Wednesday, January 31, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-!!!

Artist:!!!
Song:Must Be The Moon
Album:Myth Takes





!!! (pronounced chk chk chk) came out of the ashes of the Sacramento post punk scene. Adding dance grooves made them popular on the dance floor. They were formed in 1996. Lead singer Nic Offer was in The Yah Mos. The other members were in other Sacramento bands. The name !!! comes from the film The Gods Must Be Crazy. It is the sound made by the bushmen in the film. They released an album in 2000 and then moved to New York City in 2001. They signed with the British label Warp Records who specialize in experimental electronic music. I think !!! is more dance oriented than what they normally release. Must Be The Moon is from the 2007 album Myth Takes. It has been their most successful album to date. The band members are Nic Offer, Mario Andreoni, Dan Gorman, Tyler Pope and Allan Wilson. They all play multiple instruments. Pope left and was replaced by Rafael Cohen. !!!'s latest CD Shake The Shudder was released May 2017 and they just finished a tour to support it. Fans of punk oriented dance music should check them out. Here's the video for Must Be The Moon by !!!.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Asuka vs Sasha Banks

Here's the match video of Asuka vs Sasha Banks from last night's episode of RAW. Following up on Sunday's Royal Rumble, the "legends" were in the match because the WWE is making a women's wrestling documentary. And The Bella Twins still in the match at the end because they were shooting an angle for Total Bellas. Add to that the Ronda Rousey post match stuff and Asuka got shortchanged. So she was brought out at the start of last night's show. Then Sasha Banks came out to challenge Asuka. Last week, Sasha called out Asuka on TRL. Asuka didn't like that. So she was ready to shut Sasha up. And of course Sasha wanted to end the streak. The match was very similar to many of Asuka's NXT matches. I'm sure Asuka laid out the match herself. It got off to a slow start and the fans weren't into it. The slow build is done in Japan. Asuka likes that because when it picks up later it has more impact. There was a spot where Asuka went out to the floor and Sasha botched a suicide dive to the floor. Asuka was supposed to kick her but it never got that far as Sasha's feet got caught up in the ropes and she landed badly. The ref checked on Sasha and then Asuka checked on her. Fortunately she was OK but that could have been bad. Maybe Asuka needs to talk to Sasha about those kind of moves because Asuka doesn't do them. They are flashy but risky and unnecessary. There are other ways to do things. The match was back and forth and Michael Cole did a good job of selling near falls. Sasha tried to apply her finisher The Banks Statement three times. The third time she tried it Asuka brilliantly transitioned into the Asuka Lock and that was it. Sasha needs to go back to the drawing board. It was probably the best match on last night's show. It just shows that if you give Asuka time and let her do her thing, she will deliver a great match each and every time. It's the best match Sasha has ever had on RAW. Asuka was holding her right shoulder afterwards. I hope she was just selling but that's where she suffered the broken collarbone. Check out the video for yourself. The entire match is on the video but the guy who uploaded it ran the ending twice.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Chris Cagle

Artist:Chris Cagle
Song:I Breathe In, I Breathe Out
Album:Best Of Chris Cagle





I Breathe In, I Breathe Out was the only number one country music hit for singer songwriter Chris Cagle. He retired from country music in Oct. 2015. He was born Nov. 10, 1968 in DeRidder, LA and he grew up in the Houston suburb of Sugar Land, TX. He got into music in high school. He left college after one year to move to Nashville in 1994. He worked odd jobs while trying to establish himself as a songwriter. This included working as a nanny for his lawyer Rod Phelps. Cagle's big break came when he met legendary songwriter Harlan Howard. Howard got him a publishing deal. I Breathe In, I Breathe Out was recorded by David Kersh in 1998. Then he signed with Virgin Records. Cagle's debut CD Play It Loud was released in 2000. My Love Goes On And On was a top 20 country hit. But parent company EMI decided to close Virgin's Nashville office. Cagle was moved to Capitol and Play It Loud was re-released in 2001 with two songs added including I Breathe In, I Breathe Out which topped the charts. The album was certified Gold. He scored two more top ten hits from his 2003 album Chris Cagle. Cagle was diagnosed with polyps on his vocal cords and he was forced to rest in 2004. He returned with the 2005 album Anywhere But Here. It didn't do as well as the first two albums. He also lost a lawsuit with his former manager and he was forced to pay him $737K. Cagle left Capitol after his 2008 album My Life's Been A Country Song. Cagle and his then girlfriend were tossed in jail after a domestic incident. After getting married to a different woman in 2010, Cagle signed with Bigger Picture and released the 2012 album Back In The Saddle. The album did OK but Bigger Picture closed in 2013. And then Cagle announced his retirement in 2015 to spend more time with his family. You can get all his hits on this comp. Here's the video for I Breathe In, I Breathe Out by Chris Cagle.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Asuka wins the Women's Royal Rumble

Here's the match video of last night's Women's Royal Rumble. As you probably already know, Asuka won the match as expected and Ronda Rousey appeared after the match was over. It was a typical Royal Rumble. It was a mix of good things and not so good things. The WWE's attempt to sell this match as historic gives new meaning to the term "pretentious overkill". Part of that overkill was an abundance of retired "legends". I understand why they all wanted to be there. And I also understand the WWE's insistence on hammering home that they were making history. But keeping that to a minimum would have made the appearances more significant. So I would have cut those participants in half and bring in more NXT talents that could have used the rub. With the exception of The Bella Twins, all of those "legends" were one shot appearances. I just thought it was too much nostalgia pandering. The first two participants were Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch because they can go for a long time. Then they started filling the ring. It was great to see Mae Young Classic winner Kairi Sane. She wasn't in for very long but she got to do two elbow drops and Sasha sold hers like she got killed. One of the weirdest stats from this match was that Michelle McCool eliminated the most women. How did that happen? I thought the turning point of this match would be when Nia Jax entered. But instead they had her disappear for a couple of long periods and then they all ganged up on her and got rid of her. A taped up Ember Moon showed up. It's a phony injury. If she was really injured, she wouldn't have been allowed to participate. That made less sense than not having Shayna Baszler in this match. Most of the "legends" got in signature moves and then were tossed out. Except for The Bella Twins. So first Sasha throws her best friend Bayley out. Could you please turn Sasha heel already? That leaves The Bella Twins, Sasha and Asuka who entered 25th and hadn't done much to that point. I thought we might get an Asuka vs Sasha showdown. But instead they had the Bellas outsmart Sasha and eliminate her. And then Nikki Bella eliminated her sister. So that left Asuka and Nikki. And though Asuka choreographed the finish very well, I thought it was anticlimactic because Asuka vs Sasha would have meant more. Maybe they wanted a quick finish. Then after Charlotte Flair and Alexa Bliss entered the ring so Asuka could choose who she would wrestle at Wrestlemania, that's when Ronda Rousey came out. Mike Johnson of PW Insider was at the show and he said Ronda's entrance worked very well live. But it didn't work as well on the broadcast. I don't think it was well directed. They seemed to miss some key shots. The one thing I did like was Asuka slapping away Ronda's handshake. "I'll show you who the real badass is." The WWE says Ronda was never supposed to be in the Rumble. They want her in ring debut at Wrestlemania. They are trying to get The Rock to team with Ronda vs HHH and Stephanie. But if Ronda had been in the Rumble, that would have given the post match spotlight to Asuka where it belonged. So it was a little messed up. It's been known for a while that Ronda was coming to the WWE but the WWE tried a bit too hard to swerve fans and I think some of us were getting annoyed with them. Ronda has been wrestling training with Brian Kendrick in Los Angeles. She'll get them plenty of mainstream attention regardless. I just thought it could have been handled better. Enjoy the video!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Treble Charger

Artist:Treble Charger
Song:How She Died
Album:Maybe It's Me





Treble Charger had success mostly in their native Canada. Attempts to break them in the US were unsuccessful. The 1997 album Maybe It's Me was probably their best album. Treble Charger are from Sault Ste Marie, ON. Lead singer Grieg Nori, guitarist Bill Priddle and bassist Rosie Martin went to high school together. They added drummer Morris Palter and called themselves NC-17. But there was another band with that name so it was changed to Treble Charger. They released an album on their own label and then a 1995 album on Sonic Unyon. They got some airplay on alt rock radio and MuchMusic and that got them a record deal with RCA Canada. The 1997 album Maybe It's Me was more pop than their previous albums. Nori thought the band needed to be more commercial. Palter was fired during the recording of the album. Mike Levesque was brought in to finish the album and then Trevor McGregor was the permanent drummer. The album did well enough that the 2000 album Wide Awake Bored was released in the US by Nettwerk Records. It didn't go anywhere. The other thing was Nori was starting to have success as the producer and manager of the popular band Sum 41. And Priddle was unhappy with the band's move from punk to a pop sound. So after the 2002 album Detox, Treble Charger split up. Nori continued as a manager. Priddle released a 2008 album as The Priddle Concern. Nori and Priddle restarted Treble Charger in 2012. They played a few shows and there has been talk about recording new music. But there has been nothing so far. Maybe It's Me is available as a budget CD. Here's the video for How She Died by Treble Charger.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Ji Yeon Kim vs Justine Kish

Here's the match video of Ji Yeon Kim vs Justine Kish from last night's UFC show in Charlotte. This fight was at Flyweight. Like most Korean fighters, Ji is a kickboxer. She lost her UFC debut at Bantamweight. The drop to Flyweight was probably suggested by UFC matchmaker Sean Shelby. Justine is also a kickboxer moving up from Strawweight. She's from North Carolina but she trains in Los Angeles. Neither fighter has any punching power. So I expected a very close kickboxing match. And that's what we got. I scored the fight 29-28 for Kim but I noticed most of the media scored it the other way. I even predicted a split decision right after the fight before the scores were announced. I can't say it was a bad fight. It was what I expected. But I don't see either fighter as anything higher than lower midcard. Check it out for yourself.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Randa Markos vs Juliana Lima

Here's the match video of Randa Markos vs Juliana Lima from last night's UFC show in Charlotte. Randa is from Windsor, ON but she trains in Detroit. She's a pretty good wrestler but she id error prone and that's why her record is spotty. Juliana is a terrible fighter. She doesn't even look good when she wins because stalling is her main offensive strategy. For that reason, the ref needs to be on his game. The main characteristic of round one was stalling on the fence. This is typical of Juliana but the ref wouldn't break them up. Eventually Randa got her down and pounded her so I scored round one 10-9 for Randa. It appears the ref learned his lesson in round two. Juliana was able to get top position. Lay 'n' Pray is one of her strategies to win fights. But the ref wouldn't allow it and he stood them up. Some fans thought it was a quick standup. I think it was a reaction to the round one stalling. Juliana will stall if the ref allows it. So Randa is up 20-18 and Juliana needs a finish. Of course that was never going to happen. So Randa won by unanimous decision. Randa said afterwards that she hurt her knee in training. My guess is she will need arthoscopic surgery for that. She also said she wants a top five ranked fighter. Maybe she should win a couple of fights in a row first. Check out the fight for yourself.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Katlyn Chookagian vs Mara Romero Borella

Here's the match video of Katlyn Chookagian vs Mara Romero Borella from last night's UFC show in Charlotte, NC. This fight was at Flyweight. Katlyn was obviously undersized at Bantamweight so her drop to Flyweight was expected. Mara is from Italy but she trains at American Top Team in Florida. Jessica Aguilar was in her corner. She looked great in her UFC debut but her opponent was terrible. This was a terrible fight. Neither fighter looked good. I place most of the blame on Katlyn and her coach Mark Henry. She threw plenty of punches but most of them didn't land. She refused to get close enough. Mara was marginally better and that's why I scored the fight 29-28 in her favor. But I wasn't surprised the judges went the other way. A fight like this is very difficult for judges. It was three rounds of light sparring. The judging was not the problem. The only solution is for the ref to admonish the fighters to stop screwing around. But most refs won't do that but they are supposed to. I understand Katlyn's strategy. Instead of trying to win, she's trying to not lose. That strategy could have backfired on her. She was lucky it didn't. The flip side is it labels her as a boring points fighter. I don't subscribe to "a win is a win" because it's not true. A fight like this doesn't help anyone. check ot out for yourself.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Pied Pipers

Artist:The Pied Pipers
Song:Dream
Album:Dreams From The Sunny Side Of The Street




The vocal group The Pied Pipers were popular in the 40s first with Tommy Dorsey and Frank Sinatra and then on their own with hits like Dream. There were eight members led by Jo Stafford when they formed in the late 30s. Tommy Dorsey's arranger Paul Weston heard them at a jam session and signed then for Dorsey's radio show in New York. They appeared on the show for six weeks but the sponsor didn't like them and fired them. The group moved back to Los Angeles reduced to a quartet. They were Jo Stafford, her husband John Huddleston, Chuck Lowry and Billy Wilson. Dorsey rehired them and brought them to Chicago. Clark Yocum replaced Wilson. Then in 1940, Dorsey hired Sinatra. The Pied Pipers backed up Sinatra on several hits including I'll Never Smile Again. The Pied Pipers left Dorsey after he had one of his trademark temper tantrums. They moved back to Los Angeles and signed with Capitol Records. They reunited with Paul Weston who produced and arranged all of their Capitol recordings. And they also backed up recordings by Capitol owner Johnny Mercer. Huddleston went into the service and was replaced by Hal Hopper. And Jo Stafford had solo success and she left and was replaced by June Hutton. Dream topped the charts in 1945. It was The Pied Pipers' biggest hit. Mercer wrote Dream for his radio show. Today the song is a pop standard. The Pied Pipers had some other hits including The Trolley Song. You can get all their hits on this 2CD comp from Jasmine Records. They toured with Sinatra and were regulars on his radio show. They were also regulars on Johnny Mercer's show and Club Fifteen with The Andrews Sisters. June Hutton left to go solo in 1950 replaced by a stream of singers including Louanne Hogan who appears in the video. A version of The Pied Pipers tours today with a version of The Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra. Here's a 1951 Snader Telescription of Dream by The Pied Pipers (left to right-Chuck Lowry, Louanne Hogan, Clark Yocum, Hal Hopper) with The Ernie Felice Quartet.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Billy Bland

Artist:Billy Bland
Song:Let The Little Girl Dance
Album:American Heartbeat 1960





Let The Little Girl Dance was a top ten hit in 1960. It was the only big hit for Billy Bland. Some of his other songs charted so technically he is not a one hit wonder. And the story behind this record is pretty funny. He was born Apr. 4, 1932 in Wilmington, NC the youngest of 19 children. in 1947, he moved to New York with The Four Bees and they signed with Imperial Records. Legendary producer Dave Bartholomew brought them to New Orleans to record Toy Bell, a variation on Bartholomew's My Ding-A Ling. Bland left to go solo in 1955 and he signed with Old Town Records. He released a few singles that he wrote including Chicken Hop and Chicken In A Basket. I guess he had a thing for chicken. One of the problems I can see with Bland is he sounds a lot like Jackie Wilson. In 1960 he is in the recording studio listening to Titus Turner record Let The Little Girl Dance. Unsatisfied with Turner's performance, producer Henry Glover asked Bland to show Turner how to sing the song. That's what he did. But Bland didn't know that Glover was recording him. Old Town released it as a single and Let The Little Girl Dance reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. Glover wrote the song with Carl Spencer of the doo wop group The Star Steppers. A couple of Bland's other singles charted but Let The Little Girl Dance was his only big hit. Ace and Collectables have released Billy Bland comps. But I think most folks will only want the one song. And you can get it on this 2CD various artists budget comp. Billy Bland quit the music business in 1964 and he opened a soul food restaurant in Harlem. There's the chicken connection. He died on Mar. 22, 2017 at age 84. Here's a video for Let The Little Girl Dance by Billy Bland.

Friday, January 26, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Herb Ellis & Ray Brown

Artist:Herb Ellis & Ray Brown
Song:Edison Lights
Album:In A Mellow Tone





In the early days of Concord Records, Carl Jefferson liked to feature the same musicians with different partners. That's why you see guitarist Herb Ellis record with everyone on the roster. He was very versatile. In this case, he is recording with legendary bassist Ray Brown. Of course both guys were in Oscar Peterson's late 50s band. They recorded two albums in the mid-70s. Edison Lights is from the 1974 album Soft Shoe which is the first of the two albums. Harry "Sweets" Edison plays trumpet and he also wrote Edison Lights. The rest of the band is George Duke on piano and Jake Hanna on drums. Duke might seem like an odd choice because he played with Frank Zappa at the time. But he was a jazz musician first. Hanna was mainly a sideman who was the drummer in The Merv Griffin Show band. Hanna was on a lot of Concord recordings. Ellis & Brown followed this with the 1976 album Hot Tracks with Edison, Hanna, Plas Johnson on sax and Mike Melvoin on keyboards. Soft Shoe is out of print. But you can get Edison Lights on this 2CD comp of Ellis' Concord recordings from the British label Recall. It's a good intro to Ellis' music. In the 80s Ellis and Brown were in a trio with pianist Monty Alexander. The quality of the music shows how versatile both of these jazz legends were. They could play anything with anybody. Here's a video for Edison Lights by Herb Ellis & Ray Brown.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Rosalia de Souza

Artist:Rosalia de Souza
Song:Maria Moita
Album:Garota Moderna





Rosalia de Souza is a singer who mixes bossa nova with jazz. But her career took an odd turn when she crossed paths with Italian producer Nicola Conte and Maria Moita became a hit in clubs. She was born July 4, 1966 in Nilopolis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She moved to Italy in 1989 to study music. She sang with groups like Quintetto X and Intensive Jazz Sextet. And then she signed with Schema Records. And that's how she met Conte who was known for his remix work. They decided to record together and released the 2002 album Garota Moderna. It's a mix of Rosalia's bossa nova style and Conte's dance beats. Her cover of Carlos Lyra's Maria Moita was a hit in clubs and the album got a US release. Conte has remixed and reconstructed the recording several times. Rosalia has recorded four albums but not with the success of her debut album. Most recently she has worked with the Austrian production duo Pilots On Dope who released the 2014 CD Udopeia on Verve. Here's the video for Maria Moita by Rosalia de Souza.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Rin Nakai vs Young Ji Kim added to Feb. 24 DEEP show

It was announced today that Rin Nakai will make her DEEP debut on Feb. 24 at Differ Ariake against Korean Young Ji Kim. This fight will be at Flyweight and it looks like it will be in a cage. The last time we saw Rin she beat Kanako Murata on the 2016 RIZIN NYE show. She's been out with an elbow injury. And then she decided not to return to PANCRASE. She prefers fighting in a cage which is why she's on a DEEP show as opposed to DEEP JEWELS. Another problem with Rin is she still lives in Shikoku and it's expensive to fly her in. It can be tough to find Flyweights in Japan. So they have brought in this Korean fighter with a 1-2 record. Her win was over pro wrestler Yoshiko on a recent Road FC show. Rin shouldn't have much trouble with Young except for Rin's bad habit of getting off to slow starts. She has all the physical tools. But she has had this mental block of doing nothing at the start of fights to the point where she is frequently warned by refs. So for those asking, Rin Nakai is returning.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Asuka and The Miz vs Carmella and Big E

Here's the match video of Asuka and The Miz vs Carmella and Big E from last night's WWE Mixed Match Challenge. This airs live on Facebook Watch which is only available in the US. It will be on the WWE Network on Thursday. I assume Facebook Watch exclusivity is in WWE's contract with Facebook. So of course I am posting this video for Asuka's international fanswho won't get to see it live. Asuka and The Miz may seem like an odd team. But Asuka is very versatile and she can do anything that needs to be done including comedy spots. The first thing I noticed is that Asuka is wearing the costume she wore when she first came to NXT. I don't know why but she changes her costume all the time. Carmella and Big E did a video where Carmella said she would give Asuka her first L, meaning loss. So they gave her a big L. At first Asuka looked pleased. Then she tore it up and threw it at Carmella. Carmella tagged out immediately. The Miz and Asuka do a comedy spot with kicks. The Miz and Big E have an extended segment. Carmella didn't want to tag in. But Big E got in trouble so she had no choice. The fans were chanting for Asuka anyway. Then Carmella hit a superkick on Asuka. But she wastes time and then she slaps Asuka. She shouldn't have done that. Asuka fires up and ends things with her armbar. Asuka and The Miz will face Sasha Banks and Finn Balor in the next round. They are interviewed. They are doing bits where Asuka speaks Japanese and The Miz pretends to know what she's saying. Believe me, her English is better than his Japanese. I thought they worked well together. The Miz is a smart guy and he wants to give the rub to Asuka. Enjoy the video.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Unknown Mortal Orchestra

Artist:Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Song:Swim & Sleep (Like A Shark)
Album:II





Unknown Mortal Orchestra (UMO) is an indie band that came about by accident out of the ashes of another band. Group leader Ruban Nielson was going to quit the music business. He was born in New Zealand but he lives in Portland, OR. Along with his brother Kody he led the punk band The Mint Chicks from 2001-2009. They released three albums. But Ruban was tired of the band. He was going to quit the music business to be an illustrator at a film production company. But he got the itch to record and he posted the song Ffunny Ffriends anonymously on Bandcamp. When the song got positive feedback along with media coverage from Pitchfork, Nielson signed with Fat Possum Records and called himself Unknown Mortal Orchestra. The 2011 debut CD was actually a solo album. When the album did well, Nielson turned UMO into a real band. For the 2013 CD II, he signed with Jagjaguwar. The recordings are still mostly the Nielson brothers but there is a touring band. Kody Nielson records as Opossum. The video for Swim & Sleep got some buzz because though it is animated, the content is not safe for work. UMO toured and they appeared on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. The buzz continued with the 2015 album Multi-Love. UMO toured and appeared on several late night shows. It looks like they have a new album coming. Unknown Mortal Orchestra just released the single American Guilt and they announced a world tour beginning in April. here's the video for Swim & Sleep (Like A Shark) by Unknown Mortal Orchestra.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Asuka, Sasha Banks, Bayley and Mickie James vs Nia Jax, Mandy Rose, Sonya Deville and Alicia Fox

Here's the match video of Asuka, Sasha Banks, Mickie James and Bayley vs Nia Jax, Mandy Rose, Sonys Deville and Alicia Fox from last night's episode of RAW. Of course they are going to do a match like this heading into the Royal Rumble. The match was nothing special but two commercial breaks didn't help much. Bayley and Mickie didn't even get in the match. It started with a brawl after Nia jumped Asuka from behind. And then after Asuka tagged Sasha in, Sasha got beat up until they all ended up on the floor and Sasha beat Alicia with the Banks Statement. But the post match was good with Asuka throwing her partners over the top rope. After all,  there are no partners in the Royal Rumble. So I liked that part and I look forward to that on Sunday. Enjoy the video!

Maryna Moroz vs Angela Hill added to Feb. 24 UFC show

Maryna Moroz was supposed to fight Jamie Moyle on last weekend's UFC 220. But last week Jamie pulled out due to injury. And rather than try and find a late replacement, the UFC rescheduled Maryna for UFC on FOX 28 Feb. 24 at the Amway Center in Orlando, FL. Her opponent will be Angela Hill. This was reported yesterday by Jay Reddick of the Orlando Sentinel. The competition level is similar. Angela was on TUF 18 and after going 1-2 in the UFC, she won four fights in Invicta and got back to the UFC. She is 1-2 since returning. I don't think she has improved. But I think the competition level of her Invicta opponents was very low. Angela is still a kickboxer with no ground game. Her overall record is 7-4 and she trains at Alliance in San Diego. I don't like Maryna either. She's a boxer from the Ukraine and she trains with her husband who is also a boxer. Her record is 8-2 and 3-2 in the UFC. I don't think she has looked good in her recent fights. Angela is aggressive so that may prevent Maryna from playing keep away as she has done in recent fights. I would be surprised if there was a finish. And a split decision wouldn't shock me. I can't say it will be a good fight.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-No Doubt

Artist:No Doubt
Song:Don't Speak
Album:Icon





Today No Doubt is seen as the launching point for lead singer Gwen Stefani's solo career. But they had their own success including the number one hit Don't Speak. No Doubt are from Anaheim, CA. John Spence and Eric Stefani met in 1985 and they decided to put a band together. At first Spence was lead singer and Eric's sister Gwen Stefani sang backup. Bassist Tony Kanal joined after seeing the band. He also started dating Gwen in secret because there was a band rule that no one was supposed to date her. Then Spence committed suicide in Dec. 1987. That's when Gwen took over lead vocals. No doubt started to gain a following in California. Guitarist Tom Dumont joined in 1988 and drummer Adrian Young joined in 1989. No Doubt's main influence was the British ska movement of the 80s especially Madness. They signed with Interscope in 1990 Their 1992 debut album No Doubt did so poorly that when No Doubt recorded a second album, Interscope refused to release it. So for the 1995 album Tragic Kingdom, they brought in Matthew Wilder to produce. Wilder had success with the 1985 single Break My Stride. Then he turned to producing The Pointer Sisters and Howard Hewett among others. Up to that point, Eric Stefani wrote most of No Doubt's songs. Wilder encouraged Gwen to write more. So she co-wrote most of the songs on Tragic Kingdom. Eric still wrote a few songs including Don't Speak. But he was upset over the loss of control and he would leave No Doubt to become an animator at The Simpsons. Meanwhile Don't Speak topped the charts and Tragic Kingdom sold over eight million copies worldwide. This would turn out to be No Doubt's most successful album. This budget comp has all their hits. The problem was there were legal problems with Interscope. But it got got resolved and No Doubt released a new album in 2000. They went on hiatus in 2003 and returned in 2012. Meanwhile Gwen launched her solo career in 2004. The band went on hiatus again in 2014 and at this point they are unlikely to get back together. There was talk in 2015 about recording a new album. But Gwen said in 2016 that wasn't happening. Here's the video for Don't Speak by No Doubt.

Monday, January 22, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Kelly Clarkson

Artist:Kelly Clarkson
Song:Since U Been Gone
Album:Greatest Hits Chapter One





Kelly Clarkson will forever be known as the season one winner of American Idol (AI). She has had a good run though she has faded since switching record companies. She's done better than most AI winners. She was born Apr. 24, 1982 in Fort Worth, TX. Her parents divorced when she was six and she grew up with her mom and her new husband. While in seventh grade, the school choir teacher heard Kelly singing in the hallway and had her audition for the choir. In high school, Kelly appeared in plenty of school shows. After graduation, she chose not to go to college and worked several jobs to finance a demo. She turned down contracts from Jive and Interscope and she was turned down by record companies for sounding too dark. She didn't want to be a bubblegum singer. Then she auditioned for AI and of course she won. She signed with Simon Fuller's 19 Recordings. Legendary music mogul Clive Davis personally supervised Kelly's recording career. The 2002 single A Moment Like This was released after she won AI and it topped the charts. The trick is keeping that momentum. The 2003 album Thankful was delayed a couple of times due to Kelly's schedule and a couple of last minute changes. The single Miss Independent reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and the album was certified 2XPlatinum. It was a disappointment. Then Kelly fired Fuller for The Firm. She said she wanted a harder rock sound which led to conflict with Davis. for the 2004 album Breakaway, Kelly co-wrote six songs and it had a harder sound. It was certified 6XPlatinum. Since U Been Gone reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. It's still one of her biggest hits. The song was written and produced by Max Martin and Dr. Luke. They wrote it for Pink but she turned it down. Davis convinced them to give it to Kelly and she recorded it at Martin's studio in Sweden. Breakaway is out of print but this budget comp has all of Kelly's hits. Kelly took over production for the 2007 album My December. She worked with her band instead of outside producers. Davis didn't like the album and it didn't sell because RCA refused to promote it. For the 2009 album All I Ever Wanted, Kelly compromised and used outside producers. Her sales rebounded and the single My Life Would Suck Without You topped the charts. This continued with the 2011 album and single Stronger. After two more albums, she left RCA for Atlantic. The 2017 album Meaning Of Life hasn't done very well. Maybe touring will help. She was already fading at RCA. It's doubtful that she can get that magic back. Plus she has a family now. She may want to spend more time with them. But she had a good run and she was the first American Idol winner. Here's the video for Since U Been Gone by Kelly Clarkson.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-T.P.E.

Artist:T.P.E.
Song:Then Came You
Album:Kings Of Freestyle





Here's a dance hit popular in the Northeast that briefly crossed over to pop in 1991. Adam Marano is mainly a producer but he sings on Then Came You. T.P.E. stands for The Philadelphia Experiment. From what I could tell, T.P.E. is the first music Marano ever produced and then he went on to other things. The single Then Came You was a dance hit and it reached #91 on the Billboard Hot 100. So it obviously got more airplay than most dance tracks. Marano is the lead singer on the song. The background vocals are by Denine Latanzo who worked with Marano on other projects and recorded a couple of albums as Denine. The rap is by Ton-De-Jon. It looks to be his only appearance. Marano only recorded one album as T.P.E. for Micmac Records. The album is out of print but you can get Then Came You on this various artists budget comp. Marano went on to form Collage with Anthony Monteleone and they were around longer and therefore more successful. They recorded for Monteleone's label Viper 7. I don't know if he's still active. He was certainly a big part of the freestyle scene for a long time. Here's a video for Then Came You by T.P.E.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Green Day

Artist:Green Day
Song:When I Come Around
Album:Greatest Hits: God's Favorite Band





Green Day is one of the most durable bands from the 90s. They were a huge success with their 1994 album Dookie. After a dry period, they had renewed success with the 2004 album American Idiot. Lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong and bassist Mike Dirnt went to high school together in East Bay, CA. They formed the band Sweet Children with drummer John Kiffmeyer. Lookout Records owner Larry Livermore saw them and signed them in 1988. He suggested a name change to avoid confusion because there was a local band called Sweet Baby. They chose Green Day because they liked weed. They released a couple of EPs and then an album. Kiffmeyer left to attend college and he was replaced by Frank "Tre Cool" Wright. The 1991 album Kerplunk did well enough that major labels came calling. Green Day signed with Reprise Records and the 1994 album Dookie was produced by Rob Cavallo. The band liked his work with the indie band The Muffs. The album was a huge success. It sold twenty million copies worldwide. It was helped considerably when MTV put the videos for Longview, Basket Case and When I Come Around in heavy rotation. When I Come Around was the biggest chart hit as it reached #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. The three albums that followed didn't do nearly as well as Dookie probably because Cavallo and Green Day tried to do different types of music. But that's not usually what fans want. They want a repeat of Dookie. Green Day started recording a new album in 2003. When the masters were stolen, they decided to start over. This was after they considered disbanding because they weren't getting along. American Idiot was a huge success. It sold 14 million copies and Boulevard Of Broken Dreams became their biggest hit. And the album was turned into a Broadway show. Green Day continues to tour and record. This budget comp is a good intro to their music. And they were inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2015. Here's the video for When I Come Around by Green Day.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Rose Namajunas vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk added to Apr. 7 UFC show

The UFC announced at a press conference today that Rose Namajunas will defend her UFC Strawweight Championship against the former champ Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 223 Apr. 7 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY. I expected the rematch and I have known about this fight for a couple of weeks and I was waiting for an official confirmation. So we found out last month from Joanna's strength and conditioning coach Phil Daru that Joanna's nutritionists Perfecting Athletes botched her weight cut. She fired them. I assume she has hired a new nutritionist. Joanna is already training at American Top Team in Florida. It could be somebody that they recommend. I was asked if Perfecting Athletes is incompetent. Based on what Daru said, there may have been a control issue. A nutritionist is supposed to be part of the team and PA wanted to control everything. And choosing a nutritionist is hit and miss anyway because anyone can call himself a nutritionist. They aren't licensed. But it's become a cottage industry in the fight business. Who knows if they are competent? She had no problems with them before. So here's the thing. Joanna wants to prove that the loss was a fluke. And Rose wants to prove that it wasn't a fluke. That's what it boils down to. And if Joanna wins, I expect a rubber match. We all know what these fighters can do. I hope both are at their best so there are no doubts afterwards. It should be very interesting.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Bobby Ellis and the Desmond Miles Seven

Artist:Bobby Ellis and the Desmond Miles Seven
Song:Step Softly
Album:Rebel Music: A Reggae Anthology




In the 60s, trumpeter Bobby Ellis was a studio musician and arranger first for Studio One and then for Jamaican music pioneer Derrick Harriott. In the 70, he was a member of Burning Spear. He also recorded occasional instrumental singles like Step Softly in 1967. So he was an important figure in the development of Rocksteady. He was born July 2, 1932 in Kingston, Jamaica. He learned to play trumpet while attending Alpha Boys School. Many musicians trained there. Sax player "Deadley" Headley Bennett told Ellis that Studio One owner Coxsone Dodd was looking for a trumpet player. He was a member of the Studio One house band The Mighty Vikings which also included Headley and Desmond Miles. Derrick Harriott started Crystal Records in 1967 and Ellis and Miles became part of the house band. Step Softly was Ellis' first single in 1967. And of course he backed up Harriott as well. You can get Step Softly on this various artist comp that was first released in 1979 and released by Trojan on CD in 2002. In the 70s, Ellis was a member of the popular group Burning Spear for ten years. He also recorded with Tommy McCook and Bunny Wailer. The 70s was probably the prime of his career. Ellis continued studio work until his death from pneumonia on Oct. 18, 2016 at age 84. Jamaica gave the Order of Distinction to Bobby Ellis in 2014. Here's a video for Step Softly by Bobby Ellis and the Desmond Miles Seven.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Asuka vs Nia Jax

Here's the match video of Asuka vs Nia Jax from this week's episode of RAW. This was set up by Nia attacking Asuka last week. They had two TV matches on NXT. You should watch them because you will understand the formula Asuka wants to use with Nia. Nia beats the crap out of Asuka. Nia's undoing will be overconfidence. The only thing with this match is there was no finish which did not surprise me. I don't expect a finish until Wrestlemania. The only thing they have to do is get the belt off of Alexa Bliss. Asuka does a great job of making Nia look like a monster and then using her quickness and wits to beat her. Asuka's transition into an ankle lock that led to the finish is a good example of that. I also loved Asuka's facial expressions. I guarantee that Nia will have her best match ever vs Asuka at Wrestlemania. That is what they are building to. Enjoy the video.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Mike Reno and Ann Wilson

Artist:Mike Reno and Ann Wilson
Song:Almost Paradise
Album:Footloose: Original Soundtrack





Not only was the 1984 film Footloose very successful but the soundtrack was also very successful. It topped the Billboard Hot 200 and it was certified 6XPlatinum. There were two number one hits from the album and a third single that reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. That third single was Almost Paradise by Mike Reno and Ann Wilson. Reno is lead singer of Loverboy and Ann is lead singer of Heart. Both bands were successful at the time. The soundtrack was produced by Dean Pitchford and he also wrote all the songs with various co-writers. Pitchford started out on Broadway. He was in the 1975 musical Pippin and he also appeared in TV commercials. Then he got into songwriting. He wrote three songs for the 1980 film Fame with Michael Gore including the title song. Pitchford wrote the screenplay for Footloose based a news item about the end of an Oklahoma ban on dancing. Almost Paradise is the love theme for Footloose. Pitchford wrote it with Eric Carmen. The idea to pair up Mike Reno and Ann Wilson probably came from Columbia Records. Loverboy and Heart were both on the label at the time. It's the only time the two recorded together. My guess is they recorded their parts separately. These kind of one off duets are common on soundtracks. Both returned to their bands afterwards. Footloose is available as a budget CD. Loverboy and Heart are still together. Mike Reno has recorded occasionally for films and he released a solo album in 2002. Ann Wilson's sister Nancy used to be married to director Cameron Crowe. So she occasionally contributed to his films. She released a solo album in 2007. Here's the video for Almost Paradise by Mike Reno and Ann Wilson.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs Felice Herrig added to Apr. 7 UFC show

A few days ago, it was reported that Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs Felice Herrig has been added to UFC 223 Apr. 7 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY. Several matches for this show should be announced on tonight's episode of UFC Tonight. This is an important match for both fighters. Felice is trying to get into the title picture and Karolina is trying to stay in the title picture. Felice is from Schaumburg, IL. Her record is 14-6 and she trains with former UFC and Bellator fighter Jeff Curran. Felice is on a four fight winning streak. In Dec. she beat Cortney Casey by split decision. I didn't think she gave a very good performance in that match. Karolina is from Lodz, Poland. Her record is 11-2. Of course she's already had a title match which she lost. In her last fight, she beat Jodie Esquibel by unanimous decision. I don't like Karolina much because she's a points fighter. She's a striker with no power or ground game. I think she's highly ranked but overrated. If Felice can win in a dominant fashion, that vaults her into the title picture. I don't think a close fight does that as there are other contenders. It's rumored that Rose Namajunas will defend her UFC Strawweight Championship vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk on this show. That may be confirmed tonight too. After this fight, we may see the winner in a number one contender fight. So as I said, this is a big match.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Jim Stafford

Artist:Jim Stafford
Song:Wildwood Weed
Album:Jim Stafford





Wildwood Weed was one of two 1974 top ten hits for Jim Stafford. Stafford specialized in humorous novelty songs similar to Ray Stevens. He was born Jan. 16, 1944 in Eloise, FL. which is near Winter Haven. His dad taught him to play guitar. As a teen, he was in the band The Legends with country rock legend Gram Parsons and Kent "Lobo" Lavoie. Stafford moved to Nashville and worked on his songs and recorded demos while playing in bands. One day he ran into Lavoie who had just scored a big hit with You and Me and a Dog Named Boo. Stafford asked him to record a song he wrote called The Swamp Witch. Lavoie suggested that Stafford should record it himself. Stafford was reluctant because he didn't like his own singing voice. He got Stafford a deal with MGM Records. When The Swamp Witch was a top 40 hit, Stafford recorded a full album with Lavoie producing with Phil Gernhard. Gernhard was the man behind the 1967 hit Snoopy vs The Red Baron by The Royal Guardsmen. So the 1974 album Jim Stafford was all novelty songs. Spiders & Snakes which Stafford wrote with David Bellamy of The Bellamy Brothers reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. And then Wildwood Weed reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. That wasn't a new song. It was written by country comedian and radio personality Don Bowman. He had a few hits in the 60s. By the time Stafford recorded his 1975 album Not Just Another Pretty Foot, PolyGram closed MGM and moved Stafford to Polydor. He got lost in the shuffle over there. Stafford turned to TV. He had his own variety show in 1975 and he made many TV appearances. He also wrote songs for the Disney film The Fox and the Hound and the 1980 film Any Which Way You Can. He also hosted the TV shows Those Amazing Animals and Nashville On The Road. And he was a staff writer when The Smothers Brothers returned to TV. Stafford has had his own theater in Branson, MO since 1990. And he tours when he isn't appearing there. Here's Jim Stafford performing Wildwood Weed on Nashville Now.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Ray Peterson

Artist:Ray Peterson
Song:Tell Laura I Love Her
Album:The Wonder Of You: The Very Best Of Ray Peterson 1957-1962




Ray Peterson scored two top ten hits in 1960. Tell Laura I Love Her is the more memorable of the two because it's a death song. It still gets airplay on oldies radio. But I'm sure most younger fans know nothing about Peterson or the song. He was born Apr. 23, 1939 in Denton, TX. Peterson suffered from polio as a child. And while recovering in the hospital, he started performing for the other patients. Peterson has a four octave range. After recovering, Peterson moved to Los Angeles. His manager Stan Shulman got him a deal with RCA. When the single The Wonder Of You was a top 30 hit, RCA thought they might have something. So they brought in their top production team Hugo & Luigi to score Peterson a big hit. At the time, Mark Dinning's death song Teen Angel was a big hit. RCA wanted something similar. Veteran songwriter Jeff Barry wrote Tell Laura I Love Her about a rodeo. RCA asked him to rewrite the song to resemble Teen Angel. The record reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. Mission accomplished. The problem was Peterson and Shulman left RCA to start their own label Dunes Records. They brought in Phil Spector to produce a cover of the traditional song Corinna, Corinna. That reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100. That was Peterson's final big hit and Dunes closed in 1964. Peterson recorded an album for MGM in 1965. Then he moved to Nashville and tried to reinvent himself as a country artist. When that didn't work out, he became a baptist minister and he occasionally toured the oldies circuit. Peterson died on Jan. 25, 2005 at age 65. You can get his hits on this comp from Jasmine. Here's Ray Peterson performing Tell Laura I Love Her on Shindig! 1965.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-JJ Aldrich vs Danielle Taylor

Here's the match video of JJ Aldrich vs Danielle Taylor from last night's UFC show in St. Louis. This aired on the UFC Fight Pass prelims. Both fighters came to the UFC as late replacements. JJ Is an Invicta veteran. She trains with Rose Namajunas in Colorado. She's OK but nothing special. Danielle is a former King Of The Cage champ who supposedly has punching power. But she hasn't done that in the UFC. She has won a couple of fights with a keep away strategy. She does this because at five feet tall, she is always going to be at a height disadvantage. Fortunately, JJ was prepared for this and she basically outpunched Danielle for three rounds. By the third round, JJ was daring Danielle to engage with her. She wouldn't do it. She would not change her strategy even if it wasn't working. Of course JJ won by unanimous decision. And props to Rose, Trevor Wittman and the rest of her camp for having a plan to combat this keep away crap. I never thought it would work against a half decent fighter. So now Danielle has to figure out a new strategy. Some fans have suggested that maybe she should drop to Atomweight and fight for Invicta. But all of Danielle's fights have been at Strawweight. She's very muscular so I don't know if she could make Atomweight. Her strategy was doomed to fail because it's designed to win close decisions. Well, that cuts both ways. Check out the fight for yourself.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Jessica Eye vs Kalindra Faria

Here's the match video of Jessica Eye vs Kalindra Faria from last night's UFC show in St. Louis. This aired on the UFC Fight Pass prelims. The big thing here is that Jessica gets to fight at Flyweight which was her weight class before she came to the UFC. She was supposed to fight Paige VanZant a few months ago. But Paige got injured and then when the UFC tried to rebook the fight for this show, Paige refused to do it. So Jessica was pissed. Both fighters were on this show fighting other fighters. The good news for Jessica is that Kalindra may be the most inept fighter I have ever seen. She came to the UFC as a late replacement and lost. I had seen her before and she's terrible. But in the first round, she knocked Jessica loopy with a head kick. All she had to do was finish and I'd take all that ineptitude stuff back. But she couldn't finish and they engaged in a pointless leglock battle that allowed Jessica to recover. I scored round one 10-9 for Kalindra. But she already blew a win. Jessica controlled Kalindra on the ground in round two. This is something new for her. So she knows how to execute a takedown but she doesn't know what to do after the takedown. She ended up sitting on Kalindra for a while. I can't say why ref Dan Miragliotta didn't break it up. Oh, that's right. He is also inept. In the end, Jessica won by split decision. And then after the fight, she bragged about winning with empty takedowns. So we had two fighters, a ref and three judges who are all inept. What more can I say? Check out the fight for yourself.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Irene Aldana vs Talita Bernardo

Here's the match video of Irene Aldana vs Talita Bernardo from last night's UFC show in St. Louis. Irene is a Mexican who is in the UFC because her teammate Alexa Grasso is a highly touted prospect. These kind of package deals are more common than you think. Is Artem Lobov any good? No, he's Conor McGregor's buddy. This is the same thing. I didn't like her in Invicta either. She's a limited striker with no ground skills. She lost her first two UFC fights to fighters she could have beaten. So she needs a win. The good news is her opponent is worse than her. Talita is a Brazilian. She came to the UFC as a late replacement and lost to Marion Reneau. She looked terrible. She didn't look any better in this fight. All she did was make some think that Irene is a good fighter. I just don't think she can beat anyone good. Check the fight out for yourself.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Jessica-Rose Clark vs Paige VanZant

Here's the match video of Jessica-Rose "Jessy Jess" Clark vs Paige VanZant from last night's UFC show in St. Louis. There were four women's matches on last night's show. While that may seem like a good thing to the insufferable women's MMA fanboys, all four matches were terrible. They had in common varying degrees of ineptitude. Not one match was entertaining. The biggest problem is fighters brought in as late replacements don't belong in the UFC. So it's not really a women's MMA problem but a general problem with the UFC roster. I guess the UFC needs to spread these out better. Putting four poor women's fights on one show does no one any favors. This fight was on the main card. Paige is popular with casual fans but she's not a good fighter. She recently moved to Gracie Barra in Portland but based on this fight, it hasn't helped her. Jessy Jess is an Aussie who was in Invicta. She now trains at Syndicate in Las Vegas. She came to the UFC as a late replacement and won over Bec Rawlings. Also, her house was robbed after she left for St. Louis. And the scumbag killed her cat. That had to be on her mind. Considering that, she did OK. As for Paige, she still seems to be more interested in doing flashy switch kicks and spinning back fists. And then she broke her forearm on a spinning back fist. Then she does one of those stupid headlock takedowns and Jessy Jess got top position. She didn't do much with it and ref Mario Yamasaki let it go on. So that helped Jessy Jess a lot. With Paige's arm broken, the rest of the fight was a foregone conclusion. Jessy Jess won by unanimous decision. Paige still makes beginner mistakes that she shouldn't make anymore. We need to see improvement and we sure didn't see it last night. Check out the video for yourself.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Brenda K. Starr

Artist:Brenda K. Starr
Song:I Still Believe
Album:Lowrider Oldies: Cruisin Chrome Series Vol. 8




Brenda K. Starr had her biggest success with the 1988 hit I Still Believe. She later had success in the Latin market. She was born Brenda Joy Kaplan Oct. 15, 1966 in New York City. Her father was Harvey Kaye of the 60s group Spiral Starecase and her mother was Puerto Rican. Harry Belafonte got her a role as a singer in the 1984 film Beat Street. That appearance got her a record deal with Atlantic's Mirage label and producer Arthur Baker (Afrika Bambaataa). The 1985 album I Want Your Love and the single Pickin' Up Pieces had success on the dance charts. But she moved to MCA for the 1987 album Brenda K. Starr and producer Eumir Deodato. He is a Brazilian musician who had success in the 70s with his disco version of Also Spach Zarathustra. By the 80s he was working more as a producer with acts like Kool & The Gang and One Way. He produced I Still Believe and it reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was written by Rock Mafia's Antonina Armato when she was 16 years old. The sax solo is by Bob Malach of the Bob Mintzer Big Band. You may have heard Mariah Carey's cover of I Still Believe. She was a backup singer on the original. And Brenda got Mariah a record deal when she gave Mariah's demo to producer Tommy Mottola. Bet you didn't know that. Brenda recorded her 1990 album By Heart on Epic. Then she turned to the Latin market and she has had success there. The 1987 album Brenda K. Starr is out of print. The only Brenda K. Starr comp available is aimed at the Latin market. So I suggest this various artists comp from Thump Records which is part of their Lowrider Oldies series. Brenda has been a DJ at WNEW in New York. Her daughter Gianna Isabella appeared on the 2016 season of American Idol. Brenda still performs and releases occasional singles through her Facebook page. Here's the video for I Still Believe by Brenda K. Starr.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Not much sizzle on Invicta FC 27

Invicta had their latest show last night in Kansas City. Typically, the main card was weak. The big news coming out of this show wasn't even in the cage. They announced that UFC Bantamweight Champion Amanda Nunes will take a role in matchmaking and talent development. My initial reaction to this is it is window dressing designed to deflect criticism of Invicta's matchmaking. The main problem with Invicta's matchmaking is they can't seem to put together strong main cards. Overrating fighters and putting unproven fighters on the main card are the big problems. I don't know if Amanda can force Invicta to be honest with themselves. I suppose time will tell. Last night's show was an example of Invicta's drawbacks. All of their titles are currently vacant. But they couldn't put together a title match for last night's show. So instead the main event had former Strikeforce champ Sarah Kaufman vs former Cage Warriors champ Pannie Kianzad. Sarah is coming off a dreadful UFC stint. We hadn't seen Pannie for a while. She hasn't done well in Invicta. During fight week, Sarah said this was her first step to a UFC return. I don't see it. There was a time that Sarah was a dominant fighter who finished fights. She hasn't done that for a few years and she didn't do it last night. Oh, she won the fight. But it's not the kind of win she needs to get back to the UFC. Until she shows me otherwise, I don't believe she can be a dominant fighter anymore. The co-main was an example of Invicta's bad habit of booking predictable and needless mismatches in the main card. Veteran Flyweight Vanessa Porto won over Mariana Morais by first round rear naked choke. Mariana never should have been on the main card or in Invicta. It's flawed thinking. Mismatches don't do Vanessa any favors. And I should point out that every time Vanessa has got a title shot, she has come up short. So this mismatch was booked to pump up an overrated fighter. That is poor matchmaking. In a Strawweight bout, Sharon Jacobson won by unanimous decision over Ashley Nichols. It was an OK fight but it's a prelim fight. It didn't belong on the main card. In an Atomweight bout, Ashley Cummins won by unanimous decision over Stephanie Alba. This was on the main card because Ashley is from St. Louis. But Stephanie, who used to fight for Combate Americas, wasn't competitive. Did they book her just because she was on TV? So out of four main card matches, two were obvious and predictable mismatches. That's a problem. On the prelims, Brogan Sanchez beat Cheri Muraski by split decision. I thought Cheri won the fight but I wasn't impressed with either of them. In a Featherweight bout, Felicia Spencer beat Akeela Al-Hameed by unanimous decision. I like what I have seen from Felicia so far. It's time to move her up the card. Akeela was making her pro debut. She was outclassed. In a Strawweight bout, Mallory Martin beat Tiffany Masters by second round TKO. I don't like either fighter and I didn't see anything to change my tune. In an Atomweight bout, Thai kickboxing whiz Loma Lookboonmee won by unanimous decision over Melissa Wang. Loma was making her MMA debut and she's getting a lot of praise for her performance. Obviously her standup skills are great. But against a fighter like this, she needed to finish. And her inability to finish especially with a first round rear naked choke indicates that she needs work on the fine points of MMA. She also was docked a point for a knee to the head of a downed opponent. That lack of discipline could cause her problems with better fighters. So I like her but she's not a finished product. She's only 21 so there is plenty of time for development. It shows why many Thai fighters won't do MMA. The nuances of MMA can be difficult to learn and it may not be worth the effort. And in the opening Strawweight bout, Helen Peralta beat Jade Ripley by first round TKO. It's hard to tell if Helen is any good because Jade was terrible. She was bouncing around and constantly changing her stance. She didn't know what she was doing. What did they see in her? Here's hoping for better matchmaking next time.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Happenings

Artist:The Happenings
Song:I Got Rhythm
Album:The Happenings/Psycle





This cover of I Got Rhythm was one of two top five hits for The Happenings. They started out in 1961 in Paterson, NJ as The Four Grads. Bob Miranda was the lead singer. Other members were David Libert, Tom Giuilano and Ralph DeVito. They were a doo wop group but to be successful in the mid-60s they had to update their sound. So they went to The Tokens and signed with their BT Puppy label. The Happenings vocal sound was still doo wop. But the arrangements, the group's look and even the name The Happenings reflected current trends. The Happenings usually recorded covers of hit songs. Miranda says this was deliberate. They wanted to take proven hits and put their spin on them. This paid off in 1966 when See You In September reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. That was a hit for The Tempos in 1959. That was on their debut album The Happenings. Their cover of the Gershwin standard I Got Rhythm also reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967. It was from the album Psycle. They also had top 20 hits with covers of Go Away Little Girl and My Mammy. This Collectables CD has both albums. Libert and DeVito left The Happenings in 1968. Libert has had a long career as a manager of George Clinton and others. The Happenings recorded the 1969 album Piece Of Mind for Jubilee Records. Strangely enough, most of the songs were written by Miranda and Libert and they produced the album. I don't know why they deviated from the covers formula. But the album was unsuccessful. And after a couple more singles, The Happenings disbanded in 1972. Miranda revived The Happenings in the 90s and they tour the nostalgia circuit today. Here's The Happenings performing I Got Rhythm on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour 1967.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Sarah Vaughan

Artist:Sarah Vaughan w/Dizzy Gillespie
Song:Lover Man
Album:Interlude 1944-1947





Here is a recording from the early days of bebop featuring two jazz legends before they became famous. Sarah Vaughan met Dizzy Gillespie when Billy Eckstine brought her into the Earl Hines band in 1943. Hines always claimed that he discovered Sarah. But it is believed that Eckstine heard her sing in a New York club. Eckstine left the Hines band and took Gillespie and Charlie Parker with him. The Eckstine band would turn out to be a bebop incubator and just about every musician who would become famous went through that band. Then Sarah joined the Eckstine band in 1944. Her first recordings were with Eckstine. Sarah left to go solo late in 1944. And then Gillespie left to go solo. All the musicians hung around The Braddock Grill next door to The Apollo. Gillespie had a recording session coming up for Guild Records. The band was Charlie Parker on alto sax, Al Haig on piano, Curly Russell on bass and Sid Catlett on drums. Sarah sang on Lover Man, a song written for Billie Holiday. Gillespie was so pleased with Sarah's performance he brought her back to record with a larger band. You can get all these recordings on this budget CD from Naxos Jazz Legends. It also has recordings Sarah made with other bands like John Kirby, Teddy Wilson and others. There is one recording on this CD with trumpeter George Treadwell and he became Sarah's manager. He got her a contract with Columbia in 1949 and from there Sarah became one of the biggest stars of the 50s. But it all started with this recording of Lover Man with Dizzy Gillespie. Here's Sarah Vaughan with Dizzy Gillespie performing Lover Man on Dizzy Gillespie's Bebop Reunion 1976.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Atomweight Championship match to main event Mar. 10 DEEP JEWELS show

Yesterday DEEP JEWELS added several matches to their Mar. 10 Shinjuku FACE show. The main event will have Mina Kurobe defending her DEEP JEWELS Atomweight championship against Sarami who earned the title shot last month. This match does nothing for me. It just shows how low the DEEP JEWELS talent level is. That's the only reason Kurobe is in a main event. Never mind that she has the belt. When she has fought someone decent like Ham Seo Hee last June, she has lost. And she is 40 years old. Sarami has been around for a few years and she's 27 years old with an 11-9 record. So she has had mixed results at best. She beat Tomo Maesawa, another mediocre fighter, to earn this title shot. Her big flaw is inconsistency. At one time they were high on her and then she lost a bunch of fights including one to Kurobe. So that's the problem. You have midcard talent in a main event championship fight. Blah! In a Flyweight bout, Kana Watanabe will face Yukari Nabe. Kana is 29 years old. She won her first two fights including a win over Shizuka Sugiyama on the recent RIZIN show. Her background is judo. She had some amateur success. She is also attractive which goes a long way in Japan. The problem with her is there isn't much competition for her in Japan. Most fighters these days are Atomweight. Yukari is 30 years old from Toyama. She made her DEEP JEWELS debut in 2016 after competing in amateur judo and Shooto. Her record is 3-2. My concern is Kana will stagnate fighting low level competition as it seems to have happened to King REINA. And REINA will be on this show too. In an Atomweight bout, Hikaru Aono will face Anna Kiriyama. These two were supposed to fight in December but Anna got injured. This will be Anna's pro debut. Her training is in karate. Hikaru's training is in wrestling which she did in college. She lost in December so her record is 0-1-1. In a Flyweight bout, Amiba will face Hikari. Amiba is 30 years old. She trains at AACC and her record is 8-5. The big thing is she normally fights at Strawweight. Hikari is from Niigata. Her background is judo. She won the 2017 All Japan Shooto Amateur Championships. But she lost her December pro debut to Kana Watanabe. So I guess they are looking for Amiba to win and then get fed to Kana. In an Atomweight bout, we have idol Nanaka Kawamura making her pro debut against Mizuki Furuse. Nanaka is 22 years old. She is from the idol group Masked Women. Unlike her December match, this match will be full MMA rules. DEEP JEWELS has big plans for Nanaka if she's good because she brings a fanbase with her. Mainstream stardom in Japan is a possibility. Mizuki is a 16 year old high school student. Her record is 1-3. Two of her losses were by TKO. Her amateur experience is junior high judo. I don't think she has enough experience to be a pro fighter. But they aren't looking for this fight to be competitive. I expect more fights to be announced for this show.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Salt-N-Pepa

Artist:Salt-N-Pepa f/En Vogue
Song:Whatta Man
Album:20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection: The Best Of Salt-N-Pepa




Salt-N-Pepa were a female rap trio that came along at a time when there weren't many women rapping. So they were pioneers of hip hop and rap. Whatta Man was their biggest hit at the end of their run in 1993. Cheryl "Salt" James and Sandra "Pepa" Denton met while they were studying nursing at Queensborough Community College in Queens, NY. They also worked together at Sears. A co-worker Hurby "Luv Bug" Azor was studying record production and he asked them to record with him as a class project. Along with DJ LaToya Hanson, they called themselves Super Nature. The 1985 single The Showstoppa was a big enough hit that Next Plateau Records signed them to a record deal. By this time, Hanson left and was replaced by Deidra "Spinderella" Roper and the group name was changed to Salt-N-Pepa. Azor was their producer and manager. He was dating Cheryl at the time. Push It in 1987 and Let's Talk About Sex in 1991 were top 20 pop hits. So they were doing OK but for the 1993 album Very Necessary, They left Next Plateau for London Records. Shoop reached #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Whatta Man reached #3. Whatta Man is based on the 1968 Lynda Lyndell hit What A Man and it features En Vogue who were very popular at the time. It was first released on the 1993 En Vogue EP Runaway Love but it wasn't released as a single. The Salt-N-Pepa version was remixed by Azor to bring the rappers into the forefront. You can get all of Salt-N-Pepa's hits on this budget comp. By this time, Cheryl and Azor had split up and Salt-N-Pepa sued him for back royalties. As a result, they didn't release another album until 1997 on a new label. It did OK but not as well as previous albums. Salt-N-Pepa disbanded in 2002 when Cheryl quit the music business. Sandra was already acting in films and TV. They reformed for the 2007 vh1 reality show The Salt-N-Pepa show. They haven't recorded anything new but they still tour as part of the I Love The 90s concert series. Here's the video for Whatta Man by Salt-N-Pepa featuring En Vogue.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Melba Liston

Artist:Melba Liston w/The Quincy Jones Big Band
Song:My Reverie
Album:Lausanne 1960




Though trombonist Melba Liston rarely recorded as a leader, she was a major contributor to jazz as an arranger with among others Dizzy Gillespie, Quincy Jones and Randy Weston. And as you will see in this video, she could play. She was born Jan. 13, 1926 in Kansas City, MO. Her mom bought her a trombone at age 7. Her family moved to Los Angeles and she was classmates with Dexter Gordon. She joined Gerald Wilson's big band in 1943 and got into bebop with Gordon and Gillespie. In the 50s, she came off the road and started teaching. She still played local clubs and sessions. My Reverie is based on the Claude Debussy classical piece Reverie. Larry Clinton added lyrics and scored a hit with it in 1938. Today it's a jazz standard. Melba wrote an arrangement of Reverie for the 1956 Dizzy Gillespie album World Statesman. A couple of years later while touring Europe with her own band, Quincy Jones hired her for his band. He was living in Europe at the time. But he was about to become an executive at Mercury Records. The video clip is from a 1960 concert in Lausanne, Switzerland. The concert is out of print on DVD but it is available on CD. Melba started arranging for Randy Weston and she worked for him for 40 years. She was largely responsible for his use of African rhythms. She also worked with Milt Jackson, Clark Terry, Johnny Griffin and Ray Charles. In 1973, Melba moved to Jamaica and opened a music school. She returned to the US in 1979. A 1985 stroke left Melba unable to play the trombone. But she continued to write arrangements until her death on Apr. 23, 1999 at 73. For more on Melba Liston, check out the documentary Girls In The Band which you can stream for free on Kanopy if you have a library card. I watched it a couple of weeks ago. Here's Melba Liston with The Quincy Jones Big Band performing My Reverie in Lausanne, Switzerland May 20, 1960.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Black Eyed Peas

Artist:The Black Eyed Peas
Song:I Gotta Feeling
Album:The E.N.D.





The Black Eyed Peas had one of the best runs in recent memory. I Gotta Feeling was a huge hit in 2009. Right now they are coming back from a long hiatus. We'll see if they can return successfully. William "will.i.am" Adams and Allan "apl.de.ap" Pineda were in eighth grade in a Los Angeles high school in 1988 when they started rapping with the breakdance group Tribal Nation. When that split up, they formed the trio Atban Klann with Dante Santiago. They recorded an album for Eazy-E's Ruthless Records. But Eazy-E died in 1995 and the album was never released. The group name was changed to The Black Eyed Peas. Santiago was replaced by Jaime "Taboo" Gomez and singer Kim Hill was brought in. They signed with Interscope and released the 1998 album Behind The Front. A second singer Sierra Swan was brought in. But both singers left in 2000. Kim signed a solo deal with Interscope. Stacy "Fergie" Ferguson joined for the 2003 album Elephunk. She was in the group Wild Orchid. She brought a mainstream pop sound to The Black Eyed Peas. Also, Justin Timberlake appeared on their first top ten hit Where Is The Love?. Elephunk was certified 2XPlatinum. The 2005 album Monkey Business was certified 3XPlatinum. Don't Phunk With My Heart and My Humps were top five hits. After touring, they took a break. In the meantime, Fergie released a successful solo album. The 2009 album The E.N.D. turned out to be their most successful album. Boom Boom Pow was their first number one hit and it was immediately followed by I Gotta Feeling. So The Black Eyed Peas topped the charts for the whole summer. They went on hiatus after the 2010 album The Beginning. Adams released a solo album in 2013. The Black Eyed Peas released a new single yesterday with a new album coming. The big thing is Fergie has just released a solo album. So she is not on the new Black Eyed Peas album. They have not had success without her. Also, no matter how big a group gets, music fans have very short memories. We'll see if The Black Eyed Peas can be successful again. I have my doubts. Here's the video for I Gotta Feeling by The Black Eyed Peas.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Connie

Artist:Connie
Song:Funky Little Beat
Album:The Best Of Connie: Funky Little Beat





Consuelo Piriz had brief success with the 1985 club hit Funky Little Beat. Today it is considered to be a big influence on what became known as Freestyle dance music. Connie was born July 30, 1964 in Miami. Her father was from Cuba and her mother was from Ecuador. Her big break came when she met dance music pioneer Henry Stone. Stone owned TK Records and was the man behind Betty Wright, George McCrae and KC & The Sunshine Band. He sold TK to Roulette Records and started Sunnyview Records in 1982. He signed Connie and released the album Connie in 1986. Funky Little Beat caught on in dance clubs. It did chart in Hip Hop and R&B but it didn't cross over to pop. Stone wrote the song with his wife and producer Amos Larkins II. Larkins was hired as a Sunnyview house producer. Connie was the one artist he had success with. Larkins quit the music business in 1987. But he returned in the 90s and he has worked with Connie in recent years. She left the music business to start a family and returned with the 1995 album No Tears. This Best Of Connie CD is the 1986 album Connie with three bonus remixes of Funky Little Beat. Even the cover is the same as the original album. Connie still performs. She does these Best Of Freestyle shows with other similar acts from the past. Here's the video for Funky Little Beat by Connie.