The Vinyl Dialogues Blog

Stories behind memorable albums of the 1970s as told by the artists

Month: November 2016

Still stone in love with the music of The Stylistics

It was pretty exciting when my dad got me a cassette tape recorder and a handful of blank tapes. Given the audio technology of the times, my plan in 1972 as a 13-year-old eighth-grader was to record my favorite songs off the radio onto the blank tapes and create my own music library.

Recording songs off the radio wasn’t an exact science. Growing up in central Illinois, I was listening to WLS out of Chicago. If the disc jockey didn’t give the listeners an advance heads up as to what songs were going to be played, one had to be able to recognize a song from the first fews notes, then simultaneously push “play” and “record” on the recorder.

I wasn’t very good at that. And I didn’t want to start the tape during the commercials because I didn’t want the ads messing up my music. Thus, I had entire … Read more

‘One Toke Over the Line’ meets the Lawrence Welk Show again . . . 45 years later

In their stage show, Michael Brewer and Tom Shipley are fond of telling audiences that they’re the only guys on the planet – “and probably in the universe” – who have written a song that has been performed both on the Lawrence Welk Show and by the late Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead.

That song, “One Toke Over the Line,” first recorded by Brewer and Shipley in 1970 and featured on the duo’s third studio album “Tarkio,” became an interesting and unique bit of pop culture. It got the attention of the Nixon administration, which labeled the singer-songwriters subversives to American youth because the song contained a drug reference in its lyrics.

But because it was a hit single, the song also attracted the attention of Lawrence Welk, who liked to feature popular songs of the day sung by Welk Musical Family singers on his weekly television show. In … Read more

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén