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

Tag: The Vinyl Dialogues

Turning the clock back 40 years: A car, a girl and a song

Among the many cool things I get to do with The Vinyl Dialogues series during interviews with the artists is to hear the inspiration and evolution of some of my favorites songs.

Daryl Hall has shared with me the story of how he wrote “Sara Smile.” Dewey Bunnell of the band America has told me the backstory on “A Horse With No Name.” Tom Johnston of the Doobie Brothers has explained to me his thought process on the writing of “China Grove.” Elliot Lurie of Looking Glass offered me great detail on the creation of “Brandy.”

But I’ve never gotten to “live” the evolution a song myself. Until now.

J.D Malone is a singer-songwriter who performs often in my area of suburban Philadelphia. I’ve followed his career for a few years now, seen him perform live a number of times and have all his CDs. His songs are well-crafted and … Read more

Sun, sand and cigars: A shore way to motivate and inspire

In an effort to find inspiration and motivation, I took off Wednesday, Sept. 17, in search of an ocean.

My hope was that the combination of the late summer sea breeze, the sound of the waves, a slice or two of my favorite boardwalk pizza and possibly a leisurely go at a mild cigar after lunch would be just the thing to kick off the Opening Day of Writing for The Vinyl Dialogues: Volume II.

It was a well-calculated plan. I had been watching the weather report for 10 days in advance, trying to free up a day where it was the just the sun and me. And I picked Ocean City, N.J. because it is relatively close and it has an historic concert hall called Music Pier that stretches out from the boardwalk and touches the ocean. I figured that the extra music mojo coming off Music Pier couldn’t … Read more

Southside Johnny at The Stone Pony: A real rock and roll show









It was a theory that had at least the hint of possibly coming true.

Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes were scheduled to play a July 3, 2014, show at the famous Stone Pony is Asbury Park, N.J. The venue is, as many music fans know, the place where Bruce Springsteen got his start. As did Southside Johnny – John Lyon – and his band the Asbury Jukes.

There’s a chapter in The Vinyl Dialogues, featuring an interview with Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Steven Van Zandt of Springsteen’s E Street Band, that details the evolution of Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes in the mid-1970s, the influence of Springsteen on the band and the development of what we now know at the Jersey Shore Sound.

Over the years, it has not been uncommon for both Springsteen and Van Zandt to … Read more

A foot of snow inspired the Statler Brothers’ chapter

Sometimes, all it takes is a foot of snow to provide a little inspiration. That’s how the 1972 album “Innerview” by the Statler Brothers made it into “The Vinyl Dialogues.”

In early 2014, it snowed quite a bit in the Philadelphia area, most of it I think, right in my driveway.

Snow makes me grumpy and I have threatened – to no avail – many times to whack Mother Nature upside the head with my snow shovel if she didn’t lay off my driveway.

But over the years, I have changed my philosophy when it comes to shoveling snow. I used to believe the best way to attack the issue was to wait until it stopped snowing, then go out and shovel it all at once. The problem is that if we get a foot or more of snow from one storm, it’s difficult to lift that much snow.

So … Read more

Hall & Oates leave them wanting more at the Borgata

You know that old adage, “Always leave them wanting more?” I’m pretty sure that just about everyone in the sold-out Borgata ballroom in Atlantic City Friday night, June 20, 2014, would have been happy to sit there for a few more hours and listen to Hall & Oates.

The recently inducted Rock and Roll Hall of Famers performed a tight, 90-minute set, that included two encores, and certainly left me wanting more.

The thing that strikes me about Daryl and John at this stage of their careers is that they genuinely seem to still be enjoying what they do. And, no breaking news here: they’re very good at it.

Of course, all the hits were there:

“Maneater” – No. 1 from the “H2O” album (1982).
“Out of Touch” – No. 1 from “Big Bam Boom” (1984).
“Do It For Love” – No. 114 (and should have been higher) from “Do … Read more

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