It’s that day again – it rolls around once a year – and is the day the music died – well, for millions of us who still care. That bleak day – back in early December of 1980, when that cowardly, chubby little troll – gunned down John Lennon. But as I’ve stated in previous similar posts – it isn’t a time to mourn, but a time to celebrate – a time to embrace and enjoy the mind-blowing music which Lennon left us. And today – dear readers – we have Dr O’Boogie’s posthumous 1986 album ‘Menlove Avenue’ on the Rockbrat Stereo – and man, it’s gear ! Apparently the record was released ‘under the supervision of Yoko Ono’, but let’s not let that overshadow things, cos overall, there’s some top class tunage here. Recorded from sessions back in 73/74 (‘Walls and Bridges’ and ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’ albums – recording sessions which from memory Yoko was not actually at as she’d split from John at that time – yet she ‘oversees’ the release of that very material !) – this is the stuff I love – and if you too, dig the music John made with Spector – and the creations which he and his one-time booze-buddy Nilsson made – then this LP is an absolute must have. What are Mr Rockbrat’s choice cuts ? Good questions, but without a doubt ‘Steel And Glass’ comes in first. I have always loved this powerful song (cutting and to the point – ala ‘How Do You Sleep ?’) and for mine – this tune has that ‘definitive-signature Lennon’ sound all-through it. Long rumored to be penned about his former business manager Allen Klein – this 40 year old track sounds better than anything I will hear on modern radio today. Fact. ‘Nobody Loves You (When You’re Down And Out)’ , which shows Lennon baring his soul for all to see, is another standout. The man was a fucking amazing songwriter – and some of his tunes give me chills. ‘Rock And Roll People’ is another amazing cut, which sounds great played loud – and I advise you to do so or don’t play at all. I once heard a rumor that Lennon gave this tune to Johnny Winter, who in turn recorded it for his ‘John Dawson Winter III’ album. Some claimed that the recently departed Winter even played the blazing guitar on this track – but that’s incorrect Beatle-brains – the fretwork is actually by the amazing David Spinozza (who also worked with Macca and Ringo). Incidentally, the striking cover-art featured illustrations of John by Andy Warhol. If you are reading this today – call your local radio station and request a Lennon song – better yet, give the gift of John Lennon’s music to a young relative for Christmas. We need to educate the youngsters.
Again, today is not a day for sadness – it’s a day to reflect – a day to rejoice in the music of John Lennon – and ‘Menlove Avenue’ is as good a choice as any. His loss is still felt – but his spirit will live forever. Gonna live forever.