EBAY FOR DUMMIES

EBAY

Understand that EBAY can be an addiction is the same genre as gambling.  The key to gambling is knowing how much you are absolutely willing to lose then walk away. (Take it from a person who lives in Nevada).  The same strategy goes for EBAY.  The only difference is that on EBAY, they have one of a kind items you can’t find down at the local Wal-Mart.  Sometimes EBAY has that perfect Part for a 1968 Jaguar.  Still, you need to know how much is too much.

THE .99 cent opening Bid

Let’s start with the .99 cent opening bid.  This is one of the greatest auctions but you need to exercise patience.  Fools will come in and bid 5.00 on an item that you feel is worth 45.00.  Now if everybody plays the game right, nobody will bid until the last minute of the auction.  This is when you need to know how much you’re willing to pay.  If the someone else has bid and driven the price from .99 to 5.00, then you know he or she has bid 5.01 or more.  So in the last minute (Or last 11 seconds) you bid 45.00 hoping the other bidders only bid 25.01 and you get it for 26.01. (By the way, never lose a bid over a penny.  Always bid XX.01  or what ever your lucky number is.  Many will bid 25.01 so bid XX.02  you get the Idea.  Now if two bidders have bid the price up to around 40.00 at the close of the auction.  You have to decide how much you really want this and are willing to pay for it.

*NOTE: It’s very easy to let your ego allow you to spend way too much for the 45.00 Jaguar floor mat.  If one bidder has the attitude that nobody is going to out bid him and bids 100.00 for the 45.00 part, (Thinking that he doesn’t care if someone bids 50.00) and you bid 100.01 for the same 45.00 part.  You just bought yourself a floor mat for 100.00.  Congratulations.

On the other hand if this is the only one you’ve seen ever on EBAY, and all of the numbers check out, feel free to be a little more liberal with your bid at 11 seconds left.

How much am I willing to pay? 

I advise people never to bid on something unless they have a track record of what they sell for.  NOT WHAT PEOPLE ARE ASKING.  You hear that all the time on Pawn Stars: “Well I’ve seen them on line for 250.00″.  But did it sell for that price?  Probably not. (You don’t know how many times I see people asking 279.00 for something I just paid 89.00 for.  I laugh and say they’re F’n crazy)

I recently used my knowledge of what things sell for to wait out a seller.  He had an Item that I knew was rare, but he was asking about 50.00 too much for it.  (Or that I was willing to pay).  I PM’d  him and said, I’m willing to go 130.00 plus 10.00 shipping.  He was asking 179.95 plus 20 shipping.  I knew that if one of these came up for .99 cents, the bidding would get to about 100.00 and the real collectors that knew how rare it was, would put in there final bid at 130 – 140.  I use to sell these items and I knew what they went for (not counting the stupid people) I told myself that as a rule they would go for 120.00 but being since it was rare, I would go as high as 140 out the door.  So I waited as he kept relisting this Item.  I felt that a serious collector might have bout this when he finally lowered the price to 130 plus 20 shipping.  150 was still 10 more than I wanted to pay.  So after he relisted it the 6th or 7th time; I sent him another offer of 140 out the door.  By now, he’s lost a considerable amount of money by relisting it.  He was eager to relist it at 130 plus 10 shipping.  He was happy, I was happy and hopefully it will arrive in one piece.

On Items that frequently are listed, you need to see what the final sell price is and never exceed it.  I said to the seller of the Item above that if I paid him his price, someone wood list one for .99 cents and the bidders would take it up to what I wanted to pay.  But do your home work and see what the item is selling for before you bid or BUY IT NOW.

KNOWING THE NUMBERS

The opening bid or buy it now price is the number most people look at.  But there are other numbers that are even more important.

1. Shipping.  Some scumbags will give you a low buy it now price and hope you don’t look at the insane shipping and handling price.  If the shipping is way out of line, you don’t want to do business with that seller.  Also, if you don’t look at the cost of shipping until check out, you may find that the 45.00 floor mats are going to cost you 90.00 when you throw in the 45.00 shipping.  All of a sudden, Napa parts doesn’t look so bad.

2. Area Code.  What I really mean is location.  China has developed a bad reputations for sending you the wrong size, then putting the responsibility on you to send it back.  The only problems I’ve had as a buyer on EBAY have been from mainland China.  If the seller looks like they are from China but have an L.A. or Toronto address, it’s really important that you check the next number. (BTW, I’ve had good luck with western Europe. (Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, France and the U.K.) But even when buying from overseas, I don’t buy expensive items.

3. Seller’s Feedback Score.  This is a very important number.  No matter how sweet the deal looks, if the seller has less than 98.5 positive feedback, READ HIS NEGATIVE FEEDBACK.  I use to sell and got tagged with a negative from a scammer that EBAY sided with.  Which is why I no longer sell on EBAY.  So again, it depends on how bad you need the item.  If the seller was left a negative feedback and the buyer said: “Seller is Jerk, avoid at all cost”, you can ignore those 90% of the time.  Those are usually answered by the seller with something like : “Buyer can send the item back if not happy”.  The more immature the buyer sounds, the more I will trust the seller.  What I do look for are Immature comments from the seller.  Things like: “Buyer is a jerk and I’ve blocked him”.  Or: “Buyer is a loser that can’t read English”.  When the seller is unprofessional in their comments and try to make you think the buyer is psychotic, it’s usually the seller you need to look out for.  I’ve actually paid more for something because the seller’s comments were unprofessional and immature.

4. Doesn’t take Paypal.  I don’t think Paypal is the greatest institution in the world, but if you’re going to play on EBAY, you’re playing Russian Roulette if you do a transaction without going through a 3rd party that will refund your money.  That’s the only thing they’re really good for.  Plus, it’s much harder to rip off your I.D. by going through Paypal.  Sure they may get the Credit card or account number linked to Paypal, but if you’re smart, you won’t keep much money in that account.

EBAY IS AN ADDICTION

Check out this Weird Al Video called “EBAY:

You have no Idea how true this Weird Al video is.

One last bit of advice.  Feel free to talk to the seller before you buy.  Ask a lot of questions.  AND if you how much an Item sells for, and they RARELY COME UP FOR AUCTION.  If the opening bid is .99 cents and you know they sell for over $200.00, Tell the sell right away that you’ll give him or her $200.00 if they take it down and do a special private Buy it now Auction for you.  It works almost every time.  Sure one may come up down the road a few bucks cheaper, but if you know in your heart it’s worth $200.00, give it to them.  I bought my favorite piece to my collection that way.  I’ve seen them for 199.00 and I think an opening price of 149,00 but in the end, it could have been 300.00.  I would also say that if you are a collector of anything, if you watch the sell prices, you’ll see that EBAY is just like the stock market or Real Estate.  If you collect Franklin Mint plates, you’ll see how certain plates hold their value while others drop or climb.

Know what they sell for and Know what you’re willing to pay.  That’s the Key.

(And avoid bad sellers at all costs)

 

FIGHTING THE INCORRIGIBLE

Kamikaze

In WWII, we saw Japan use the Kamikaze pilot who was ordered to give his life and use his plane as a weapon of destruction.  September 11th 2001 comes to mind.  Towards the end of WWII Hitler ordered the brilliant Aces of what remained of an over worked Lüftwaffe in April of 1945, to give their lives to take down B-17s and B-24s that were killing German civilians.  Lüftwaffe heroes such as Heinrich Erhler gave their lives to take down one last B-17 in the attack on Berlin.  In Germany, it had become an act of self-defense, in the Pacific it was an act of aggression.  Japan was attacking the U.S. Navy in battles in the Philippines and other areas across the South Pacific theater of battle.

    childmartyr

(These children should be playing with stuffed animals and Tonka Toys.)

In Iraq and Afghanistan, everyone is a potential suicidal IED.  Only the term INCORRIGIBLE can describe this egregious lack of appreciation for human life.  This Muslim culture’s lack of respect for humanity is only outdone by the hypocrisy of the Palestinians who use children as human shields, then have the fucking audacity to say that Israel or Americans are committing war crimes by bombing “innocent children”.  The same innocent children these psychotic killers strap bombs to.  We are dealing with a truly satanic regime in the Middle East.  They multiply like fleas or termites and do far more damage per capita.

iraqi-suicide-bombers

We seem to have a worldwide war of the “have-nots” attacking the “Haves”.  Perhaps, invading the haves is a better word.  Central America and Mexico are not capable of bringing their standard of living up to that of the U.S. so instead of developing a thriving economy, they create a pile of donkey feces and cry that they’re refugees from their own shit holes.

Immigrant train

Is it in their DNA?  In Albert Schweitzer’s book “African Notebook”, he spends two chapters discussing the differences between Blacks and Whites.  I believe that what he is really talking about is cultural differences.  For most Americans, even the most hardened criminals; I believe would find it hard to strap a bomb to a toddler and send it into a café to kill 30 of their enemy.  It’s not in our American culture.  Yet most communist or Muslim countries seem to find no issues with this and just call it jihad.

child_suicide_bomber        Hamas

In the swamp; you cannot negotiate with Alligators.  In the ocean, you cannot negotiate with Sharks.  They will eat you.  Albert Schweitzer wrote this in the 1st edition of his book: “African Notebook”

I have given my life to try to alleviate the sufferings of Africa. There is something that all white men who have lived here like I must learn and know: that these individuals are a sub-race. They have neither the intellectual, mental, or emotional abilities to equate or to share equally with white men in any function of our civilization. I have given my life to try to bring them the advantages which our civilization must offer, but I have become well aware that we must retain this status: the superior and they the inferior. For whenever a white man seeks to live among them as their equals they will either destroy him or devour him and they will destroy all of his work. Let white men from anywhere in the world, who would come to Africa remember that you must continually retain this status; you the master and they the inferior like children that you would help or teach. Never fraternize with them as equals. Never accept them as your social equals or they will devour you. They will destroy you.”

The Nobel prize winner (Schweitzer) was giving a stern warning to those who would follow him, using heavy admonishments.  The point in referencing Schweitzer is that he was claiming that there are cultural differences that we need to be aware of.  In America and parts of Europe, we want to proclaim all men equal.  And all men are entitled to equal unalienable God given rights.  But not all men are culturally equal.  I believe this was Dr. Schweitzer’s point.  We need to remember this when engaging illegal immigrants or fighting the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, Hamas or their affiliates.  We are not fighting the English of the 18th century.  The enemy does not line up and shoot at you wearing the same colors.  We need to understand the culture of the enemy and fight them on their battle field.

Hamas Rockets

 

Only then will we see respect and a modicum of co-operation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Successful Narrow minded

The Successful Narrow Minded

 I recall the first time I was called a true Renaissance man.  I had no Idea if I had just been insulted or complimented.  The person I was talking to was quite successful so I figured since it was just him, his wife and myself, it was probably the latter.  I was saying to myself: “Isn’t a Renaissance man the guy that use to fly over the enemy territory and report the location of the enemy troops?

Areal photo             recon

No that would be a Reconnaissance Man.  The fact that I knew what a reconnaissance man was should have given me some indication of what a Renaissance man was.  I think my father used a simpler version when he would call me a “Jack of all trades and a master of none”.   That was usually followed up with the question: “What are you going to do with your life”?  50 years later; I’m still asking myself that question.

I wish had I a real passion and was focused.  But we live in a society where, as Greg Gutfeld says: “You can order anything”.  The age of the Renaissance man seems to have come and gone. (A person who has done it all).  This is no shit.  I can speak 5 languages. (3.5 fluently) I’ve taken out a woman’s ovary (endoscopically) in surgery and I’ve changed two engines and 3 transmissions.

I’ve also recorded 4 albums.  Three of them were released on Urban Camo records.

possible%20cover%20design%205  Moonman2   HunkaCover    2panelout

But this story is about narrow minded success.  If you ask anyone in almost any Industry how to be successful, they’ll say: “Find what you enjoy and become an authority on the subject.  Hell, you can be known as the world’s authority on the best ways to attach erasers to wooden pencils.

  eraser

But how fucking pathetic is that?  Narrow minded success has a fancy name; it’s called branding.  I’ll give an example.  Joey, Dee Dee, Tommy and Johnny fell in love with Iggy Pop’s music.  They went into the garage and made history.  With the exception of blues music, you would be hard pressed to find anything narrower in musical existence.  But when someone says: “Name a Punk Band” 9 times out of ten times, someone will say: “The Ramones” or even “Los Ramones”.

Ramones

In the entertainment industry they have a name for that, it’s called: “A Handle”.  It’s so impossible for a Renaissance man to be successful because he or she is never content doing the same fucking thing over and over.  This is why I have so much appreciation for the Band Queen.  What genre do you put them under?  Freddie ended up doing Opera, yet this band gained its’ following playing punk and rockabilly.  In the DVD Queen live at Wembley, the band goes from a rockabilly medley playing Ricky Nelson and Little Richard covers to playing “Bohemian Rhapsody”.  The eclectic shift brought tears to my eyes when I first saw it.  And a band that can go from Tutti Frutti to Bohemian Rhapsody is incredible. (To me)

Foreve2r Fred and Brin FreddiePower

I have three commercial albums.  The first was a Blues/pop album designed to showcase my guitar prowess.  The second was a metal version of Rockabilly.  Finally I did an album that was written for the sequel to the cult movie “The Secret”.  Unfortunately, there never was a sequel.  But my musical talent is at its’ best on this album.  In almost every interview people say: “It sounds like you’re having so much fun”.  It was fun because I wasn’t tied down to one genre on the album.  I did power punk, rap, prog rock and a power ballad.  That pretty much describes my life.

I like it all.  I could never be the authority on all things politically conservative.  I love Baseball and would love to converse on the topic with Charles Krauthammer.  But I could never be a Baseball writer or announcer.  I’d love to write about how Bobby Flay got interested in Southwestern cuisine.  But my love for the BF-109G is even more attractive to me.

Baseball    Bobby Flay at the UncorkÕd MastersÕ Series Dinner The MESA Grill  at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada May 7, 2009. © RD / Kabik / Retna Digital  K1squad

I was offered a chance to audition as a sports announcer for a TV station on the Monterey Peninsula and I was honest with the station manager.  I said, ya know, it’s an honor, but it’s not my passion.  I’d get tired of it in 6 months and shoot myself.

sports

I just don’t know how people can devote their ever so short lives to being an authority on taking out tonsils or writing a blog on N scale model trains.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I enjoy the various gifts that life has to offer to much to be known as the Carl Sagan of Astronomy or the Susan Miller of Astrology.  I like nasty burritos in Mexican restaurants condemned by the health department as well as Sashimi or Veal picata.  I’ll never be successful as defined by this culture.

Tin Man

 In a sentence: “My brain contains more crap than I ever wanted to know”.

 

 

A RETORT TO JOSHUA DUBOIS

A RETORT TO JOSHUA DUBOIS’ 34 WORDS THAT MATTER

USSR

“I’m reaching out to some of America’s leading foundations and corporations on a new initiative to help more young men of color facing especially tough odds stay on track and reach their full potential.”

In a free market society, the goal is not equality, the goal is success.  America is a color blind economy.  You are rewarded by effort and abilities not the color of your skin.  The system has worked quite well which is why millions want to come here.   In Communism these 34 words are the platitude of the Marxist creed. “To each for their needs; from Each according to their ability”

 My retort will be short and to the point.  I want a law that demands 2 white men under 5’10” and one Asian under 5’5″ on an NBA court on the floor at all times on every team.  Until the President is willing to reach out to corporations to give short white men and Asians a chance in the NBA.  SHUT THE HELL UP!

Now do you understand how the free market works?

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANDREW BREITBART

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANDREW

Breitbart

THE FIGHT GOES ON

Andrew Breitbart would have been 45 today. Andrew is best remembered as an atypical overt born again conservative. He referred to himself as a Reagan Republican. He grew up in Brentwood, CA and use to be a typical Hollywood liberal.

Andrew would have his “aha” moment while watching the Clarence Thomas hearings and the Supreme court Justices’ phony charges of sexual harassment. He was influenced by Rush Limbaugh and by one “Matt Drudge”.

Andrew contacted Matt and told him how much he admired his work online and became as he called himself: “Matt’s bitch”. Later Matt would introduce Andrew to the then wealthy republican Arianna Huffington and helped her create the Huffington Post.

Andrew would then become a writer that was published in The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online and the Weekly Standard Online, among others. He wrote a weekly column for The Washington Times, which also appeared at Real Clear Politics.

Andrew is best remembered for being eloquent yet loquacious. The only criticism is that Andrew could not make his point in under 30 minutes. This is because Andrew became so passionate about life.

In one of Andrew’s last public appearances, he was giving a speech at CPAC in 2012. The highpoint of his speech was when he voiced that he had video evidence of Barak Obama and this time the candidate would be “fully vetted”.

Weeks later Andrew was found lying on a sidewalk in Brentwood. What some speculate is that the press release of Andrew’s death came hours before his body was cold. The news outlets were claiming Andrew died of “Natural causes”. What many pundits of this administration ask is: “Why did it take 6 weeks to release the cause of death in the recent overdose of Whitney Houston; while Andrew’s death was announced literally within minutes of being rushed to Ronald Reagan Medical Center”?

From that point, those opposed to this administration refer to a political death as being “Breitbarted”.

We miss you Andrew. Happy Birthday and Rest in Peace.

Dearborn The New 51st Muslim state

ARE YOU READY FOR MORE AL QEADA?

I MEAN REBELS?

I mean freedom fighters?

Muslims

Remember this Video?  It’s Mr. Burns taking “Santa’s little Helper” and poking him in the eyes.  He’s shouting Poka-Poka-Poka !

What Obama is doing is exercising the Cloward and Piven attack.  If you step back and look at the BIG PICTURE.  He’s putting in place all of the pieces he needs to make us the Divided Socialist States of Amerika.  He has created more income in-equality by making the Rich much Richer and the poor even poorer and in the middle, the average household income has declined by 4,000 dollars.  4,000 you could have use to pay for Obamacare. (Which was designed to fail so Obama could fix it with single payer socialism)

California is forcing Smith & Wesson to micro stamp Bullets casings so the police can trace the shells back to the person who bought them.  (Not fired them)  But the big picture made Smith and Wesson move out of California.  (And I thought I was being unique)

Recently a woman was being fined 5000 thousand dollars a day by the department of agriculture for throwing a private Birthday party on her private farm for selling……..”Goat’s Milk”.  And she’s in the dairy business.

Recently the feds busted into a mall theater and grabbed a young man’s glasses and held him for interrogation for 3 hours asking him who he was pirating movies for.  The man said, they’re not even on, I have prescription lenses in my google glasses.  Instead of checking to see if a crime had been committed, they played bad cop/bad cop.  After checking the new tech glasses they found a few pics of his wife, laughed and said sorry and was given 4 free tickets to the theater.  Will the ACLU stand up for this guy?

Every day it’s a new unbelievable story from the IRS, to the NSA, to Benghazi, to the GSA blowing millions, to 1.7 million rounds of hollow points being bought by the DHS.

Poka-Poka-Poka !

Now to really get your eyes bleeding, he’s invited 30,000 Syrians to live in America. Check out the Wall street article below.  How much do you want to bet Dearborn, MI becomes a separate Muslim state with Sharia law?

The Wall Street Journal article, which was published on January 10, 2014 and written by Miriam Jordan reports:

U.S. plans to resettle thousands of Syrians displaced by their country’s civil war could hinge on those refugees receiving exemptions from laws aimed at preventing terrorists from entering the country.

A U.S. official stated publicly for the first time this week that some of the 30,000 especially vulnerable Syrians the United Nations hopes to resettle by the end of 2014 will be referred to the U.S. for resettlement.

More than two million Syrians have fled their country since the war erupted in 2011, creating the worst refugee crisis since the Rwandan genocide, advocates say. About 20 countries, mostly in Europe, have agreed to take 18,000 Syrians, according to United Nations High Commission for Refugees, or UNHCR, the agency charged with referrals.

The U.S. has not set a specific target for how many refugees it will resettle. But at a Senate hearing Tuesday, State Department Assistant Secretary Anne Richard said, “We expect to accept referrals for several thousand Syrian refugees in 2014.”

Post-9/11 immigration laws designed to keep out terrorists have had the unintended consequence of ensnaring some innocent people. For example, some of the provisions treat providing food or services to rebels—even those supported by the U.S.—as “material support” to terrorism.

Sen. Dick Durbin (D., Ill.), a key proponent of refugee resettlement, said the “overly broad” provisions would prevent a Syrian who gave a cigarette or a sandwich to a Free Syrian Army soldier from coming to the U.S. as a refugee.

Now look at the big picture.  It’s been my opinion for 5 years now that what this Despot wants more than anything is a word that Rhymes with Partial Flaw.  That would be the coup de gras.

PIERRE “CAJE” JALBERT 1925-2014

Caje cloud star small

REST IN PEACE PIERRE

January 9, 1925 – January 22, 2014 Pierre Jalbert, Captain of the 1948 Canadian Olympic Ski Team, actor, film editor and ADR specialist, passed away at age 89 in Los Angeles on January 22nd, following complications from a recent heart attack. A native of Quebec City, he moved to Los Angeles in 1952, and became a film and dialogue editor at Universal and MGM. Credits include Blackboard Jungle, Bad Day at Black Rock, Ben Hur, Mutiny on the Bounty, An American in Paris, Tea and Sympathy, Something of Value. In 1961, the agent of Pierre’s wife Joy recommended he audition for the role of a French-speaking WWII GI in the TV drama, “Combat!” Pierre played the role of “Caje” from 1962-1967.  Caje was a regular favorite.  He was known for “Taking the Point”  He played the squad’s French translator.

Id shoot you

He was also featured in The Richard Petty Story, Ski Bum, Ski Lift to Death and Airport ’79. Pierre then returned to the cutting room and ADR booth at Paramount, and worked on Concorde, Bloodline, Grease, The Godfather (including the famous baptism intercut sequence at the end of the movie), and the miniseries Shogun – where he was nominated for an Emmy for sound editing. Pierre excelled in home remodeling, masonry, and artistic crafts, and enjoyed French history, Eastern philosophy, fine wine and good conversation. Pierre is survived by his loving wife of 53 years, former actress and ballerina Joy Lee. Memorial service details are pending – Parts published by the L.A. Times

Caje H2O

 

Caje GREAT PIC

 

GLENN BECK ON TV

GLENN BECK SEEKS YOUR HELP

beck

Apparently Glenn’s TV Network is ready to go on live TV.  The problem is, the big providers, such as Comcast, Dish and ATT U-Verse are not concerned.  Yet they do offer Al Jazeera and MSNBC for your fair and balanced propaganda.  Glenn has made it as easy as possible to contact your TV provider and request the Blaze.

Just Call 1-800-996-2529 and push a couple buttons (1 for cable 2 for Satellite etc…) And the system will transfer you to your provider.

I was happy to see that my provider said I was the 6th person SHE had gotten today requesting the BLAZE. I think Glenn was an effective force in the 2010 mid-term elections which is why the DOJ put heat on Rupert Murdoch to get rid of Glenn.  I made my request and it took all of about 5 minutes.

AGAIN 1-800-996-2529 and you’ll get a recording from Glenn who walks you through the process.  It’s so easy, even Kathleen Sebelius could do it.

TOP 10 LISTS IN MUSIC

THE TOP 10 GREATEST in MUSIC

TOP 10 Blues Songs Recorded

bbking

10.  Sweet Home Chicago – Albert King

9.   Crossroads – Freddie King

8.  2AM in Texas – Ace Andres

7. Tore Down – Freddie King

6. The Sky is Crying – Albert King/Stevie Ray Vaughan

5. Texas Flood – Stevie Ray Vaughan

4. Red House – Jimi Hendrix

3. Just Aint my Cross to bear – Allman Brothers

2. Statesboro Blues – Allman Brothers

  1. The Thrill is Gone – B. B. King

TOP 10 GREATEST ROCKABILLY SONGS

bluesuede

10. That’s alright Momma – Elvis

9.  Honey Don’t Carl Perkins – Carl Perkins

8. Ubangi Stomp – Ace Andres

7.  Rock This Town – The Stray Cats

6. Summertime Blues – Eddie Cochrane

5. I fought the Law – Bobby Fuller Four

4. Good Rockin’ Tonight – Elvis/Robert Plant & the Honey Drippers

3. Flying Saucer Rock and Roll – Brian Setzer

2. Bullet Proof – Lee Rocket

  1. Blue Suede Shoes – Carl Perkins

TOP 10 GREATEST ROCK AND ROLL SONGS

Elvisgold

 10. Blitzkrieg Bop – The Ramones

 9. Wollt ihr Das Bett in Flammen sehen – Rammstein

8. Stranglehold – Ted Nugent

7. Smells like Teen Spirit – Nirvanah

6. Johnny B. Goode – Chuck Berry

5. Lucille – Little Richard/Ace Andres

4. Great Balls of Fire – Jerry Lee Lewis

3. Born to be Wild – Steppin Wolf

2. You Shook me all night Long AC/DC

  1. Heartbreak Hotel

TOP TEN GREATEST COUNTRY SONGS

hank-williams

  1. Move it on over – Hank Williams

9.  Your Cheating Heart – Hank Williams

8.  This Broken Heart – Raul Malo and the Mavericks

7. Blue Moon of Kentucky – Bill Monroe

6. El Paso – Marty Robbins

5. Me and Bobby McGee – Kris Kristofferson

4. Faded Love – Hank Williams/Patsy Cline

3. Crazy – Patsy Cline/Willie Nelson

2. All my Ex’s live in Texas – George Strait

  1. Stand by your Man – Tammy Wynette

TOP 10 GREATEST R AND B SONGS

SMOKEY

10.  Never found a girl – Booker T/Daryl Hall

9.  Please Please Please – James Brown

8. My Girl – The Temptations

7. Standing on the Top – Rick James and the Temptations

6. Respect – Areatha Franklyn

5. Being with you – Smokey Robinson

4. 60 Minute Man- Billy Ward and the Dominoes

3. Every time you go away

2. Ooh Baby Baby – Smokey Robinson

1. Let’s get it on – Marvin Gay

TOP 10 GREATEST MUSIC EVENTS IN HISTORY

phillips_elvis

 10. Ike Turner. Wrote the first Rock and Roll song recorded. – Rocket 88

 9. Dick Dale. Built the first “LOUD”  guitar Amplifier

8. John Lennon. His obsession with Buddy Holly led to something really BIG.

7. Buddy Holly changed the music Industry. The 1st artist to write, record & produce.

He’s the link between Elvis and the  Beatles

6. Chuck Berry. Broke the racial barrier.

5. Howlin’ Wolf. First artist to record at 706 Union Ave. In Memphis

4. Alan Freed. The Cleveland D.J. that coined the term “Rock and Roll”

3. Elvis Presley.  Walked into 706 Union Ave. Memphis

2. Sam Phillips becomes the father of Rock and Roll

  1. The A/R guy that Signs Ace Andres to a major label recording contract. 😉

Technology giveth; Technology taketh away!

Where has all the talent gone?

glenn-miller

In the early 20th century, Big Bands created the music industry as a business.  The Giants like Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington, Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey were amongst the first to get paid “Millions” in royalties.  They received nothing by today’s standards (Or yesterday’s) but compared to their Vaudeville predecessors, they kicked down the door of the entertainment industry.

MTV-man-on-moon

 Radio and Television had given birth to media.  Technology created the Rock Star and the Movie Star.  Eventually Technology would kill the Rock Star and the Media.  The Bugles who launched MTV with the song “Video Killed the Radio Star” didn’t realize that eventually the Video Star would kill the real musician.  An engineer took geological survey equipment and took the software used to map the contour of the subterranean structures.  This same technology was used to create a piece of software that would map ones voice and contour it to the proper key of the song.  So all a person needed was a set of vocal cords and not necessarily a great voice.  The device is called auto-tune.  Hollywood, with its’ 60 year old formula was in heaven.  It could take a male or female super-model and make them sound like Smokey Robinson or Barbara Streisand.

In fact, in 1985, Todd Rundgren, an artist who does not need an auto-tune device, made a mockery out of the Music industry by releasing an album called “A Cappella”.  Its’ working title was: “Me and my big mouth”.  Todd used a computer keyboard which was famous at the time called an “Emulator” (Today it’s known as a sampler).  The Album featured one artist and no instruments.  Todd Rundgren.  But his voice is synthesized in the emulator to sound like a drum set, a bass, a horn section and a Hammond B-3 organ.  Yet there are no instruments on the album. NONE! He actually had a hit with this experiment.

If you combine this new monster with the morals of Hollywood, you can easily see how the Millie Vanillie scandal could work.   But this could only work as long as the gate keepers and key masters existed in Hollywood.  Without the so called “Artist & Repertoire agents running the show (And sometimes the mob) you would have Chaos.  Auto-tune brought an end to the careers of great yet unattractive artists like Joe Jackson.  They for all intents and purposes will never see the cover of a Rock poster again.

Enter the PC/Internet in the 1990s.

Although all of my albums were recorded in a studio with analogue/digital machines and real musicians,(The old school way) the program “Pro-tools” came out and anyone with a slight bit of computer savvy, a touch of engineering skills and a garage band could release an album.  What the now “digital artist” lacked was the promotional financial backing.  I got in just as promoters and agents started asking for booking fees.  In other words, an artist needed a financial backer to split the cost of the signs, newspaper articles and even the band’s bar tab.

As Joe so eloquently said; there’s no longer any money in records for the pure artist.  With today’s technology you can spend 10,000 dollars making an album, have one person from Asia buy it and it’s on download sites all over the world that you or your music company haven’t contracted with.  Does anyone remember “Napster”?

 So musicians are back to the pre-Big Band days.  You will only make money if you can create a business, gain a following and sell merchandise.  The music is just a loss leader (as they say in business).  Yet as I write this, there are garage bands that are legends in their mom’s garage and somewhere at this very moment, some band is making $200.00 a night, playing Mustang Sally and Brick house.  Will there ever be another “Frampton Comes Alive” album? No.  Will there ever be another outdoor Coliseum tour again? No!  Will there ever be another hit song as big as the “Macarena”?  Hell No.

TELEVISION WAS NOT EXEMPT EITHER

 

Enter “REALITY” TV.  It started (Ironically) about the same time the music industry took a hit.  In the mid-eighties, Sony came out with the “Camcorder”.  It was a portable analogue (or semi-portable at the time) Home movie camera designed to create a video you could play on the new invention called the “Video Cassette Recorder”.  Again, technology became more advanced and video cameras became a toy everyone could play with.  Some took the use of the video camera past the purpose of vacations and little Johnny’s first steps and started making silly videos of people hurting themselves (Jack Ass).  Reality TV was born.

Judge Judy

Reality TV had always existed in the form of game shows, court shows (Divorce court) and talk shows.  Phil Donohue and Oprah were two of the more successful pioneers which eventually lead to The Jerry Springer show where violence was expected.  In the late 1990s, everyone had a talk show.  It became a competition to see who could get the closest to the edge.  Jenny Jones went over the edge and ended up on the witness stand.  Her episode on secret lovers united a gay waiter with a homophobic guest.  The guest felt nationally humiliated and took the waiter’s life with a shot gun after the show.  This event weeded out a lot of the talk show hosts whom no one can remember.

 Real_World

What Hollywood producers found was a simple principle.  People enjoyed watching talentless people.  Reality TV as a genre was born in the 90s with “The Real World”.  Then an amazing phenomenon occurred in 2000, “Survivor “ aired and received huge ratings.  The reality genre killed the prime time drama show as we knew it.  Reality TV gave the audience a chance to “interact” with the show and use their computers to vote.  Thus we saw mega hits like American Idol,  and eventually, Duck Dynasty.

Duck Dynasty Season 3

 Think about it.  Producers no longer had to pay actors.  They no longer had to pay writers on their staff.  And the worst part, reality TV is everywhere.  In fact, just as Napster and new recording technology killed the music Industry, Reality TV and YouTube did away with police dramas, variety shows, Action dramas like Law and Order and 24 and pretty much TV scheduling as we knew it.  Why? How? The answer is and has always been the bottom line.  It’s much cheaper to produce a reality show.

I don’t think the degradation of talent will stop until we start televising gladiators actually killing each other or being eaten by lions during prime time. (News at eleven)

BTW, in the late 1980s and predominantly in 2002, legal drug labs started creating anabolic steroids which are now known as PEBs or Performance Enhancing Drugs.  Again, it’s Ironic that as technology was taking down entertainment talent, Sport talent was no exception.  Steroids have disappointed sports fans for the last 25 years.  Pretty much the same time the VCR came out.

BB