Farewell to the Loop

It’s now the last hour of WLUP’s existence as a radio station, at least as I’ve always known it. It’s changing formats at midnight tonight, and it will apparently continue on at a different frequency and on the internet. So that’s something, I guess. Listening to “Stairway to Heaven” for the final time on 97.9Continue reading “Farewell to the Loop”

Rockers are mortal, after all

It wasn’t always this way for me, but within the past couple of years the deaths of people I don’t know have taken on a whole new dimension. Whether I knew the person or not–and particularly if they were somebody famous for one reason or another– the first thing I want to know is howContinue reading “Rockers are mortal, after all”

An old Stairway story

This morning I was driving my daughter to a skating lesson, as I usually do on a Saturday morning. I complain about the early hours sometimes, but I know that I’ll miss these days when they’re over and my services are no longer needed. Such is life. We got into our minivan, the little oneContinue reading “An old Stairway story”

It really makes me wonder

There’s no doubt in my mind that Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven is the song of my lifetime. I’ve written about the song before, and it always seems to be able to lift my spirits up. And today, as I was contemplating the senseless attacks at the Boston marathon, the song worked its magic onceContinue reading “It really makes me wonder”

Hearing “Stairway” for first time

Upon hearing Ann and Nancy Wilson, Jason Bonham, and a cast of hundreds whose names I don’t know present Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to HeavenĀ as a gift to us all at the Kennedy Center, I wanted to offer a few words about the first time I ever heard the song. My hope is that young kidsContinue reading “Hearing “Stairway” for first time”

And as we wind on down the road

I can’t think of a song that I’ve heard more often–or that I have more memories about–than Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven.” It’s almost a rock-n-roll cliche, because it’s been played and played and played again in the forty years since it was released. But it is the epic rock song by the greatest rockContinue reading “And as we wind on down the road”

Make it last as long as you can

The suicide of guitarist Ronnie Montrose over the weekend is another sign that life does go on. It’s been almost forty years since the debut of his eponymous band on vinyl (maybe you could have owned it on 8-track or reel-to-reel, too), and the music still holds up well. Songs like Bad Motor Scooter andContinue reading “Make it last as long as you can”

Appreciating vinyl once again

I rarely read the Wall Street Journal, but when it’s available in the hotel it’s hard not to at least pick one up. The USA Today is probably more common in hotels, but that wasn’t an option for me today. It was the WSJ or no way, so I went with what was in frontContinue reading “Appreciating vinyl once again”

Rock’s greatest band

If I had just one album to take to the proverbial desert island with me, Led Zeppelin’s fourth album wouldn’t be it. But if I was able to just take a couple more, it would be find its way into my terribly limited collection. It came out forty years ago today, so technically it’s inContinue reading “Rock’s greatest band”

Takin’ care of business is his name

I heard an interesting combination of songs on the radio yesterday. Songs, in and of themselves, can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Either they’re played in sequence on an album, and if you’ve listened to the album enough, you know what to expect when that song is over. On the first Van HalenContinue reading “Takin’ care of business is his name”

A Sure Shot for the Rock Hall

To me, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a fraud. Rock and roll began as an expression of rebellion, and that gleaming building on the waterfront in Cleveland is anything but rebellion. Some of the bluesmen who helped to create rock and roll are enshrined there, but too many of them have beenContinue reading “A Sure Shot for the Rock Hall”