Tuesday, February 23, 2010

O Canada!

01 Tragically Hip - Wheat Kings
02 Japandroids - Sovereignty
03 Kate and Anna McGarrigle - Complainte Pour Ste Catherine
04 Wolf Parade - You Are A Runner And I Am My Father
05 Metric - Hardwire
06 Nathan Lawr - Swimming Like A Needle In The Hay
07 Odds - It Falls Apart
08 Ladyhawk - I Don't Always Know What You're Saying
09 The Squires - The Sultan
10 K'naan - In the Beginning
11 Lowest of the Low - The Dogs of February (Stanley vocal)
12 Jill Barber - Don't Go Easy
13 Black Mountain - Don't Run Our Hearts Around
14 Bruce Cockburn - Soul Of A Man
15 Cowboy Junkies - Anniversary Song
16 Death From Above - Romantic Rights
17 Feist & Constantines - Islands in the Stream
18 Ashley MacIsaac - Rusty D-con-STRUCK-tion
19 The Guthries - Patsy Cline
20 Woodpigeon - Music Belongs to Those Who Make
21 Terry Jacks - Seasons In The Sun
22 A.C. Newman - Drink To Me, Babe, Then
23 Hank Snow - I'm Moving On
24 Leonard Cohen - Chelsea Hotel No. 2 (Beacon Theatre)
25 Blue Rodeo - Floating

01 Broken Social Scene - Cause = Time
02 Basia Bulat - Gold Rush
03 Jim Cuddy - Countrywide Soul
04 Ronnie Hawkins - Who Do You Love?
05 Oh Susanna - Johnstown
06 Jon Rae and the River - Roll
07 Jason Collett - Not Over You
08 Ladyhawk - Night You're Beautiful
09 Rufus Wainwright - Oh What A World
10 The Be Good Tanyas - Junkie Song
11 The Constantines - I Will Not Sing a Hateful Song
12 The Organ - Don't Be Angry
13 The Weakerthans - Our Retired Explorer...
14 Tegan and Sara - Monday Monday Monday
15 Neil Young - Journey Through The Past
16 The Sadies - The Land Between
17 The Awkward Stage - Anime Eyes
18 Leonard Cohen - Store Room
19 Corey Hart - Sunglasses At Night
20 Jim Bryson - Sleeping In Toronto
21 Pink Mountain Tops - Rock N Roll Fantasy
22 Sarah Harmer - Lodestar
23 Deep Dark Woods - The Ballad of Frank Dupree
24 Caliban Quartet - Theme from 'Hockey Night In Canada'
25 Rock City Plaza - My Children, Be Joyful

01 Lowest of the Low - St. Brendan's Way (Hawkins Vocal)
02 One Hundred Dollars - Someday Soon
03 Joni Mitchell - Urge For Going
04 Danko Jones - I Want You
05 Cowboy Junkies - Lungs
06 Apostle of Hustle - Dark Is What I Want / Strutter's Ball
07 Ron Sexsmith - Seem To Recall
08 The Burning Hell - The Things That People Make
09 Ladyhawk - Teenage Love Song
10 Ox - Stolen Car
11 Doug Paisley - Last Duet
12 Blood Meridian - Work Hard, For What
13 K'naan - Waving Flag
14 Spirit of the West - Sadness Grows
15 Elliott Brood - Write It All Down For You
16 Nathan Lawr - Bury Me Blues
17 Bourbon Tabernacle Choir - Afterglow
18 Woodpigeon - Beth Jeans Sleepover
19 Daniel Lanpois - Indian Red
20 Geoff Berner - The Olympic Fight Song

Friday, June 5, 2009

1. Ricky Nelson - Lonesome Town
2. Josh Rouse - It's The Nighttime
3. Kitty Wells - It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels
4. The Dead Beat Club - Comes The Night
5. The Black Keys - Act Nice And Gentle
6. The Donkeys - Traverse Wine
7. Tommy McClain and Clint West - Try To Find Another Man
8. Hank Williams - I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry
9. Steely Dan - Any Major Dude Will Tell You
10. Dios (Malos) - You Got Me All Wrong
11. Solomon Burke - That's How I Got To Memphis
12. George Harrison - Beware of Darkness
13. Apollo Sunshine - Phone Sex
14. Mose Allison - That's All Right
15. David Bruinooge - Walls (Drop D - Version 3)
16. Old Crow Medicine Show - Take 'Em Away
17. The Derailers - Play Me The Waltz Of The Angels
18. The Gourds - Web Before You Walk Into It
19. National Grain - Foolin' Around
20. Reigning Sound - Goodbye

1. Woodstock Mountain Revue - Killing The Blues
2. Tom Waits - Ol' 55
3. The Baptist Generals - Going Back Song
4. Joel Plaskett - Deny, Deny, Deny
5. Jimbo Mathus & His Knockdown Society - Rock Of Ages
6. Wilco - When The Roses Bloom Again
7. Reigning Sound - Funny Thing
8. Neil Young - Hold Back The Tears
9. Teddy Grace - I'll Never Let You Cry
10. The Subdudes - Carved In Stone
11. Bill Janovitz - Slip Sliding Away
12. Widespread Panic - Nobody's Loss
13. Matt Mays - Full July Moon
14. Charlie Haden & Pat Metheny - The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress
15. Hem - The Pills Stopped Working (live)
16. Dexateens - Grandaddy's Mouth
17. The Roadside Graves - West Coast
18. Ricky Nelson - Garden Party
19. Mysteries of Life - I Forgot To Say Goodbye
20. The Violent Femmes - Confessions

1. Jon-Rae Fletcher - The Big Talker
2. Santos & Johnny - Sleep Walk
3. Lefty Frizzell - My Rough And Rowdy Ways
4. Ron Wood - Mystifies Me
5. Marshall Crensaw - Starlit Summer Sky (Demo 1979)
6. The Innocence Mission - Bright As Yellow
7. Jason Collett - No Redemption Song
8. Sunparlour Players - If The Creeks Don't Rise
9. The Black Keys - The Lengths
10. Campbell & Lanegan - Honey Child What Can I Do
11. Blue Mountain - ZZQ
12. Bazil Donovan - Stage Door
13. Fleetwood Mac- Woman Of 1000 Years
14. Anita O'Day - Waiter Make Mine Blues
15. Ted Hawkins - I Got What I Wanted
16. It's A Beautiful Day - White Bird
17. Gram & Emmylou - Love Hurts
18. Reigning Sound - Since When
19. The Grateful Dead - Lay Me Down

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


We threw out all the general rules for our "Eccentrics and Dreamers" mix and just dug deep into our archives - we went a little heavy on Robyn and Roky, but it just feels...right. This mix has some noise, some humor, some creepiness, and some weirdness. Thanks to all those who threw in their tracks, including Sean, Jay, Jeff, Corey, and Scott (who I believe singlehandledly delivered every single Elephant 6 selection). And thanks to magazines like Magnet (which may not be around in any form in a few years) that put the time and effort into writing such an extensive and interesting feature in the firstplace. Here's the tracklist for "We Observe The Myth Tonight":

SIDES 1 and 2
Soft Boys - Underwater Moonlight
Roky Erickson - Starry Eyes
Sun Ra - Outer Spaceways In
The Olivia Tremor Control - Memories of Jacqueline 1906
Love - 7 And 7 Is
His Name Is Alive - How It's Gotta Be
Mick Farren and The Deviants - Lets Loot The Supermarket Again Like We Did Last Summer
The Red Krayola - Hurricane Fighter Plane
Robyn Hitchcock and Heavy Friends - Interstellar Overdrive
Circulatory System - Inside Blasts
Skip Spence - War In Peace
13th Floor Elevators - Roller Coaster
The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Malela
The Fugs - I Want To Know
The Apples in Stereo - Sun Is Out
The Sleepy Jackson - Cavities

SIDES 3 and 4
The Lilys - Dunes
King Tubby - Hungry Belly Dub
Beulah - Sunday Under Glass
Roky Erickson and The Aliens - I Walked With A Zmobie
Elf Power - Upside Down
Sun Ra - Plutionian Nights
Robyn Hitchcock and The Egyptians - Airscape
The Olivia Tremor Control - Courtyard
The Brian Jonestown Massacre - The Devil May Care
Mogwai featuring Roky Erickson - Devil Rides
Guided By Voices - Over The Neptune / Mesh Gear Fox
Love - She Comes In Color
The Sleepy Jackson - Miniskirt
Sun Ra - Space Is The Place
Robyn Hitchcock with Rawlings / Welch - No Way Out Of Time
Roky Erickon and The Explosives - Bloody Hammer

Download this fine mix here, or stream below in the player:


Well, a lot has been written already. Bar Clock, Postcard, and a lot of music lovers in general are saddened by the tragic loss of Jay Bennett at only 45 years of age. A couple of quick memories:

Bennett went on at length (some might say defensively) about how Wilco's popularity and size never felt right to him - and he proved this by hitting the road with Edward Burch in a beat up Toyota. And you could tell he relished jumping on stage and playing in a small room. When I moved to Chicago in 1998, I made a beeline to Lounge Axe and Schuba's and Martyrs' and all the other smaller clubs in town. And more often than not, you could figure it out which touring musician or act might end up having a mini-Wilco concert break out. Tim Easton? Check. Autumn Defense? Check. Tweedy playing solo at Liunge Axe or the Abbey Pub? Check. And there was Bennett in the middle of it all, with a shit-eating grin and his unkempt locks flowing about, loving every minute of it.

January 2000 - The Minus 5 / Wilco show as we said goodbye to the club - Bennett was in his element, bouncing from one instrument to the next, and inserting bits and pieces of Abbey Road as Jeff talked about the closing of the club.

December 2000 - Bennett gathers a bunch of friends - including Nora O'Connor, Andrew Bird, and Leroy Bach (who stole the show that night) and puts on a 5 hour show at Martyrs'. Bennett was the worst of the bunch - debuting many songs for the first time, sounding like a clone of Elvis Costello and really struggling in a very public forum - but that's what Jay did. He tinkered with songs in a way that went too far and ruined some great versions and he clearly drove a lot of people insane - fans and bandmates alike - but he also created a number of gems that will always bring a smile to my face.

Check out all the Bennettisms on display in this snippet from I Am Trying To Break Your Heart regarding the evolution of Poor Places - cigarette dangling, details about sound and noise and sonic landscapes and gear and microphones, and an enthusiasm that was always apparent.

'We were either going to get something great or lose our fucking minds..."

Finally, here's the July 24, 1999 set from Jay and Jeff (Jesus! Almost a decade ago) at the second annual Chicago Roots and Folks Festival - sponsored by the Old Town School of Music (where John Prine was discovered by Kris Kristofferson), although the school has since moved from Old Town and now resides in Finnegan's stomping grounds in Lincoln Village. A lovely acoustic set where Tweedy commented on the increasing rowdiness of the crowd (Steve Earle was the headliner that night) and Bennett, the mad professor as always, was bouncing around the stage even in this quiet setting. I was there right up front and loved every minute of it. Thanks to Chris "K-Fly" Campbell and his weeklong salute to Jay for posting this show.

7-24-99 Setlist:
James Alley Blues
She's a Jar
New Madrid
Blood of the Lamb
Willow Garden
Auld Triangle
Another Man's Done Gone
Hesitating Beauty
Via Chicago
Sugar Baby
I Got You
Forget the Flowers
I'm Always In Love
The Lonely 1
True Love Will Find You
Casino Queen
California Stars
Hoodoo Voodoo

Download 7-24-99 here


Tuesday, May 19, 2009


In its earlier hard copy version (before they started pissing everyone off with their underrated / overrated columns in their new electronic-only version), Magnet magazine did some great themed issues (the shoegazing issue, the salute to Bomp! Records, etc.). One such issue occurred Feb / Mar 2004 where Magnet had a great 30-page spread / guide on some of music's most interesting personalities. The article was entitled Reality Bites: The Eccentrics and Dreamers Issue - and it featured Robyn Hitchcock on the cover donning a top hat and cape. For the past few years, I've wanted to tackle a few mixes using only the bands referenced in the piece. So, let's try to tackle our version of a mixer: I perused the article and have listed out every group namechecked in the article - feel free to select a song or two by any of the artists listed below. If you feel that Magnet missed the boat on a particular artist or group, then upload that material as well. DJE - your whole music listening experience qualifies so feel free to choose whatever you like...

(Bar Clock Editor's Note: A mini Roky Erickson tribute is breaking out with the number of songs that are being uploaded, so this in all likelihood will be a multi-mix set)

The list below corresponds to how the original article broke out and categorized the artists:

The Cult Artist:

Robyn Hitchcock (Soft Boys, solo, side projects)

The Believers:
First wave of the Elephant 6 Collective
- Neutral Milk Hotel, Apples in Stereo, Olivia Tremor Control
Second and Third waves of the Elephant 6 Collective
- Elf Power, Music Tapes, Minders, Beulah,
- Of Montreal, Ulysses, Sunshine Fix, the Circulatory System

The Madcaps / Escape Artists:
Roky Erickson (13th Floor Elevators, the Explosives, solo)
David Bowie
Skip Spence (Jefferson Airplane, Moby Grape, solo)
Syd Barrett (Floyd, solo)
Larry "Wild Man" Fischer

The Ringleaders (with many ex-bandmates):
Brian Jonestown Massacre
Guided By Voices
the Fall
The Lilys
Sleepy Jackson
Queens of the Stone Age

The Listeners:
Brian Wilson (Beach Boys, solo)
Kevin Shields (My Bloody Valentine, Primal Scream, producer)
His Name is Alive
Sonic Boom
King Tubby

The Humorists and Jesters:
Mojo Nixon
Captain Beefheart
the Fugs
the Deviants

Some Eccentric Necessities:
Sun Ra
Red Crayola (or Red Krayola)
Various Artists - "Songs in the Key of Z"

Deadline for this mix is Friday May, 22. But we'll probably extend it through the weekend.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Some select commentary from the mix contributors:
Corey on Teedy:
Vulture Whale's lead track on their latest album- what's not to love? It starts out with the maxell cassette tape beep, and then talks about the transformation of a gal who wears turtlencks and drives real slow who quickly starts smoking hoglegs and starts strippin'....ass shaking hilarity ensues.

Steve on Marlene:
A favorite song, and the upbeat attitude reminds me of spring.

Corey on Nancy Reagan's Head:
Roxy Music came to save the world and all I got was this lousy t-shirt

Enrico on When Tiffany Cries:
A tune from the Cleveland-based power pop cult act The Mice - who had a big influence over Guided By Voices (you can picture Pollard belting this one out). Pretty soon after this music was released, The Mice disbanded and the lead singer Bill Fox made a go of it as a solo artist, but he vanished from the scene in the late 80s. In 2007, Fox was the subject of a Joe Hagan article in the June/July issue of The Believer, in which Hagan set out to answer to the question "Why Did Bill Fox Stop Playing Music?"

Enrico on Come On, Claire:
First brought to my attention by the mighty Jim Kotsonas and his legendary New Release Mondays Song of the Day epic posts on Postcard - this is a single from the fall of 2008. Uploaded for two reasons: 1) I love the happy-go-lucky mid 80s sound of the music as the lyrics get darker and darker, and 2) I didn't know if Lauree would be back from the UK in time and this mix screamed out for some Scottish pop (Lauree also came through on that end).

Graeme the Newlywed on Anna:
A heartbreaker from Sweden's finest.

Tualla on her selection of a song with a girl's name (we opted for the ladies of Bar Clock to upload songs with men's names in the titles, and they chose not to...)
So I primarily listen to guys singing. Guys singing about girls - so that's what you get. This is Calgary's Woodpigeon live on the BBC in February.

Jeff on Help You Ann:
The Lyres - 80's garage rock revival, from Children of Nuggets.

Goodale on Loretta:
The ideal woman. I guess.

Lauree on Daisy:
Friends of mine from Wilmington, NC. I haven't seen them in years, but this song is so much fun live!

The Judge on Little Caney:
I don't know this for a fact, but I have always understood Little Caney to be a sweet little girl, not unlike one of my own, who is being accompanied through a family graveyard on a beautiful spring day (with the grass growing as tall as Caney....everybody knows that the grass grows tallest in spring...after that first spring cut, it stays cut through summer.) Even without the lyrics (that I love) I think that this song epitomizes the sound of spring to me...so I was pretty pleased that it had (what I presume to be) a girl's name in the title, too for purposes of this wonderful endeavor.

Lauree on choosing some Scottish pop (as if there was any doubt):
Ultimately the Scottish pop won out. Mainly because it's a better quality mp3 than the Swedish pop song I was going to include. Because I care!

Steve on Black Eyed Susie:
OK, so this one stretches the concept a bit, but it fits the qualifers and the title of the mix!


As you'll soon see, the Bar Clock group is back with a vengeance. First up are several tunes for the late spring fever that's in the air - each song references a girl. The girl that got away? The girl that wouldn't go away? The little girl that breaks your heart? The head of a former first lady? One wonders. By the way, artwork for this one has turned out like a Belle and Sebastian cover reject, although the cover subject is Annika Norlin from Hello Saferide, who give us the fourth track on the mix.

01 - Vulture Whale - Teedy
02 - Todd Rundgren - Marlene
03 - Mission Of Burma - Nancy Reagan's Head
04 - Hello Saferide - Anna
05 - The Mice - When Tiffany Cries
06 - Aberfeldy - Come On, Claire
07 - Woodpigeon - Beth Jeans Sleepover (live)
08 - The Haunted - Mona
09 - Robert Johnson and the Punchdrunks - Cecilia Ann
10 - The Lyres - Help You Ann
11 - Townes Van Zandt - Loretta
12 - Lamont Skylark - Daisy
13 - Glossary - Little Caney
14 - Attic Lights - Wendy
15 - Cheri Knight - Black Eyed Susie
16 - The Raveonettes - Here Comes Mary

Download the zip file here, or stream the songs from the player below:

Saturday, May 16, 2009


As we put the finishing touches on the new mix (which should be ready by the end of the weekend), I thought we would share this great video with a recent new favorite of many of the folks at Bar Clock as well as Postcard: Blind Pilot. Courtesy of the folks running HearYa.com, here's what they had to say about the band's recent live session (4/3/09) at Shirk Music and Sound in downtown Chicago.

I had seen Blind Pilot twice already in April and experiencing them live only enhanced my love for their amazing debut, Three Rounds and A Sound. It’s easy to get caught up in Isreal Nebeker’s amazing lyrics, silky vocals and the wistful feeling of Blind Pilot’s music. Their sound is so effortless that it’s easy to lose sight of the spectacular work of rhythm section, led by Ryan Dombrowski. Watching them live in the studio really made me take notice and Ryan doesn’t miss a beat - nothing fancy but not a note missed. Add Luke on the stand up bass and they become the backbone of the band, allowing the band to strut their stuff.

Blind Pilot - "One Red Thread" - HearYa Live Session 4/3/09 from HearYa.com on Vimeo.

Download the 5 song set zip file here

Friday, May 8, 2009


Here's Greg, Jim, Bazil, and the rest of the gang with their version of the Jerry Chestnut staple, Good Year For The Roses, made famous by George Jones, but also covered by Elvis Costello (on his Almost Blue album, which inspired the band's name) and Johnny Paycheck, among others. From Blue Rodeo's recent 2008 CD/DVD release, Blue Road. A lovely steel solo courtesy of one of the band's newer members, Mr. Bob Egan (Souled American, Freakwater, Wilco).

Thursday, May 7, 2009


I went to Simon's at Foster and Clark in Chicago last night and saw The Western Elstons for the first time. I'd heard good things for the last couple months and finally bothered to get down the street to hear them. Turns out there a great little Country/Rockabilly band, complete with pedal steel, playing with no cover in one of my favorite bars. I highly recommend listening to them on MySpace http://www.myspace.com/thewesternelstons or getting out to see them if you happen to be in Chicago. Wednesday nights are interesting again!