Record of the Month

I figured I’d do a monthly ‘what I’m listening to’ kind of thing. This could be viewed as a lame placeholder kind of post. And probably it is. But it’s my blog! So there!

These may or may not be newly released disks. They might not even be a good disk – just what is been in heavy rotation in my car (as usually theiPod is playing anywhere else).


I don’t have anything ‘new’ this month. So, I’ve pulled one back from the vaults. Or a song or two will pull up from my iTunes which reminds me how much I like this disk.

That I like Jackson Browne’s Running on Empty might kind of surprise you. Perhaps not. The disk is 30 years old. And it’s a semi-brilliant concept – one I don’t know I have seen before or since: a semi/pseudo live album of new or unreleased material.

And by ‘live’ I mean, concerts, hotel rooms, tour buses and the likes.  Even “The Road” was done fairly seamlessly, as the first half was done in a hotel room and the second part in front of a live audience.

But most, if not all of the songs, have to do with ‘the road’, which were recorded on his tour to support The Pretender (his best disk?).  The vices of the touring, I guess, are on there: the need for adoration (“Stay”), drugs (“Cocaine”),  boredom (“Nothing But Time”) and acts of self-love (“Rosie”) are all here.   I’m fondest of “The Road” and “You Love the Thunder” though.

Except for The Pretender and Late for the Sky, Browne has never had this consistent of a disk.  He’s shown some glimpses of grandness (“Lives in the Balance”, “Call it a Loan”) and whimsy (“Disco Apocalypse”) – but then a lot of schlock (“Lawyers in Love” or “Somebody’s Baby”…..anyone……anyone???).

If all you know of from Running on Empty is the title track or “Stay” – I say check it out – you might be surprised.  Or perhaps not.

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