When You Woke Up and Morning Smiled
1706. Midnight Star: "Operator" 12-inch 1707. Midnight Star: Headlines 1708. Midnight Star: Greatest Hits 1709. Midnight Star 1710. Adrian Miller: Empty Promises 1711. The Best of Glenn Miller 1712. Glenn Miller: A Memorial 1944-1969 1713. Mitch Miller and the Gang: Sing Along With Mitch 1714. Roger Miller: Thank You 1715. Steve Miller Band: Sailor 1716. Milli Vanilli: Girl You Know It's True 1717. Milli Vanilli: "Girl You Know It's True" 12-inch 1718. The Million Dollar Quartet 1719. M.D.C.: Millions of Dead Cops 1720. Mills Brothers: In a Mellow Tone 1721. Mills Brothers: Great Hits 1722. Ronnie Milsap: Country Music Mixworthy: "A String of Pearls," #1712; "My Family's Just a Little Weird," #1719. Spent: Girl, you know it's true: somewhere along the way, I lost interest in the 20th century's musical arch-villians. I used to put the M.D.C. song on every punk compilation I ever made, but, like some other things I've categorized as mixworthy, it's really listed above by default. I don't think I realized till now that M.D.C. and Millions of Dead Cops are not inter- changeable (hence the misalphabetization)--M.D.C. is the band, Millions of Dead Cops was their first album, and the acronym took on a different meaning for every subse- quent release. I found this out at the group's website. Some marginal hardcore group I liked 20 years ago has its own website. Of course they do--I have one, so why not them?...One of my favourite movie-music segments: "String of Pearls" during the Ted Williams section in Ken Burns' Baseball...Famous story in my family: when I was four or five, I mistook the statue of Christ in the lobby of Toronto's St. Joseph's Hos- pital for Mitch Miller...Finished the Godard film tonight. Always interesting, occa- sionally moving, often incomprehensible. Great ending (I'm paraphrasing): "What if you had a dream where you walked through paradise, and in the middle of your walk, someone handed you a flower. When you awoke from the dream, the flower was still in your hand. What would you say? I was that man." As soon as I figure out how to apply the same elevated rhetoric to Kylie Minogue and Mocedades, I'll be back with more LPs. _______________________________________________________________________________ 1723. The Best of Charles Mingus 1724. Charlie Mingus: The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady 1725. Charles Mingus: Mingus at Antibes 1726. Charles Mingus: Better Git It in Your Soul 1727. Charles Mingus: Passions of a Man: An Anthology of His Atlantic Recordings 1728. Liza Minnelli: Results 1729. Kylie Minogue: Kylie 1730. Minutemen: 3-Way Tie (For Last) 1731. Minor Threat 1732. Minor Threat: Out of Step 1733. Mission of Burma: The Horrible Truth About Burma 1734. The Mistaken 1735. Brenda Mitchell: Don't You Know 1736. Joni Mitchell 1737. Joni Mitchell: Clouds 1738. Joni Mitchell: Blue 1739. Joni Mitchell: For the Roses 1740. Joni Mitchell: Court and Spark Mixworthy: "Filler," "I Don't Wanna Hear It," "Minor Threat," #1731; "Cashing In," #1732; "Night in the City," #1736; "Chelsea Morning," #1737; "Carey," #1738. The consecutive Minutemen/Minor Threat/Mission of Burma threesome is probably with- out parallel in my collection: three hugely iconic bands from the same moment and, broadly speaking, the same genre (i.e., the Amerindie sprawl of the mid-80s--obvi- ously, Minor Threat and the Minutemen hardly sound at all alike). All three get chapters in Michael Azerrad's Our Band Could Be Your Life, and they're situated consecutively in there, too. Minor Threat was the only one of the three I cared about. There was a purity about their small recorded output (25 songs?) that was inspiring, and you didn't have to be some Maximum Rock 'n' Roll buckethead to feel it--my deepest interest in alcohol coincided exactly with the period I listened to them most avidly, so the asceticism they were so fixated on was more than a little remote from my own life. (Which doesn't mean I didn't sometimes find their single- mindedness in that area admirable anyway--more often it seemed weird, and at times I found it corny.) What reached me instead was the same thing I got from Hüsker Dü: an overwhelming wash of sound, incredibly fast, surprisingly melodic, clean and lucid at every turn. I actually wrote to Ian MacKaye sometime after the group's "Salad Days" single (45 only, else I'd be listing that too) with a rather amorphous idea for a book that would have involved his own band, the Shoes, and the Chantels. I'm sure I wouldn't have explained the connection very well (I couldn't explain it very well today; I was just kind of, uh, "feeling" it), I think I'd done about six record reviews for Nerve at that point, and all things considered he wouldn't have been out of line to take a deep breath and count back from ten and maybe I'd go away. But he replied with a postcard gracious enough that I didn't at all feel like I'd just made the most harebrained proposal in the world, a gesture for which I've always felt some gratitude, coming as it did when I was just starting out. (I've had nobody- editors make me feel smaller.) I never followed any of MacKaye's post-Minor Threat projects--I think I occasionally played Fugazi when I was at CIUT--but I'll support the idea that he's one of the genuine good guys out there...Charles Mingus: I'd be more inclined to listen to him than I would Ornette Coleman, and I remember thinking that parts of The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady sounded like good film noir music, but he's still pretty heavy going for me. I want to make Joni Mitchell happy, though, so I've very painstakingly arranged for the two of them to bookend this group. _______________________________________________________________________________ 1741. Moby Grape 1742. Moby Grape: Omaha 1743. Moby Grape: 20 Granite Creek 1744. Mocedades: Eres Tu ("Touch the Wind") 1745. Modern Jazz Quartet & Guests: Third Stream Music 1746. The Art of the Modern Jazz Quartet 1747. Modern Jazz Quartet: In Memoriam 1748. The Modern Lovers 1749. A Moment With the Moments 1750. Thelonius Monk: Monk's Music 1751. Thelonius Monk: Thelonius Alone in San Francisco 1752. Thelonius Monk: Monk's Miracles 1753. Thelonius Monk: Always Knows 1754. The Monkees 1755. Monkees: Greatest Hits 1756. Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys: Radio Shows 1946-1948 1757. Bill Monroe's Greatest Hits Mixworthy: "Hey Grandma," "Omaha," and "Indifference," #1741; "Ain't That a Shame," "I Am Not Willing," and "Going Nowhere," #1742; "Roadrunner," #1748; "Love on a Two-Way Street," #1749; "Well, You Needn't," #1750; "Take a Giant Step," #1754; "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You" and "Pleasant Valley Sunday," #1755. Spent: "Last Train to Clarksville" and "I'm a Believer," #1755. I've never played Moby Grape with any great regularity--it's "Ain't That a Shame" from the budget-priced reshuffle Omaha that I've included on numerous mix-tapes over the years--but listening to it right now for the first time in a while, I'd say it's almost as good as legend would have it. I've got a bad association with the album for the stupidest of reasons: one of the later pressings turned up as a remainder at the old Yonge St. Cheapies store in Toronto, and because I was too stubborn to replace a worn-out needle on my record player, I ended up returning two or three copies before giving up on it. I found a used copy sometime after that (with the poster included), but, irrational though it may be, the Cheapies episode lingered. For anyone who keeps track of such stuff, I'll mention that all middle fingers are observing proper decorum on my copy's cover...Speaking of which, #1750's utterly absurd cover shot of Thelonius Monk sitting in the wagon is one of my favourites. It's hard to tell from behind the shades how he felt about the whole idea; allowing for the fact that, if the playful- ness of his music is any kind of a barometer, the concept for the shot may have been his own, his expression nonetheless has "Are you really sure we want to do this?" written all over it...Even though this whole exercise is all about records, most of the important listening I've done in my life has taken place in the car, whether off the radio, cassette deck, or CD player. "Roadrunner" documents that experience more joyously and more perceptively than anything that has ever addressed the subject, and, in doing so, becomes the thing itself; nothing sounds better in a car than Jonathan Richman singing about how much he loves to listen to rock and roll in his car. I don't remember Richman being invited to do the anthem at any of last year's Series games in Fenway, but Red Sox management ought to take out a lifetime retainer on "Roadrunner" the way Steinbrenner has on "New York, New York." _______________________________________________________________________________ 1758. Montreal Featuring Uchenna Ikejiani 1759. This Is the Moody Blues 1760. Look! It's the Moonglows 1761. The Moonglows Vol. II 1762. Jane Morgan's Greatest Hits 1763. Lee Morgan: Delightfulee 1764. Lee Morgan: The Procrastinator 1765. Van Morrison: Astral Weeks 1766. Van Morrison: Moondance 1767. Van Morrison: Wavelength 1768. Van Morrison: Common One 1769. Bob Mosley 1770. Elton Motello: Pop Art 1771. Mothers of Invention: Cruising With Ruben & the Jets 1772. Mothers of Invention: The **** of the Mothers 1773. Mott the Hoople: Brain Capers 1774. Mott the Hoople: All the Young Dudes 1775. Mott the Hoople: Mott Mixworthy: "Question," #1759; "Sweeter Than Words," #1760; "Flower Punk" and "Mother- ly Love," #1772; "All the Young Dudes," #1774; "I Wish I Was Your Mother," #1775. If the estimate I gave early on of 3500 albums is correct, I passed the halfway mark with the previous group. In terms of where I'm sitting as I type all this up, I pass a second halfway marker of sorts with this group; everything up to and including Elton Motello--every last Jet Boy and Jet Girl--has been shelved to the left of me, but beginning with the Mothers of Invention, everything's now shelved to the right. Actually, I can tell at this point that my original estimate was a little low--I'm going to end up in the 3,600-3,700 range...I'd rather be listing "Go Now" for the Moody Blues, but "Question" will do. Best of all would be the middle break from "Tuesday Afternoon" as a standalone, the reflections-of-my-mind part that you can't resist singing along to. First thing I think of in connection to the Moody Blues: sitting in class in grade 12, listening to "Legend of a Mind" (a.k.a. "Timothy Leary's Dead") on headphones while I was supposed to be listening to cassettes of course-related material. The punchline: it was Mr. Paul's chemistry class!...If I had Freak Out! on LP (the traumatic details of which can be found back in the entry for Country Joe & the Fish), I'd be listing "Hungry Freaks, Daddy" and "Trouble Every Day." In general, I think the reverential worship attached to Frank Zappa is weird--he obviously recorded a lot of stuff that barely reaches the level of puer- ile diddling around, and the smugness that permeates even the great early records gets tired very fast. (Something Lester Bangs deflated perfectly in a 1971 review of Filmore East: "Uncle Frank as all-purpose conscience pointing out our lameness and simultaneously educating us to that great wide world of music out there beyond our punky ignorance, his pointer guiding us from track to track, 'See this is jazz, and now for a taste of Stravinsky, and notice how we've interwoven it all with a few Motown arrangements and fuzztones that all you stupid little "Louie Louie"- brained bastards can understand...'") The first three sides of Freak Out! are great, though, and "Trouble Every Day" is like the "Anarchy in the U.K." of 1966...Moon- dance was one of the first few dozen records in my collection. I listened to side one fairly regularly in high school, and I probably included "And It Stoned Me" on a couple of the earliest mix-tapes I compiled for personal use. When I stopped play- ing it within a couple of years, I stopped for good, and Astral Weeks didn't make it to a fourth listen. The other two albums were added somewhere along the way...A beginner's guide to Elton Motello: a taste of Stravinsky, a few Motown arrangements, fuzztones we can all understand. _______________________________________________________________________________ 1776. The Move: The Greatest Hits Vol. 1 1777. The Best of the Move 1778. The Move: Split Ends 1779. The Move: 'Shazam' 1780. Mtume: Juicy Fruit 1781. Mud: Mud Rock 1782. Mud: Use Your Imagination 1783. Maria Muldaur 1784. Jerry Murad's Fabulous Harmonicats: Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White 1785. Shirley Murdock: A Woman's Point of View 1786. Elliott Murphy: Aquashow 1787. Elliott Murphy: Lost Generation 1788. Anne Murray: Talk It Over in the Morning 1789. Anne Murray's Greatest Hits 1790. Pauline Murray and the Invisible Girls 1791. Musical Youth: The Youth of Today 1792. Musical Youth: Different Style! Mixworthy: "Wave Your Flag and Stop the Train," #1777; "Do Ya" and "Message From the Country," #1778; "Talk It Over in the Morning," #1788; "Dream Sequence I," #1790. "Message From the Country" was among the songs I included on "Beatlesque," a mix-tape I once compiled for a teacher (and Beatles lover) who was leaving my school. The idea was pretty self-explanatory, with a fluid enough interpretation of Beatlesque to guide me that, along with obvious things like the Knickerbockers and Big Star and Traffic's "Hole in My Shoe," I had "Take the Skinheads Bowling" and Hüsker Dü's "Books About UFOs"--songs that don't sound like the Beatles at all, but which seem to me to cap- ture something fundamental about what they might have been doing had they existed in a different time and different set of circumstances. "Message From the Country" is more of a straightforward soundalike, although I can't point to any one specific per- iod it aligns itself with--White Album-Beatles would be the closest match, I guess. As a warm-up for their Beatles flirtation, "Wave Your Flag and Stop the Train" joins the Five Americans' "Western Union" in a surreal mini-genre I've mentioned before: the Imitation Monkees Genre. I don't know if there was ever an Imitation Electric- Era Cult Genre, but that's about the only possible parallel I can conceive of.