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11.09.2004

hey man, is that freedom rock?

I just noticed that the version of WinAmp that I use (ver. 5.05) includes a list of links to Internet Radio stations. Browsing through it I found Technicolor Web Of Sound, which streams kick-ass late 60s psychedelia. From very obscure (The Neighb'rhood Childr'n, Embryo Infinity Rebirth (really dug their tune, Walls))to more recognizable stuff (just heard "Life's a Long Song" by Jethro Tull, much to my surprise and delight, and some Beatles and Captain Beefheart.) The quality's not the best (56KBPs)

Of course this kind of thing can lead to chases. I'm now fascinated by a band called Pearls Before Swine, and their founder/main-dude Tom Rapp. I just heard a track called The Surrealist Waltz, and tracked down info. on the band on Allmusic.com*. Seems that they recorded some interesting psychedelic albums starting in the late 60s through the early 70s. Tom Rapp then recorded a couple of solo albums before leaving the business and eventually becoming a civil rights lawyer. Over twenty years later he up and jumped back into performing and recording (whether or not he entirely left in between I don't know, but he wasn't doing anything publically available.) In 1999 he released an album called A Journal of the Plague Year, which I'd love to hear. Here's a bit from Allmusic about one of the tracks:

Possibly the most vibrant statement on Rapp's return is the ten-minute, three-part epic "Shoebox Symphony," which was adapted from a tape found in a shoebox that was left over from his days with Pearls Before Swine. The piece passes through straightforward folk-rock to frightening psychedelic elements before it is seemingly spliced to an old children's folk song.

(There's a lot more information at this Pearls Before Swine fan page.)

Another groovy thing about the station: they've got occasional station-breaks which consist of commercials and interviews from the time this stuff was popular. A minute ago I heard an interview with a couple of the Monkees, and before that there was a commercial for Hertz Rental Cars which sounded pretty damned dated. Whoever put this thing together put a lot of work into it.

I'd love to find some more of these genre/period specific stations. Probably there couldn't be many that I'd find more entertaining than this one, but there's something cool just about the fact of being able to listen to a collection of stuff that's so tied to a particular time and culture. Subculture. Whatever. Damn hippies.

I also enjoyed a track by The Left Banke, and am starting a similar bout of information gathering on these guys, though I'll spare the details. This stuff makes me severely miss the early days of file-sharing on Napster and Kazaa, when I'd be able to track down some more material to listen to and get a more solid picture of what these artists sound like**

* - Allmusic's new setup, requiring users to login, perform various rituals (only a small amount of blood is involved,) and then finally to volunteer in something called Uncle Tom's Bee Hunting Brigade, doesn't allow hot-linking, otherwise I'd link directly to the write-up in question.

** - Allmusic's "listen" links are brief and usually don't work for me on my antiquated get-up here, though they're at least a semi-decent excuse for this horrible new big-brother situation the site's hooked up.

Final Note: As I was finishing up my previous entry, which I was doing at the exact same time that I was creating this one, with some minor chronoffset, I was hearing a song by the 13th Floor Elevators. Right when I was writing about elevators. IT'S FUCKING CRAZY, AIN'T IT! And now there's some song called Buffalo Billycan by Apple, and it fucking rocks. Someone needs to send me a CD with a bunch of this shit on it. Send it general delivery to... wherever you want. I imagine I'll find it.

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