20. helpless

“Because we’ve all been there – that small town in Ontario of the heart and soul, all solitude and yearning. And learning. Which hurts at the time, but in the fullness of time, we come to realize it’s about as good as life gets. And nobody’s ever put it better than Mr. Neil Young in the song known as Helpless, and he never sang it better than he did one evening toward the end of 1976, the concert known as The Last Waltz, the band known as The Band bidding a proud and fond (though not exactly permanent) farewell. Even Joni Mitchell showed up in the background making for perhaps the most righteously Canadian thing that ever happened in a San Francisco ballroom (of course, it was called Winterland). It was even snowing (backstage anyway). Way better than hockey.” (Philip Random)

(Photo: Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

36. stand + you can make it if you try

“This live Sly + the Family Stone double shot comes from the awkwardly titled monster The First Great Rock Festivals of the Seventies: Isle of Wight / Atlanta Pop Festival which is one of those albums I inherited because nobody else wanted it – from my friend Carl who’d previously grabbed it from his older brother’s discard pile. Six sides of this and that including Johnny Winter, Poco, The Allman Brothers, Jimi Hendrix, Leonard Cohen, even some Miles Davis. I guess the whole was less than sum of its parts. I say ‘guess’ because I lost track of everything but the middle two sides a long time ago – the Procol Harum, Ten Years After, David Bromberg, Cactus and Sly and The Family Stone sides, all from the 1970 Isle Of Wight Festival (Britain’s Woodstock if you believe the hype, but history seems to argue it was a little more contentious than that).

Anyway, the one thing that is clear is just how f***ing brilliant Sly and his crowd were at that point. The best band on the planet? Maybe. Because to my mind (and soul) it’s powerful evidence of what Hunter S Thompson was talking about, 1971 sometime, that psychedelic morning in Las Vegas when he looked to the west toward San Francisco and saw just how far the great waves of love and evolution had reached before, sadly, tragically, inevitably, they achieved their high water point, and thus began their great retreat. Because the 1960s were nothing if not a wild and unprecedented ocean storm — not just one lone rogue wave taking out a some unsuspecting picnickers, but a sustained, relentless, committed storm, one wave after another, ebbing and flowing, always creeping further inland, going for the heart of the beast that was America (etc). Because we do need to remember this stuff, how free things can get, and it’s seldom ever been as free as a Sly And The Family Stone rave-up, live or in the studio, women and men of all races, creeds, making their stand, not fighting the power so much as grooving right on through it, confident as f*** they’d make it they just never stopped trying. At least until the drugs wore off.” (Philip Random)

(image source)

The 12 MixTapes of Christmas [2018 version]

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These 12 Mixtapes of Christmas have got nothing to do with Randophonic’s other 12 Mixtapes of Christmas from two years ago, or even with Christmas (beyond being a gift to you). And they’re not actually mix tapes, or CDs for that matter – just mixes, each 49-minutes long, one posted to Randophonic’s Mixcloud for each day of Twelvetide (aka the Twelve Days of Christmas).

There’s no particular genre, no particular theme or agenda being pursued, beyond all selections coming from Randophonic’s ever expanding collection of used vinyl, which continues to simultaneously draw us back and propel us forward (sonically speaking) — music and noise and whatever else the world famous Randophonic Jukebox deems (or perhaps dreams) necessary toward our long term goal of solving all the world’s problems.

Bottom line: it’s five hundred eighty-eight minutes of music covering all manner of ground, from Roy Orbison to Curtis Mayfield to Can, Bob Dylan, Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, Kraftwerk, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and beyond (and that’s just from the first mix) — anything and everything, as long as it’s good.

023. The Final Countdown*

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Installment #23. of the Final Countdown aired December-10-2018 (c/o CiTR.FM.101.9).

 

The Final Countdown* is Randophonic’s longest and, if we’re doing it right, most relevant countdown yet – the end of result of a rather convoluted process that’s still evolving such is the existential nature of the project question: the 1297 Greatest Records of All Time right now right here. Whatever that means. What it means is dozens of radio programs if all goes to plan, and when has that ever happened?

Installment #23 went like this.

857. Marius de Vries – The Avengers Theme
856. Holger Czukay – cool in the pool
855. Ropes – Club in Europe Forever
854. Blue Nile – stay
853. Barry Adamson – something wicked this way comes
852. Spoon – I turn my camera on
851. UB40 – present arms in dub
850. Johnny Mathis – wild is the wind
849. The Rain and the Sidewalk – master of the universe
848. Can – I’m so green
847. Chicago – make me smile [longer edit]
846. Jimi Hendrix – love or confusion
845. Three Dog Night – never been to Spain
844. Joni Mitchell – cold blue steel + sweet fire
843. Nitin Sawhney – Voices
842. Strawbs – a mind of my own
841. Funkadelic – Brettino’s Bounce
840. Funkadelic – Music For My Mother
839. Sun Ra – exotic forest
838. Neil Young – lotta love

Tracks available on this Youtube playlist (not exactly accurate).

Randophonic airs pretty much every Saturday night, starting 11 pm (Pacific time) c/o CiTR.FM.101.9, with streaming and/or download options usually available within twenty-four hours via our Facebook page.

 

433. what are their names?

As the story goes, David Crosby‘s girlfriend Christine Hinton had recently been killed in a car accident, and out of the haze of grief (and with a lot of help from his friends) came 1971’s If Only I Could Remember My Name, his first and best solo album, and one of the finest folk-based, free-form exploratory records of any era. Case in point, the mostly instrumental What Are Their Names? which just sort of creeps along at first but by the time it’s done, it’s delivered a defiant punch. Like hanging out with your friends, getting high, yet bemoaning the deep inequities of the world, how the rich keep on getting richer and the poor just keep getting eaten. And guess what? The masters of war behind it all live just over yonder hill. Perhaps we should go pay them a visit, do a little sharing.

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590. who knows?

“We’re listening to Who Knows from Band of Gypsys, the Jimi Hendrix 1970 New Years live album. Two guys are arguing about the relative quality of his backing magicians. The Experience versus the Band of Gypsys lineup of Buddy Myles and Billy Cox. A third guy finally pipes in, ‘Hey, if they were good enough for Jimi, they’re good enough for me. Now shut the f*** up and listen.’ Which, in the case of the Band of Gypsys, should drive home the point that barely eight months before his death, whatever may have been going down in the man’s personal life, Jimi Hendrix was anything but in a creative rut.” (Philip Random)

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602. blue

“There’s not enough Joni Mitchell on this list. It’s true. But it’s all there in the guidelines. If I didn’t own it on vinyl by August-4-2000, it didn’t qualify. And as of that date, all I had was Blue. Which tends to satisfy the if-you-can-only-own-one-Joni-Mitchell-album-it-should-be-Blue club, but why the hell would you only limit yourself to one? That’s just dumb (he said, looking his younger self in the mirror).” (Philip Random)

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The 12 MixTapes of Christmas

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The Twelve Mixtapes of Christmas have got nothing to do with Christmas (beyond being a gift to you) and they’re not actually mix tapes, or CDs for that matter – just mixes, each 49-minutes long, one posted to Randophonic’s Mixcloud for each day of Twelvetide (aka the Twelve Days of Christmas).

The mixes are in fact remnants of an unfinished project from a few years back that had something to do with compiling a playlist for an alternative to Alternative Rock (or whatever) radio station. To be honest, we’re not one hundred percent clear about any of it because somebody spilled (what we hope is) red wine on the official transcript, thus rendering key parts illegible.

Bottom line: it’s five hundred eighty-eight minutes of music covering all manner of ground, from David Bowie to Bow Wow Wow to Tuxedomoon to Claudine Longet, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Captain Beefheart, Aphrodite’s Child, Tom Jones, Marilyn Manson, Ike + Tina Turner, anything and everything, as long as it’s good.

 

 

879. Hey Joni

“A Sonic Youth song about Joni Mitchell (or so I think I read somewhere years ago), found on 1988’s Daydream Nation, a four-sided psychedelic monster if there ever was one (even if it did show up in a most un-psychedelic year). Or whatever. I’ve always had trouble putting words to Daydream Nation kicking as it did through all the gloom and permafrost of its time, like an unexpected future full of cool and fierce and infinitely complex noise, and in that complexity hope, I guess. Because I did need it.” (Philip Random)

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