The Sounds Of “P”! Petty! Portugal.The.Man! Prince! Pretzel Logic And Parallel Lines Too!

Prince Says: “Listen Up!”

The sound of music in the letter “P” is filled with terrific new songs as well as songs from my favorite Artists…let’s start with a song that is new, but has a retro feel to it!

Portugal. The Man – “Feel It Still”

How unique that this band started in Sarah Palin’s hometown of Wasilla, Alaska. They reside in Portland, Oregon now and have a unique sound – this new song has a 60’s Nancy Sinatra vibe and lyrics to match:

“Ooh woo, I’m a rebel just for kicks, now
I been feeling it since 1966, now
Might be over now, but I feel it still”

It sounds like it could have been used in an “Austen Powers” movie!

Here is the music video:

I am trying to always include new songs on these lists, because they are also filled with my favorite Artists – like Todd Rundgren:

“Parallel Lines” – Todd Rundgren

He is one of the most seriously under-appreciated Artists out there, and here’s a great example from his “Nearly Human” album – the beautiful “P” song “Parallel Lines.”

Here is an absolutely gorgeous live version from the show “Night Music” in 1989 – a stripped-down version unlike the more orchestrated version from the album:

Todd is still going strong, with a new album and tour underway – and he also tours every year with Ringo and his “All-Starr” Band – but to hear more from his “Nearly Human” masterpiece, click here:

Next up is another favorite of mine, who tragically is no longer with us:

Tom Petty – “Free Fallin'”

Simply one of our greatest Singer/Songwriters, Petty had massive hits and tender, insightful stories of growing up in LA’s San Fernando valley:

She’s a good girl, loves her mama
Loves Jesus and America too
She’s a good girl, crazy ’bout Elvis
Loves horses and her boyfriend too
It’s a long day, livin’ in Reseda
There’s a freeway, runnin’ through the yard
And I’m a bad boy, cause I don’t even miss her
I’m a bad boy for breakin’ her heart

And I’m free, free fallin’

I love these lyrics, which capture life in the valley so well…here is the music video, shot on Ventura Boulevard:

Tom Petty’s death was a shock to all music lovers – here are some of my favorite songs from him:

Next up, another shocking loss:

Prince – “Let’s Go Crazy”

This iconic Musician’s death also stunned the music world…I just wanted to acknowledge that I could have chosen a myriad of classic songs to celebrate his life –

However, this one is impossible not to get energized by – here is the clip of “Let’s Go Crazy” from the movie “Purple Rain:”

How can you not jump up and dance to that? Next up is a band I came across who makes finely-crafted pop music:

Parachute – “The Mess I Made” and “She Is Love”

I got hooked on these two songs from Parachute, a band from Virginia that formed in 2008.

In 2009, they released a great pop album called “Losing Sleep”, and have released 4 albums to date.

The song that hooked me first was “The Mess I Made”, with a great soaring chorus – here you go:

Their big hit from the album was “She Is Love” – again, a very well-crafted song.

Here is “She Is Love”:

Finally, a return to an iconic band that influenced me heavily:

“Pretzel Logic” by Steely Dan

I was hooked the first time I heard Steely Dan – from the early, more rock-influenced sound right through their later jazz-influenced music…but this song is my favorite, maybe because of these lyrics:

“I stepped up on the platform
The man gave me the news
He said, You must be joking son
Where did you get those shoes?”

Yes, men wore these in the early 70’s, and as those lyrics point out, were justly humiliated for it! It is the sharpness of their lyrics that have always hooked me, along with great musicianship.

Here is an audio only version of the title track to their great album “Pretzel Logic”:

Again, music lost a great Arrtist with Walter Becker died…here is a look at some of my favorite Steely Dan music:

Let me know what “music with a P” I missed!

Categories: 70's Music, Art, Awards, Books / Media, Classic Rock, Hollywood, Los Angeles, Memoirs, Music, Obscure Music, Talent/Celebrities, Todd Rundgren, Uncategorized

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10 replies

  1. Never heard of Parachute. I’ll have to listen to some of their songs.
    I like songs from the following artists/bands:
    Peter Gabriel, Paul Simon, Phil Collins, Phish, Pearl Jam, The Pretenders, and Pink Floyd.

  2. Prince! A legend from the incredible Minneapolis music scene. My hometown.

  3. Again I say you pick perfectly! For me today which could easily change on a different day, today it has to be Portugal. Thank you. And I didn’t know they were from Alaska – I wonder what SP makes of them 😉

  4. Another great mix, John. I loved that track from Portugal. The Man. I will be checking them out, for sure.
    As you already know, my adoration of Steely Dan knows no bounds, and I did actual;ly own similar shoes, in 1976!
    Prince was also my own top choice for ‘P’. I used ‘When Doves Cry’.
    Best wishes, Pete.

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