Monday, December 31, 2007


I thought Bill Richardson's job interview ads were funny.

But not too funny.

The governor wisely didn't go this route.


I've been so busy at work the last week and preparing for my trips to Iowa and New Hampshire, I've probably been lax in expressing HOW MUCH I HATE THE MUSIC INDUSTRY!

Here's the latest: Just when you think the Recording Industry Association of America couldn't get any slimier, now they're saying that people don't have the right to copy legally purchased CDs onto their computers.

Read THIS.

Goodness Gussie! These people hate their damned customers. And remember, these are the same snakes who tried to sneak a bunch of anti-downloading clauses into the U.S. PATRIOT Act days after September 11, 2001.

All I know is that they'll take my external hard drive when they pry it from my cold dead hand.


Sunday, December 30, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Giddy Up by The Hives
Buried Alive by The Pretty Things
Don't Come Back by Mary Weiss
Poor Poor Pitiful Me by Warren Zevon
Pure Gold by Heavy Trash
Show Girl by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Voodoo Doll by The Gore Gore Girls

Pussy is Pussy by Spanking Charlene
Leave My Kitten Alone by The Detroit Cobras
Pack Your Pistols by The Dirty Novels
Gun Blue by Goshen
American Coffin by Thurston Moore
Let Them Knock by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
Own Thing by The Dynamites featuring Charles Walker
Eyes Behind Your Head by John Hammond
The Monkey Speaks His Mind by Andre Williams

Underneath the Stars by Peter Case with Carlos Guitarlos
Over! Over! by The Fall
Police Story by The Dirty Projectors
Teddy Picker by The Arctic Monkeys
Feelin' Good by Levon Helm
Conquest/Bone Broke by The White Stripes
Miracle of Five/Perfect Stranger by Eleni Mandell
Depth Charge Ethel/Go Tell the Women by Grinderman
Choices/The Last Time by Bettye LaVette
Supertheory of Supereverything/American Wedding by Gogol Bordello
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Saturday, December 29, 2007


Friday, December 28, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Thrown Out of the Bar by Hank Williams III
The Telephone Girl by Todd Burge
I'd Deal With the Devil by Dale Watson
Daddy Was a Preacher But Mama was a Go-Go Girl by Southern Culture on the Skids
Get Up and Go by David Bromberg
Who Broke the DJ's Heart by John Lilly
St. Petersburg Jail by Ronny Elliott
I'm a Gonna Kill You by T. Tex Edwards & Out on Parole
Forbidden Angel by Mel Street

Iowa City by Eleni Mandell
Tennessee Blues by Steve Earle
The Way of the Fallen by Ray Wylie Hubbard
Ubangi Stomp by Carl Mann
Hot Burrito #1 by The Flying Burrito Brothers
Fooey Fooey by Michael Hurley & The Unholy Modal Rounders
Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me by The Jim Kweskin Jug Band
How Lew Sin Ate by Dr. West's Medicine Show & Junk Band
Merchant's Lunch by Austin Lounge Lizards
Take Me On by Ukulele Man

Yankee Doodle by Harper Simon
John Brown's Body by Marah
Little Boxes by Devendra Barnhart
Stalin Kicked the Bucket by Johnny Dilks
Sweet Betsy From Pike by BR5-49
Seven Cent Cotton and Forty Cent Meat by Jim Lauderdale
The Alamo by Marty Robbins
The Battle of New Orleans by Johnny Horton
The Farmer is the Man by Otis Gibbs
Apache Tears by Scott Kempner
An American is a Very Lucky Man by Fred Waring & The Pennsylvanians
Rosie the Riveter by Suzy Boggus
Peg and Awl by Freedy Johnson
The Ballad of Ira Hayes by Johnny Cash
The Old Woman Taught Wisdom by Malcom Holcomb
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Friday, December 28, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 28, 2007

This past year wasn’t a bad one for music. Not a landmark year, but there was a lot of good stuff — if you know where to look for it.

I realize my best-album list is full of old favorites — Nick Cave, Bettye LaVette, The Fall, The White Stripes, Peter Case, The Band’s Levon Helm. What can I say? I’m becoming an oldster and somewhat predictable in my tastes. But the truth is, some of these artists released their most vital work in years, and they need to be recognized for it.

Here are lists of my favorites in 2007.

Best albums

1) Super Taranta! by Gogol Bordello. If The Pogues were Ukrainian, if The Clash had been raised in a Gypsy caravan, and if Brave Combo had a New York snarl, then they might be Gogol Bordello. Super Taranta! is a lusty, vodka-fueled stomp that not only has the band’s trademark Gypsy craziness but also delves into dub reggae and Italian music.

2) The Scene of the Crime by Bettye LaVette. With her slightly raspy voice and impeccable taste in material, Bettye is on fire. She’s backed here by The Drive-By Truckers, which sounds like Muscle Shoals: The Next Generation. The Truckers’ contribution makes for a harder-edged sound than heard on previous LaVette efforts, but the band never overwhelms her. In fact, these guys seem to inspire her.

3) Grinderman by Grinderman. Rock ’n’ roll supposedly is a young man’s game — traditionally, some of the best of it is created by horny, sexually frustrated young guys. But with his latest band Grinderman, Nick Cave proves that horny, sexually frustrated middle-aged men can rock, too. Cave rocks harder here than he has since his 1980s band The Birthday Party. But the middle-aged Cave of Grinderman seems even more dangerous than the bellowing junkie of his old group.

4) Miracle of Five by Eleni Mandell. Mandell has just about the sexiest voice in showbiz today. This album drives home this point. This is contemporary torch music with subtle touches of film noir. It makes great background music for reading Raymond Chandler or Ross MacDonald or even James Ellroy.

5) Icky Thump by The White Stripes. Jack and Meg return to their basic guitar/drum attack. Jack plays his guitar like a maniac and warbles like the reincarnation of Marc Bolan hopped up on trucker crank. Meg is playing drums less like Moe Tucker and more like The Mighty Thor.

6) Dirt Farmer by Levon Helm. A throat-cancer survivor, Helm has nursed his vocal cords back to health, and his new solo album shows him in fine form. The voice that brought us “Up on Cripple Creek,” “The Weight,” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” is back. And the material here is worthy of that voice.

7) Favourite Worst Nightmare by The Arctic Monkeys. This one sneaked up on me. I started out prejudiced against this young band of Brits because a couple of years ago they were the hot new gonna-conquer-the-world buzz band. But toward the end of the year I realized that I was enjoying this, their sophomore effort, more than almost anything else released this year.

8) Rise Above by Dirty Projectors. Here’s one of the strangest new albums I’ve heard in a long time. It’s a remake of songs from Black Flag’s 1981 punk rock classic Damaged. But instead of slavishly reverent recreations, Dave Longstreth (the main Projector) filters Black Flag tunes through his own private universe. It doesn’t sound close to what normal mortals consider punk rock — except when Longstreth’s voice turns from a creepy croon to a grating scream during otherwise pretty musical passages.

9) Reformation Post TLC by The Fall. Thirty years on the road and Mark E. Smith is still cranking out his crazy brand of rant ’n’ roll, shouting his incomprehensible, half-comical lyrics over steady, driving beats; bubbly, fizzly synth noises; and ever-tasty, irresistible, garage-band guitar riffs. It’s a tried-and-true formula and one from which the former dockworker from Manchester, England, rarely strays. But dagnabbit, the darn thing still works.

10) Let Us Now Praise Sleepy John by Peter Case. This album — which is almost all acoustic and is named for late Tennessee bluesman John Estes — harks back in spirit to Case’s early solo albums. It’s good to know that troubadours as vital as Case are still among us.

Honorable mention

1) Thirteen Cities by Richmond Fontaine
2) 100 Days, 100 Nights by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
3) Wagonmaster by Porter Wagoner
4) Dangerous Game by Mary Weiss
5) Push Comes to Shove by John Hammond

Best reissues

1) I Hate CDs: Norton Records 45 RPM Singles Collection Vol. 1 by various artists
2) Lullabys, Legends and Lies by Bobby Bare
3) Stand in the Fire by Warren Zevon4) Pardon Me, I’ve Got Someone to Kill by T. Tex Edwards & Out on Parole
5) Hentch-Forth.Five by The Hentchmen
Best Music DVDS1) The Best of The Johnny Cash TV Show
2) Voodoo Rhythm: The Gospel of Primitive Rock ’n’ Roll
3) Fancy (Les Claypool live)
4) UFOs at the Zoo (Flaming Lips live)
5) Bloodied but Unbowed: Bloodshot Records’ Life in the Trenches

Thursday, December 27, 2007


State Senate President Pro-Tem Ben Altamirano, who was elected to the state Senate in 1970 (when I was a senior in high school!) died the his home in Silver City. He was 77.

The Associated Press had no details of his death Thursday night.

I'll miss Ben. He was always a gentleman who treated people with respect.

Gov. Richardson released a statement about the senator:

"I am deeply saddened by the passing of a great New Mexican and my dear friend, Benny Altamirano," Governor Bill Richardson said. "Benny was a true statesman whosesoft-spoken demeanor and love for the state of New Mexico helped earn him the respect of everyone who crossed his path. Benny will be dearly missed. Barbara and Isend our condolences to Benny's wife, Nina, and his entire family."


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 27, 2007

’Twas the day after Christmas, and few creatures were stirring at the Roundhouse. Is it just the usual post-holiday, pre-Legislature lull? Or has everyone gone to Iowa to help Bill Richardson’s campaign?

Richardson apparently was around the Capitol at least for a short time Wednesday morning. He did an interview with Russ Mitchell on CBS News’ The Early Show, and the backdrop looked like the Capitol television studio.

But he wasn’t there long. According to his campaign schedule, Richardson had a “presidential job interview” in Council Bluffs, Iowa, at 12:30 p.m.

And it’s not certain when he’ll be back. The Iowa caucuses are just one week from today, with the New Hampshire primary only five days after that.

That gives the gov just one week to write his State of the State address, which traditionally kicks off the annual session of the state Legislature — and comes only four days before the Nevada primary.

Downplaying expectations: His campaign e-mail pitches are breathlessly upbeat about Richardson’s chances in Iowa. “I wish you could see this!” said one missive last week. “You just wouldn’t believe what’s going on here in Iowa. ... I can hear the crowd shouting, ‘We want Bill! We want Bill!’ ”

But Richardson seemed in recent interviews to be downplaying expectations for Iowa, where, according to Real Clear Politics, his average poll number is just above 6 percent — a distant fourth place behind Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and John Edwards.

For months, Richardson has said his goal is to be in the top three in Iowa. That’s still the case, but on Wednesday, he told CBS’ Mitchell that a fourth place finish there wouldn’t kill his chances. “It slows it down a little bit,” the governor allowed.

“But I’m continuing on to New Hampshire,” he said. “I feel I need to be in the top three there. Nevada, a Western state, which should be good for me — top three. And then we head into the Feb. 5 primaries, which contain California, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma — states where I will do well.”
However, according to the polls, Richardson isn’t doing much better in New Hampshire. Real Clear Politics has his average at 7 percent in recent polls there. And in California, most recent polls show Richardson in the low single digits.

In Nevada, his poll average is only 5.7 percent, again a distant fourth.

Richardson didn’t mention the Jan. 26 South Carolina primary, where he’s running in fifth place with a poll average of 1.8 percent.

“You know, I’m going to win this thing,” Richardson said Wednesday on CBS. “You watch this. You watch. You guys better start covering me because I’m going to win and then you’re going to be, ‘Oh, geez, where did this guy come from?’ ”

(UPDATE: I just came across a fresh poll in Oklahoma, one of the states Richardson mentioned. According to The Tulsa World, he's pulling 4 percent in the Sooner State.)

Cheating and yelling: Richardson hasn’t just been talking about boring stuff like caucuses and primaries to CBS lately. Recently, he and all the other presidential candidates were asked by anchorwoman Katie Couric about their attitudes on infidelity and losing their tempers.

Couric didn’t, however, ask the candidates if they’d lost their temper during infidelity.

She asked Richardson, “Many people say they don’t feel comfortable supporting someone who’s not remained faithful to their spouse. Why should they?”

The governor replied, “Well, I think this is ... if you’re — if you’re not faithful to your wife, you’re not faithful to the country, to your ideals. You’re not faithful to the spirit in which Americans trust their political leaders. And they expect them to ... have a sense of honor.

“Nobody’s perfect,” Richardson continued. “I’ve been married to Barbara for 35 years. We’ve had our differences, our difficulties, but we’ve stayed together. But I think being faithful is ... an essential component of any relationship. It’s whether a voter can trust you to ... be thinking about the common good as opposed to personal ambition or anything else.”

Couric then asked whether Richardson thinks infidelity is reason enough not to vote for someone.

“I don’t think so,” he said, “I think that, you know, infidelity is ... a serious problem in any marriage. But, you know, everybody sins. And it’s whether you’re forgiven, whether you forgive yourself, whether you have faith in God. You know, perfection ... is something that politicians, they should not stand themselves for perfection. Nobody’s perfect. "

When asked when the last time he lost his temper was, Richardson said, “I lost my temper last night when I was bone tired and I couldn’t find the bathroom light. I’d flown in from New Mexico. And I was in the hotel. And I couldn’t find the bathroom light, and I got mad and lost my temper.

“But thankfully, it was just with myself,” he said. “That was the last time I lost my temper. But I do that frequently. You know, I’m somebody that sometimes needs to cool down my fuses.”

“What happens when you lose your temper?” Couric asked.

“Well ... I just get — a little bit of an inner rage. I never — well, sometimes I take it out on people. But it — but it ends quickly. It’s because I demand a lot from myself, and I expect others to. But that’s a little side of me that I’d like to control a little bit.”

According to a transcript of the interview, Richardson added, “Praise others a little more. Thank people more. But in the end, sometimes I lose my temper and — and — and yell a little bit.”

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


I meant to plug this earlier.

I was part of a panel of reporters, along with Trip Jennings of the Albuquerque Journal and Jim Williams and Steve Shadley of KUNM, talking about 2007's top stories in New Mexico.

We recorded it last week. It will be broadcast at 8 a.m. Thursday morning on KUNM, 89.9 FM.


Lots of cool people were born on Christmas. Jesus, Cab Calloway and Shane MacGowan.

Yes, the former frontman of The Pogues (and whatever happened to The Popes?) and the writer of one of my favorite Christmas songs, "Fairytale of New York" just celebrated his 50th birthday. (Thanks to Frank for pointing this out.)

Some people seem shocked that Shane made it to 50. But come on, Keith Richards is past 60 and Jerry Lee Lewis is in his 70s.

Personally, I'm just surprised that Shane is younger than me.

Happy birthday, blessed drunkard! I'm a day late, but I bet you're still celebrating.

Monday, December 24, 2007


Sunday, December 23, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

email me during the show!

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM


Silent Night by Bad Religion
Santa Looked a Lot Like Daddy by Buck Owens
Egg Nog by the Rockin' Guys
Santa On the Roof by The Rev. Horton Heat
Santa Doesn't Cop Out on Dope by Sonic Youth
Christmas is Just Another Day by Johnny Dowd
Be-Bop Santa Claus by Be-Bop Santa Claus
Gloria by Elastica
Even Squeaky Fromme Loves Christmas by Rev. Glen Armstrong
Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree by Beatlemas

Let's Make Christmas Mean Something This Year by James Brown
Santa Claus Goes Straight to the Ghetto by Snoop Doggie Dogg
It's Christmastime (Part 1) by James Brown

Christmas Boogie by Canned Heat & The Chipmunks
Santa Claus Boogie by Hasil Adkins
Don't Believe in Christmas by The Sonics
Christmas in Jail by The Soul Deacons

THE CHRISTMAS RAT Do You Hear What I Hear? by Imagene Peise
Ao Tumhen Chand Pe by Asha Bhosle
It Came Upon a Midnight Clear by BeauSoleil
Fairytale of New York by The Pogues with Kirsty MacColl
Mele Kalikimaka by Petty Booka
Deck the Halls by The Klezmonauts
Green Chili Christmas by Robert Mirabal
Christmas Time is Coming (A Street Carol) by Stormy Weather

Happy the Christmas Clown by Conway Twitty & Twitty Bird
Your Christmas Whiskey by Minus Five
Oh Holy Night by Brian Wilson
It Being Nearly Christmas Eve by Jack Clift
Christmas in the Trenches by John McCutcheon
Silent Night/What Christmas Means by Dion
Star of Wonder by The Roches
Little Drummer Boy by Joan Jett & The Blackhearts

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Here's a worthwhile video for a worthwhile charitable program, the Art Street project at Albuquerque Healthcare for the Homeless. What s the program? Watch the video.

Fellow New Mexico blogger and a true compassionate conservative Mario Burgos says his company Mudhouse Advertising, will give $1 for every unique visitor that views the video between now and the end of the year.

So click away. If you've got a blog or Web site, post it.

Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 22, 2007


ALERT: Apparently the 90.7 signal isn't working. But 101.1 FM is.

Friday, December 21, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

email me during the show!

Now 101.1 FM

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Oxycontin Blues by Steve Earle
Big Ol' White Boys by Terry Allen
Bongo Ride by Jon Rauhouse
Cowboy Logic by Michael Martin Murphey
How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Livc? by Tim O'Brien
Got Me a Woman by Levon Helm
Jole Louise by Daniel Lanois
Lonely Christmas Call by George Jones

Hey Sexy by Robbie Fulks
When the Whiskey Turns to Tears by Cornell Hurd
The Outcast by Dave Van Ronk with Tom Russell
East Side Boys by Martin Zellar
Lou's Got the Flu by Roger Miller
Merry Christmas from the Family by Robert Earl Keen
$500 Car by Ed Pettersen
Heroes and Villains by Geraint Watkins
Blue Christmas Lights by Chris & Herb

Old Man From the Mountain by The Gourds
Dark Holler by David Bromberg
Walk You Home by Marlee MacLeod
Maybe Mexico by Jerry Jeff Walker
$87 and a Guilty Conscious That Gets Worse the Longer I Go by Richmond Fontaine
Six Bullets for Christmas by Angry Johnny & The Killbillies
I'll Be Home For Christmas by The Old 97s

Boxcar by Neil Young
We Never Touch at All by Merle Haggard
Your Great Journey by The Handsome Family
Invitation to Your Party by Jerry Lee Lewis
Can Man Christmas by Joe West
Fare Thee Well Sweet Malley by Robin Williamson
Please Don't Tell Me How The Story Ends by Joan Osbourne
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Friday, December 21, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 21, 2007

If you’re looking for a grand tour of rock ’n’ roll’s glorious underbelly, you shouldn’t miss I Hate CDs: Norton Records 45 RPM Singles Collection Vol. 1.

This compilation — 45 tracks in all — sums up what Norton records is all about — crazy R & B, reckless rockabilly, garage-band snot, immortal punk rock. This music is raw, rowdy, and sometimes raunchy as it thumbs its metaphorical nose at any precious, prissy, pretentious, and self-important airs that rock all too often acquires.

Norton Records, which specializes in primitive rock, was founded in the 1980s by Billy Miller and Miriam Linna. As shown on this compilation, the label happily plays with fire.

This is the devil’s music, the evil jungle sounds the preachers and the White Citizens’ Council originally warned us about — dangerous-sounding stuff that leads to juvenile delinquency, sex, miscegenation, and eventually to an eternity in hell. Much of the material is from the ’50s and ’60s, but it’s far too unrefined for oldies radio. Not that its lyrics are obscene; most of the artists here don’t need to use dirty words to sound outright filthy.

True to the name of the compilation, I Hate CDs isn’t available on compact disc. But you can download any or all tracks at iTunes,, and eMusic.

There are some impressive names on I Hate CDs, some that you might even recognize. There are a couple of Ramones rarities — demos of “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” and “Judy Is a Punk.” Question Mark and The Mysterians have a tune here as does rockabilly great Dale Hawkins (most famous for “Susie Q”), guitar killer Link Wray (who does an instrumental called “Vendetta”), and a young Doug Sahm, who sings “Slow Down” with a band called The Pharaohs (but I don’t think these are Sam the Sham’s boys).

The Legendary Stardust Cowboy (who comes from “Lubbock by way of Mars,” according to his own hype) provides the title song to the collection. (“The Ledge” is a high school chum of Joe Ely, who speaks his name with the highest praise. But I’m still waiting for a Flatlanders cover of an LSC song.)

There’s a good, scary Screamin’ Jay Hawkins song I’d never heard before called “I Hear Voices.” What I like best about this tune— besides Jay’s sceamin’ of course — is the weird soprano voice that accompanies him at the end of the track.

Raspy-voiced soul man Andre Williams provides one of the few philosophical discussions. “The Monkey Speaks His Mind” is about someone objecting to the notion of man coming from the apes. Of course, the one objecting is an ape. “No monkey ever deserted his wife, starved his babies, and ruined their life.”

R & B icon Don Covay — called Don “Pretty Boy” Covay here — has a raucous little ode to wife swapping on this collection called “Switchin’ in the Kitchen.” And for fans of Kill Bill and those Vonage commercials, the Japanese girl punks The’s (known for their cover of the Rock-a-Teens’ “Woo Hoo”) do a fierce version of “The Harlem Shuffle.”

Big Star, the ’70s band led by Alex Chilton, provides one of the album’s poppier moments, a song called “September Gurls.”

Several mainstays of Norton (“the label with the able stable,” as they call themselves) are represented on this compilation. There’s Esquerita, a 6-foot-6-inch, one-eyed, pompadoured transvestite, who, according to legend, taught Little Richard to play piano. Hasil Adkins, the late wild man of West Virginia, sings one of his fine-feathered chicken songs, “Chicken Shake.” (A few years ago, Norton released an entire Adkins album of this curious subgenre. It’s called Poultry in Motion.) There’s Mary Weiss, former singer of The Shangri-Las, whose wonderful “comeback” album Dangerous Games was released on Norton earlier this year. A “bonus song” from that album, a cover of “A Certain Guy,” is on this collection.

And the Norton house band, The A-Bones (featuring Miller and Linna), have a couple of tracks here. “Stop It Baby” features former Flamin’ Groovies singer Roy Loney, and “New Spark” has unsung rockabilly hero Johnny Powers.

Of course, the real fun is discovering the truly obscure artists. Who the heck is Stud Cole? Apparently this Stud’s a rockabilly who never got his due. His contribution here, “The Witch” (not The Sonics’ hit by the same name), makes me want more.

Bunker Hill just might be the craziest soul man you’ve never heard of; he does a rollicking tune called “The Girl Can’t Dance,” which features Link Wray on guitar. “The Limp” by the Incredible Kings is how I imagined all cool, swingin’ parties would sound back when I was a kid.

“Puddy Cat” by Wade Curtiss and the Rhythm Rockers is a goofy, so-weird-it’s-beautiful parody of The Trashmen’s “Surfin’ Bird” — as if that trash-rock classic needed a parody. Instead of the refrain “papa oom mow mow” of the original song, Curtiss sings “mamma meow mow.”

Speaking of surfing, you’ve got to hear “Surfside Date” by The Triumphs. Not having any liner notes, I don’t know if this was recorded in the ’60s or last month. Whatever the case might be, surf music rarely sounded as primordial.

And if Hasil Adkins didn’t satisfy your hunger for chicken songs, there’s an even crazier tune called “Chicken” by an unknown shouter named Jack Starr.

If you’re an audiophile, beware. Some tracks definitely are lo-fi. Of course, if you’re that much of an audiophile purist you probably wouldn’t like this primitive stuff anyway.

Don't forget to check out the cool drag race-style audio promo over at Norton's MySpace page.

The Steve Terrell Christmas Special: A Santa Fe tradition. Hear Snoop Doggy Dogg, The Pogues, James Brown, Joan Jett, The Trashmen, and Roger Miller sing the songs we love this season at 10 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 23, on KSFR-FM 101.1.

Thursday, December 20, 2007


Here's a little shop talk:

The New Mexican has taken advantage of the Albuquerque Tribune's situation by hiring two of its reporters.

I'm especially pleased that we've hired Kate Nash to help out at the Capitol Bureau. She's done this for years for the Trib and that other Albuquerque paper and knows as much, if not not more, than I do about where the bones are buried at the Roundhouse.

We've also hired Sue Vorenberg, who covers science and health for the Trib. She'll cover science, technology and energy for the New Mexican, and will cover health while Diana Del Mauro remains on maternity leave.

Both Kate and Sue will start in January.

We've been short-handed at The New Mexican. In recent weeks we've lost my bureau partner Dave Miles, Andy Lenderman and Wendy Brown. Things are looking up.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


My son dropped out and now he can't count and he has conversations with inanimate objects that mock him.

"Coulda, shoulda. woulda stayed in school.
James Brown was right.
I was a fool."

Peter Case

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


I'm off work this week, but political junkie that I am, I'm still trying to keep up with what's going on in the political universe around here.

Tom Sharpe has a story in today's New Mexican about three new possible Democratic candidates jumping into -- or considering jumping into -- the Third Congressional District race.

There's Derrith Watchman-Moore, Teresa Ledger and Jon Adams, who apparently is dropping his bid for the First Congressional District race, renting an apartment in Santa Fe and running in CD 3.

Reports Sharpe, "Adams did not respond to messages seeking comment on his bid."

Maybe I'm old fashioned, but wouldn't it make sense if you want to switch districts and run for Congress you should return phone calls to the local paper? Call me crazy.

Speaking of phone calls, former State Rep. Patsy Trujillo called me tonight to say that she's not going to run for the Congressional seat and that she's supporting Public Regulation Commissioner Ben Ray Lujan for the nomination.

Back to "vacation" for me. There will be no Roundhouse Round-up this week, though I retain the right to make wisecracks from the sidelines.

Monday, December 17, 2007


Sunday, December 16, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Hombre Secreto by The Plugz
Double-0 Bum by Gas Huffer
Lightning's Girl by Nancy Sinatra
Do You Swing? by The Fleshtones
D is For Dangerous by The Arctic Monkeys
You've Got Good Taste by The Cramps
Nothing but a Heartache by The Detroit Cobras
Buried and Dead by The Gore Gore Girls
Hot Aftershave Bop by The Fall
Punchbowl by The Rockin' Guys
Harry You're a Beast by The Mothers of Invention

Catch Us If You Can by The Dave Clark Five
Bits and Pieces by Joan Jett & The Blackhearts
Giddy Up by The Hives
Rag and Bone by The White Stripes
Navajo by The Black Lips
Yata Hei by Keely Smith
Chief Whoopin' Koff by The Fireballs
Golden Shower of Hits by The Circle Jerks
Fat Daddy by Fat Daddy
Let's Make the Water Turn Black by The Mothers of Invention

I Hate CDs by The Legendary Stardust Cowboy
Are You For Real by Question Mark & The Mysterians
Switchin' in the Kitchen by Don "Pretty Boy" Covay
Hey Mrs. Jones by Long John Hunter
Stop It Baby by Roy Loney & The A-Bones
A Certain Guy by Mary Weiss
Surfside Date by The Triumps
Hotrod Millie by The Hentchmen
Shortnin' Bread by The Ready Men
I Hear Voices by Screamin' Jay Hawkins
Puddy Cat by Wade Curtiss & The Rhythm Rockers

The Fishing Song by Alex Maryol
Fattening Frogs for Snakes by Sonny Boy Williamson & The Animals
Death of a Socialite by The Pretty Things
Room Thirteen by The Dirty Projectors
In Germany Before the War by Randy Newman
Happy Christman (War is Over) by Lorette Velvette
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Sunday, December 16, 2007


For you bad-album-cover-art fans, Pitchfork has compiled a list of the worst of 2007. And yes, Swamp Dogg is there.

Nothing here quite matches Devastatin' Dave or Julie's 16th Birthday . (You can find the classics HERE)

Saturday, December 15, 2007


Friday, December 15, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Long Legged Guitar Pickin' Man by Jesse Dayton & Brennen Leigh
Amos Moses by Jerry Reed
The Ballad of Thunder Road by Robert Mitchum
Make Things Happen by The Waco Brothers
I Was a Champion by James Luther Dickinson
Who Were You Thinking Of by The Sir Douglas Quintet
Why Do You Bob Your Hair, Girls? by Ann Magnuson
Western Union Wire by Kinky Friedman
Do You Call That a Buddy by Martin, Bogan & Armstrong

It Gets Like This Every Christmas by Cornell Hurd
False Hearted Lover Blues by Levon Helm
Rag Mama Rag by The Band
The Only Trouble With Me by Merle Haggard
You Win Again by The Flying Burrito Brothers
Living With the Animals by Mother Earth
Ashes of Love by Rose Maddox
Uncle Bud by Boozoo Chavis & The Magic Sounds

Secrets of Success/Born at Night by Ronny Elliott
Long Dark Night by John Fogerty
The Thunderer by Dion
The Disappearance of Ray Norton by Richmond Fontaine
Kill the Mockingbird by House of Freaks
El UFO Man by Jonathan Richman
Trotsky's Blues by Joe West

Bob (the Song) by The Cerrillos Islanders
Friday, Sunday's Coming by John Lilly
Gypsy's Curse by Calexico
I Can't Stop Loving You by Don Gibson
I Guess I've Come to Live Here in Your Eyes by Willie Nelson
You Make It Look Easy by The Flatlanders
Wings in His Eyes by Eleni Mandell
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Friday, December 14, 2007


My analysis of Bill Richardson's debate performance in Iowa Thursday is HERE. I mainly look at his answer to the question about lab security and Wen Ho Lee during his years as energy secretary.

My profile of Ben Ray Lujan, who's announcing his run for Congress today is HERE.

And my profile of Harry Montoya, also running for the Third Congressional District seat, which was published Wednesday, is HERE.

And, going back in time a couple of months, my portrait of Don Wiviott can be found HERE. He was running for Senate at the time, but right after Tom Udall said he was running for Senate, Wiviott switched to the CD 3 race.


I didn't do a Terrell's Tune-Up this week, but I did review a couple of Christmas albums. So here's slightly different versions of those. At least one will be in Pasa Tempos in today's New Mexican . (Pasatiempo of course) The other one might not be in until next week, but I'll give you blog readers an early Christmas treat.

But before we get to those, I just want to say I'm real happy, in fact GLAD ALL OVER, that The Dave Clark Five finally made it to the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame. They've virtually been written out of most official versions of rock history, but I think they're the most seriously underrated of the British Invasion bands.

I never saw The Beatles but I saw the DC5 twice in Oklahoma City as a kid. I believe The Shangri-las were part of the package show for one of these concerts.

And back in 1964 or so I had this cheesy magazine titled something like "The Beatles vs. The Dave Clark 5." The premise was that The Beatles were threatened because "Glad All Over" had displaced "I Want to Hold Your Hand" as number one in England or something. There were these phony quotes under the photos of all the musicians. One of The Beatles , John I think, supposedly was saying "Five against four is no fair!"

Eat it, rock snobs, this is long overdue.

Here's those Christmas album reviews:

A Twismas Story with Twitty Bird & Their Little Friends
(Conway Twitty United / INgrooves)

You find them in the bargain bins at supermarkets, drug stores, truckstops discount stores everywhere this time of year — Christmas albums by Nashville stars, available now at humiliatingly low prices. Some of the greatest names in country music are among them, each offering disturbingly similar over-produced, under-inspired twangy takes on the same 20 or so holiday chestnuts.

Granted, there have been some great country Christmas tunes: Merle Haggard’s “If We Make It Through December,” Dwight Yoakam’s “Santa Can’t Stay,” Buck Owens’ “Santa Looked a Lot Like Daddy” and Roger Miller’s “Old Toy Trains” are timeless masterpieces. But most of the rest of the country Christmas universe consists of useless nasally versions of “Silver Bells” and drawling renditions of “Frosty the Snowman.”

However, this album by the late great Twitty so tacky, so cheesy, so overstuffed and over-the-top with Christmas corn, it’s a perverse classic. First released in 1983, it’s been re-issued this year to shock a new generation. Twitty Bird — who was Conway’s Tweetie-like cartoon mascot (How did he not get sued by Loony Tunes?) — is portrayed here by the singer’s granddaughter. The “Little Friends” are sped-up “Chipmunk” voices. They all chatter insanely and sing about Santa, Frost, Rudolph and new holiday characters like Happy the Christmas Clown and Ding-A-Ling the Christmas Bell. Some of these are weird enough to be included on a future volume of A John Waters Christmas.

Just remember: Friends don’t let friends take hallucinogenic drugs and listen to A Twistmas Story at the same time.

Christmas in Larryland
(Warner Brothers)

The War on Christmas rages — or so Fox News would have you believe — and Larry the Cable Guy is fighting back valiantly. In true compassionate holiday spirit, Larry’s new Christmas album takes square aim at liberals, Moslems, the American Civil Liberties Union, environmentalists, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and people who don’t think fart jokes are all that hilarious.

Sometimes I wonder if Larry — in real life a guy named Dan Whitney, a Nebraska native who doesn’t have a Southern accent and never worked for a cable company — is actually trying to make conservatives look bad by playing them as dimwits. But that’s too Machiavellian. There’s probably less than meets the eye here.

On this album there’s not one but two parodies of “The Night Before Christmas.” There’s “Liberal Commie Environmental Poem” is full of hybrid sleighs, non-toxic toys, a Santa with a nose like “pesticide-free cherries” and other enlightened jabs at “political correctness.” Then in “Patriotic Poem” we don’t get Santa but the ghost of Ronald Reagan, who comes back because Christmas has been banned. But all Ronnie does really is complain about Michael Moore, John Kerry and Rosie O’Donnell. I’m just disappointed that the Gipper never says “get ‘er done.”

There’s a lengthy skit in which Larry and some friends are in a living nativity scene in front of their church just to rile the ACLU. (Apparently someone forgot to tell the Cable Guy that the ACLU doesn’t have any beef with religious displays at churches.)

The album kicks off with Larry fantasizing about hosting an “old-time radio Larry the Cable Guy Christmas spectacular” with guests including “Santa, Rudolph, the prophet Mohammed, the June Taylor Dancers ...” I’m fantasizing about Larry taking this show on a world tour. They’d love him in Sudan.

Thursday, December 13, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 13, 2007

Gov. Bill Richardson got a bum rap on The Huffington Post this week.

“Mum’s the Word: Bill Richardson Opts Out Of Taking The Political Courage Test,” the headline said. It was accompanied by an unflattering photo of a consternated Richardson holding a hand to his head. (I stole the photo to the right from Huffington, which apparently lifted it fro the Associated Press. God bless the Interwebs!)

Wow. Seems kind of bad for a governor who rarely issues a news release without using the word “bold” to describe himself, one of his programs or positions to be afraid to take a “courage test” — actually a questionnaire from a nonpartisan organization called Project Vote Smart.

But it’s not until the bottom of the post that we learn that “out of 17 presidential candidates in the Democratic and Republican parties receiving serious media attention, only John Edwards, Chris Dodd and Mike Gravel took the test.”

So it could be said that Richardson boldly placed himself in the mainstream by ignoring the Political Courage Test.

Richardson apparently was singled out because the post originally was published as an article in The Weekly Alibi in Albuquerque.

Courage! Actually, Project Vote Smart runs a handy little Web site on which you can look up voting records, rankings from interest groups and other information about officeholders and candidates on the federal and state levels.

And it even asks legislators and other state officials to take the Political Courage Test.

Here in New Mexico, it looks as if our legislators might be presidential quality — that is, by and large, they also declined to take the test. In 2006, only 11 New Mexico House members participated.

Among Santa Fe-area lawmakers, only Democrats Sen. John Grubesic (who isn’t seeking re-election) and Rep. Peter Wirth (who’s leaving the House to run for state Senate) took the test. State senators were last questioned in 2004, when they were last up for election.

But in this respect, our state legislators actually are better than our congressional delegation. No U.S. House member from New Mexico returned a Project Vote Smart questionnaire last year, and neither senator participated before his last election.

Political connections: Santa Fe County Commissioner Harry Montoya, who is running for the Democratic nomination for the House District 3 seat, is founder and chief executive officer of a nonprofit drug-education organization called Hands Across Cultures Corp.

According to federal tax documents filed this year, the corporation’s board of directors includes one Ben R. Luján.

Montoya confirmed Wednesday that this indeed is Public Regulation Commissioner Ben Ray Luján — who plans to formally announce Friday that he’s running in the CD 3 Democratic primary as well.

However, Montoya said, Luján has resigned from the board. “He told me he was resigning about two years ago, but I didn’t get a letter until last month,” Montoya said.

Raising funds: Democrat U.S. Rep. Tom Udall — who is leaving the seat Luján and Montoya are vying for to run for Republican Pete Domenici’s Senate seat — doesn’t have Albuquerque Mayor Marty Chávez to worry about anymore, but he’s still preparing for what’s bound to be an expensive general election race.

Udall is having a fundraiser Friday night at the east-side Santa Fe home of lawyer Stephen Durkovich. It’s an invitation-only affair, a campaign aide said Wednesday, with a $2,300 “suggested donation.”

A lump of coal for state employees: Late last month, Arcy Baca, president of American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 477, wrote a nice letter to state legislators asking for a study of the impact of the high cost of living in Santa Fe on state employees.

“A number of my members had moved to the surrounding areas seeking the opportunity to purchase a home and try to make ends meet,” Baca wrote. “… State employees working in Santa Fe are struggling to pay for just the basic necessities. A significant number of employees, me included, have had to resort to taking a second job.”

He’s not kidding about that. In fact, for the past year, Baca has been working weekends for this newspaper’s circulation department.

“Many of the state employees who work in Santa Fe but cannot afford to live in Santa Fe are burdened with burdensome costs of commuting,” Baca’s letter continued. “I am concerned about how the cost of living is going to impact keeping state jobs in Santa Fe and keeping our locals employed.

As I said, it was a nice letter. The copy I saw was on a holiday letterhead with red Christmas ornaments. Or maybe they’re holly berries. Whatever, it was nice.

However, it apparently wasn’t nice enough to sway the Legislature.

“The budget came out today, and there is not even an extra dime to conduct a study to help state employees with the high cost of living in Santa Fe,” Baca said Wednesday. He said he hadn’t heard a word — not even a single “Bah humbug” — from any lawmaker.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Here is the latest on the 3rd Congressional race.

Basically Sheriff Greg Solano is out, Benny Shendo is working his last week as secretary of Indian Affairs and next week will formally announce his entry into the Demo primary, harry Montoya is formally announcing this week and Republican Marco Gonzales -- former staffer of Sen. Pete Domenici and lifelong cousin of former County Commissioner Javier Gonzales, a Democrat who was considering running for CD 3 -- will run in the Republican CD 3 primary.

Solano has some interesting thoughts on the race -- mainly that it all could be decided by a few hundred people at the pre-primary convention in March before voters can even cast a ballot.

Referring to the convention, Solano wrote last week in his campaign blog:

"The majority are your county and local elected officials, those that are not elected officials are those who work to get those elected officials in office. All of these people go to the legislature at some point and time to get things passed or obtain capital funds for their local jurisdictions.

"In no way am I alleging arm twisting or back room deals, however, how many are likely to donate money, outwardly support a candidate, or give their very important delegate vote to anyone who opposes the son of the speaker of the house (?)"

Monday, December 10, 2007


Sunday, December 9, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

email me during the show!

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
I Want the Answers by The Fleshtones
Firecracker by Half Japanese
Parade by Pretty Girls Make Graves
High Tension Line by The Fall
Your Love Belongs Under a Rock by The Dirtbombs
Firefly Child by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Jackrabbit by Goshen
Roly Poly by Joey Dee & The Starliters
Real Live Doll by The Trashmen

The Blimp (Mousetrapreplica) by Captain Beefheart
Backstreet Girl by Social Distortion
Puppet on a String by The Hives
Stop it Baby by Roy Loney & The A-Bones
I Hear Voices by Screamin' Jay Hawkins
Too Far Gone by Dead Moon
Young Miles in the Basement by Pere Ubu
Harlem Shuffle by's
Jinglecide by The Rockin' Guys

Pull My Daisy by David Amram
Fat Angel by Jefferson Airplane
The Trip by Donovan
Honest James by Thurston Moore
Vamos by The Pixies
You Don't Know Me At All by Bettye LaVette

Movement in the Light by Fishbone
Sloppy Seconds by George Clinton
The Collection Song by Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
Western Plains by Van Morrison
Hard to Handle by Otis Redding
The Hope and the Anchor by The Mekons
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis

Sunday, December 09, 2007


* I maxed out my 90 downloads early this month because I spent nearly half of them on I Hate CDs: Norton Records 45 RPM Singles Collection Vol. 1 . (I grabbed 40 of the 45 tracks here. I already had the other five.)

This compilation sums up what Norton is all about -- crazy R&B, reckless rockabilly, garage-band snot, immortal punk rock. What can you say about a collection that includes Hasil Adkins, The Legendary Stardust Cowboy, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, ? & The Mysterians, Andre Williams, Dale Hawkins, Link Wray,and even some Ramones rarities?

Of course the real fun is discovering the truly obscure artists here. Who the hell is Stud Cole you might wonder. Apparently this Stud's a rockabilly who never got his due. His contribution here, "The Witch" (not the Sonics hit by the same name) makes me want more. "The Limp" by The Incredible Kings is how I imagined all cool, swingin' parties would sound back when I ws a kid, There's a completely goofy, so-weird-it's-beautiful parody of "Surfin' Bird" (as if that song needed a parody) called "Puddy Cat" by Wade Curtiss & The Rhythm Rockers. And speaking of surfing, you've got to hear "Surfside Date" by The Triumphs. Not having any liner notes, I don't know if this was recorded in the '60s or last month. Whatever the case might be, surf music rarely sounded as primitive.

If you're an audiophile, beware. Some tracks definitely are lo-fi. But if you're that much of an audiophile you probably wouldn't like this raw stuff any way.

Hey, check out the bitchen audio promo over at Norton's MySpace.

* Mental Strain At Dawn: A Modern Portrait of Louis Armstrong by David Murray with Doc Cheatham . I'm straining mentally over the title of this album. Despite its name, this isn't really a "tribute" to Satch. Most of the selections here aren't even Armstrong tunes (though I wanted to believe that Louie did a song called "When Jack Ruby Met Joe Glaser.") But what we have is far more interesting than a run-of-the-mill tribute album. It's a collaboration between trumpeteer Cheatham -- a contemporary of Armstrong's who was in his late 80s when this was recorded -- and free jazz sax man David Murray. Between the two, especially in the standards here like "Dinah" and "Chinatown, My Chinatown, " you can hear the evolution of jazz right before your ears.

*Trees Outside the Academy by Thurston Moore. Thurston's new solo album, his first in a decade or so, is kind of Sonic Youthy, but with more emphasis on melody. Some of it's kind of pretty. There's even some acoustic guitar, but Thurston's definitely not going John Denver on us -- though I can imagine playing some of these tunes alongside from Donovan's Sunshine Superman album . You can easily imagine Sonic Youth doing most of the songs in slightly harsher versions.

J. Mascis shows up for some guitar solos, and SY drummer Steve Shelley is on most cuts. But the one that caught my ear was violinist Samara Lubelski. And the duet with singer Christina Carter, from a band called Charalambides, on the song "Honest James."

Consumer tip for fellow eMusic subscribers: If you want this album but only have 11 tracks left in your month, skip track 12, "Thurston @ 13." It's a recording of young Thurston, assumedly at the age of 13, dropping various items on a table.

* Willie's Blues by Willie Dixon & Memphis Slim. This is fine old Chicago blues from 1959 by one of the genre's greatest songwriters (Dixon) and a true blues piano avatar (Slim).

There's nothing here on the level of my favorite Dixon song ( "Weak Brain, Narrow Mind," best heard on The American Folk Blues Festival DVD (Vol. 1), but "I Got a Razor" is a dark little gem. And "Good Understanding," which begins with a reference about two women holding hands is pretty interesting as well. And there's a good version of Dixon's classic "Built For Comfort" here too.

* The Blue Memphis Suite by Memphis Slim. Listening to Willie's Blues reminded me of a politically-charged Memphis Slim song KUNM used to play when I was a freshman in college -- "Chicago Seven," which had the lyrics, "everyone's talking about Chicago Seven/Four in Ohio/That makes 11/ Nobody seemed worried about all the black blood spilled/But they began to take notice when some of their own got killed."
Nope, they didn't make a beer commercial out of that song.

So to my delight I learned "Chicago Seven" was available on eMusic on this album. Blue Memphis in many ways is Slim's version of London Sessions. Muddy waters, Howlin' Wolf, Bo Diddley, Jerry Lee Lewis and probaby bothers I'm forgetting had albums by this title in which the American music icon was surrounded by a bevy of worshipful British rockers. On Slim's album he has Fleetwood Mac's Peter Green and Led Zep's John Paul Jones among others. But this isn't some hyped-up greatest hits workout. There's some stray wah-wah guitar sounds here and there and the sound is far slicker than the smokey Willie's Blues, but it's SLim, not his guest stars who dominate. The first eight tracks make up an autobiographical song cycle in which Slim tells of growing up in Memphis, moving to Chicago in 1937 and leaving this country for France in 1962 (where he stayed until his death in 1988.)

* "Real Live Girl" by The Trashmen. A little Christmas cheer from the Surfin' Bird brains.

Just like last month, right after I post my eMusic for the month I find some nice freebies. This time it's The Gore Gore Girls, who have three free live tracks on HearYa Session at Shirk Music. If you don't mind the little Beer Nuts commercial at the outset of two of the three tracks (I'm not kidding), all three sound great.

Saturday, December 08, 2007


Friday, December 7, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, NM
10 p.m. to midnight Fridays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

email me during the show!

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM

OPENING THEME: Buckaroo by Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
Poor Old Dirt Farmer by Levon Helm
Long Dark Night by John Fogerty
Absolutely Sweet Marie by C.J. Chenier
Don't Make a Fool Out of Me by Nathan & The Zydeco Cha Chas
I Must Be Dreaming by Ponty Bone
Woman's Been After Men Ever Since by Little Jimmy Dickens
I Saw Polly in a Porny by Shel Silverstein
Sleigh Bells, Reindeers and Snow by Rita Faye Wilson

Where's My Check? by The Cerrillos Islanders
I'll See You in My Dreams by The Asylum Street Spankers
Soldier's Joy by The Holy Modal Rounders
Shorty Takes a Dive by Dan Hicks & The Hot Licks
Mornin' Blues by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
Biscuit Roller by Michael Hurley
Deep Purple by John Sebastian & David Grisman
Don't Let Your Sweet Love Die by U.S. Sen. Robert Byrd
Rootin' Tootin' Santa Claus by The Buckerettes

Son of Skip James by Dion
So Glad You're Mine by Junior Wells
Born at Night by Ronny Elliott
Hot Burrito #2 by The Flying Burrito Brothers
After the Harvest by Ray Wylie Hubbard
Pointless Drinking by Amy LaVere
Ding-A-Ling the Christmas Bell by Conway Twitty with Twitty Bird and their little friends

8:05 by Moby Grape
Who's Julie by Mel Tillis
Lion in Winter by Hoyt Axton
River Roll On by The Judds
Hands on the Wheel by Carla Bozulich with Willie Nelson
Too Many Rivers by Brenda Lee
Rosalie by Bob Neuwirth
CLOSING THEME: Comin' Down by The Meat Puppets

Steve Terrell is proud to report to the monthly Freeform American Roots Radio list

Friday, December 07, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 7, 2007

Here’s a nice little Christmas miracle for you (that doesn’t really have anything to do with Christmas.)

Back in the late 1990s, Levon Helm — best known as singer/drummer/mandolinist of The Band — came down with throat cancer.It left his once-mighty voice a pathetic rasp. He was unable to sing for many years. When he came through Santa Fe in 2001 with the Barn Burners, he was just the drummer.

But the 67-year-old Helm has nursed his vocal cords back to health, and his new solo album, Dirt Farmer, shows him in fine form. The voice that brought us “Up on Cripple Creek,” “The Weight,” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” is back.

More good news: the material on Dirt Farmer is worthy of that voice. No, it’s not in the same stratosphere as the songs on those classic albums by The Band. But Helm has assembled a fine batch of tunes — including works by Steve Earle, Buddy and Julie Miller, the late Chicago bluesman J.B. Lenoir, British songwriter Paul Kennerley, and the Carter Family. There’s not a weak song here.

And Levon’s put together a tight little band featuring his daughter, Amy Helm, on harmony vocals (and drums and mandolin on some tracks) and guitarist Larry Campbell (a Bob Dylan sideman in recent years).

As the title of the album implies, Dirt Farmer has an acoustic country feel. There’s lots of fiddle (played by Campbell), mandolin, accordion, and pump organ, which gives an old country-church feel to some songs, like the Millers’ “Wide River to Cross.”

The album starts off with a spirited rendition of “False-Hearted Lover Blues,” which Helm says in the liner notes is a tribute to the Stanley Brothers, but it also has some dark edges of Doc Boggs.

Helms’ voice always has been suited for historical songs. Here he sings Kennerley’s “A Train Robbery,” which deals with the career of Jesse James. (It originally appeared as a bonus track on the CD rerelease of Kennerley’s 1980 song cycle The Legend of Jesse James, a various-artists project in which Helms participated.) “We all know he was nothing but a Missouri farm boy just fighting to stay alive,” Helms sings ofthe famous outlaw.

“Poor Old Dirt Farmer” is a traditional song performed as a Cajun waltz. It’s about a farmer who can’t pay his loan, can’t grow his corn, and ain’t got no home. The story grows more bizarre. There’s a tractor accident: “And now his head is shaped like a tread. But he ain’t quite dead.”

That song gave the album its title, but the real theme song is Lenoir’s “Feeling Good.” Levon trades vocals with Amy (her solo vocal parts remind me a lot of Carrie Rodriguez), and this upbeat blues is a triumphant declaration for him.

It’s great to hear Helm’s voice again.

Also recommended:

* Revival by John Fogerty. This has been hailed as a “comeback” album, even though Fogerty’s been doing comeback albums since1985’s Centerfield. Part of the hoopla is due simply to the title of the record, plus the fact that there’s a song called “Creedence Song.”

It’s true, Fogerty sounds a lot like Creedence Clearwater Revival here. But he always sounds a lot like Creedence Clearwater Revival. I know there were other members of the band who contributed, but face it — as singer, songwriter, and lead guitarist, Fogerty was for all practical purposes Creedence Clearwater Revival.

But forget that particular hype. This is a darn good album, better than his last comeback album, 2004’s Déjà Vu All Over Again.

As you might expect from the man who wrote “Fortunate Son” and “Run Through the Jungle,” there are some pig-bitin’ protest songs on Revival. I know that I panned R.E.M.’s recent protest songs just last week. The main difference is that Fogerty’s tunes rock even harder than they preach.

Fogerty names names on “Long Dark Night”: “Rummie’s in the kitchen/Messin’ with the pans/Dickie’s in the back/Stealin’ everythinghe can. ... Runnin’ down the highway/Shoutin’ to the Lord/Georgie’s got religion/And you know we can’t/Afford more years.”

Even more driving is “I Can’t Take it No More.” Fogerty has a personal message for the president with a stinging reference to a Creedence song: “I bet you never saw the ol’ school yard/I bet you never saw the National Guard/Your daddy wrote a check and there you are/Another fortunate son.” (Hey, I wrote years ago that “Fortunate Son” was the first song ever written about the current president, though Fogerty didn’t know it at the time.)

“Gunslinger” bites even harder. It’s a tune about an Old West town —or a whole nation. Its people’s spirits have been broken by the “wild-eyed bunch” who moved in. “This used to be a peaceful place/Decent folks, hardworkin’ ways/Now they hide behind locked doors/Afraid to speak their mind. ... Wrecked the paper/Closed the school/Tired old judge got roughed up too/No one left to make a stand/They whisper what’s the use.”

The remedy, Fogerty says, is a “gunslinger” to “tame this town” and bring justice. The precursor to this song is Neil Young’s “Looking for a Leader.” But “Gunslinger” is more artful.

Of course, all isn’t politics and protest here. There are some sweet love songs, like “Broken-Down Cowboy” and “Natural Thing.”

My only complaint with Revival is the overt sense of nostalgia. I can take the self-referential “Creedence Song.” Here the narrator isn’t rock star John Fogerty, but a kid whose dad was a rocker who won his mother’s love by playing Creedence songs. But harder to justify is “Summer of Love,” which talks about “freedom in the air” and “flower children lookin’ for the truth.” Fogerty even sneaks in a “Sunshine of Your Love” guitar lick.

Come on, gunslinger. You shoot a lot straighter when you’re looking ahead.

Thursday, December 06, 2007


A version of this was published in The Santa Fe New Mexican
December 6, 2007

A young Democratic campaign worker whose video of U.S. Sen. George Allen helped end the Virginia Republican’s political career last year now works in Santa Fe for Gov. Bill Richardson’s presidential campaign.

S.R. Sidarth — whom Allen mockingly dubbed “Macaca” during a campaign appearance last year while Sidarth videotaped his speech — is working in Richardson’s campaign communications office, according to a recent blog item in The Washington Post. He is responsible for “compiling daily newspaper articles for the governor, drafting press releases and performing other communication tasks,” the Post said.

Unlike his work for Sen. Jim Webb, a Democrat who unseated Allen last year, Sidarth is not working in the Richardson campaign as a “tracker” recording speeches of opponents.

Sidarth declined a request for an interview from The New Mexican. On Monday, he told a reporter to submit questions in writing, and he’d have to clear an interview with “my boss.” On Wednesday, he told a reporter, “I’m not interested.”

Allen’s “Macaca moment” quickly spread over the Internet as well as television, raising questions about racism on the senator’s part.

Macaca is the name of a genus of monkeys, but it’s been used as a slur against Africans by white colonists.

“After Allen’s remarks, my heritage suddenly became a matter of widespread interest,” Sidarth wrote in a first-person essay for The Washington Post last year. “I am proud to be a second-generation Indian American and a practicing Hindu. My parents were born and raised in India and immigrated here more than 25 years ago.”

And even though Allen sarcastically “welcomed” him to America and “the real world of Virginia,” Sidarth wrote, “I have known no home other than Northern Virginia.”

He was named’s “person of the year.” The Internet magazine called Sidarth “a symbol of politics in the 21st century, a brave new world in which any video clip can be broadcast instantly everywhere and any 20-year-old with a camera can change the world.”

According to published reports, Sidarth is the son of a mortgage banker from Fairfax County, Va. Politics appears to be a major passion of his. Beside the Richardson and Webb campaigns, he worked one summer as an intern for Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-Conn.

Sidarth used the Allen incident to get into an exclusive campaigns-and-elections seminar at the University of Virginia taught by Larry Sabato, a frequently quoted political scientist who directs the university’s Center For Politics.

Sabato said this week that Sidarth was admitted on the basis of a three-word essay: “I am Macaca.”

Apparently Richardson is lucky to have Sidarth, based on what his old professor told me. He has “an instinctive sense of politics,” Sabato said.

“Sidarth was a wonderful student,” he said. “One of the great joys of teaching is that you meet extremely able young people like Sidarth. He’ll be involved in politics, one way or another, for his whole life. ... Sidarth showed great maturity under fire last year. He was treated very roughly by some adults, and he took it in stride.” (Sabato said some partisan Republicans at the school gave Sidarth a hard time.) “He is well prepared for the trials of life.”

Another “Macaca” connection: Sidarth isn’t the only tie New Mexico has to the Allen-Webb contest this election cycle.

As reported in this column a few weeks ago, Albuquerque Mayor Marty Chávez, who is running for U.S. Senate, hired Blackrock Associates, a California firm that served last year as Webb’s Internet strategist.

The Iowa surprise: It’s only four weeks until the Jan. 3 Iowa presidential caucuses, or as a Wednesday e-mail from the Richardson called it “The Iowa Surprise.”

According to recent polls, it would indeed be a surprise if Richardson pulled off a move into the top tier of Democratic candidates.

Real Clear Politics, which averages several polls conducted in the past week, shows Richardson still in a distant fourth place in Iowa, averaging 6.8 percent. The top three candidates are Barack Obama (27.2 percent), Hillary Clinton (25.8 percent) and John Edwards (23.2 percent).

The polls tell a similar story for Richardson in New Hampshire, where he’s in fourth place, averaging 9.1 percent. New Hampshire’s primary is Jan. 8.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


Here's my link to the story about Javier Gonzales and Joe Maestas decidng not to run for Congress. CLICK HERE.

When I talked to Ben Ray Lujan yesterday, I mentioned, "Your dad told me there's a 95 percent chance you'll run."

Ben Ray corrected me. "I think you said he told you 99 percent." (I checked my clip and that's right.)

It was then when Ben Ray added that his father would know.

Monday, December 03, 2007


I think somehow I've landed on some Homeland Security list.

Last weekend I flew to San Francisco for a conference sponsored by

Both on the way there in the Albuquerque airport and on the way back in the San Francisco Airport, I was "pulled over" for a "secondary security search." The weird thing is, I was flying on different airlines -- Delta on the way out, U.S. Airways on the way back.

In Albuquerque I only had to walk through a special booth where there's little sudden puffs of air that somehow check your body for chemicals. It kind of tickles.

In San Francisco the search was more of a hassle. I got the puff booth, but I also had to sit and wait while they did chemical tests on almost everything I was carrying with me -- my laptop, my cell phone, my iPod (Christ, the subversive stuff they could have found in there!)

I'm not complaining about the TSA employees. The workers I dealt with were professional, though of course they weren't allowed to explain how I had been chosen for the extra searches.

Of course I've been asking myself that questions. Maybe I triggered it myself on my trip to New Hampshire last summer. I forgot to take my laptop out of the case at the Albuquerque checkpoint and was sent for a secondary search. (I wasn't chosen for the extra screening on my trip back from New Hampshire. The San Francisco trip was the first time I've flown since then.)

Darker possibilities have entered my mind. Could I have written something that angered some government official or politico who called a buddy in the federal government ...

I know. That sounds like a paranoid idiot. But we're becoming a nation of paranoid idiots -- from the conspiracy nutballs to some of the people running the government to anyone who somehow feels "safer" because someone dusted my iPod.

All I know is I'm sick of it. I'm sick of the secondary searches, I'm sick of the little notes I always find in my suitcase after a plane trip telling me that some goverment agent has been rummaging through my underwear. I'm sick of having to take off my damned shoes every time I fly.

Something has to change.


Sunday, December 2, 2007
KSFR, Santa Fe, N.M.
10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time
Host: Steve Terrell

Now Simulcasting 90.7 FM, and our new, stronger signal, 101.1 FM
email me during the show!

OPENING THEME: Let it Out (Let it All Hang Out) by The Hombres
Cold Turkey by John Lennon
Slow Death by The Flamin' Groovies
Endless Party by Johnny Thunders & Wayne Kramer
Kill the Messenger by The Bell-Rays
Crane's Cafe by TAD
You Got it All ... Wrong by The Hives
Communist Moon by International Noise Conspiracy
Chicago Seven by Memphis Slim

Teddy Bear by The Residents
Leaky Bag by Thinking Fellers Union Local 282
Transcendental Light by The Black Lips
Thee Most Exalted Potentate of Love by The Cramps
(Hot Pastrami with) Mashed Potatos by Joey Dee & The Starliters
Bahamut by Hazmat Modine
Vaquero by The Fireballs
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer by Tiny Tim

Dumb All Over by Frank Zappa
Love - Building on Fire by The Talking Heads
Prickly Thorn but Sweetly Worn/St. Andrew (The Battle is in the Air) by The White Stripes
Live With Me by The Rolling Stones
Sun Arise by Alice Cooper
Kewpie Doll by The Birthday Party
Something Funny in Santa's Lap by The Moaners

No More by The Dirty Projectors
I Remember You by Ruby Dee & The Snakehandlers
When Jack Ruby Met Joe Glaser by David Murray
Blue Intensity by Sun Ra
The Flying Club Cup by Beirut
CLOSING THEME: Over the Rainbow by Jerry Lee Lewis


Sunday, July 21, 2024 KSFR, Santa Fe, NM, 101.1 FM  Webcasting! 10 p.m. to midnight Sundays Mountain Time Host: Steve Terrel...