Posts Tagged ‘Heart’


Pat Benatar is one of the best artists to emerge from the MTV era of rock & roll: the 60s-90s. Among such heavyweights as Journey, the lovely ladies of Heart, Fleetwood Mac, and even the Buggles, Benatar holds her own with her powerhouse

Cover of "Live From Earth"

vocals. This what has made her an icon. However, as with all great artists, they are meant to be heard live. Benatar proves she’s worthy of this with her 1983 live album, Live From Earth.

However, with all great artists, they are meant to be heard live and Benatar proves that she’s worthy of the “must-see” concert label.

She opens the show with the haunting classic “Fire and Ice.” However, things get really amazing when she breaks into the gritty “I Want Out” followed by the awesomeness that is “We Live For Love” and the grisly, sad, and controversial “Hell Is For Children.” That track is literally one that leaps out of the speakers and grabs you instantly. Clearly, this is Pat Benatar at her “tough-girl” persona best. One which she would abandon for another persona, a bit more personal one if you will – motherhood, with her 1984 album Tropico. The two studio tracks, the ever-popular “Love Is A Battlefield” and “Lipstick Lies” (both containing very memorable videos – such as Benatar herself doing Michael Jackson-style dance sequences) serve as a great transition into this new era for Benatar.

What Pat Benatar live album would not be complete without her performing her swan song, “Hit Me With Your Best Shot?” None! However, this is probably the weaker track of this album because you can barely hear her vocals. Since the album was recorded in many places, wherever they recorded it, the acoustics are TERRIBLE!

Benatar and her husband Neil Geraldo quickly redeem themselves on “Promises In the Dark.” The live version of “Promises In The Dark” actually sounds better than the recording as heard on 1983’s Precious Time album.

This album is okay, however it seems more or less like a greatest hits collection thrown in with a few new tracks. But its a good live album overall from what sounds like one exciting tour. B+


Yes friends, Eddie Trunk of That Metal Show has officially won my respect. Why? Because he has repeatedly called out the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (or to him “The Rock and Roll Hall of Shame”) for not including such hard rock acts as Heart, Rush, Foreigner, Journey, Alice Cooper, in lieu of such acts as Donna Summer, various rap acts, etc.

I am in full agreeance with Trunk!  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame leaves much to be desired. They consistently shun the real legends – the ones who have actually influenced others to be rock & rollers.

KISS

KISS, whether or not you love them, they are rather influential. They are very successful touring artists. They’ve been eligible since 1999 because their debut album was released in 1974.

Heart

Without the Wilson sisters, there would be no Seattle music scene, Alice in Chains and maybe even Nirvana. Virtually every woman who has picked up a guitar has in some way been influenced by Nancy Wilson; or for that matter any woman that wanted to sing Zepplin-style rock & roll with Ann’s powerhouse vocals. (Go listen to songs like Barracuda, White Lightning and Wine, How Can I Refuse and the ever-enduring Magic Man) Better yet, they, like KISS are still popular even with younger people today! I remember I went to their concert they performed with Journey (another deserving artist) and Cheap Trick back in 2008. I was expecting the crowd to be mostly people my parents age – in their 50’s. To my surprise, there were many people there my age as well as the age of my guest – I was 22 and a junior in college at the time. My guest was 19 and a freshman in college. They have been eligible ever since 2000.

Stevie Nicks

Though she already is a member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Fleetwood Mac, she has never been inducted as a solo artist. She is technically eligible as a solo artist due to the fact that Bella Donna was released 30 years ago. Many artist such as Sheryl Crow (wh is a legend herself if you ask me) and Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine have all cited her as an influence.

Journey

Never has a band since Aerosmith seen such a surge in popularity than say, Journey. The main factor in the surge is none other than the usage of Don’t Stop Believingon MTV’s The Hills and other shows like Glee. They’ve been eligible since 2000.

Foreigner

Without Foreigner, there would be no Bon Jovi.  They’ve been eligible since 2002.

Read this article for more info.


In 1985, Heart was on the verge of a MASSIVE comeback. Their 1985 self-titled comeback album went to #1 on the US Billboard 200 charts. The album itself yielded such hits as What About Love, Never, If Looks Could Kill, Nothin’ At All, and the ever-popular smash These Dreams.

The b-side to What About Love is Heart of Darkness. Unfortunately, it sounds like every other song on their 1985 album – which is probably why it wasn’t included on the album. It’s a bland piece of production. Heart is a better band than this song. It doesn’t show off the high vocal range of Ann Wilson nor does it show off Nancy’s mad guitar skills. It sounds simply like another hyper-produced song from the 80’s.

Don’t bother in finding this b-side.


Cover of "Private Audition"

Heart is rock & roll’s most enduring band – there’s no doubt about it. However, even rock music’s most famous sisters have

their bad moments. 1982’s Private Audition is one of their moments.

Private Audition simply does not measure up to what we have come to love about Heart. Rather it seems like Heart has seen better days with their previous albums such as their classics: Dreamboat Annie, Dog & Butterfly and plenty more.

What makes Private Audition terrible is that it is, at times, an almost-total deviation of the style and essence that has made Heart legendary. In fact,l this deviation only works for them once and that is on This Man Is Mine. Furthermore, none of the songs showcase the powerhouse vocals of lead singer Ann Wilson, nor the mad guitar skills of her sister Nancy.

This is perhaps Heart’s worst album they have made. Thankfully most Heartmongers, including the Wilson sisters themselves, have all but forgotten this turkey of an album.  Soon after the album’s release, the sisters got rid of band members Steve Fossen and Mike DeRosier.

The verdict: buy any other album by Heart, but not this one.

 

 


If you know the Wild Heartwell, it’s a widely-known thing that I LOVE Seinfeld. However, there is one particular episode

Happy Festivus from the Wild Heart

that strikes my fancy: The Strike. This one is perhaps best-known as The Festivus.

With that said, I present to you the Wild Heart’s celebration of Festivus. HAPPY FESTIVUS! LET’S RUMBLE!

Airing of Grievances:

The airing of grievances gathers everyone you know and you tell them how they have wronged you in the past year.

  • Heart – you come to Houston AGAIN and every time you do, you jack up your ticket prices. As a fan, I find this completely appalling. I haven’t seen your act since 2008’s Human Tour when I was in college. Between then and now, the economy went to hell and now this jobless college grad cannot afford to go to your concerts. Please lower your ticket prices!!
  • Amy Grant – Your “2 Friends Tour” COMPLETELY avoided coming to Houston. I really wanted to see you live again and performing all your old hits, as well as Michael W. Smith. So I suggest that you stop snubbing Houston, and come to some place like the Berry Center, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavillion, or even the House of Blues. Otherwise I am done listening to your music!
  • KTRU – I go in for an interview twice with you dumbass hipsters and you refuse to hire me twice! You act all anti-record industry yet what do I see when I walk into your studios but a big white banner that says “TOM WAITS FOR NO ONE!” Guess what? He was signed to Asylum and Island Records – both are major labels. He’s currently signed to Anti records, the US distributor to Kate Bush. Hate to break it to you but that’s a major label too. Yet somehow you don’t like me because I tell you the artists I am currently loving are Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks and Kate Bush. You are nothing but hypocrites. Thanks for crushing my on-air dreams.Oh and one more thing, since you are based at Rice University: GO COOGS!
  • Stevie Nicks – Why did you have to snub Houston for the “Heart and Soul” tour? I wanted to see you perform that duet of Young Turks with Rod Stewart Not cool! But thanks for coming for the “In Your Dreams” tour. That was amazing!
  • White Stripes, Rilo Kiley, & R.E.M – Why did you all break up? We need you to save us from the clutches of the evils of bad music such as Lady GaGa & Katy Perry!
  • Ke$ha – I couldn’t help but notice that your song “C U Next Tuesday” is an acronym for “cunt.” As a college educated woman who took at least 9 hours of womens studies classes, I find this VERY offensive. Just because a guy calls you that doesn’t mean that it is okay. It’s degrading a female to a mere body part and nothing more. Take a freaking lesson from the women’s lib movement from the 70’s Ke$sha!
  • The Ton Tons – How come you never got back to me about covering you guys?
  • Nameless haters of that know who they are – What the hell gives you the right to take shots at the Wild Heart? BTW keep up the hatin’ because people like you only make people like me stronger! To quote Pat Benatar: “Knock me down it’s all in vain. I get right back up on my feet again! Hit me with your best shot!” It’s never cool to make fun of someone’s album collection. Vinyl is cooler, better sounding as far as decibels go, but you are a clueless jerk who only cares about making other peoples lives miserable.

And now for the toasts of 2011

  • All of the local bands that I have covered this year – Nightbird – Stevie Nicks Tribute, Spare Parts, Spare Heart – Heart Tribute, August 83, Kozmic Pearl – Janis Joplin Tribute, Love It To Death – Alice Cooper Tribute, and BlackRozeHouston. I have loved every minute of covering you guys. Houston’s music scene is like a hidden gem of musical talent. All of y’all keep up the good work and I think you will go far! Special thanks to John Hill and Jennifer Nguyen for giving me this idea.
  • Glee – One of the best things that you do, aside from the funny storylines with Jane Lynch and Matthew Morrison, is that you introduce classic rock numbers to a new generation. You did this well with last season’s salute to Rumours by Fleetwood Mac. No thanks to the show, a new generation got to hear snippets about the emotional drama that went on behind the scenes but also hear the songs themselves as performed by the cast. I want an encore! However can that encore be with something by Yes or Styx?
  • Stevie Nicks – Your new album, In Your Dreams, is AMAZING! It reminds me of your old 80’s albums like The Wild Heart, Bella Donna, and The Other Side of the Mirror. Also, your In Your Dreams tour was pretty magical – least your concert in Houston was. (Never have I been to the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavillion where a concert was done in 103+ degree heat under a big full moon. Even better, your merchandise wasn’t too expensive and my mom liked the keychain I got her.
  • Lindsey Buckingham – I won tickets to your concert at Cactus Records. Though I am unfamiliar with your solo work, I must say you were pretty amazing at the Verizon Wireless Theater. Also, I must give you mad props for performing my favorite Fleetwood Mac song, Tusk.
  • Cactus and Black Records – Without you lovely people, I would not have been able to cover 2 major shows (Lindsey Buckingham and Lost 80’s Night at StereoLive with Animotion, When In Rome, and A Flock of Seagulls), survived a bad day at work, and helping me to climb the ladder of success with blogging.

Magic Kingdom

Disney is a pretty cool place. Why can't they totally rock out?

It’s no secret that the Wild Heart loves is all things related to Disney. Disney ROCKS when it comes to good art, animation, and just making people feel like kids again. My childhood would not be complete without such films like The Little Mermaid, Oliver and Co., Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story and even Aladdin. The songs only made the films better.

As I wrote about earlier, Disney has a pretty interesting relationship with rock & roll and Broadway. However, one way I was thinking about earlier is how they have a Contemporary Christian music festival every year called “Night of Joy.” Night of Joy is one big festival that requires a separate ticket that takes place in the Magic Kingdom.

So as I was thinking today while watching a YouTube video about Epcot Center was this: what about a rock festival or concert series that incorporates both rockers past and present? Like Night of Joy, it would be a separate ticket event. However, it would dwarf Night of Joy in the form of 3 stages sometime over Memorial Day Weekend in May. There would be 3 stages that are active on 3 nights. The 3 stages would be set for different types of artists:

  • The disney stars stage would happen at the Magic Kingdom. Picture this: your young daughter is a big fan of Selena Gomez from Wizards of Waverly Place. What wouldn’t be more magical for your young daughter than to see her at night at the Magic Kingdom along with some of her other favorite Disney stars?
  • The Legends stage would be held at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. It would feature such legends of rock as Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, Paul Simon, Heart, Aerosmith, Jackson Browne, Sheryl Crow, Journey, Stevie Nicks, Sammy Hagar, etc. Better yet, to make it a bit more kid-friendly, these legends would be introduced by a current Disney Channel star so that it may be an easier thing for the younger kids to digest. In essence “this is what mom and dad listen to.”
  • The Disney Rocks! stage would consist of current rock artists who would be rockin’ either the Animal Kingdom or Epcot. The artist roster would be a who’s who of current rock artists such as the Kings Of Leon, Green Day, Florence and the Machine, Ellie Goulding, Foster the People, etc.

Better yet, they could even sell some special edition trade pins with the artists on them either featuring a classic album cover of the artist but, in place of the artist have either Mickey or Minnie. Or you could have a picture of the artist in a pose (Paul Simon with his guitar singing to an animated Mickey Mouse, Donald getting serenaded by Ellie Goulding, Mickey making faces at the Kings of Leon, etc) or Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy paying tribute to a well-known album. These would all be limited edition pins.

What do you think of this idea?


The Wild Heart not to long ago came across the National Recording Registry, which is a branch of the Library of Congress. I must say, it’s a pretty cool ordeal because it seeks to preserve both historical recordings and essentially recordings that defined what life was like at the time of their release. According to their website, these are the qualifications that the recording must meet:

“Recordings selected for the National Recording Registry are those that are culturally, historically or aesthetically important, and/or inform or reflect life in the United States.

For the purposes of recording selection, “sound recordings” are defined as works that result from the fixation of a series of musical, spoken, or other sounds, but not including the sound component of a moving image work, unless it is available as an autonomous sound recording or is the only extant component of the work.

Recordings may be a single item or group of related items; published or unpublished; and may contain music, non-music, spoken word, or broadcast sound. Recordings will not be considered for inclusion into the National Recording Registry if no copy of the recording exists.

No recording should be denied inclusion into the National Recording Registry because that recording has already been preserved.

No recording is eligible for inclusion into the National Recording Registry until ten years after the recording’s creation.”

While some of the recordings (rightfully so) belong into the Registry, however the Wild Heart thinks they forgot a few while in the process.

  1. The Concert for New York City – This recording became eligible a few weeks ago. However this was one of the things that brought the city of New York together like never before, but nevertheless after the tragedy of September 11, 2001.
  2. Woodstock: Three Days of Peace and Music – This recording has been eligible for at least 40 or more years. This festival defined what the 1960’s were all about.
  3. Woodstock 99 – If Woodstock 69 (mentioned above) was the embodiment of peace and music, Woodstock 99 was it’s evil twin. Take in mind the time of 1999: 2 of the major news events that happened were the impeachment of President William Jefferson Clinton over his affair with a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky and the school shooting at Columbine Highschool, which killed 15 people including the shooters themselves. There were also many copycat crimes as well. It was a rather violent time. Woodstock 99 was almost like a violent reaction to that time, however in the same violent vain.
  4. Dreamboat Annie by Heart – This was released at the peak of the second wave of the Women’s Liberation Movement. If anything, the fact that not one but two women head up this band. History was made with this album.
  5. 52nd Street by Billy Joel – If I ever want to know what life is like in the Big Apple, I just pop in one of his albums. This was, to me, what I picture Manhattan to be like at that time. Especially with such songs as Big Shot, Half A Mile Away, Zanzibar and the album’s title track.

Spare Heart wows the audience with both authentication and skill

Spare Heart – A Tribute to the band Heart and Love It To Death performances at The Concert Pub North on FM 1960 in Houston, TX were filled with songs the fans love and deep tracks from the artists’ respective catalogs. It was one rockin’ night!

Spare Heart kicked off the evening with a rousing and loud rendition of Even It Up from Heart’s 1980 classic Bebe Le Strange followed up by the ever-angry rocker Heartless, which was highlighted by the driving rhythm section headed by John Hill on drums and Sean Harrold on bass.

The cover of the power-ballad cover of Alone, which, like the actual recording, kicks into high gear around the chorus. Things only got better with the nicely done keyboard playing of Jeff Ball. It served as a nice complement to the smash hit These Dreams – a beautiful rendition done by the “Nancy Wilson” of the group, Staci Butler. However, this version was a bit more acoustic sounding, which made it sound organic.

Things were kicked back into high-gear with the driving guitar forces of Staci Butler and Mike Lambert on Crazy On You, which was quite possibly the fan favorite of the night.

One of the greatest things about Spare Heartis that they do both the “greatest hits” and some Heart’s deep tracks such as How Can I Refuse, which was beautifully executed by lead vocalist and the “Ann Wilson” of the band, Linda Lambert.

Shortly thereafter,  Love It To Death – The Alice Cooper Tribute show took the stage.

The highlight of Love It To Death – The Alice Cooper Tribute show’s set was none other than No More Mr. Nice Guy. Many in the audience enjoyed the song. Some even sang along.

One of the best things about Love It To Death – The Alice Cooper Tribute show is the fact that they are authentic: lead singer Paul Byron, when in makeup and other trademarks of Alice Cooper, looks strikingly close to the real Alice Cooper. He adds authentication to the performance by doing what Cooper may do during live performances. Such as when he performs Billion Dollar Baby, he throws out fake $1 billion dollar bills containing the band logo. The audience was highly entertained.

Overall, it was a nice precursor to kick off the Halloween season.


Till Saturday, due to my busy schedule and the fact that I have to pay off a speeding ticket, I am rerunning all my posts about Heart in honor of their nomination into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Saturday I will be covering the Spare Heart – a tribute to Heart concert at the Concert Pub North near Spring, TX. so be on the lookout for that review.
Heart is one of those bands that has had many incarnations but still has the constant two frontrunners in the form of sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson. They are the female counterparts of Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. However, their reasons for the original lineup change is because of their original romantic entanglements with former drummer Mike DeRosier and Roger Fisher.

Heart’s 1985 self-titled album is proof that that the lineup change that occurred with the previous album, Passionworks, and signing on with record label powerhouse Capitol Records, worked.

Heart’s self titled album is nothing short of great. While it stays true to Heart’s somewhat angry hard-rockin’ musical roots with songs such as The Wolf and If Looks Could Kill, one of the best changes is that there are some hard-rockin’ love songs. On Never, Ann cries “We can’t go on just running away/ If we wait any longer we will surely never get away/ Anything you want – we can make it happen/ Stand up and turn around – never let them shoot us down.” She continues with this passion on All Eyes.

One surprise is that, for a change, guitarist Nancy Wilson gets to sing lead vocals for the first time ever on a Heart album. She has a beautiful voice on the smash single These Dreams. The lyrics of the song describe the fantasy world a person enters when faced with a real-life difficult issue. This song was dedicated to a close friend of Nancy Wilson, Sharon Hess, who died of leukemia shortly before the song was made.

One track though, falls flat. Nobody Home sounds like it wants to be a hybrid power-pop ballad meets the signature sound of Heart. It doesn’t work for the band. Shell Shock sounds like an overdone hard-rock song. It even has corny and cliche love song lyrics that do not fit into the repertoire of Heart.

Caveats aside, the album is a welcomed return to both great music and the radio for Heart.


In honor of Heart finally getting nominated to be in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, I will be rerunning some of the reviews I have written in regards to the band this week. Enjoy!

In 1976, there were very few well-known women in hard rock. Enter two sisters named Ann and Nancy Wilson from Seattle, WA and their outlaw boyfriends Mike and Roger Fisher. When those women came across the border, magic and Dreamboat Annie was born!

Dreamboat Annie is the 1st album that was released by Heart. Normally with legendary bands, when they release their first album, it takes a bit of maturing on the part of the band to find their voice. Not so with Heart. Heart knows that the audience wants 100% unbridled creativity from their artists and that is exactly what shows on such songs as the hauntingly beautiful Magic Man where Wilson exclaims “‘come on home girl’ he said with a smile/ ‘you don’t have to love me and let’s get high awhile’/ ‘but try to understand’/ ‘try to understand’/ ‘try try try to understand I’m a magic man.'” On other tracks such as Crazy on You and Sing Child show that the Wilson sisters can rock with the best of their peers. They even get a bit raunchy like their male counterparts with White Lightning and Wine – a tribute to the effect that happens when you mix cocaine and booze.

However, the Wilsons are not all hard-rock, no ballad. There are plenty of beautiful ballads such as the three (count ’em), three different versions of Dreamboat Annie – all of which are amazing.

Unfortunately for Heart, their fortune was put in trouble with their own record company, Mushroom Records, decided to launch a poorly-done campaign resulting in a tabloid-style ad placed in such magazines as Rolling Stone that showed band leaders and sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson as sister lesbian lovers. The ad campaign showed the sisters from the shoulders up with the headline “it was only our first time.” This led to a host of legal problems involving both the band and Mushroom records – which went out of business in 1980.

Legal problems aside, the album itself is a great album. The Wilson sisters made history with this album and that is what makes it great.