Tag Archives: peter gabriel

Episode 40: It’s the Money!

When starting a tribute band, be sure to pick a band to cover that has sweet looks, as well as good songs.

I know this guy who plays in a couple of local tribute bands, one for Journey and one covering random 70’s soft pop. He makes scads more with them than his serious project.

In my observation, I’ve seen three primary motivators for starting or joining tribute bands. An overwhelming majority of the bands seem to be just slimy attempts to impress friends or score chicks. Sometimes they’re merely a way for decent musicians to make a little money (hopefully performing music they like). In other cases, however, tribute bands perform music by artists who have died or by bands that have broken up.

My friend, Ben, suggested this week’s theme: If I was in a ___________ tribute band, we would be called _______________ because of this song. After some thought, I think most of my tribute bands would fall under the third motive I proposed. Peter Gabriel and R.E.M. would hopefully make a little money (since they had hits), so the second motive would apply. In planning this week’s show, I’ve also gone as far as to think about who should be in some of these bands. Who knows, maybe one of these could someday materialize?

  1. “Shock the Monkey” – Peter Gabriel (Security/Charisma/1982)
  2. “Boulder to Birmingham” – Emmylou Harris (Pieces of the Sky/Reprise/1975)
  3. “Why Hip-Hop Sucks in ’96” – DJ Shadow (Endtroducing…/MoWax/1996)
  4. “The One I Love” – R.E.M. (Document/I.R.S./1987)
  5. “Sleepless Dreamers” – Mark Heard (Fingerprint/Palmfrond Communications/1980)
  6. “Easy Money” – King Crimson (Larks’ Tongues in Aspic/EG/1973)

Radio Free Raytown – Episode #40 (5/14/10)

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Episode 39: In Giddy Rotation

In Genesis' episode of Behind the Music, Peter Gabriel admitted that since the band didn't have a lot of money for stage costumes early on, he would just cut shapes into his hair for effect.

I finally got the new Peter Gabriel record, Scratch My Back, this week. It’s an album of covers, a tactic, that usually reeks of¬†desperation for most artists. Worry not, my friends. He delivers the goods, picking ¬†songs from David Bowie and Talking Heads to unlikely guys like Stephen Merritt and Bon Iver. Probably my favorite in the bunch is his take on The Arcade Fire’s “The Body is a Cage.” It’s dark and searching, like much of his own best work.

Most of the album features minimalistic 20th Century string arrangements (think Reich, Glass, Shostakovitch, etc.) with sparse piano. For a guy known for working with amazing drummers and percussionists, there is almost no drumming on the album. The treatment works perfectly, however, to showcase his tremendous vocal prowess.

All that said, it reminds me of his work on Robert Fripp‘s album, Exposure. I’ve always loved how Gabriel stripped down “Here Comes the Flood,” from his first solo album. Fripp added some nice color, but mostly left the song speak for itself with raw beauty.

I’m done gushing over Peter Gabriel. Enjoy this week’s show.

  1. “Up the Down Escalator” – The Chameleons (Up the Down Escalator 12″/Satik/1983)
  2. “Death of Imagination” – The Sun and the Moon (The Sun and the Moon/Geffen/1988)
  3. “Water Music I” – Robert Fripp (Exposure/E.G./1979)
  4. “Here Comes the Flood” – Robert Fripp & Peter Gabriel (Exposure/E.G./1979)
  5. “Water Music II” – Robert Fripp (Exposure/E.G./1979)
  6. “Memory Loss” – The Radio Dept. (Clinging to a Scheme/Labrador/2010)
  7. “The Mall and Misery” – Broken Bells (Broken Bells/Columbia/2010)

Radio Free Raytown – Episode #39 (4/30/10)

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