Love Amid the Rubble: Ronnie Lane’s Tender Ode to His Dad, Saint Stan

Jun 19, 2016 | 826 Views | 1 Comment

I heard your footsteps at the front door, and that old familiar love song. ‘Cause you knew you'd find me waiting there, at the top of the stairs. Those lyrics weren’t written by a heartsick bloke waiting for his lover to come home. They were composed by an artist recalling his boyhood days in a working-class London neighborhood, waiting for his tireless dad to return from his Sunday morning trudge to the local junk market. You were sorting through the odds and ends, You was looking for a bargain. Ronnie Lane, the artist once described by Mojo writer Wayne Pernu... Read More »

You Score an Ounce, Olé — Paul, Pot, and the Petition of ’67

Jun 18, 2016 | 1772 Views | 3 Comments

Even if Bob Dylan hadn't introduced The Beatles to marijuana at New York's Delmonico Hotel, the boys would have lit up soon enough. From that August 1964 night onward, "let's have a laugh" quickly became their code phrase for "let's have a toke." And laugh they did. At least until the infamous Sgt. Norman Pilcher and his drug-sniffing dogs Yogi and BooBoo came snooping around their London abodes. The cop and his canines found 12 grams of cannabis in a binocular case in John and Yoko's apartment in October 1968, and a few months later discovered a... Read More »

What Did You Do in the War, Daddy?

May 30, 2016 | 2467 Views | 2 Comments

“What did you do in the war, Daddy?” That’s a question most kids eventually get around to asking when they learn their fathers served in the armed forces. Almost all of my childhood friends had dads who served in either World War II or the Korean War. In those days it wasn’t uncommon for veterans to keep their war stories to themselves, especially those who fought in battle or witnessed atrocities. The men who went to war back then were of a generation steeped, for better or worse, in silent suffering. They shared a collective stiff-upper-lip consciousness.... Read More »

Ian McLagan: I Had Me a Real Good Time

May 12, 2016 | 4543 Views | 1 Comment

"Had me a real good time." That's the title of a song by Faces, and it totally sums up my feelings every time I rock-and-roll to the music of that premier British bar band. Their keyboard player Ian McLagan, who died suddenly of a stroke  on December 3, 2014, would have been 71 today. I know I refer to a lot of performers as "my favorite" this or that, but you can be certain of this: "Mac" was my favorite band keyboardist. The charismatic musician began his recording career in 1965 with the Small Faces, a tight... Read More »

Leslie Gore on Owning Yourself

May 2, 2016 | 4881 Views | 3 Comments

Ladies, the next time you want to change your hairstyle or splurge on those Miu Miu pumps and your man gets bossy and tries to dissuade you, just say "you don't own me." Guys, the next time your lady tells you to turn down the car stereo or toss out those LPs that are hogging up space in the kettle cabinet, just say "you don't own me." People, the next time anyone tries to make you abandon your personal style or code of ethics to suit someone else, just heed some wise advice delivered in song... Read More »