Straightline music

This is going to ramble a bit. It started with a look at the ships at #Jutland100 and the beautifully straight lines, straight sides, straight ahead beasts they were, e.g. the Lion, then to football teams which advance impressively and carry all before them.

Then to music for some reason and I was looking at just how much grunt there really was in bands and players like this, how much straightline power:

duane eddy

Didn’t need to be superfast, superslick like Clapton or Jeff Beck, it was much straighter music with torque:

By the way, I once put on a stage show [did a little bit of producing for a while] in which the Art of Noise version with Rik Mayall featured. Had twelve girls dancing [you can never have enough girls] and a James Dean type – went down well.

Anyway, seeing that pic above of Duane Eddy, started my blogrounds and at the very first blog stumbled upon this gentleman below, from a later era:


From this group.

This being one of their songs.

And this being his blog.

Well I’ll be … I thought, though not in those exact words.

That got me looking at this straight down the line rock, which inevitably led to:

Wiki says, about Wray:

Building on the distorted electric guitar sound of early records, his 1958 instrumental hit “Rumble” by Link Wray and his Ray Men popularized “the power chord, the major modus operandi of modern rock guitarists”,[3] facilitating the emergence of “punk and heavy rock“.[4]

Though he began in country music, his musical style went on to consist primarily of rock and roll, rockabilly, and instrumental rock.[7]

Pity. He was the goods for a time:

Then it was lost, it all went dum-dee-dum-dee-dum, all pretty and it’s taken me a long time to work out why.

Birth years: Link Wray [1929], Little Richard [1932], Duane Eddy [1938], Eddy Cochran [1938], Mitch Ryder [1945] – those men were not of the 50s, they were of the 30s and 40s growing up, and this probably imparted that hard edge.

I love the Stranglers and Ramones, wandered about in T-shirts of both, but they were too much of my era all the same. You see, we’d never truly known hardship, Depression, War and so we were a bit Rebels Without Causes, James Deans.

The Duane Eddys and Link Wrays were something much earlier and heavier, like the old blues men and I for one love that. They were noir.

When it went all Rockabilly or the other way to metal, or even went all soft and poplike, there were still one or two bands doing it the old way. This clip below is recent but the names in that band are the old sidemen.

You can’t really emulate it. However, new genres emerged which did capture the raw energy and spirit, the unpredictability and menace.

I don’t mean some punk screaming in his near falsetto, which passes for metal these days, or being as foulmouthed as possible in order to appear tough, I mean the sort of guy you’d not wish to meet on a dark night in an alley – the speakeasies, the noir, the grunt.

Leave you with this as an example of maybe the last of the take no prisoners music:

Were I ever in a band again [I was at one time, a group called The Other Side, we were awful, playing Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs and I was dire], then I think I’d like us to play a combination of all of the above in some way.

2 comments for “Straightline music

  1. May 31, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    I’m in good company it seems! I saw Link Wray play when he was teamed up with Robert Gordon and he was fantastic…you have good taste in music (I would say that ha!).

    • May 31, 2016 at 11:22 pm

      Would have been nice to see you continue but construction clearly beckoned. Going to put together another post in a few days as some more tracks have come through at my place.

      For OoL readers in general – wasn’t sure if this open forum would be the place for this bit of history or my place. Bit of both it seems and there are some further artists to explore now. Or would it have been better to do some Turkish village music or Syrian, to get us all prepared?

      As I go on, getting more and more unreconstructed and rebellious, can’t help thinking we’d be hell in a care home.

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