still remember seeing Jefferson Airplane in 1970 at the Shore. And when they did that song I moved and sat down in the aisle to hear it. I strongly identified with some of the words of that song: ‘you are the crown of creation, and you got no place to go’. The song gave me hope for change at a time my life felt helpless and out of control. Paul Kantner was a visionary. The last studio album Jefferson Starship, the group he founded, came out with was an album almost no one heard near the end of his career. It was full of protest and folk and other peoples’ material. It was unlike anything he ever put out. It was titled “Jefferson Tree Of Liberty”. He was a visionary to the very end.

I listen to music every day, most days, for hours. I do not consider this a waste of time although some people might. My mind roams and although it seems I am doing nothing; it is part of my creative process. I tap into my mind and simply think and consider ideas and thoughts. Sometimes ideas for blogs occur then and I jot them down and later if I still feel strongly about these ideas I write another blog. It is my form of meditation.

I never forget a piece of music. First of all. It has to be very good. I don’t, necessarily, remember the single notes but I remember the melodies. I always remember the emotional impact of the song. That is fixed in my brain. I just have to hear it once. I consider that a gift. I don’t tolerate mediocrity. My taste in music is impeccable. That is also a gift–to be able to discern what is very good. All this is done at an intuitive level.

Only By Grace…

Author: siggy

Only by grace both of us are passionate about listening to music. I share the best music I know and come across with her. And that is a gift being able to do that. In the beginning I opened a whole lot of worlds to her: British music and other kinds. I never forget the emotional impact of any piece of music. And I share that music with her easily. And that is only by grace.

In the beginning of our marriage every morning I would play this Nicole Nordeman CD. She asked me to play the music today and memories came flooding back. Everything was new between us then. I like to say we are an old married couple but we are not–twelve years I think. Every day is still another discovery. I know she is a gift and only here by serendipity. The music reminded me of that fact.

I appreciated my home better after I was gone a week. All my music at my fingertips. My wife, of course. And all my pets–all seven cats and three dogs. Now I am usually in charge of meals. There is nothing like being gone and back and realizing all your amenities are near by. Now I made my own coffee and drank out of my special cup. My coffee now tasted like I remembered it to. I did not have to listen to too many lectures when I did something wrong. My friend was a bit opinionated and overbearing, which is not to say my wife can’t be–she can. All in all I was glad to be home and grateful I had one to return to.

I play “DJ” all day for my wife. Sometimes she gets tired of the music and ask me to “pipe” it in my den or lower it or turn it off if the music is getting on her nerves. That is a gift to me that her taste in my music is eclectic so I can play almost anything any time. I was not as free to play my music with my first wife. I often had to wait until she was out of the house to play some of my music. Her tastes in music were not as varied as my current wife.