So – it’s been a while!

To be honest I’d forgotten about this place. I’m guessing everyone else has too! I haven’t watched the show this season and I’ve been very out of the loop with the radio show. So do tell (if anyone’s out there) how are things in the land of George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight? Are the guests still gripping? Are the chairs still red? Does it still have the punch it did when it was The Hour? Who’s been the best guest this season? The worst?

Until next time (or  possibly next year)


Best Videos of All Time

Music videos paint a story beyond those of the lyrics. I could spend a whole weekend just watching them on TV.

Here are some of my favourite videos of all time. Enjoy!

The 12 Days of Strombo Show

Thank you, George and Bob, for your 12 Gifts of Christmas. Great selections .. all of them.

I would like to point out two things to you however.

1. The 12th day of Christmas gave us John Bonham. Though I can’t say I disagree with you on this point, and realizing how hard this decision must have been to make, an honourable mention (at the very least) must go to Moonie. Remember that incredible drum solo in “The Kids Are Alright”? No one ever has and no one ever will play drums like Keith Moon of The Who. How tragic that both of them were taken by alcohol – Bonham by drinking 40 shots of vodka for breakfast and subsequently suffocating on his own vomit, and Moon overdosing on medication for alcohol withdrawal. Both climbed the “Stairway to Heaven” and “died before (they) got old” *insert bad joke drum roll here*.

2. The second point I would like to make is in regards to the selection of the Partridge Family’s song “Get Happy” as the gift for the first day. Everyone, EVERYONE, knows that the best Partridge Family song is “I Think I Love You”. Just ask anyone. 😉

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to George, Bob, Rich and all the staff of the Strombo Show. Thanks for all your hard work and may you have an amazing 2011!

Bob’s Garage

Picture them in their bell bottomed pants and desert boots … their mop-topped hair surrounding their baby faces.  Usually four of them, sporting matching jackets and ties, and bobbing up and down to their simple beats, simple bass lines, simple chord progressions and mostly simple lyrics.  The second wave saw them sporting their paisley Nehru jackets, their ruffled shirts and their little square granny glasses, but their music  shared the same raw simplicity.  Ah … The Garage Bands.

You wanted to rebel against your parents?  Then join a garage band.  My older brother did.  Shadows on the Wall they were known as, unfortunately the shadows faded quickly as they were lacking in some form of .. well .. talent.  Raw simple chords fed through a fuzzbox, garage rock is now considered the forerunner of punk music.

Bob introduced a few of the more popular garage rock bands of the 60s, including the Beau Brummels and the Hombres.  Other tunes of note of the era include Louie Louie (the Kingsmen),  Wooly Bully (Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs). I have listed for you some of my favourite garage rock tunes for your listening pleasure.

Though this song was not made famous by the Sonics, their cover is well worth a listen.

Though the garage band is still a part of growing up, the days of the early garage rock bands are gone. Their influence on the many bands that followed, however, cannot be denied. So sit back, turn it up .. and enjoy.

My Blood Runs Cold

Okay Mr Terfry – you win. You were right. Your choice for scariest Hallowe’en song chilled me to the bone. Was it the pulsing drum beat? The ear-piercing shrieks? The unspeakable acts committed by Frankie Teardrop? The sinister character who weaves in and out of the darkness (in the video that like a bad car crash I had to go watch!)? I don’t know, and I don’t care. I am scarred for life.
You can watch Suicide’s “Frankie Teardrop” here.

There are only a handful of songs that have managed to do this to me. “Careful with that Axe Eugene”, an early Pink Floyd masterpiece, also manages to make your heart race. The song title is the only words spoken out loud, another small handful being whispered during the 9 minute song. This tune uses its tempo to build to an exploding crescendo which is accompanied with an ear piercing shriek. We can only imagine what happens to poor Eugene. If you aren’t familiar with this classic, someone has dared to set it to a scene in the movie “The Shining”. This film doesn’t need any help.

I would also like to add another two songs to this list. It is not so much the music that frightens, but the fact that both songs are based on two of history most horrifying killers, Armin Meiwes and Ed Gein.

Rammstein’s Mein Teil is based on the story of Germany’s Armin Meiwes. Armin posted a classified ad on the internet looking for a willing victim to be killed and eaten. Even more shocking, his ad was responded to by Bernd Jürgen Brandes. I’ll spare you the rest of the details, but Armin was convicted of manslaughter, for which he received a sentence of a mere 8 years.

Mudvayne’s “Nothing to Gein”  is based on the story of Ed Gein, the American serial killer notorious for transforming body parts of his victims into a variety of household items. Officers who were dispatched to Gein’s house were forever changed.   A scene in the video portrays Ed sewing with what  is supposedly human skin.  Enough said.

There are certainly more songs out there that will make one’s blood run cold.  What are yours?

Don’t Forget the Lyrics!

It’s been a long and rainy Sunday so listening to tonight’s episode of the Strombo Show curled up in my big chair seems even more cozy than usual.  The weekend’s gone by too fast as always and the work week lurks around the corner – UGH!   At least we have Battle of the Blades and the Strombo Show to look forward to on Sunday nights!

Songwriters write songs to convey a message to their listeners, the melody tagging along to set the mood and the tone.  The true masters  are those that can marry the two.  How many times have we listened mindlessly to a song without really listening to the lyrics?  Yet when we finally take the time to listen to the lyrics, we are blown away. Try it sometime – you might be amazed at what you hear.

Bob Mackowycz and George put forward a list of their favourite songwriters.  Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, Gil Scott Heron and of course Bob Dylan.  I have a few names that I would like to add to this list however.  Here they are in random order:

1.  Neil Young

2.  Eddie Vedder

3.  Eminem

4.  John Lennon

5.  Lauryn Hill

6.  Morrissey

7.  Gord Downie

8.  Roger Watters

9.  Patti Smyth

10.  Chrissy Hynde

Agree?  Disagree?  What are your thoughts?  I’m sure you can add to this list.


If you missed the show tonight, here is a list of the G12 as well as links to the artists’ MySpace pages if you would like to hear the songs.

12.  Duck Sauce – Barbara Streisand

11. Chromeo – Don’t Turn the Lights On

10. Chk Chk Chk (!!!) – AM FM

9.  Local Natives – White Eyes

8.  Deerhunter –Revival

7.  Tired Pony – Dead American Writers

6.  Fistful of Mercy – Father’s Son

5.  War Paint – Undertow

4.  Small Sins – Déjà Vu

3.  Unkle – The Answer

2.  Black Mountain – The Space in Your Mind

1.  Arcade Fire – Modern Man

Well .. off to have a listen to the album side and the Big Lie-Down.  This week – Arlo Guthrie’s “Alice’s Restaurant”. Ninites!  🙂



His Master’s Voice

The black vinyl disc spun round and round, the single groove spiraling inwards at 33 and 1/3 rotations per minute, the groove leading the needle to its final destination, the label.  On this label sat the puppy, the overgrown puppy who could never again enter his house, but listened instead through the giant cone shaped tower on the roof.  He listened sadly to “His Master’s Voice”.

This is one of my earliest recollections of my passion for music.  My sister had been given a record player for her fifteenth birthday – it was the best gift ever – maybe not to her, but to me it was.  I spent more time spinning vinyl than both my sister and brother combined.  The Beatles, the Supremes, Jimi Hendrix, Iron Butterfly, not exactly what you would expect a seven year old to be listening to.  At that point I was hooked and there was no turning back.

Many years later, that passion for music still burns.  I know now that the dog was just an advertising idea – looking into the speaker of an old record player, the recording of his master’s voice was so clear that even he couldn’t tell the difference.   Now I tune in weekly to the Strombo Show to help feed this passion.  It is the perfect mix of “the new, the old and the in the middle” as George once said.  Discovering some of the best new bands, savouring the old classics, and being entertained by a vast array of musical guests and interesting discussion.  All of that is delivered in four hours of radio.  Now that fall is finally here I look forward to a brand new season.  I can’t wait!

I am honoured to be a contributor to this site and look forward to sharing the passion of music with all of you!


I would love to hear what were some of the influences in your life that sparked your love of music.  Anyone?

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