Boz Scaggs – JoJo

My relationship with Mr. Scaggs has more to do with his name than with his music. The first time the words “Boz” and “Scaggs” touched my ears I knew I would remember this name forever. During any night out on the town or at any bar trivia, you’ll hear me yelling out this gentleman’s name for almost every answer to anything – it’s just so much fun!!! Now for his actual music, he’s a smooth blend of easy listening, jazz, and pop . This song should be a great introduction to his work!

Tower of Power – Diggin’ On James Brown

If you study music or dabble in the realm of funk, you’ve maybe heard about something called ‘the pocket’. This isn’t where you keep extra guitar picks or bass strings, but rather a concept for where exactly on the beat a musician will play or how much space they leave. I think if you listen to this song you’ll understand the idea. This song grooves super hard and is great for getting energized on a early morning.

Rainbow – Stargazer

Most people have at least heard the name Dio if they haven’t heard his music. He’s a moderately flamboyant vocalist and front man. I know just about everybody in the world has heard the work of Ritchie Blackmore, as he’s the guitarist for Deep Purple. Combine the two and you get a band that delivers epic rock songs that journey through a mystical world. I like the orchestral elements of this song and I especially enjoy Ritchie’s guitar solo. It reminds me a little of Led Zeppelins “Kashmir”.

Yonder Mountain String Band – Dancing in the Moonlight

Originally released by King Harvest in 1973 the song, “Dancing in the Moonlight”, has been covered time and time again. It was well received in it’s initial release but regained momentum in 2000 when another band was given a platinum record for their version of it. I really enjoy his particular cover because of all different instruments float in and out creating great textures throughout the piece.

Jeremy Jouve – Trez Piezas Espanolas II. Passacaglia

This has always been one of my favorite classical guitar pieces and was originally written by Joaquin Rodrigo in 1954. The term passacaglia is Italian and is used to describe a piece where the bass line stays pretty much the same throughout. The piece opens with the statement of the line with minimal accompaniment, grows to a tense climax, and then eases you out of it with a short fugue. It’s best to hear the entire 3 works in context but if you only hear one, this should be it.

Sigur Ros – Agaetis byrjun

This ambient, alternative, indie band is hitting our ears all the way from Iceland. Formed in 1994 the band has undergone several line up changes but their sound has remained consistent. Spacey and relaxed, this is the type of music to put on when doing a puzzle, painting, or anything relatively passive.

Mike Love – Permanent Holiday

Here’s the second week in a row where we have a piece that was shared with my by our very own drum instructor Vince! The studio version of this song is thoroughly enjoyable, but the real treat in this song is Mike’s use of his loop station during the middle of the song which can be enjoyed a little more from their YouTube video. He layers pieces of a phrase together and harmonizes it to keep it growing throughout the entire section. Check it out!

Duane Allman – Mean Old World

I hope you recognize this last name and make the connection to The Allman Brothers. Duane Allman is one the greatest slide guitarists to have ever lived. His sound extremely genuine and authentic, never too much or too little. Growing up in the south during the mid nineteen hundreds was certainly character building. Passing away at the extremely early age of 24 this song reflects a completely appropriate sentiment of how it’s a “Mean Old World”.

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