317: “Volunteered Slavery” by Rahsaan Roland Kirk

It's time to get up, not down.

I’m watching Antiques Road Show and this guy has a flute that was played by Rahsaan Roland Kirk. The flute is made of ivory from the tusks of a brown dwarf star. It’s been appraised at the value of one observational time machine trip (past only) and a large chili cheese tots. Public television is on a roll.

Rahsaan Roland Kirk was the tectonic inspirational force behind the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Ian Anderson (of Jethro Tull), Eric Burdon, and Dan, a guy at work who knew who he was when I asked.

A few forreal’s forya: Kirk changed his name from Ronald to Roland because he was inspired in a dream to switch the two letters around. Later, he added Rahsaan because he heard it in a dream. Kirk was always spilling over the edges of himself. He played two instruments at once because one wasn’t enough. He was politically outspoken. He always had to lead the band. And he wore clothes eccentric even for a jazz musician.

Scientifically speaking, I don’t advise making real world decisions based on the bizness your unconscious mind cooks up. The ways that could go bad…

I so infrequently write actual biographical content here that I feel I should point out that the forreal’s communicated two paragraphs previous were actually taken from Wikipedia and not fictions of my mental undulations.

Without further crap, I present to you my favorite Kirk klassic, “Volunteered Slavery” from Volunteered Slavery (1969).

Please share your thoughts on Roland Kirk and faster-than-light physics, but be most certain of all to enjoy…

Song: Volunteered Slavery
Artist: Rahsaan Roland Kirk
Album: Volunteered Slavery
Label: Rhino Atlantic
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Rdio | Spotify | YouTube

298: “The Spark Of Life” by Todd Rundgren

Listen to his music, not his hair!Todd Rundgren invented the aglet, so most people who have heard of Todd Rundgren know him as the founding father of the aglet industry.

But in fact, Todd Rundgren is a prolific songwriter, producer, artist, midwife, and bounty hunter. “Bang The Drum All Day” is the Rundgren track most likely to have earwormed you, but there is oh so much more to this shoelace maven.

The track I’ve handpicked for you is one any jamband would feel at home cracking off for its spinning sycophants. “The Spark Of Life” is indulgent, absurd, and beautiful. It’s a six-and-a-half-minute instrumental with wailing guitar and psychedelic intro, but it’s also laden with synths, 80’s-sounding electronic effects, and a drum machine trussing the architecture. Remember that this sound was created in 1974 on Todd.

Rundgren has always been diverse like the universe, and constantly pushing the edges of his music and art. He was one of the first artists aired on MTV, and one of the first musicians with a website (he still maintains his own site)… way before MySpace. This guy has done more with his time than stare at his shoelaces.

Find your inspiration, and enjoy.

Song: The Spark Of Life
Artist: Todd Rundgren
Album: Todd
Label: Rhino
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

260: “What Is Hip?” by Tower of Power

The White Side Of The MoonHoly sack of  bran muffins, I haven’t posted any Tower of Power yet!!

Perhaps Sauron is controlling my behavior…

I must fight as hard as any stupid, little hobbit can.

Luckily, Tower of Power is very strong. Yesssss.


Song: What Is Hip?
Artist: Tower of Power
Album: Rhino Hi-Five: Tower of Power
Label: Rhino/Warner Bros
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG | Spotify
Watch: YouTube

4: “The Vision Of Rahsaan A) Dedication B) Roll On Kirk” by Eric Burdon & WAR

Eric Burdon and War, Shirtless!Make ’em work.  Make ’em work.  Make ’em work.  Roll on Kirk.  This song is a dedication to jazz legend Rahsaan Roland Kirk.  The song was created by crazy whiteboy Eric Burdon, who worked for every inch of soul he showed, backed up by the band he helped launch, WAR.

Now stop reading these words and download this song.  I will refund your money with coinage surreptitiously placed in the crevices of your home furniture if you are not completely satisfied with your purchase.  I promise.


Song: The Vision Of Rassan A) Dedication B) Roll On Kirk
Artist: Eric Burdon & WAR
Album: Eric Burdon Declares WAR
Label: Rhino / Avenue
Buy from: Amazon | iTunes
Listen: MOG