Dramarama- Anything, Anything

Dramarama is a Los Angeles based alternative rock band, that started in New jersey in 1982. They’re known for their hit, “Anything, Anything” which became a number-one hit on the popular Los Angeles radio station KROQ-FM. This song was featured in the movie, “Nightmare on elm street 4: The Dream Master”, which sort of threw it into the public eye. To this day, youngsters still seem to call in and request this song on KROQ-FM.

Unfortunately, this band is severely underrated in my opinion. They have some of the best music I’ve heard compiled in their album collection, “The Best of Dramarama: The 18 Big Ones”. Songs such as, “Haven’t Got a Clue, 7 Minutes (More or Less), & Incredible”,which are all such unbelievable songs, but almost completely unheard of in the music world. It saddens me that it is this way, but I feel a great deal of joy, in the ability to honor them in this post.

Also, you can check out the video below. This is a cover of the song from one of my favorite female rockers that inspired me to do what i do. She executed this song perfectly…

Led Zeppelin- Tangerine

It is music like this that seems to touch my soul in every single and molecular way.
Its graceful sentiment on reminiscing old times is executed perfectly, which only a band like Led Zeppelin can master.
This was one of the last songs Jimmy Page, guitarist for the band, got to write without any input from lead singer, Robert Plant.

Plant introduced this song at a concert by saying, “This song is for our families and friends and people we’ve been close to. It’s a song of love at its most innocent stages.”

This song portrays the feelings we all experience at times, thinking about the past. It leaves us in a state of peaceful serenity, thinking about how blessed we are to have the happy memories. However; the song also strongly imposes feelings of melancholy, which leave us wondering if both sides will always remember the good old times.

* Side Note: (Led Zeppelin is probably the greatest band ever)

Fleetwood Mac- Landslide

This is still one of my favorite songs till this day, and holds a world full of meaning for me.

This song was written by Stevie Nicks from “Fleetwood Mac”. The song sold over a million copies in the United States and reached No. 51 on  the Billboard’s Hot 100 list. Nicks wrote the song while in Colorado. She was going through a tough time, and randomly  looked out the window and saw a stunning view of the rocky mountains. At the time, she was dropped by a major label and was debating if she should go back to school or continue on with her band.

A landslide can be defined as a geological phenomenon which includes a wide range of ground movement, such as rockfalls, deep failure of slopes and shallow debris flows, which can occur in offshore, coastal and onshore environments. Although the action of gravity is the primary driving force for a landslide to occur, there are other contributing factors affecting the original slope stability.

This song means a great deal to me. I play it whenever a significant event happens in my life.

It’s meaning can be applied in so many aspects about one’s life. This song is about change and revelations . It could refer to building a life based upon someone else or something else, and then being afraid to change when it doesn’t pan out. But we get older, and hopefully, we get wiser. But most importantly, we accept the daunting fact that things constantly change. It is inevitable.

The Verve – Lucky Man

Have you ever heard the saying, “No one will love you, until you learn to love yourself”?

“Lucky Man” was released in 1997, on The Verve’s Urban Hymns album, which is somewhat underrated in my opinion. The simplicity, truth and pure beauty of this song is magnificent.

This is definitely the song to turn to when in doubt of yourself. This song  grounds us, and reminds us to be completely true to ourselves. A song written such mature nature, can only be written when one comes to a later point in their life, and understands the liberation of  learning to embrace and love oneself.

It is my most far-fetched hope for the world, that we all embrace learn to these lyrics and; stand naked , smile with no disgrace, with who you are….

The White Stripes- Jolene

So I might have a certain indiscretion about discussing Jack White.  He is perfection in every single and molecular way .

“Jolene” is the original song of Dolly Parton, who really laid her heart out with this song, which is  remarkable in itself. She released this song in in 1974, which  Bob Ferguson produced. The  song was ranked # 219 On Rolling Stone’s top 500 songs of all time.

Parton, got the idea for this song from a red headed bank teller kept flirting with her Parton’s new husband. After finding out the woman’s name, she told her that this was a pretty name and that she would write a song about it.

I chose to post the white stripes version because many seem to agree that,  Jack White of The White Stripes, does a better job at getting into this songs dark roots. Parton is renown for her happy attitude in her country- pop songs that bring about a happy go lucky vibe which isn’t exactly the feeling you should get from the story portrayed in this song.

After all, this song is about a cry of desperation, in which a woman begs a beautiful seductress  not to take her husband away. She speaks of Jolene’s beauty and ability to take him with ease but asks her not to do this. She says, “You could have your choice of men, But I could never love again, Hes the only one for me, jolene“.

Jacks rendition, where he becomes filled with emotion and displays his passion for the music in his veins is what makes me love the song and him even more. It inspires me to want to keep singing and playing, just to feel this something that I was meant to do.

According to Rolling Stone Magazine, “Weird and passionate, with burning eyes and an old man’s sensibilities, Jack White spent the 2000s going from promising garage-rocker to international rock star. He was one of the most important guitarists of the decade — on the strength of his forcefulness and ingenuity rather than virtuosity — as well as a great conceptualizer and a top-flight songwriter who could draw on a seemingly bottomless bag of riffs and melodies.”

The Guess Who- American Woman

“American Woman” by The Guess Who is about a wild, crazy, psychotic American woman who drives you absolutely mad!!Haha, wrong….

In actuality this is one of the most misinterpreted songs. It is in fact about America’s imperialistic attitude towards the Vietnam war. The band itself is  Canadian and not in fact praising or giving out patriotic pride to any “American Woman”. They were the first Canadian rock band to achieve success in the US without leaving Canada. This song was released in 1970 and made the number 1 Billdboards hot 100 chart. They first performed this song in front of 150,000 people at the Seattle Pop Festival in 1969. The crowd went wild in the first thirty seconds of listening to the unheard song.

According to Words & Music magazine, Bachman, the guitar player for the band explained, “We were playing in a curling rink in Kitchener, Ontario (Canada), and I broke a string. I was up there alone, tuning up my E an B strings on an old Les Paul. I started playing that riff and in the audience, heads started turning. The band got up, and I said, ‘Keep playing this, I don’t want to forget it.’ When Burton had run out of solos, I yelled out, ‘Sing something!’ So out of the blue Burton just screamed, ‘American Woman, stay away from me!’ That was the song, the riff and Burton yelling that line over and over. ”

I have to be honest with everyone. When I first researched this song, I was a bit surprised with the results that I had discovered. I mean, it makes perfect sense now that I think about it. They shed light on  America’s thoughts on the world revolving around itself and enforcing their policies onto other Countries. From first listen, it’s hard to assume that this song means anything other than some rant about a woman. Many say that this song created a lot of controversy  and anti-American sentiments. In fact, they weren’t even allowed to perform this song for president Nixon when they were at the white house. (How tragic?)

Ram Jam- Black Betty

Ram Jam is known as a one hit wonder band, recognized for their rendition of Leadbellys, “Black Betty”. They really made this song their own by taking the original few word, 59 second version and creating their own hit.

This version done by Ram jam is known to be a bit controversial. At the time it came out in the year 1977, it was believed to be about an Alabama black woman who had a child gone wild. Many civil rights activists including the NAACP tried to intervene saying this song was disrespectful to black women due to the harsh lyrics. But, despite all the controversy, the song reached number 18 on the singles chart in 1977 in the United States.

Since the band broke up, the lead singer, Myke Scavone resides in New Jersey and fronts his former teenage garage rock band called, “The Doughboys”.

It is understandable why these lyrics could have caused controversy at the time, however; from the bands perspective,  It is important to note the time period that this song was made in. It was the end of the Vietnam war and a time of free thought and expression. People wanted to live in harmony and promote peace amongst themselves. “Black Betty” was more so an exciting concept that this band tried to convey, in my opinion.

As for the meaning, there are many theories on what this song meant, but no definite answers. There are many theories about what or who “Black Betty” was. From a musket, to a woman, to a whip. I don’t think we’ll ever know for sure, but it doesn’t matter because this song just exudes a flavor of 70′s rock & roll that is undeniably irresistible.