Tag Archive: Mick Jagger

Beatles at the BBC

CNN is about to push out ‘The Seventies’; over the weekend I finally saw the British Invasion episode of ‘the Sixties’, and it was everything I wanted and more.

Short version: BeatleMania hit, inspired in part by their covers of Isley Brothers and Barrett Strong’s hit songs; the Rolling Stones followed suit, letting James Brown open for them to show their appreciation for soul music (cool but BIG mistake Mick never forgot), the Beatles started writing their own songs and got bigger, which inspired Brian Wilson among others to try harder and play around with harmonies and the studio to create ‘God Only Knows’, which the Beatles heard and a year later, ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ comes out.

(And yes, the creative competition and artistry fired me up as much as it sounds like it did. I picked my guitar the next weekend and started playing my favorite solos again.)

Including this one.  Enjoy!


’20 Feet From Stardom’



With only a general knowledge of what this film was about, it took about 5 minutes for this pop music geek to feel like a kid in a candy store.

20 Feet From Stardom is the story of the background singer.  And I’m still a little amazed by how much information and how many stories they packed into a crisp 90 minutes.  You get opinions from some of the stars: Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Mick Jagger.  You hear from some of those who started as background singers and graduated to the spotlight: Sheryl Crow and (the man) Luther Vandross.  And you get this really nice history on the evolution of the background singer.  It started really ‘vanilla’ (pun intended), but as gospel music gave us the Arethas and the Whitneys, it also gave us this treasure trove of singers who learned in the church choir ‘where their voice most naturally fit into the song’ (I absolutely loved that line).  Our earliest song memorizations are always the hooks and the chorus, and this film is a nice tribute to the people who we’re actually singing along with when we first hear a song we like.

If you can’t tell, I highly recommend this one to all music fans.