Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Charles Bradley roars back with new single


In advance of Charles Bradley's long overdue debut album No Time For Dreaming (now scheduled for release January 25, 2011), Daptone's dependable Dunham subsidiary is putting out the motivational Joe Quarterman-penned title track as seven-inch single with the charging Farfisa-fired Golden Rule on the flip.
As with Bradley's previous Dunham scorcher The World (Is Going Up In Flames), both sides are produced by Dap-Kings guitarist Thomas "TNT" Brenneck featuring the instrumental support of his stone-solid Menahan Street Band with vocal enhancement provided by Daptone's own sweet singing Gospel Queens on loan from Naomi Shelton.
Before heading over to Daptone's online store to grab a copy for yourself, check out Mr. Bradley belting out No Time For Dreaming with the Menhan crew at Het Depot in Leuven, Belgium back in February. Some time-saving advice to diggers: Don't bother trying to track down Joe Quarterman's original recording of No Time For Dreaming – it was never issued.



No Time For Dreaming by Charles Bradley

Sunday, November 28, 2010

David Murray does Nat King Cole


Few musicians in jazz history have proven more vigorously productive and resourceful than David Murray. During the past 35 years, from the moment he first visited New York as a 20-year-old student, playing in a walkup loft, in 1975, David has careened forward in a cool, collected, rocket-fueled streak. He has released over 150 albums under his own name. Yet more impressive than the numbers is the constancy of two abiding achievements: as a tenor saxophonist, he has perfected an instantly recognizable approach to improvisation that even in its freest flights acknowledges the gravity of a tradition he honors more than most; and he has altered the context for his improvisations as an infinite mosaic of musical challenges and explorations.

With this new album, we hear the fruit of one of David Murray’s most improbable and effective projects: an interpretation of two albums that Nat King Cole recorded in Spanish and Portuguese in 1958 and 1962, performing melodies from Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Rio de Janeiro, and Buenos Aires.

The result is one of Murray’s most purely pleasurable albums. It demonstrates a tremendous leap in his approach to a world of music that has long fascinated him. The arrangements are imaginative, compelling, and wily, especially in the integration between winds and stings. The band is as tight as a fist. And there is a stunning feature for David Murray the improviser, a sensational tour de force and high spot in his massive discography.

The Cuban songwriter and flutist (known as “la flauta magica”) Richard Egues wrote the enduring “El Bodeguero” (the Grocer’s Cha Cha), which inspired Murray to take a more Ellingtonian approach, using an expansive swing rhythm that underplays the cha-cha-cha beat emphasized by Cole. It concludes with his own signature approach to counterpoint, a frequent joy throughout the album. David’s solo is exceptional, at times echoing the mellow strength of Ben Webster, especially in the middle section. There are also telling solos by trombonist Denis Cuni Rodriguez, a graduate of the National School of Music in Havana and an educator in his own right, and pianist Jose “Pepe” Rivero, a composer with an accomplished classical piano technique.

Quizas, Quizas, Quizas, one of two selections by Cuban songwriter Osvaldo Farrés, is perhaps the best remembered of Cole’s interpretations, complete with Romeu’s lovely strings. Composed in the 1940s, it was much covered and memorably revived in Wong Kar-Wai’s film In the Mood for Love. After the tenor and trumpet split the theme chorus, shadowed by the ensemble, we hear the insinuating, whisky-stained, darker than pitch voice (Tom Waits squared) of Daniel Melingo, a veteran of Buenos Aires rock who went to Spain to score films for Pedro Almodovar, and, in the late 1990s, returned to Argentina to spearhead a tango revival. For most Americans, this will be the first encounter with an artist who has garnered much attention throughout Latin America.

From the 1962 album, More Cole Español, the second Osvaldo Farrés classic, “Tres Palabras,” here given a deeper emotional cast than Cole’s version by the trumpet playing of Mario Felix Hernandez Morejon, who is at home with Mozart as well as jazz. This selection features one of Murray’s most lyrical arrangements, in the way he frames the solos; it finishes with a climax that entwines Murray, Filiu, and Ruiz in an episode that might be called Tres Saxofonistas.

“Piel Canela” is the best known song by Bobby Capó, the Puerto Rican entertainer and songwriter who came to New York to work with Xavier Cugat, and soon became a Latin American celebrity in his own right. Murray replaces Ralph Carmichael’s vamp with a contrapuntal intro to a performance that includes another inspired alto solo and a fierce Murray wrap-up solo.

Yet Murray’s solo triumph on this session is, as noted, the remarkable “No me platiques,” a serenade by the Mexican composer Vicente Garrido, known as The Master. This is all Murray and strings—an eight-minute, superbly paced cri de coeur, combining romance and drollery before attaining a deep, persuasive resolution. Murray original, “Black Nat,” uses riffs to build an intricate ensemble backing for the soloists, including tenor saxophonist Ariel Bringuez Ruiz, though it is Murray who unmistakably claims the climax.
From the 1958 Cole Espanol. “Cachito,” Cole’s first venture in Spanish was recorded entirely in Hollywood, with a Dave Cavanaugh arrangement and an orchestra made up of Latino musicians in Los Angeles. The song, written by Mexican pianist and composer Consuelo Velázquez, best known for her imperishable standard “Besame Mucho,” has three eight-bar melodies. Murray’s written obbligato for winds and the strings gives the illusion of spontaneous invention, especially during the C section—whirling in double-time responses to the melody statement by tenor saxophone. We are also introduced to the bebop radiance of the alto saxophonist. Roman Filiu, who worked with Irakere and recorded with David on his excellent rhythm-and-strings album Waltz Again.

Edgardo Donato’s legendary 1920s tango, “A media luz,” generated a delightful Cole performance, smooth and sure, but in this version, it reclaims its tango roots in a performance featuring Daniel Melingo, himself a musical descendant of Carlos Gardel, who helped make it a standard. Murray turns to the bass clarinet, choosing his notes with care and sustaining the rare sense of accomplishment when two musical worlds discover they have more in common than is generally acknowledges or celebrated. Murray Plays Cole in Español is all celebration.

“Aqui se habla en amor” was the ringer in the Cole repertory, as it was composed by Jack Keller, a prolific writer of mostly forgotten Top-40 tunes (his clients ran the gamut from Perry Como to Frankie Avalon), and his mentor Noel Sherman, who had written the Cole hit, “To the Ends of the Earth.” Murray takes the tempo up and employs divergent melodies to recreate the piece as a cool, modern jazz theme—the layered themes indicating an Eastern quality as well.
by Gary Giddins



No me platiques by David Murray

Friday, November 26, 2010

One For The Weekend: Fern Knight


Here's an intriguing gothic fairytale filmed by Derek Moench to go with song The Poisoner from Fern Knight's superb new Castings (vhf) album, their fourth and best yet.
Once again it's the bewitching voice of cellist Margaret Ayre that draws you in but Castings is a considerably less fussy affair for the Philadelphia/D.C. crew, moving further away from the chamber folk precision of their previous work towards headier prog-psych territory.
It seems like some Sourdeline may have seeped into Ayre's songwriting while listening back to the songs from their La Reine Blanche album while she was putting together the liner notes for Guersson's reissue. And the influence of King Crimson clearly weighs heavy as can be heard from the Fern-ized version of Epitaph and Ayre's own companion piece From Zero To Infinity.
Incidentally, along with shooting the group's video clips, Moench is also responsible for sweet cover art for the Castings album available now on vinyl and  digipak CD. Even though the CD comes with the bonus track Cave Of Swords, the limited-run RTI audiophile pressing housed in heavy old-school gatefold "tip-on" sleeve is hard to pass up. Either way, Castings is on my 2010 best-of list. 

 
The Poisoner by Fern Knight

Fern Knight:  "The Poisoner" from Derek Moench on Vimeo.

LINKS
Fern Knight http://www.fernknight.com/
vhf http://www.vhfrecords.com/catalog/122.htm

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Garage Rock 101


The clever marketing team behind Toyota's Scion brand – in conjunction with the culture vultures at Vice – has finally decided to let people see it's first attempt at feature-length documentary making, New Garage Explosion!!: In Love With These Times.
The 75-minute overview of contemporary garage rock – which you can view on the Vice site (see link below) – is essentially a series of superficial artist profiles strung together to make the case that these eruptions of three-chord scorch arising from San Francisco, Oakland, Detroit, Memphis, Brooklyn, Detroit, Atlanta and Portland are actually all part of a much larger movement.
Using a steady stream of talking head style interviews intercut with brief performance clips, directors Joseph Patel and Aaron Brown with guidance from Yeti Magazine's resident rock expert Mike McGonigal attempt to explain how this groundswell of politically incorrect and musically inept activity known as "garage" grew in the absence of mainstream media attention while pointing out the links between the attitudes, motivation and output of Jay Reatard, the Black Lips, Oblivians, Gories, The Oh Sees, Clone Defects, Vivian Girls, Magic Kids, Pierced Arrows, Smith Westerns, No Bunny, Golden Triangle and others.  

After at least a year in the making, they've hit on three revelations:
1) kids will do what they want
2) garage rock is more about feel and energy than virtuosity
3) it's fun to make people dance even if it doesn't make you rich

While New Garage Explosion!! does a good job of spotlighting the work of a few key artists, it never gets up close and personal enough with the characters involved or the fans who love them to make for a truly compelling study. Ultimately, the film fails to convey the true excitement of the music – the nutty thrills, spills and ridiculous hilarity of it all. The end product could've greatly been improved by collecting bizarre and enlightening anecdotes from club bookers – in fact, one interview with Dan Burke at the Silver Dollar probably would've sufficed – but perhaps that may have made it a little too real.
Of course, if the whole film venture was merely a cynical marketing ploy to drive consumers to Scion and Vice websites in hopes of selling corny cube-shaped cars and cheesy club wear, then perhaps filmmakers Patel and Brown have done exactly what they set out to accomplish.

Watch New Garage Explosion!! right here

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Paulo Superfly goes all in for Angola


Diggers around the globe know that If you're after tropical grooves, the Superfly Records store and website is where it's at. Deep digging collector Paulo "Superfly" Gonçalves runs the Paris-based operation when he isn't jet-setting around to hoover up rare vinyl in other countries or spinning some of his latest finds. Like many trend-conscious celebrity selectas who were all about old school Colombian cumbia joints a minute ago, the Superfly man has now turned his attention to south central Africa's funky Lusophonics as can be heard on his latest podcast Angola Dancefloor Shaker Mix which you can download free right here. If you like what you hear, you'll definitely need to grab a copy of Analog Africa's hot new archival compilation Angola Soundtrack - The Unique Sound Of Luanda (1968-1976).
Expect to be served up a heaping helping of those highly addictive rebita, kazukuta and semba rhythms when Paulo "Superfly" Gonçalves tears up the Turning Point party with A Man Called Warwick at The Garrison (1197 Dundas West) tonight (Saturday, November 20).


LINKS
Angola Soundtrack http://analogafrica.blogspot.com/2010/10/blog-post.html
Superfly Records http://www.superflyrecords.com/
Turning Point presents Paulo Superfly http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=168929159791329

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Boss takes over Late Night with Jimmy Fallon

Whip My Hair by Jimmy Fallon as Neil Young


Bruce Springsteen interview part one


Bruce Springsteen interview part two


Because The Night by Bruce Springsteen



Born To Run by Jimmy Fallon & the cast of Glee

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Os Mutantes @ The Opera House Wednesday!




Interview with Sérgio Dias of Os Mutantes
 


Os Mutantes Live @ Amoeba Music

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Gord Cumming & Scott B are Massey-Harris

Despite what tractor-riding farmers might tell you, Massey-Harris isn't just about plowing, it's about picking too. The always entertaining Gord Cumming (of The Lawn and numerous other Toronto combos) has reunited with fellow singer/songwriter Scott Bradshaw from the Scott B Sympathy days in a dynamic guitar duo format called Massey-Harris.
For the past few months, Gord and Scott have embarked on a stealthy swing through local drinking establishments, delighting surprised patrons who wound up getting a lot more than sloshed. They'll be rummaging through their vast combined catalog of tuneful curios to delight the crowd on hand at the Duke Of Gloucester (649 Yonge, 2nd Floor) tonight (Sunday, November 14) starting at 9 pm. Why don't you join 'em – it beats watching football highlights.    




Massey-Harris @ Reposado, Toronto August 22, 2010

Friday, November 12, 2010

One For The Weekend: Sleigh Bells


Riot Rhythm by Sleigh Bells directed by Bo Mirosseni

Sleigh Bells "Riot Rhythm" from on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Record Store Day 2010, Part II: Black Friday


While it's not officially designated as a Record Store Day, Friday, November 26 – the day after Thanksgiving in the US – will see a similar sort of hubbub at independent record retailers as some labels are taking advantage of the post-turkey shopping frenzy by issuing special limited-edition singles, LPs, CDs and DVDs available only on Black Friday.
The big difference here is that it isn't a holiday in Canada so expect a crush of frantic vinyl junkies at Rotate This, Soundscapes, Vortex and Sunrise during the lunch hour with a second wave starting around 5 pm. Incidentally, Rotate This kicks off their annual pre-inventory "There Goes The Neighbourhood" weekend sale today with 15% off all new and used vinyl and CDs and on Saturday and Sunday used vinyl will be 40% off.  

Here are a few of the more interesting Black Friday exclusives up for grabs:  

Black Keys - Brothers Double box including the album released as 45 rpm double vinyl set along with a limited-run poster and 6-song 10" LP with previously unreleased live versions of Everlasting Light, Next Girl, Tighten Up, Howlin’ For You, She’s Long Gone and Too Afraid to Love You

Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings - I Learned The Hard Way: Singles Collection includes the album released as 11 seven-inch singles with 10 bonus songs and 8 instrumental versions. 

Bruce Springsteen - Save My Love b/w Because The Night seven-inch with both tracks taken from The Promise album
 
Metallica - Live At Grimey's CD and 10" double vinyl LP release of Metallica's insanely intimate secret show at The Basement below Nashville record store Grimey's in June 2008

Dr. Dog - Double: four previously unreleased songs Take Me Into Town, Black-Red, Nobody Knows Who You Are, The Sound released as a double pack seven-inch

Drive-By Truckers -  The Thanksgiving Filter b/w Used to Be A Cop seven-inch of two tracks from their forthcoming Go-Go Boots album due out February 15, 2011

Bob Dylan - The Times They Are A Changin b/w Like A Rolling Stone (Mono) seven-inch taken from the Whitmark Demos and the Legacy Mono Box releases

Roky Erickson - Night of the Vampire DVD and 180g vinyl LP of a selection of songs from the 13th Floor Elevators catalog performed on Halloween night 2008 by Roky Erickson backed by the Black Angels at the El Ray Theatre in Los Angeles.

Jimi Hendrix - Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 10" green vinyl single
featuring Little Drummer Boy b/w Silent Night/Auld Lang Syne

Freddie Hubbard - Red Clay 180g vinyl LP remastered from the original two-track analog tape

Iron & Wine - Walking Far From Home 12" EP with the title track b/w Summer In Savannah and Biting Your Tail

Cee-Lo Green - Fuck You 12" Original uncensored track Fuck You with the otherwise unavailable instrumental version on the flip

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

New Grinderman video for Worm Tamer

In advance of the November 22 release of Grinderman's Worm Tamer single, a new performance video  has appeared in which a Nick Cave shows off his growing Telecaster slashing and pedal stomping skills inside the converted Victorian schoolhouse that is London's legendary RAK Studios. The 12" version of Worm Tamer comes backed with two additional remixes courtesy of UNKLE and A Place To Bury Strangers. Grinderman will be in Toronto to play a sold-out show at The Phoenix on Thursday (November 11).


Worm Tamer by Grinderman

Monday, November 8, 2010

Feist documentary hits Toronto and DVD shelves

Whether due to public demand or the fact that Feist simply had a day off in Toronto between gigs, Anthony Seck's documentary Look At What The Light Did Now – a behind-the-scenes look at the making of The Reminder album and the aftermath – will finally get a public screening in Toronto at The Royal Ontario Museum on November 21 beginning at 8 pm. Check out the film trailer and Feist's charming rendition of the title song with Little Wings which I previously posted right here.
For some reason, the presentation will be hosted CBC poster boy George Stroumboulopoulos – evidently both Ron MacLean and Linden Macintyre were busy that night – who'll no doubt heap praise upon La Feist and director Seck for a full 15 minutes before giving way to some thoughtful questions from the audience for another 10 minutes and it'll be all over by 10:15 pm.
Those who aren't quick enough to score tickets to the ROM event should note that Look At What The Light Did Now will be issued as a DVD on December 7 and yes, there's extra material that won't be seen at the ROM. What exactly do you get? Well, there are five single shot, unedited live performances (Limit To Your Love, Secret Heart, Help Is On It's Way and So Sorry) from The Reminder tour; footage from The Living Lantern – a performance at the Cameron House; archival footage of Feist and record producer Chilly Gonzales on the Presidential Suite Tour 2002; two short films (The Water directed by Kevin Drew and Departures co-starring Kevin Drew), along with music videos for I Feel It All, 1234, My Moon My Man and Honey Honey. 
The 13-track bonus CD includes solo and duet versions of the title track of the film, rare and unique live performances, and just what everyone in Berlin was waiting to hear – solo piano reinterpretations of Feist's songs Intuition, The Water, Sea Lion Woman and 1234 by maestro Gonzales!
Unfortunately, the DVD doesn't feature any live footage of Feist fronting the Calgary grunge band Placebo from the early 90s prior to moving to Toronto or what has proven to be her most popular television appearance ever – Sesame Street. So for anyone who can't get enough Feist, I've included a couple of entertaining clips below. You're welcome. 


Double Run by Placebo (w/Feist)

 

Back Down The Same Way by Placebo (w/Feist)



Lazy Bermuda by Placebo (w/ Feist)



Feist on Sesame Street

Friday, November 5, 2010

Ray Davies reworks the tribute concept

There have been a couple of tribute albums celebrating the music of the Kinks and their chief songwriter Ray Davies which despite the good intentions of all involved have been patchy affairs. Selecting a slate of worthy participants whose personalized submissions will make sense when sequenced together on a single album is every bit as big a challenge as choosing the appropriate song for each to cover. Even hugely gifted artists don't always make great interpretive stylists.
Perhaps to take some of the guesswork out of the whole tribute process or maybe simply to exert more control over the choices of who would be involved, what songs they'd sing and how they'd sing them, Davies decided to assemble See My Friends (Universal) himself not unlike Van Morrison did with 1994's No Prima Donna. Unfortunately, Davies' auto-tribute gambit hasn't worked out much better and his decision to one-up Van by contributing vocals and guitar to most tracks doesn't seem to have helped.
Whereas Morrison's self-produced homage suffered from overly reverential renditions by people Morrison wanted to hear interpreting his stuff (i.e. Liam Neeson, Brian Kennedy, Phil Coulter, Marianne Faithfull, etc) rather than refreshing new takes by rising stars of the day who might've helped bring Morrison's music to a whole different audience, Davies' version suffers from the competing selection criteria of inviting artists he admires (Alex Chilton, Lucinda Williams, Paloma Faith, Frank Black) while not offending celebrity acquaintances asking to be involved (Metallica, Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi & Ritchie Sambora, Jackson Browne) and placating the label brass by including a few younger names who might help goose sales with the under-50 demographic (Billy Corgan, Amy Macdonald, Spoon, Mumford & Sons).
It wouldn't be at all surprising to learn that a number of Davies' ideas for collaborative pairings came about by mere coincidence – a meeting in a coffee shop, a festival billing, a shared hair stylist – whatever. That would make more sense than Davies' seeking out Snow Patrol's Gary Lightbody in hopes of convincing him to remake Tired Of Waiting as it really should be done or pleading with 23-year-old Amy Macdonald to use her life experience to bring some realism to Dead End Street.
If Davies had any prior experience with Lucinda Williams, who isn't overly comfortable in a studio setting when recording her own songs, he probably would've known better than to ask her to sing something she was unfamiliar with like Long Way From Home. Hearing her performance – apparently the best of four takes after having learned the lyrics the night before – it's painfully obvious that she's out of her element.
The head-scratching cast of characters on See My Friends naturally leads to a confusing hodge-podge of an album which veers from full-on metal onslaught one moment to a somber vocal duet backed by gently strummed acoustic guitars the next. Incidentally, the beautifully understated acoustic version of Waterloo Sunset sung by Jackson Browne with Davies on backing vocals is easily the best thing here. Why anyone thought Springsteen growling Better Things or Bon Jovi bellowing Celluloid Heroes would be a better idea when hamfistedly backed by Paul Shaffer and the rest of David Letterman's Late Show Band is beyond me.
In retrospect, Davies would've saved lots of time and money – and likely gotten more enjoyable results – if he'd have simply taken his acoustic guitar to the home of each artist and recorded right there in their kitchen.    
While it could be argued that the drastic stylistic variation from track to track on See My Friends offers an accurate representation of the multi-faceted nature of Davies' writing, nevertheless, it doesn't make for a coherent listen. But then again, in the iTunes era, who listens to albums anyway? 

See My Friends (Universal)
1.  Better Things – Ray Davies & Bruce Springsteen w/ The Late Show Band
2.  Celluloid Heroes – Ray Davies, Jon Bon Jovi & Richie Sambora w/ The Late Show Band
3.  Days/This Time Tomorrow – Ray Davies & Mumford & Sons
4.  Long Way From Home – Ray Davies & Lucinda Williams
5.  You Really Got Me – Ray Davies & Metallica
6.  Lola – Ray Davies & Paloma Faith
7.  Waterloo Sunset – Ray Davies & Jackson Browne
8.  ‘Til The End of The Day – Ray Davies, Alex Chilton 
9.  Dead End Street – Ray Davies & Amy Macdonald
10.  See My Friends – Ray Davies & Spoon
11.  This Is Where I Belong – Ray Davies & Black Francis
12.  David Watts – Ray Davies & The 88
13.  Tired Of Waiting – Ray Davies & Gary Lightbody
14.  All Day And All Of The Night/Destroyer – Ray Davies & Billy Corgan


Ray Davies pitches See My Friends


Days / This Time Tomorrow by Ray Davies with Mumford & Sons

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

AfroCubism rock Montreal Friday

Since the Havana-meets-Mali supergroup AfroCubism won't be playing Toronto on their current tour, you may want to take that weekend trip to Montreal you've been thinking about to witness Eliades Ochoa throwing down with Toumani Diabate, Bassekou Kouate, Djelmady Tounkoura and Kasse Mady Diabate at their lone Canadian date at Metropolis on Friday (November 5).
Judging by their first ever performance at the Festival Mar de Musicas in Cartagena, Spain back in July, which you can check out in the clip below, it should be a monumental event that may never be seen again in Canada. AfroCubism's fantastic self-titled debut disc is available now on World Circuit.   

Nima diyala by AfroCubism live at the Festival Mar de Musicas July 9, 2010

AfroCubism - 'Nima diyala' live from World Circuit on Vimeo.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Baseball Project salutes magnificent misfit Giants

Congratulations to the World Series champs San Francisco Giants whose formidable pitching staff made the highly-touted offense of the Texas Rangers look like bush leaguers in the batters box. Joining in the celebration is Bay Area native Scott McCaughey who persevered through years of Giants torture has come up with a winning Baseball Project tune Panda & the Freak in honour of the Bad News Beards' fan faves, husky switch hitter Pablo Sandoval and lanky longhaired starting pitcher Tim Lincecum.
Although the badly slumping Sandoval was not a factor in the Rangers series, Lincecum's killer changeup, untouchable slider and whiff-inducing splitter had the Rangers thoroughly bamboozled, allowing just one run and three hits over eight solid innings during the 3-1 win in Game Five to finally end the Giants' 56-year World Series drought. Shortstop Edgar Renteria's brilliant defensive play and surprising run production – his three-run homer was all the Giants needed to take Game Five and clinch the series – made him a unanimous choice for MVP but unfortunately it wasn't enough to earn him a mention in Panda & the Freak which will be released as part of the Baseball Project's second album Vol. 2: High and Inside (Yep Roc) due in February. I'm sure he's content with the MVP hardware and a second huge diamond-encrusted ring. Check out the song in the live clip below or stream the studio version for free right here.



Panda & the Freak

You heard about the Mudcat, Catfish and the Georgia Peach
The Kitten and the Cobra, the Spaceman and the Beast
Goose, Bird, Rooster, Penguin, Vulture, and your bird can sing
And the greatest nickname of all time: Death To Flying Things


In old New York it was Turkey Mike, Muggsy and the Big Six
In San Francisco Baby Bull, Stretch and the Say Hey Kid
Then came the Count, the Hac km an, Jack the Ripper and Will the Thrill
Barry and Jeff Kent, but a dearth of nicknames, that is, until


The Giants got the Panda, the Giants got the Freak
The Panda’s smoking line drives, the Freak is throwing heat
Panda and the Freak, Panda and the Freak.


When it comes to kung fu fighting, he’s no better than Hong Chi Quo
He’s kind of like Bruce Lee if you cross Bruce Lee with a buffalo
He barrels round the bases, he scrambles for ground balls
Zito named him Kung Fu Panda, that’s our Pablo Sandoval


They said he wasn’t built to last, they said he was too small
The Mariners passed him right by, now that was a bad call
Two Cy Youngs, two strike-out crowns, in his first full two seasons
That's why they call Tim the Freak, because he defies all reason


Panda & the Freak