The secret Andy Warhol banana has been honored again with a new homage courtesy of blues artist John Németh. Of course, The Velvet Underground & Nico album honored its 50th anniversary this year and Németh has done his version of the cover with a pink-ish pickle for the album Feelin’ Freaky but my thought was didn’t Kosha Dillz do a regular green pickle recently and that wasn’t meant to be an inquiry, it was my way of saying someone else already did the pickle idea. Yet Németh might say “oh, but it’s a pink-ish pickle.” Aaah.
(John Németh’s Feelin’ Freaky will be released on May 19th, you may pre-order it below via Amazon.com.)
Boz Scaggs used to release albums with some of the most interesting album covers, some memorable, a few peculiar and arguably, the cover for his [i]Middle Man[/i] album was somewhat peculiar. Who is this lady in fishnets and a red bathing suit and what does it mean if he is the middle man? Does it mean he is deeply into things that are in the middle and of so, what middle specifically? No matter, it was a hit album partly due to the success of the single “Jojo” and it seemed Scaggs began the 1980’s on a good note.
Jidenna Mobisson simply creates music as Jidenna and after gaining a nice buzz in the last few years, he’s about to drop his debut solo album tomorrow called [i]The Chief[/i] and what does he do for the cover? He becomes the middle man and we’re about to see how much in the middle he will be getting in the years to come.
We all know about the 1967 album by Velvet Underground, we all know about Nico, some of us may hum “Femme Fatale” or “Venus In Furs” on a regular basis. We know about the album cover Andy Warhol put together, we know what happens when we peel the banana if the cover has the sticker.
What you don’t know about is the new album from rapper Kosha Dillz. I’ve been eyeing this album cover for a few months, knowing the influence and waiting for the right time to post it, meaning “when the album is released. I’ll create a Covered page for it.” It is time. Kosha’s new album is called What I Do All Day & Pickle, a play in words in every sense and is the music as clever? If you know about Kosha Dillz, it has to be so get the album and listen while you chilsnoi on the dillznoi.
By the time Columbia Records released Simon & Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits in 1972, the duo were already apart, with Simon already releasing music under his own name that would become part of his string of hits.
This past weekend, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler returned to Saturday Night Live in support of their new film Sisters and for the album cover recreation, both of them went directly to that album that may pop up at many thrift stores but it’s because it was and remains very popular. I must say Poehler is still quite attractive in that Simon mustache.
38 years ago, Warner Bros. Records and Fleetwood Mac released an album called Rumours and it became one of the biggest albums of the 1970’s which still receives massive airplay. Pretty much every song is treated as if it was a single, despite the fact only four of the album’s eleven songs were released as singles (or eight if you want to throw in the B-sides). We know the songs from every angle, they are played continuously on the radio. Today, a band from Seattle pays a slight homage to Mick, John, Stevie, Christine, and Lindsey with their new album so let’s focus on them.
They’re called Pony Time and their album being released today is called Rumours 2: The Rumours Are True. Have a look at the cover.
Luke Beetham and Stacy Peck make up Pony Time, playing a rock sound that is intimate and powerful. On top of that, the opening track, “Time Tells Me”, opens with a drum break, perfect for sampling, looping, and chopping while “Really Nice Guys” shows a grit that is trademark Seattle, with the punk rock power that may bring to mind the guitar work heard in songs by Mudhoney, The U-Men, or Sinister Six. It may have a slight classic feel but if you’re someone who cares if something is timely in order to meet someones journalistic standards, then you’ll appreciate what Pony Time have done here. The album is available through Bandcamp below.
This edition of my COVERED column, I like because it seems so out of the loop but someone did it. David Peel was singer and musician who spoke for the counter-culture and in support of the hippie community and marijuana. He was very much “anti-man”, in that he did not like what authority was doing to take things away. He was signed by Elektra Records and came out with the Have A Marijuana album. While the mainstream didn’t embrace him in full, since he was anti-mainstream, the album managed to go as high (literaly) as #187 on the Billboard album chart before falling off. He was also signed by The Beatles’ Apple label and came out with The Pope Smokes Dope.
Mild High School is a group of sorts, and I say “of sorts” because this is a project from a mind of Alexander Brettin, a Chicago musician who is living in Los Angeles and hoping to make his talents known by being signed to Stones Throw. He just came out with a single called “Windowpane” b/w “Weeping Willow”, the picture sleeve of which is an ode to the Have A Marijuana album. Brettin/Mild High School will be releasing a full length album later this year but for now, have a listen to the A-side of the “Windowpane” single below.
Elvis Presley’s debut album cover from 1956 has been honored and parodied many times over but this is the latest, a compilation on Omnichord Records called Leiria Calling, featuring new music from Horse Head Cutters, Nuno Rancho & A Few Fingers, Les Enfants Terribles, and Les Crazy Coconuts among many, put together by executive producer Hugo Ferreira. Omnichord Records could be considered a label presenting the latest in Latin rock but that would be putting it very loosely.
You can also say it’s a double tribute, as the title Leiria Calling honors The Clash’s London Calling, which also honored the Presley cover.
You have no doubt seen the cover for Weezer’s debut album, it has been seen countless times in the last twenty years, it is a statement and a musical landmark. In the last three years, it’s safe to say someone has already called it “iconic” while the guys in Weezer might call it “moronic”. Up to you.
Twenty years later, the album is honored by You Blew It! who are honoring Weezer with an EP tribute of songs from that debut album, simply called You Blue It!. The EP will feature new versions of “Susanne”, “Only In Dreams”, “In The Garage”, Surf Wax America” and “My Name Is Jonas”, the latter of which you can check out below. Topshelf Records will release the EP in digital form on July 15th while the vinyl pressing will hit stores and stands on August 12th. If you want to hear what You Blew It are about outside of a Weezer context, they are on tour in support of their latest album Keep Doing What You’re Doing.
July 1… New Haven, CT (Toad’s Place)
July 2… Clifton Park, NY (Upstate Concert Hall)
July 3… Syracuse, NY (Lost Horizon)
July 5… Toronto, ON (Opera House)
July 6… Millvale, PA (Mr Smalls Theatre)
July 8… Lansing, MI (Common Ground Fest)
July 9… Columbus, OH (Newport Music Hall)
July 10… Columbia, MO (The Blue Note)
July 11… Chicago, IL (Concord Music Hall)
July 12… Milwaukee, WI (The Rave)
July 13… Minneapolis, MN (Varsity Theater)
July 15… Lincoln, NE (Bourbon Theatre)
July 16… Denver, CO (Summit Music Hall)
July 17… Salt Lake City, UT (Club Sound)
July 19… Seattle, WA (Showbox at The Market)
July 20… Portland, OR (Crystal Ballroom)
July 22… San Francisco, CA (Regency Ballroom)
July 24… Los Angeles, CA (The Fonda Theatre)
July 25… Pomona, CA (Glass House)
July 26… San Diego, CA (House of Blues)
July 27… Tempe, AZ (The Marquee)