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Thursday, December 5, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Eddie Murphy 'Party All the Time'

(Photo: Twitter)

December of 1985 was a pretty cheesy month for music. Lots of sappy songs hit Billboard's Hot 100 and then there were some tracks that were a bit weird. Eddie Murphy's "Party All the Time" was one of those strange ones. It hit number 2 on the charts and was pretty darn catchy. While Murphy wasn't exactly known for his singing ability this song came at a point in time when he could really do no wrong.

Murphy was coming off of four successful years on Saturday Night Live and he had just struck box office gold with Beverly Hills Cop so if he wanted to make a song then no one was going to say no. Murphy teamed up with the legendary Rick James and the rest was easy. At the time James was also riding a nice wave of success, both with his own album and with his girl group, The Mary Jane Girls.

Murphy's name was going to sell records and putting James in the mix ensured that "Party All the Time" would be worth the airplay that it eventually received.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Cinderella- 'Nobody's Fool'


You take your road, I'll take mine
The paths have both been beaten
Searchin' for a change of pace
Love needs to be sweetened
I scream my heart out, just to make a dime
And with that dime I bought your love
But now I've changed my mind
I'm not your fool
Nobody's fool
Nobody's fool
I'm no fool

Here's a nugget for all of you glam rock fans out there. Cinderella's debut album, Night Songs is officially 30 years old. THIRTY! Does that make you feel as old as it makes me feel? I'd say that Cinderella spent a bit of their early years lots in a sea of fellow headbangers but when I looked back, they actually did chart pretty well. They were also innovative in that all of their first videos had a continuing storyline.

In their first video, "Shake Me" a Cinderella-type girl was transformed into a bad girl that hung with the band. Her wicked sisters (AKA the polka dot twins) were always nearby. "Nobody's Fool" picks up the story with Cinderella heading to practice with the guys but then leaving in order to make it home by midnight.

"Nobody's Fool" ended up being a really popular power ballad, with tons of radio play. MTV also had the video for it on an every four hour loop for months. In an era where power ballads by glam rockers were everywhere, this song probably lands in my top five or six.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Falco- 'Rock Me Amadeus'


He was Superstar
He was popular
He was so exalted
Because he had flair
He was a virtuose
Was a rock idol
And everyone shouted:
Come on and rock me Amadeus

Back in 1985 Falco became the very first German artist to score a number one hit in the U.S., thanks to the popularity of "Rock Me Amadeus". He was already incredibly popular is Germany, Austria and all of the U.K. but it took this song to make him a household name state side. He never managed to repeat that initial success with any of his follow up albums. In 1998 Falco was reportedly working on a comeback when the sport utility vehicle that he was driving collided with a bus in the Dominican Republic. Falco died of his injuries and an autopsy later showed that he had a mix of alcohol and cocaine in his system at the time of the accident. 

Check out Falco's fun tribute to legendary composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart below!

Monday, December 2, 2019

Daily Boom Holiday Tunes: Jody Watley - 'Like A Holiday'

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: John Lennon- 'Starting Over'


Our life together is so precious together,
We have grown - we have grown,
Although our love is still special,
Let's take our chance and fly away somewhere alone

I was nine years old when John Lennon's "(Just Like) Starting Over" was first released and it's actually one of those songs that really does stick in my head. It was really popular for several weeks leading up to Lennon being gunned down outside of The Dakota in NYC, but it shot to number one and stayed there after his death. I was a really young Beatles fan so of course, Double Fantasy was on my turntable and after Lennon's death I think it was all that I listened to for a long time.
You have to remember, back in 1981 the only way that we got our info was via the news or newspaper so at that time, people really clung to what little they had. In this case, it was Lennon's new songs that he would never get to perform live and the next phase of his love affair with Yoko Ono that would never happen. So many people criticized their relationship but obviously there was something about this woman that made Lennon decide to completely change his life for the better.
Since New Year's for most of us is about resolving to change pieces of our life for the better, the hope found in the lyrics to "(Just Like) Starting Over" really struck me as pretty appropriate. Lennon wrote of the future that he anticipated and even planned for, just like many of us have done while jotting down those resolutions. The only difference is that most of us will get to live long enough to see them come to fruition (or not), unlike Lennon.

Exclusive Interview: Toto's Steve Lukather on the Band Taking an Extended Break, a Second Book in the Works & Playing with Ringo Starr

Steve Lukather Official Promo Shot

ICYMI

Steve ("Luke") Lukather may be best known as a vocalist, guitarist, songwriter, producer and founding member of the iconic band Toto, but that's just scratching the surface of what he is actually capable of. He started his career as a session musician and you'll find his work, spanning various genres, on more than 1,500 albums. Lukather has spent decades working alongside so many of the industry's best, but Toto is his main job and cultivating the musical fruits of the bands' labor has been the centerpiece to his prolific career.

It was recently confirmed that Toto will be taking an indefinite break after their October 20th show at The Met in Philadelphia and I was lucky enough to catch up with Lukather for a chat about the band winding down, and what's next for him. Check it out below!

 Steve ("Luke") Lukather on life on the road:

"We work about five days a week and those days off cost money. Luckily I don't really need more than a day or two off once in a while. I'm out here working, it's not a vacation and I spend a lot of time in hotel rooms. They've turned into a bit of a sanctuary, to be honest with you. Especially since I'm running the business end of things too. I mean, there's a great team but I have to wake up and make all the decisions and take care of all the BS. That means that I've got to be up early and I've got to have some space to do things. I've got my guitar with me so I practice that and take care of the band business. I've got things to do and if not I can always watch films or peruse the internet or something.

I've been around the world so many times that going out to sightsee is almost laughable at this point! I've already done that so many times in the 44 years that I've been doing this, so I just kind of stay to myself. There's nothing normal about my life, but I've normalized it. I used to be a crazy party guy and so the days were spent recovering. Now I get up when I used to go to bed (laughing). I have to be sober, together and functioning to run a business on top of being an older guy on the road. I have to take care of myself now. I had my wild days and it was fun, I guess. They tell me that I had a great time (laughing), so I've got nothing left to prove in that arena. I'm really fine being an older guy out here and you have to learn to like hanging out with yourself, otherwise, you'll go mad (laughing).

It can be terribly depressing at times too. I've got little kids as well as grown kids, then my dog passed away and I was on the road when that happened. There are things that you just can't prepare for, but you've got to deal with them. I chose this job and the great thing is that the good parts are great and the things that suck, well they really suck and that makes it just like anyone else's life. My doctor has known me through every aspect of my career and I told him he should really come along and do everything that I do, eat what I eat, sleep when I sleep. Travel around with me for a month and then tell me your real thoughts on this job because in some ways it's tougher than people think."

Luke on being away from his family:

"It's very hard having little kids and being on the road, but it has always been that way. My father was in the television and movie business, so he would go on the road for six months at a time, long before cell phones, and I didn't love him any less. That gives me a little peace. My kids only know me this way, so if they only know me this way then there is nothing else to compare it to. When I come home I'm a dad and I do all the dad stuff, which I love doing."

Luke on working with his oldest son Trev:

"Ever since he could play guitar at all he has been working on my records with me. He has played songs for my solo record and he has played live with the band. He wrote Halestorm's first hit, so he has got a gold record, and he plays in this band What So Not that headlined Lollapalooza. Then he has his new band ZFG, with Mike Pocaro's kid on bass, There's a bidding war for that band, wait until you hear them! They opened for us all summer in Europe. He's my best friend so we always try and do as much as we can together. Right now it's his turn to be the artist. That's what he is focused on and I'm trying to help him with that."

Luke on Toto's music being categorized as 'yacht rock':

"The term yacht rock is kind of funny. All they did was put a label on a thing that we called, going to do session work, and we did that every day for fifteen years (laughing). They'd put a piece of paper with a bunch of cord symbols in front of us, count off the song and then you better play something because that's what you got hired to do. All of those records have suddenly become a genre. We didn't write all that music but we did contribute to the arrangement and the performance of it. We gave a lot of ourselves. That was just the era and style of music back then, sure there's some cheesy shit in there but there's also cheesy stuff today.

They always want to put terminology on things. They can't just say, hey this is a cool band, instead it has to be called soft rock. I mean at what point did the music go from soft rock to hard rock, what is the criteria for that shift? Is the guitar louder or does it have a bigger drum sound?  Why do we need terminology? If you don't like something that's cool but in the end, an E-chord is still an E-chord. Everyone likes things in a nice tight little box and there it is, now we know what to call it (laughing). The fact of the matter is that regardless of what anyone calls it, none of us expected any of this music to last almost 45 years like it has."

Toto Official Promo Shot

Luke on Toto becoming an interesting part of pop culture:

"We were Family Guy characters the other night and how cool is that? It was absolutely hysterical, we were howling with laughter. "Africa" kind of went crazy for us these last few years, it has kind of leveled off now which is fine with me, but it was really great for our careers. Everyone always says 'Africa by Toto' which makes us part of the whole schtick and gives us free publicity (laughing). I love all of it and it's an honor for us to be a part of pop culture. You have to be able to laugh at yourself and realize that parodies and things are really an honor."

Luke on working with Ringo Starr's All-Star Band:

"The Beatles spent eight years putting together music that would not only last for 55 years, but it's still going strong! There's never going to be another Beatles and I'm just so grateful that I got a little teeny piece of that experience by getting to work with three out of four of those guys. I've been working with Ringo's band for going on eight years now and I'm very honored to do that. When I first signed up in 2012 I thought I'd be doing one summer and here I am still. We've become really great friends and I just love this guy, regardless of the fact that he's Ringo (Starr). I mean, he is 100 times cooler than you think he is, but to have him as my friend is great. I'd love him even if his name was Joe Smith because he's just the kind of guy that makes you think, 'I want that guy to be my friend' (laughing), and I cherish that. I'd do anything for him and Ringo's band is like my vacation gig (laughing)."

Luke on Toto winding down, at least for the foreseeable future:

"Toto has been my job and I've spent my whole life cultivating this. Toto has had its' best year in terms of live performance and live revenue. Musically, including ticket sales and reviews and all of that, things are fantastic. Sadly, some stuff going on behind the scenes has kind of crippled us so we have to step off and see what happens next at the end of this tour. We are at the end of our 40th-year cycle, it's now actually 43 years of togetherness (laughing) and so we do need to go away for a while there's no question about that. For how long is the thing because there is definitely some darkness behind the scenes.

There is litigation from hateful people that want to tear us apart for no particular reason other than finding personal joy in doing so. None of it makes sense to anyone who is actually in the band. It's kind of insidious and messed up but it is how it is. Sometimes you're forced to do things at the time that don't really make sense but then, in the end, they really do work out for the best. It's just time for me to get out there and do some other stuff.  Out of the dust and ethers, something happens. I don't know what that is right now but I do know that change is good. Music is in my DNA and I've spent my whole life making it so I know that I can play whatever I decide that I want to play."

Luke on what's next for him:

"I am doing book number two! The first one was successful, which is surprising to me (laughing), but okay. I can't put my life into just those first 300 pages, I have a billion stories so now I can get more into the session thing and more into the goings-on behind the scenes. It's going to take me a few years to do it, just like the last one did and I've got a documentary in play too. There will never be a Toto story per se because there's a person that'll stop that. Actually, there are a couple of people now that'll stop it from happening.

So I'll write a second book, write a solo record, I'm going back out with Ringo, I've got other tours to do and I want to stay home and just be a dad. I want to watch my little kids grow up a bit, I'm hardly out of work (laughing), I haven't been out of work since I've started so I'm very fortunate, but there is a price to it all. So, for now, I'll just get to stay home a little bit more and that will be really, really cool for me. This is a great time to step back because it's the end of a cycle. We never thought we would get to forty years, are you kidding me? We're going out with a bang though! Every night there's nothing but good vibes on stage, the reviews are great, revenue is good and the audiences are loving it. We have just decided to go out there and kick ass."

Steve Lukather & Joseph Williams
Color By Kevin Albinder

Luke on the future of Toto:

"There have been eight versions of Toto, eight from the beginning lineup right up to today. People come, people go and we reconfigure. I'm the only guy that has been there for every one of them. Will there be a 9.0 (version)? I don't know, not the way it is now. It breaks my heart and I can't predict the future, but I'll tell you that on October 20th, in Philadelphia, it's the last time that you'll see this incarnation of the band."

Check out Toto's official site for tickets to their final shows & check out Luke's official site to stay up to date on everything that he's doing!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Daily Boom Holiday: Steve Lukather & Friends- 'Carol of the Bell'

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Expose`- 'December'


"Now, the time of the year

Is finally here

It's the time when I spend
All my hours in fear
Emptiness just comes and goes
Hopefully, it doesn't show

Voices calling my name

Deep inside of my brain

They don't stop 'cause
They're trying to drive me insane
I don't know why you went away
Ooh, the memories will never fade

December once again"

It's absolutely impossible to make it all the way through the month of December without doing a very obvious daily 80's throwback. "December" is a track off of Expose`'s debut album, Exposure that never really got the credit that it deserves. Way back in 1987 Arista was marketing this trio as a dance or freestyle group and perhaps didn't realize just how well some of their ballads would eventually do. "Come Go With Me" was the lead single off of the album and "December" actually ended up being its' B-side.

As an unapologetic Expose`fan, I have to say that this is one of my very favorite songs by them. Gioia Bruno leads "December" with Jeanette Jurado and Ann Curless backing her up and the end result might just be one of the best ballads of the 80's never to be released as a single. It makes sense that "December" was a B-side because it certainly deserved play, but the ladies team obviously underestimated the wide range that these ladies actually have. This was several months before "Seasons Change" was released and everyone fell in love with the group so "December" was a risky bet. Had it been on a follow-up album it might have been a single. itself.

If you've never listened to this song, here's your chance. It's a nice reminder of just how amazing Bruno's voice really is.


Daily Boom Lost Hit: Rick Springfield - 'Souls'

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Franke & the Knockouts- 'Sweetheart'


 Sweetheart
Who love you from the start?
Who treats you like a star?
Oh sweetheart
Who loves you baby?
Who loves you wrong or right?
Cause you're the spark in my life
Yeah day and night


"Sweetheart" by Franke & the Knockouts is one of those songs that I remember loving but I knew absolutely nothing about. It ended up on my Discover playlist that Spotify hand-picks for each user every Monday. This song was a top-ten Billboard hit for the New Jersey group way back in June of 1981. Franke & the Knockouts eventually put out two successful albums and had a few singles before splitting in 1986.

This is where it gets pretty cool, Tico Torres moved on to play drums for none other than Bon Jovi and lead vocalist Franke Previte's writing talents were honored a few years later. He contributed two tracks on the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, Eric Carmen's "Hungry Eyes" and the infamous "I Had The Time Of My Life". The later actually earned Previte an Academy Award for Best Original Song. 

Before those great accomplishments came "Sweetheart", complete with chest hair, glitter and (not so) slick dance moves!

Friday, November 29, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Phil Collins - 'Another Day In Paradise'


"She calls out to the man on the street
"Sir, can you help me?
It's cold and I've nowhere to sleep,
Is there somewhere you can tell me? 
He walks on, doesn't look back
He pretends he can't hear her
Starts to whistle as he crosses the street
Seems embarrassed to be there."


"Another Day in Paradise" was Phil Collins 7th number one song in his solo career and it also became a bit of a lightening rod  for controversy. The song addresses homelessness and the plight of those on the streets. It brought awareness to the problem, which still exists in every U.S. city and the songs aim was to remind people that their own personal situations could always be worse.

Collins came under fire because critics thought he capitalized on the topic without doing anything to actually help those living on the streets. He has said that it was written because having money and fame doesn't mean that you're out of touch with the reality of the quality of those around you. 

It's one of those things that I think you can go in circles about. Awareness without action doesn't create change. But that awareness may have encouraged many people to take action , which meand Collins hope for the song (and message) was accomplished. 
Check out the video for "Another Day in Paradise" below. How does it leave you feeling?

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Tina Turner- 'What's Love Got To Do With It'


You must understand
Though the touch of your hand
Makes my pulse react
That it's only the thrill
Of boy meeting girl
Opposites attract

This week is pretty much the start of summer in my house and if you live on the East coast like I do then you were probably more than happy to see the sun shining for real.  I was in the car doing the last day of school drop off thing when I heard Tina Turner's "What's Love Got To Do With It" and boy did it take me back. As my soon-to-be high school freshman got out of the car to get on her bus it clicked that I was exactly her age when this song was popular.

In fact, way back in 1984, Tina topped Billboard's charts and boy was she in great company. The rest of the top ten was rounded out by the likes of Prince, Huey Lewis & the NewsJohn Waite and Corey Hart. Back in 1984, we used to do the math to figure out when our favorite videos would be on. Admit it, you did it too. New videos were at the top of every hour and they repeated every four hours. If you watched in the morning before school then you likely knew that the same exact videos would be on the next day, just 12 minutes later because the schedule barely changed at all.

Do you remember the summer of Tina strutting in those fishnets with her bitty jean jacket and pretty epic wig? Of course, you do because it was the year of Jackson's Victory tour which we all fantasized about going to see. My friends and I all took turns leaving for the Jersey Shore and mailing each other postcards from Wildwood as if we'd not actually see each other again in a matter of days. Then there were those white clunky shell necklaces and bracelets. I think I wore three at a time because they were so cool and seemed to somehow prove that I had a life outside of Smalltown, USA. Ghostbusters was an absolute phenomenon and Beverly Hills Cop was a huge deal. Oh and my hair reeked of Salon Selectives. The smell is like a mash-up of strawberry, cherry and god knows what else and if you're REALLY lucky you can find it to this day!


My dad was thrilled the year that Tina reinvented herself and came back. He had been a DJ for years and had an in-home studio that I would kill for now and he knew what a powerhouse she actually was. While my local DJ's focused on how great she sounded after mentioning her great legs on the 45 of "What's Love Got to Do With It", dad always had a way of making me connect with the stripped down music, lyrics and the voice presenting it all to me. I'm also pretty sure that he appreciated Tina's fishnets too.

31 years ago, as Tina walked those legs right to the top of Billboard's Hot 100, where she stayed for three weeks, I was walking my little legs into 8th-grade classes just like my daughter now. It makes me wonder, when she is my age and looks back on the summer before 8th grade, what will stand out in her mind?

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Dokken- 'In My Dreams'


What can I say or do
You won't come back, we're through
I've realized too late
That, baby, your love has turned away
In my dreams--it's still the same
Your love is strong, it still remains
In my dreams--you're still by me
Just the way it used to be

I think that one of the most underrated hard rock bands of the 80's is Dokken. While Guns N' RosesSkid Row and Motley Crue were steamrolling their way to worldwide music domination Dokken was always there too. In their 37 years of performing, they have sold over 10 million records and have had several singles chart well, including "In My Dreams".

Monday, November 25, 2019

Daily Boom 90's Nostalgia: Queen - 'The Show Must Go On'


Empty spaces, what are we living for
Abandoned places, I guess we know the score
On and on, does anybody know what we are looking for
Another hero, another mindless crime
Behind the curtain, in the pantomime
Hold the line, does anybody want to take it anymore
The show must go on


"The Show Must Go On" is probably one of my most favorite songs by Queen. It was recorded in 1990 at the height of Freddie Mercury's battle with full blown AIDS and there was concern that he wouldn't be able tp actually hit the necessary high notes. While the rest of the band may have thought that he was too weak to actually perform it Mercury knew better and pulled off the tough vocals in spite of his fading health. The song itself is filled with innuendo about Mercury's health and how change was pretty imminent. 

The press had speculated that the legendary front man was ill but no confirmation of Mercury's HIV-positive status was ever given until the day before his death in 1991. "The Show Must Go On" was also released in 1991 and the video that accompanies it features the band performing together at various gigs over the years. Check out the late, great Freddie Mercury and the rest of Queen below.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

90's Nostalgia: Londonbeat- 'I've Been Thinking About You'


We must have been stone crazy when we thought we were just friends
'Cause I miss you, baby, and I've got those feelings again.
I guess I'm all confused about you.
I feel so in love, oh, baby, what can I do?

I've been thinking about you, I've been thinking about you.
I've been thinking about you, I've been thinking about you.
Shi-pow-pow!


Do you guys want to feel really old? Remember Londonbeat's one-hit-wonder "I've Been Thinking About You"? Sure you do and if you're blanking on the song click play below and you're likely to remember it after just a few notes. Anyway, "I've Been Thinking About You" hit number one on Billboard's charts 27 years ago.

Twenty-seven years ago.

This song was huge and it really does stand the test of time doesn't it? Most 90's dance songs are either obvious house hits or else they have a new jack swing vibe. Londonbeat could have released this just last month exactly as is and it would still get a lot of radio play. It's just a great dance track, one that is a perfect way to start your Thursday morning!

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Exclusive Interview: 'Dukes' Star John Schneider Brings His Plan to Fruition by Releasing Memoir, New Music & Holiday Film 'Christmas Cars'


(John Schneider Promo Shot- Official Facebook)

When I mention the name John Schneider I'm going to bet that the first image that comes to mind is a flash of the 70's breakout television hit, The Dukes of Hazzard, right? If you're a little younger than me then maybe you're brain races to that dad you wished you had on Smallville. Schneider has made a name for himself by breathing life into characters that are uniquely embedded in our own personal history. He is also a well-established country music veteran that has spent this entire year manifesting a trio of projects that complement each other beautifully.

I caught up with John earlier this week and learned that he is standing in exactly the spot he intended to be in as the holidays roll around.

John Schneider on manifesting a book, a movie and new music all at once:

"A whole lot of work and a whole lot of planning went into this year because things don't just happen by themself. We've sown a lot of seeds this year. I think the last time that we spoke I was thinking about doing a book. I'd put little potential chapter titles in my phone as people would ask me different things, and then I would fill in some details. I made sure to write about the bad stuff, like losing the property, because you have to put the bad in the recipe too. Alicia (Allain, Schneider's business partner, and wife) and I were talking and she said that it needed to be a movie. I didn't want to do a documentary, and so she suggested putting all of these things into a movie that celebrates the 40th anniversary of Dukes of Hazzard while weaving our lives into it. That became not only the book, "My Life, My Way" but it also became Christmas Cars, which is already the top-selling movie that we've made thus far."

John on the importance of Christmas Cars:

"The great thing about being independent filmmakers is that Alicia and I can make what we want and say what we want to. When the world sees this movie and hears things like the war of northern aggression, rather than the term Civil War, hopefully, some people will hear that and google it. We want to make people curious about the details of the people and events that they think they're already familiar with. I'm not beating them over the head, I'm just throwing things out there to make them think. We try and do that in a really fun way in Christmas Cars. There's heart in it, there's obviously Christmas in it and there's the community in it and I think that is really the salt in the recipe that was The Dukes of Hazzard. You need community and you just can't get anything done without the help, support, and appreciation of your friends and family. You can try and you can wear yourself out. All kinds of things happen in life to try and keep you from your goals, but you persevere because you have made a promise to do so.

I think that Christmas Cars is going to speak to a lot of people, about a half-hour after they've seen it. The message hits you a little bit later on and to me, that's the mark of a good film. It shouldn't end just because the end credits roll. It's like gumbo and it needs to marinate for a while because it tastes better later. Hopefully, people will want to watch it again because of that."

John on challenging the assumed narrative:

"The (inaccurately called)  Confederate flag, which is really the Union Jack, has become like a universal sign of racism and intolerance. So, anyone who has that on their car, as if I put it on the General Lee myself, must also be racist. They don't even give you the benefit of the doubt, if I have that car then I must be racist. So now wait a minute, just because I have a bedsheet in my chest of drawers, am I accused of being a Klansman? No, I'm not. So why not actually ask what I think about it before just jumping to such a conclusion? Is it because I might have an intelligent answer that might diffuse some of the fear that's being sold out there? I bet that's exactly it."

(John Schneider Promo Shot- Official Facebook)

John on reaping the rewards of what he has sown:

"People are buying the book, people are buying the movie, and people are buying our music that's in the movie and so all of that is just incredible. I can't say that it's completely unexpected because like I said, these are seeds we have sown and they are plans that we've had. People will say, 'Well, it's great when a plan comes together', and yes, it really is (laughing). Our plan was to do the music and the book and then to put both of those into the movie. Then finally, our plan was to successfully release everything out into the world. Had we not planned it and had we not decided to go for it then none of it would have happened. I believe firmly in just going for it, make a plan and go for what you want. You have to have a target so that you know when you hit it. Plan your work and work your plan. The worst thing that can happen is that you're just breathing air and taking up space."

John on challenging others' to do what they love:

"I realize that there are people that think they're supposed to be miserable and so they just do what they have to in order to get by, rather than doing what they love. They do whatever to pay the mortgage and the car note and somehow they've been told that they're supposed to be miserable and they've believed it. A lot of people have grown complacent with that and they're okay with it. If you think you're okay with that then I dare you to question whether or not you really are. See if when you question yourself quietly you don't come to a realization that you're here for a purpose.

We're all here for some reason and we all play some part in this game. What's your part? What position do you play and what position are you supposed to play? I think that a lot of people have bought into the idea that they're supposed to be spectators when it's not necessarily true. Chances are that you knew why you were here when you were a little kid and then life and loved ones talked you out of it. See if that idea still makes you smile and if it does, move towards it. Read books about it, just do something and see where it leads you."

(John Schneider Promo Shot- Official Facebook)

John on writing another book:

"Those who have read the book seem to be loving it, at least that's the feedback that I'm getting. I feel great about it but I have to say, writing these chapters made me start thinking of other things to talk about. I can't help but think of how to peel the artichoke back even further so that I can get into some more stuff for the next book. In the first book you're in a position of having to come up with the right recipe to make it all work. The second time around it's not exactly going to write itself, but it is going to categorize itself and that's really terrific. So once 2019 is squared away that is definitely something that I'll be working on."

You can order John Schneider's new memoir, "My Life, My Way" right here.
Check out John Schneider's official site to order Cars for Christmas. Also, join him on Facebook and become part of his interactive community!

 

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Taylor Dayne - 'Tell It To My Heart'

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"The passion's so complete
It's never ending
As long as I receive
This message you're sending
Body to body, soul to soul
Always feel you near
So say the words I long to hear
Tell it to my heart
Tell me I'm the only one
Is this really love or just a game
Tell it to my heart
I can feel my body rock
Every time you call my name."

If freestyle and dance music was your thing back in 1988 then you had to have worn out a Taylor Dayne tape or two. She first hit the charts in late 1987 with "Tell It To My Heart" and she followed that with three more top ten singles off of her debut album. If you were in a club, you heard Taylor, if you were in the car Taylor was on the radio. If you flipped on MTV, there she was. She was a pop staple everywhere and her big hair, red lips and bomber jackets left a lasting visual impact. Check out her very first video below. Do you still kind of love it?

Friday, November 22, 2019

Daily Boom: 90's Nostalgia: Pebbles - 'Giving You The Benefit'


"Baby how could you be hangin' out on a diamond queen
Ain't you missin' me poor little me
When you knew all the time that you could have been
With your homegirl lovin' and a
Kissin' on sweet little me
Don't you know if you want to be a man you
Gotta work real hard
If you want to make me feel like I'm your number one then
Nothin' in the world should make us part
'Cause we can make it work if you
Take it with the hurt from the heart."


Long before Pebbles was linked to the girl group that she created, TLC, she could be found burning up the charts herself. In 1990 she released her second album, Always, which was completely produced by Babyface and then-husband L.A. Reid. The result was some literal New Jack Swing magic. "Giving You the Benefit" was the lead single off of the album and it landed in the top ten on Billboard's Hot 100. 

This song was straight dancefloor fire when it was first released and it's one of those that still gets people moving. This queen had a way of throwing down female anthems that we were all able to sing along to with a nice bit of attitude. Pebbles, the artist hasn't made an album in a while, but Sister Perri can be found on social media promoting all things peaceful and godly.

But let's revisit this fantastic song. Oh and another thing, this video is for me, one of the very best of the 90's. Check it out.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Rod Stewart- 'Passion'

Rod Stewart...don't ask....I've loved him since I was little. I think it's the hair and the raspy voice.

Tonight in the city
You won't find any pity
Hearts are being twisted
Another lover cheated, cheated
In the bars and the cafes, passion
In the streets and the alleys, passion
A lot of pretending, passion
Everybody searching, passion

I've already told you guys that music played a huge part in everyday life for me as a kid in the 80's. My dad had the most enviable record collection but of course there was conflict along the way. My mom didn't exactly love his hobby and she blatantly disapproved of a lot of the artists that he brought in the front door. He got away with a lot but it was fairly well known that dad was expected to keep a close eye on what 45's I wanted. The only problem there was that, because music is such a subjective thing he just wasn't inclined to tell me no. 

Dad suffered through several spinning's of "Disco Duck" before being happy to watch me move on to ABBA. Dad might have been a classic rock kind of guy but he had no problem encouraging my love of disco, at least until I discovered Pat Benetar and then my taste was all over the place.

I still can remember this one Saturday afternoon when he and I drove to a record store in a strip mall next to a Kmart (back when the blue light special was alive and well). There were several record stores that we would frequent and if you told me that they wouldn't exist a few decades later I would never have believed it. Anyway, the Saturday afternoon deal was always that I could get a 45 or 2 if it was a really good week. I looked and looked, knowing exactly what I wanted, Rod Stewart's "Passion". It was probably 1980 and not exactly appropriate for a 9-year-old. Dad actually said no, probably because he envisioned my mom's reaction if he bought it fr me.

The next weekend I had a plan. I had 179 pennies in a sandwich bag because if it was my money he probably wouldn't stop me. I walked up to the counter with "Passion" in one hand and the pennies in the other. The shop owner made me count them out and then he scooped them up and dumped them into his register drawer. I think my dad secretly liked how nervy I was, but warned me that my mom would be pissed & he would likely get blasted too.

I don't remember her words exactly but I do remember him defending me and saying I probably just loved the music (true story) and he wasn't going to stop me if I had the nerve to bust my piggy bank for it. Needless to say, "Passion" got thrown in the garbage but about a week later my dad bought it and magically gave it to me after he was done with it. For years afterwards my dad would buy 45's, put them on tape & I'd inherit the vinyl. 

It's 35 years later and yes, not only do I have that 45 but I also have the album that is was on. "Passion" is played fairly often in my house, to this day.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Daily Boom 90's Nostalgia: George Michael - 'Jesus to a Child'


"And what have I learned
From all this pain
I thought I'd never feel the same
About anyone or anything again
But now I know
When you find a love
When you know that it exists
Then the lover that you miss
Will come to you on those cold, cold nights
When you've been loved
When you know it holds such bliss
Then the lover that you kissed
Will comfort you when there's no hope in sight"


I jumped on the George Michael bandwagon the very first time that I heard "Careless Whisper" blaring through my father's speakers. He and Andrew Ridgely put out some of the best pop songs of the 80's but I always felt like Michael really hit his stride in the 90's. He was grown and had experienced the harshness of real adult life. By the time he released Older in 1996, he had already lost one of the loves of his life and was starting to see the downside of fame firsthand.  I think he poured everything into that album and you can feel it.

"Jesus to a Child"  is one of those songs. You can feel the fragility and the brokenness in him and in his lyrics. For every fluffy pop song out there, there needs to be something as deep as this to balance the scales. "Jesus to a Child" has a way of uniting anyone that has felt deep pain and unimaginable loss. Sooner or later, we all get there and connect with this. Check out the video, it's George at his most honest. 


Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Kiss - 'Tears Are Falling'


"Something is wrong as I hold you near
Somebody else holds your heart, yeah
You look at me with your eyes in tears
And then it's raining, feels like it's raining
Oh no, tears are falling
Oh no, tears are falling, whoo oh
Oh no, tears are falling, whoo oh
I saw you cry
And now it's raining (yeah)
Looks like it's raining (someone stole your heart)
And now it's raining, feels like it's raining."

1984 was a monstorous year for KISS. Their album Animalize spawned the hit "Heaven's On Fire" and for the first time the hard rock icons were performing and shooting videos without their infamous makeup. It was almost strange to see them all glammed up. Big hair, lipstick and colored spandex replaced their old painted face look and the MTV crowd kind of ate it up. 

By the fall of 1985 the boys were back with their 13th studio album, Asylum, which didn't do as well as its' predecessor. However, it brought with it one of my all-time favorite KISS tracks, "Tears Are Falling".  The video was filmed earlier in the year in London and for whatever reason I was kind of obsessed with it. My uber religious mother believed that anything connected to KISS was leading fans down a path of imminent destruction, so I really had to keep my love for the band on the low. 

Instead of watching MTV after school and out in the open like my friends I'd get up super early to watch it before mom crawled out of bed. There was a point in time when the  "Tears Are Falling" video played at 6:40am for about a week straight and I was up and out of bed to see it. 

Thirty-plus years later, I still love it so check out the video below!

Daily Boom Lost Hit: Paul Hardcastle - '19'

Monday, November 18, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Ozzy Osbourne 'Shot In The Dark'


"Out on the street, I'm stalking the night,

I can hear my heavy breathing.

Paid for the kill but it doesn't seem right;
something there I can believe in .

Voices are calling from inside my head.

I can hear them, I can hear them,

vanishing memories of things that were said,
they can't try to hurt me now.

But a shot in the dark, one step away from you.

A shot in the dark, always creeping up on you"

I can remember being in high school and everyone loving Ozzy OsbourneBlack Sabbath seemed to be a group that all of my friends worshipped at the feet of and I simply just didn't get it. I couldn't exactly climb aboard the crazy train, until "Shot In The Dark" started playing on my local rock station. Yeah it was probably a little more pop-ish than most of Ozzy's stuff and maybe that's why it appealed to me. While 80% of me lived in headbanger heaven the other 20% was dancing their ass off to club hits.

Weird I know.

Even today, "Shot In The Dark" feels a bit different to me. Ozzy's hair is bigger, his clothes are a bit glitzier and he has this look on his face that tells me that in spite of the booze & the drugs, he knows exactly what he's doing. This song was intended to broaden his appeal so that his fan base would grow.

And it worked.

Check out "Shot In The Dark" below!



Sunday, November 17, 2019

Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Howard Jones - 'Everlasting Love'


She wasn't looking for a cuddle in the back seat
He wasn't looking for a five minute thrill
She wasn't thinking of tomorrow or of next week
This vacancy he meant to permanently fill
I need an everlasting love
I need a friend and a lover divine
An everlasting precious love
Wait for it, wait for it, give it some time.

Howard Jones is an interesting 80's icon. Despite having 15 songs to hit the top 40 from 1983-1992, he was hardly a media darling. Jones is to this day widely considered to be one of the most defining figures from the syth pop era but back then he was a bit of a misfit. There were always guys that looked cooler and acts that were splashier and in the end Jones actually admitted that it was just fine with him. He never necessarily was taking aim at fitting in anyway.

Instead of being known for his look, it's his music that has lasted for decades. Catchy songs like "What Is Love" and "No One Is To Blame" still get plenty of blame. I happen to still love "Everlasting Love"- a nifty little tune about a guy looking for a whole lot more than just a quick fling. Check out the video below!

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Exclusive Interview: Kip Winger is Dancing Between Symphonic Work and Musical Theater While Laying the Groundwork for the Next 'Winger' Release

Photo: Kip Winger- Official Facebook

ICYMI

There are so many misconceptions that go hand in hand with being a bonafide rockstar. One of the biggest is the notion that once you "make it"  in the music industry and score a platinum record or some other oddly shaped trophy, you're set for life. You know, money just keeps on flowing while difficult doors are magically opened for decades on end. The real truth is that any end of the music industry is a really harsh place to exist, even on the best of days. You can be on the road playing sold-out gigs now and in six months time, you can be back to waiting tables with zero musical options. It's a scenario that Kip Winger knows well, as he went from riding the late 80's hard rock wave with his own band (Winger), to having his career all but buried by MTV- the same network that had made him a household name. The only solid guarantee in music is that you're going to hit bottom far more often than you strike gold and it takes talent, timing and unshakable determination to pull yourself back up again.

That sitting on the bottom feeling is something that Winger has dealt with on multiple occasions and it's likely a big part of what has helped to transform him into a man that is comfortable in his own skin, flaws and all. He carries with him a depth that only comes from a life that has been fully lived and transparency that is quite beautiful. While the rockstar days aren't totally behind him, composing symphonic music and simply striving to be better, is what captures the majority of Winger's attention these days.

I caught up with Kip Winger recently and quickly realized that he is the kind of man that carries with him a great deal of wisdom, the kind that can rub off if you're ready and willing.

Google the lyrics to any of the songs on some of Winger's solo albums like, "Songs from the Ocean Floor" or "This Conversation Seems Like a Dream" and half a verse into it you'll understand that his writing is deeper than most.

Kip Winger on writing rock, progressive and symphonic music:

“I'm a believer that if you want to be a good writer then you have to sit down and write every day. You can't just expect it to hit you on a sunny (or a cloudy) kind of day. I'm the kind of person that believes that you just sit down and make it happen. One day is good, one day is bad and one day you might get to an idea that you'll work on in a month. Organizational skills are key when it comes to inspiration because the inspiration will hit you and it'll leave you just as fast as it hits you. I have to have a recorder or something with you because the inspiration for music for me usually comes from my subconscious being almost in a state of a trance or I can be doing something like grocery shopping. I sit down and write every day when I'm home. I tour a lot and it's harder to do it when I'm on the road, but I do carry tools to write when I'm on the road.  When I'm home I write every day and I try to keep the projects that I'm working on very organized. Now I have these big projects that take much longer than just sitting down to write an album, but even still an album will take me a year.”

Kip on his own personal writing style:

“I do a lot of stream of consciousness writing as well as pursuing specific ideas. I know what I like so I don't just meander around and hope to get struck by a great idea. I do get struck by great ideas and all of the best ideas are purely by accident. You can't just sit down and write a great idea and I challenge any artist in the world to say that their ideas came because they thought of them. It just doesn't happen like that. Those ideas come because you work, work, work and then the universe will show you something that you weren't seeing and it'll show it very clearly so that you think, 'Oh my god, that's amazing'. You spend a little time getting high on that feeling and then you try to develop it and realize you suck (laughing) because the idea alone was its' greatest fruition.

I don't think I'm different than many other artists and I think that my process is probably pretty similar to most people. I may just be more dedicated to it than most people and I'm probably less dedicated to it than some people. I'd say I'm in the more dedicated category and I know what it means to be an artist. Having that understanding is about all that I can hope for.”

Kip on what influences his solo work:

"Well in my solo stuff when you hear world music it's a direct descendant of Peter Gabriel. I never dug down into authentic world music, it all came from the generation of Peter Gabriel and other English artists that were introducing that stuff into their music. If you listen to a song like "Don't Let Go" off of This Conversation Seems Like a Dream you just have to know that I was heavily influenced by Peter Gabriel. There's no way around it and I'm proud of it because he is a towering genius among us, the guy is incredible.

Photo: Kip Winger & Robby Rothschild by Aline Narducci

Kip on the creation of "Sure Was a Wildflower", one of his favorite songs:

“I wrote that song for a movie. I read the script and I don't remember the name, but the movie came out and they didn't like my song (chuckling). I really like that song. I was working with a very well-known television composer named Dominic Frontiere, who did old school stuff like Outer Limits and The Flying Nun, plus he was a jazz guy. He was working on the film when we both lived in Santa Fe and so he asked me if I was up for writing a song for it. So, I wrote the song for the movie and they didn't like it so I put it on my album instead. The lyrics come right from reading the script and that's one of my favorite songs out of everything I've ever written."

Photo: Kip Winger- Official Facebook

Creative people generally aren't too quick to admit their fear of failure. Musicians and artists need to make money and admitting that you're insecure can prevent you from landing gigs, but that doesn't mean that the fear doesn't exist. In fact, it usually is just left unspoken, but festering beneath the surface. Making platinum records and earning Grammy nominations apparently won't chase these fears away either.

Kip on admitting his creative fears in spite of finding success:

“I mean it's terrifying, I'm not going to lie. I'm working on symphony number one for Nashville Symphony and I'm scared to death, it is terrifying. I don't think you ever get over that kind of fear. The only people that I know that have gotten over it are people with giant egos and those same people usually aren't the better artists. I don't think you can get over the fear if you know the difference, I mean, how can you? You've always got Beethoven looming over your head. In my case, there are great composers that I'm actually friends with now that crush me. I can call them up and ask what they did in bar nine million of their fifth symphony so I'm in a really strange situation. All you can do is one note after the next, or if you're a writer you put one word after the one before, after the one before that and pretty soon you've got a novel.”

If life is intended to be a journey then it's only fair that we would need some help along the way. Winger learned years ago that he is wise to watch and learn from the steps, and the missteps of others.

Kip on the importance of mentors:

“I actively seek out mentors. I grew up reading this book that my dad gave me, "Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill. In it, he talks about shadowing those who are doing what you want to successfully do, and so finding a mentor has always been a big thing for me. Even at the ripe old age of 57, I still have a couple people that I consider my mentors. I'll call them up and ask for advice on all sorts of things like how to get out of problems, or I'll ask them to look at my music, or I'll ask them why I suck (laughing).

I don't think that need for guidance should ever go away. I think that if you believe your own gospel too much and think that you’re all that, then you become a fraud or a parody of yourself. You have to have the humility to look around you to see and understand that people are as good or better than you. The people that I'm looking at are usually better than me and so I just keep trying. There's nothing else you can do but keep trying to get better. You can't not be you, that's the other part of the equation.”

He has spoken often about taking ballet in his teens and how it was the key to unlocking his love of classical music and yes, Winger does still dance.

Kip on the importance of dance class, even still:

“I like to stay in touch with dance because when I compose music, I consider dance even if it's not something that's going to end up being choreographed. My last ballet class was maybe nine months ago. I recently did a tango class and I'm kind of interested in that. That was just last week actually.”

Photo: Winger Promo Shot

Kip on that new Winger project:

Reb (Beach) and I are going to start writing and we'll try to knock something out in August. He's out with Whitesnake now and I'm very busy, so we've got some time set aside in August for us to get together and try to do something. I don't know what we're going to do and I don't like to preplan it. I like to sit down with Reb and see what the mood of the day is. It's impossible for Reb and I not to sound like Winger because the combination of us is the sound of the band, no matter what song we do.”

Kip on why he can’t just coast on Winger’s early success:

“I think human beings, in general, tend to be lazy. A lot of people can find success at one thing and be like, okay I did it, I'm done and I can live off of that credential for the rest of my life. I don't even feel successful in many ways, all of that stuff sort of passed by me and it never sunk in. I'm not the kind of artist that can repeat myself and so I don't just sit around and think of the glory days. The glory days for me are still ahead of me, in terms of art. For me, it all comes from a very artistic point of view. I'm not interested in the commercial aspect of it, to my own detriment by the way, because I'm not a rich guy. I don't have tons of money but what I leave behind, that's the most important thing."

As if the rock and symphonic worlds aren't keeping him busy enough, Winger has teamed with Damien Gray to create a piece of musical theater.

Kip on Get Jack, a Musical Thriller:

“The Get Jack concept album is coming out in the next couple months and then we're hoping to do a lab later this year. We've got a great director, Kelly Divine, and we just signed a producer so it's moving along but it's a very heavy lift. Hamilton took ten years before it was up and successful. This has so many moving parts and the scheduling is difficult but it's moving forward and I'm happy with the progress given what we've been able to put together.”

It only makes sense that a man who values mentors to facilitate his future growth would still have a pretty impressive list of things to do.

Kip on what’s next:

“Honestly, more of what I'm doing but I need to try and make it better. I'm done seeking out new genres. I'm not going to do that anymore and I'm actually going to try and reduce all of the different directions. I'd like to reduce everything down into my solo records because that's a place where I can do it all. I know who I am and I know my limitations very well. I don't have any pretenses about who I am.  I keep moving basically, and I adapt and overcome. I've experienced tons of obstacles. My big thing is time and I don't have enough time to do all of the things that I want to be doing. I'm comfortable with who I am but I'm not comfortable with my ability, especially with my orchestral writing, I'm just not good enough yet. I might do another musical and I'd like to write an opera. Yeah, I'd really like to write an opera.”


Photo: Kip Winger official Site

Check out Kip's official site for updates on everything he's doing, plus info on upcoming gigs. Also, keep an eye on Winger's band site for updates on new music & tour dates.



Daily Boom 80's Throwback: Paula Abdul - 'Straight Up'

Image result for paula abdul straight up

"Lost in a dream;
I don't know which way to go.
A-let me say if you are all that you seem,
Then baby, I'm movin' way too slow.
I've been fooled before;
Wouldn't like to get my love caught in the slammin' door.
How about some information, please?
Straight up, now tell me ,
Do you really wanna love me forever,
Oh, oh, or am I caught in hit and run?"

I think just about everyone loved Paula Abdul back in the late 80's. She kind of seemed like the girl next door in interviews but once she hit the dance floor it was nothing but fire. My friends and I wanted to dance like her and the guys around us wanted to spend a little time with her as well. What is cool about "Straight Up" is that it sold a million copies the first week that it was out and it shot to the top of Billboard's Hot 100 before a video was even released!

Oh and that video? It was kind of everything. The black and white was a nice departure from the bright colors of the decade and it was memorable. People over the years have claimed that Abdul can't sing but again I need to remind you that she hit number one without a video filled with her sick choreography to bolster the song.

Abdul eventually traded in making music for mentoring and judging others on shows like American Idol. Just when it seemed like her own performing days might be over Abdul started hitting the stage again. You can check out upcoming performance dates on her official site, but in the meantime, check out Abdul at her best below!

Daily Boom Lost Hit: Scandal ft. Patty Smyth- 'The Warrior'

Friday, November 15, 2019

Freestyle Friday: Sweet Sensation - 'Never Let You Go'


"You are the earth and I am the sea
The world together, forever, I'll be all that you need
You and I were always meant to be
If you should leave and go your own way
I'll still love, I will survive but every night I pray
That you will find your way right back to me
I'll, I'll never let you go
I'll keep you on my heart"

I love Freestyle Friday here at Boom because it's one of my very favorite genres of old school music. Back in the fall of 1988 glam rock was everywhere and it almost made some of the dance tracks even more appealing since they were so completely different from the likes of, well, "Welcome To The Jungle".  Sweet Sensation was one of several girl groups (Expose`, The Cover Girls, JJ Fad, etc.) that were doing battle on Billboard's charts. "Never Let You Go" was their first break out hit and after it hit number one on the dance charts mainstream radio also embraced the girls.

Betty Dee Lebron is the main voice behind the group and back in the 80's they had some of the best choreography around. The original line up of Lebron and sisters Mari and Margie Fernandez grew up together on NYC's lower east side and by 1988 Shelia Vega replaced Mari. Together the trio performed all over the world, bringing their Latin freestyle sound with them.

Sweet Sensation was one of those groups that helped convince me to take a break from the hair bands every now and then. My friends and I also figured out how to mix the huge headbanger hair with biker shorts, crop tops, and little ruffled skirts so that we could pay homage to both genres at the same time.

Ironically, the Fernandez sisters technically own the Sweet Sensation name and along with Sheila Vega still do shows. Betty Dee also performs the Sweet Sensation catalog regularly with Belle Ritter and Jenae Colon. Both ladies joined Sweet Sensation back in 1991 and have stuck with its' original lead singer ever since. The great news for freestyle fans (especially in the NYC area) is that you can still catch the ladies performing all of their classics live!