Category Archives: pop

Today: It is 3 years since the great Alex Chilton died


Alex Chilton, power pop genius died 17. March in 2010 three years ago today.

Paul Westerberg wrote these words in The New York Times three days after Alex Chilton passed away:

It was some years back, the last time I saw Alex Chilton. We miraculously bumped into each other one autumn evening in New York, he in a Memphis Minnie T-shirt, with take-out Thai, en route to his hotel. He invited me along to watch the World Series on TV, and I immediately discarded whatever flimsy obligation I may have had. We watched baseball, talked and laughed, especially about his current residence — he was living in, get this, a tent in Tennessee.

Because we were musicians, our talk inevitably turned toward women, and Al, ever the Southern gentleman, was having a hard time between bites communicating to me the difficulty in … you see, the difficulty in (me taking my last swig that didn’t end up on the wall, as I boldly supplied the punch line) “… in asking a young lady if she’d like to come back to your tent?” We both darn near died there in a fit of laughter.

Yeah, December boys got it bad, as “September Gurls” notes. The great Alex Chilton is gone — folk troubadour, blues shouter, master singer, songwriter and guitarist. Someone should write a tune about him. Then again, nah, that would be impossible. Or just plain stupid.

He is one the all time best pop melody makers, he’s up there with Paul McCartney, Brian Wilson and Pete Townsend. When you hear his songs for the first time you’ll swear you’ve heard it before, but you have not. It is just so instantly recognizable, so familiar and so right!

The Box Tops – The Letter:

Alex Chilton was involved in great music all his life, he was like the music worlds Coen brothers, they may be making some movies that are not fantastic, but they are always good. And in most cases better and more interesting  than anything else out there. Chilton had a very consistent career and deserved so much more recognition than he got.

The Ballad of El Goodo (live, 93):

It is difficult to get across the admiration I have for Alex Chilton, let’s just say that he is one of the all time best and listen to his music.

Oh, and I think we should include that “stupid”song that Mr. Westerberg is talking about above. Alex Chilton, here in a solo Paul Westerberg live clip:

From the Guardians Obituary:

Alex Chilton defined the term cult hero. He was difficult, mercurial, endlessly self-sabotaging and, for a brief time, utterly brilliant. His 70s group Big Star remain almost unknown to the mainstream but are one of the key abiding influences in rock music of any calibre, their short life only fuelling their near-mythical status. “I never travel far without a little Big Star,” sang the Replacements on their strange love song, “Alex Chilton”. Several influential rock groups, from REM to Primal Scream, Teenage Fanclub to Wilco, would echo that sentiment. REM’s Peter Buck once described Big Star as “a Rosetta stone for a whole generation”.

My (Hallgeir) list of Alex Chilton’s top 21 songs (actually 22, I had to include The Letter even if he didn’t write that one):

Continue reading Today: It is 3 years since the great Alex Chilton died

Great Christmas song: When the Thames Froze by Smith & Burrows

When The Thames Froze
Today we give you a new Christmas song (well, it’s about one year old) and what a gem it is!

Former Razorlight drummer Andy Burrows and Editors frontman Tom Smith  released their record Funny Looking Angels  under the name Smith & Burrows. One of the best songs on the album is, When The Thames Froze .
Smith & Burrows gives us a wonderful Christmas Carol with a darker undertone. A song fit for the recent economic resessions.

Q Magazine described the song as ”a Christmas anthem for modern times”.

We have chosen two version, first the official video, and second, an acoustic live version (Smith & Burrows performing ‘When The Thames Froze’ at The Station Sessions as part of the Secret Season supporting Shelter):

And Spotify:


– Hallgeir

Look out for: Lily and Madeleine

Lily and Madeleine are two songwriting sisters  from Indianapolis. Lily is 15 and Madeleine is 18. I’ve only heard one song, the beautiful “In The Middle”, but it is enough to get us exited about their new EP “The Weight of the globe”. It will be released early next year.

The Web site “My Old Kentucky Blog”(MOKB ) compares them to First Aid Kit, and it’s an understandeable comparison. Young sisters singing wonderful harmony infused americana. So thanks to MOKB for this find, check out the site, it’s one of the best.

We are really looking forward to hear their new EP and following them in the future.

Lily & Madeleine – In The Middle:

Written by Lily & Madeleine with Kenny Childers
The Weight of the Globe EP coming in January
Recorded at White Arc Studio with Paul Mahern
Video by Stuart Hotwagner and Nicole Lehrman

(the pictures are from their Facebook page)

– Hallgeir

Free Christmas Music 1: Rosie Thomas A VERY ROSIE CHRISTMAS SAMPLER

Rosie Thomas pulls out all the stops for this teaser to her spectacular holiday collection “A Very Rosie Christmas”. Included is the bonus track “Friendship Sleigh Ride”, which appears in the promotional videos for Sufjan Stevens’ holiday tour.

Listen here (or give your e-mail  for a free download):

From the nice people over at Noisetrade:

“One night in suburban Detroit, a twelve-year-old Rosie Thomas lay sleepless in her bed, obsessively dwelling on what she perceived to be her lack of life purpose. Then, well after 2 AM, it suddenly hit her. She sprung out of bed and raced down the hall. “Daddy, Daddy, I know what my mission in life is,” Rosie exclaimed, poking her father. “I just want to entertain people.”

After 3 albums on Sub Pop, These Friends of Mine was release through her own lable, Sing-A-Long Records. The album includes appearances by friends Sufjan Stevens, Damien Jurado, David Bazan (Pedro the Lion), and Denison Witmer.

Rosie Thomas pulls out all the stops for this teaser to her spectacular holiday collection “A Very Rosie Christmas”. Included is the bonus track “Friendship Sleigh Ride”, which appears in the promotional videos for Sufjan Stevens’ holiday tour.”


– Hallgeir