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Reelin’ in the Years – 1990

Total Recall – 1990 via slantmagazine.com

Whew. Those overblown 80s are finally over and I’m 28 years old. I’m living in Canada again. Not the happiest time in my life, especially after spending two years in tropical India, where the sound of frogs and crickets lulled me to sleep each night.

Musically, I just looked over the charts for 1990 and things aren’t much better. I wasn’t connecting with anything the radio was spitting out. Or very little. I remember going down to “Little India” as it used to be called in Toronto and hanging out, buying Indian tapes. But I knew that was over too. I was moving on.

Toronto Reference Library 1990 via Wikipedia

I cannot find a tune for 1990 that I feel is memorable enough to list here. So I’m going to cheat again like I did for 1986 and list two songs appearing on a 1990 compilation album.

Peter Gabriel was key to the rock group Genesis. When Gabriel left, I felt Genesis suffered dearly from his departure. I suggested this elsewhere and almost had my virtual hide ripped off by someone who thought post-Gabriel Genesis was better. Whatever. Music is subjective. Not worth getting your shirt in a knot over who likes what.

So here’s two songs for (cough cough) 1990. They were actually released in the late 70s and early 80s.

Reelin’ in ALL the Years


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Reelin’ in the Years – 1988

Baul (traveling musician) in West Bengal, circa 1988

It’s 1988 and I’m 26 years old. I’ve been studying in India for a year, doing a degree in Comparative Religion. During summer break the heat was intolerable so I returned to Canada where the temperatures are great in the summertime.

Somewhat out of touch with Western ways, I immersed myself in family, friends, and of course, pop culture. I needed to update and take some tapes back to India for my second year of studies.

James Taylor’s Never Die Young is one of the albums I took with me, so I really got to know it back in my little Indian room with a beautiful view.

Indian kids circa 1988

There were several good tunes I could have chosen for ’88. But Taylor’s “Home By Another Way” sits best with me today.

James Taylor has one of those amazing voices that doesn’t require any studio tricks to stand out in a mix.

I was first introduced to Taylor with Sweet Baby James and the classic, “Fire and Rain.” His music came back into my sphere with Gorilla, which is another great album. JT and others followed. Seems James Taylor never really disappeared, still doing concerts on PBS from time to time.

This song is about overcoming evil not by taking it head on but by going around it. Christians are told to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. That means know what’s going on but don’t let life’s monsters realize you know. And skirt them if you can.

A king who would slaughter the innocents
Will not cut a deal for you…

But Herod’s always out there
He’s got our cards on file
It’s a lead pipe cinch, if we give an inch
Old Herod likes to take a mile

It’s best to go home by another way
Home by another way

The Moody Blues expressed a similar idea in their 1969 album On the Threshold of Dream.

Face piles of trials with smiles
It riles them to believe
That you perceive
The web they weave…
And keep on thinking free

I’m saddened that I haven’t listed a classic Moody Blues song in my 70s recollections. They are one of my favorite bands. I was focussing on pop radio for that decade, and The Moody Blues songs that made the radio were good but not my favs.

Image via discogs.com

Reelin’ in ALL the Years

 Eagles Add New Dates to 2018 Tour Schedule (news.radio.com)

 Why India has better things to do than hang out with Justin Trudeau (nationalpost.com)

 Canadian PM Trudeau roundly mocked for political, fashion blunders during disastrous trip to India (businessinsider.com)

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Reelin’ in the Years – 1979

It’s 1979, I’m seventeen years old, and once again everything is changing.

1965 Plymouth Satellite

1965 Plymouth Satellite – Wikipedia

Pop music does that. A friend in India (where I studied a decade later) once sagely commented that the attraction of pop is its ephemeral nature.

Well, yes and no. There are some timeless classics. But he was right. Change change change. If you don’t adapt to the times, you’re out in the pop world.

In Canada, punk and the New Wave are far less marginalized in ’79. New Wave especially hits the mainstream.

I owned this vinyl record and remember grooving to this song with my friends. It was so… new!

Actually, it is a brilliant synthesis of old 50s and 60s sci-fi and spy movie themes. But we were only dimly aware of that. When something moves you, you don’t stop to think about it. That comes later.

Planet Claire
The B-52’s

She came from Planet Claire
I knew she came from there
She drove a Plymouth Satellite
A-faster than the speed of light

Planet Claire has pink air
All the trees are red
No one ever dies there
No one has a head

Some say she’s from Mars
Or one of the seven stars that shine after three-thirty in the morning
Well, she isn’t!

She came from Planet Claire
She came from Planet Claire

She came from Planet Claire

Tachyon visualization. Since that object moves...

Tachyon visualization. Since that object moves faster then speed of light we can not see it approaching. Only after a tachyon has passed nearby, we could see two images of the tachyon, appearing and departing in opposite directions. The black line is the shock wave of Cherenkov radiation. It is shown only in one moment at time. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reelin’ in ALL the Years


old school selfie

Image via Tumblr

old school selfie in the bathroom… i was doing my masters in India… above my head to the left is a bucket… placed there to quiet a perpetually dripping shower head… and yes, i’m wearing a lungi… pentax K1000 film camera circa 1988-89


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Monsoon dream

Remembering my days as a student in India, where I spent long hours doing sorta fusion ragas on my guitar…

Funnily enuf, when I finished the final mix of this tune, a thunderstorm came up and it started raining heavily. Sort of perfect.

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when u wanted (with Audrey in the UK)

Somewhere between the old ambient stuff of Eno, some kind of renaissance wormhole, and… I don’t know. Just listen! Big thanks to Audrey in the UK!

(Shhhh… don’t tell anyone… but Audrey’s website blows my cover… http://www.yakitome.com/tts/text_to_speech)  🙂

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This Lonely Planet

This is a tune I wrote while living in Santiniketan, India. I wrote it on a 6 string acoustic guitar but thought it would sound nice through a blown bottle with whale songs in the background. Sometimes the whales get a bit grumpy. I could have lowered the levels there, but that just wouldn’t be real!