Category Archives: Music

The Washington Senators had an accordionist, Merv Conn

During yesterday’s Washington Nationals broadcast, Dave Jageler was lamenting that the strike zone was going back and forth like an accordion. A discussion about accordions with Charlie Slowes ensued. I don’t think they know that in the 1960s, the Senators hired Merv Conn to play the accordion during games (I mentioned it a couple of years ago). A brief demonstration and explanation from Conn himself:

That was from local filmmaker Jeff Krulik‘s The Legend of Merv Conn which is available here:

Conn was more than just a musician at RFK Stadium, he was a beloved music instructor and performer, even though “The Beatles killed the accordion.” Here’s a 2007 profile from John Kelly before the documentary came out – A Legend With Oomph — and Oompah

Conn died in 2011, his obituary is here.

As for Krulik, he has made many films but is best remembered for Heavy Metal Parking Lot. We talked about that several years ago during the 25th anniversary of HMPL. While all his work is enjoyable, I suspect that Charlie and Dave would enjoy this award-winning documentary.

MEANWHILE IN THIRD PLACE

So, don’t look at the standings until Memorial Day?

NL-standings-20140527

Maybe it’s supposed to be the actual Memorial Day, rather than Memorial Day Observed.

Between injuries and Matt Williams over-managing and love of bunts and sacrifices, the Nats are struggling. Thankfully, Chicken Man on the case:


After Memorial Day loss, fans plan chicken sacrifice Tuesday at Nationals Park
Let Teddy Win

What took so long?

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weezer-blue-album-crop

Weezer’s Blue Album is 20 years old

Welp, that was fast.

I remember when “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” was 20 years old and it being a big deal. I think it came out on CD concurrent with that anniversary which might be the part of it. Physical media!

Weezer’s “Blue Album” isn’t that big a deal and Weezer’s aren’t the Beatles.

Not even close.

But it was a fun album of its time and a nice contrast to grunge which had peaked and was only going to get worse — I’m looking at you BUSH. “Buddy Holly” is still the great turn-it-up and roll-down-the-windows-on-a-warm-day classic it’ll always be.

Gee, it’s so quaint to look back on Rivers Cuomo’s lyrics and think about how much he’s grown as a songwriter, singer and man since…okay I can’t say that with a straight face.

Weezer t-shirt, front

Apparently, the social contract mandates going through the album and saying something about the songs.

My Name is Jonas – annoying, awful, almost killed album before it began

No One Else – catchy sounds like every other song

The World Has Turned and Left Me Here – beginning to think that high school never ended for this dude

Buddy Holly – Windows 95 (not so good Al)

Undone – The Sweater Song – proto shoe-gaze

Surfwax America – Catchy, kind of different than the other songs. A little at least.

Say it Ain’t So – always seemed to hear it going over Blue Mountain on I-81

In the Garage – He talks about KISS who were best described as “they suck, but they have sucked longer than anybody else.” That was over 20 years ago.

Holiday – just a set up for Island in the Sun years later

Only in Dreams – more proto shoegaze that never ends

Oh and good job by producer Ric Ocasek for this album.

Some people who took this assignment more seriously than me:

Now, people who took the assignment more seriously than I did:

‘The Blue Album’ at 20: Looking Back at Weezer’s Debut, Track by Track «.

Remembering Weezer’s ‘The Blue Album,’ A Garage Rock Classic, on Its 20th Anniversary – The Daily Beast.

Weezer's 'Blue Album' at 20: Classic Track-by-Track Album Review | Billboard.

Weezer t-shirt (back)

DEATH TO FALSE NERD ROCK!

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The-Beatles-in-Washington-D-C-the-beatles-16976631-717-486

50 years ago tonight, The Beatles played their first U.S. concert in D.C.

Fifty years ago tonight, the Beatles played their first public concert in the United States in the District, the day after an eight inch snowstorm no less. The lads had a snowball fight that afternoon before the show at Washington Colosseum — if you’ve ever taken a train north out of Union Station, you’ve passed it. I think it’s a parking garage now and under disrepair in general.

There is quite a bit of coverage about the anniversary, so I won’t spend much time writing about a concert that happened before I was born. I will say that I need to get the photo above (or one like it) and put it up some day.

DOCUMENTARY ON THE CONCERT

HOW THE CONCERT SOUNDED
lots of screaming girls, some music

1983 DC101 INTERVIEW
WWDC DJ Carroll James interviewed by WWDC/DC101′s Young Dave Brown and Ernie Kaye on December 17, 1983. YDB!

MORE COVERAGE

Beatles Fans Celebrate 50th Anniversary of Historic D.C. ConcertWAMU 88.5 – American University Radio

Photos of The Beatles in Washington, D.C.Ghosts of DC

The Beatles' First Concert in the U.S. (1964)Ghosts of DC

50th anniversary concert reenacts Beatles’ first U.S. show at the Washington ColiseumThe Post

The Beatles would play D.C. again in November of that year (more video or at least still photos with the music over them) and D.C. Stadium in 1966 on their last tour (Ghosts of DC).

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Bryce Harper's Bitchin' Camaro - used with permission of Forgeline

Bryce Harper’s Bitchin’ Camaro and other NatsFest notes

Bryce Harper’s Bitchin’ Camaro – used with permission of Forgeline
Third year Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper just got a customized 1969 Camaro. I don’t normally post that sort of thing, but I’m making the exception because when a player for a team I like gives me a chance to reference the Dead Milkmen, I do that every time. The same can’t be said for other blogs.

Perhaps I’m a bigger Dead Milkmen fan than most, but isn’t Bitchin’ Camaro shared cultural capital?


Might be a few naughty words in there

Lots of Harper coverage came out of NatsFest, including references to Babe Ruth instead of Mickey Mantle.

Pretty funny, Harper.

Even the Ombudsman, a soulless Phillies fan, has to appreciate this:

Then there were seperate ESPN ads featuring Harper and Strasburg:

Stephen Strasburg, Bryce Harper, and Tyler Clippard
Photo by Scott Abelman used under Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic license

NatsFest had 8,400 fans apparently. There was apparently a Wheel of Fortune Game played amongst some players and Let Teddy Win’s Harper photo went viral.

If there was an after-party like last year’s with Charlie Slowes, it’s been kept on the DL. Or maybe it was on the DL and didn’t happen. Don’t know, but that would have been the part most worthy of attention.

Oh and LIVAN! was back and is probably headed to spring training. Are his possible legal troubles over?

Opening Day is 62 days away…

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Music Tuesday is sort of back: The Go! Team – Everyone’s a V.I.P. to Someone


Music Tuesday! remember that? No. That’s okay. I dropped it in favor of just putting songs up on my tumblr, but right now youtube and tumblr aren’t getting along, so it’s onto the mothership.

The influential, but unliked, @PancakeCatapult introduced me to this instrumental a few weeks ago and I’ve listened to it often since then. Banjos, harmonica, flutes, trumpets and strings (real or synthesized) each get their moment as the song slowly builds to a slight crescendo and wraps up shortly thereafter. While it sounds like the end of something and is therefore bittersweet, it is quite agreeable, relaxing and interesting — easy listening for the 21st century.

You may have seen it on EDSBS and like I mentioned earlier, that was probably Mr. Catapult’s influence.

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No more Sweet Caroline at Penn State games

Tweaking the traditionAltoona Mirror

And while the Boston Red Sox, Pitt football and others have elevated “Sweet Caroline” to a staple for their games, that popular PSU tradition may be interrupted or discontinued.

Long overdue, particularly considering the awful origins of the song:


Neil Diamond Storytellers by JimGoodwine

Okay, in the real world, I’m glad they are getting rid of it because it is a cliche that has nothing to do with the Penn State. Not that it has anything to do with the Red Sox, but they’ve made it their own long before Guido D’Elia brought it to Beaver Stadium. I’m sure it still gets played at the Shandygaff.

I still have a post to write about everything. Not real eager to do it.

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Summertime

The Summer Solstice just happened.

I’ve done this before and probably will again because Ella and Louis are always a good thing.

Capital Weather Gang had another great write-up about the solstice today.

Oh and it is about 100° today and tomorrow and there is no more refreshing way to beat the heat than a good gin and tonic.

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Nats honor Chuck Brown with 3 homers in 7-4 win over Pirates

BeltwayLand was sad yesterday after the godfather of go-go Chuck Brown died (The Post). There was plenty of speculation on Twitter about how and whether the Washington Nationals would honor Brown. In the past, “Bustin’ Loose” was played after home runs. When I heard about Brown’s passing, I tweeted this:

I’d like to see the #Nats honor Chuck Brown tonight. I’d also like to see @NationalsPR do a pregame tribute

I’m pleased to report that that Nats did honor Brown — three home runs by Adam LaRoche, Xavier Nady and Ian Desmond. The first two are former Pittsburgh Pirates. Gio Gonzalez had 10 strikeouts. He gave too much credit to the Buccos as well, which WTOP’s Craig Hesit could not get over. The Nats can sweep a two-game series and take the season series if they win tonight, which means they probably won’t.

Hey, a Barry Svrluga chat! Sure, the Nats aren’t mentioned in the preview, but let’s pepper him with questions about them anyway. And Panera.

I couldn’t blog yesterday, car problems (somebody broke my side mirror, no note — gutless coward) so I did not get to comment on the weird Stephen Strasburg ointment story. Weird. I think we can all agree that Gio was the real culprit, right? Strasburg was just part of the many injuries that the Nats are dealing with and dealing with quite well. Still, this graphic is quite telling. Yikes.

Good to see the Nats come back from that awful loss to San Diego Padres on Tuesday afternoon.

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

When I think of St. Patrick’s Day, I figure there has to be a bar with a Christmas/Easter Protestant who had one Irish grandparent is wearing a green baseball cap of a team that doesn’t normally wear green (i.e. Red Sox) drinking green light beer and rocking out to “Little Lion Man.”

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