Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Influences: Franke And The Knockouts

They were not the greatest band in the world by any means, and as short-lived as their career was in music, they had a huge influence on me and my writing. I simply loved their music.

Their biggest hit was their debut song "Sweetheart" off their debut album called, "Franke and The Knockouts". The song peaked at number 10 on the U.S. Billboard charts in 1981. It was followed up quickly by their second release off the same album, "You're My Girl", which peaked at #27.

I knew the songs, but never bought the album / CD until after I bought their second album, "Below The Belt", a 1982 release. (It was recommended by a friend). I enjoyed each and everyone of the tracks on that album. Their third charted song came from that album called, "Without You (Not Another Lonely Night)". It reached as high as 24 on Billboard's Top 100.

Their third album was released in 1984 called, "Makin' The Point". They released the song "Outrageous" but it did not hit in Billboard's Top 100, even though I thought it was a pretty good album.

In 1999, they would release their fourth album, a collection of their best songs called, "The Sweetheart Collection".

The band was made up of Franke Previte, lead vocalist, co songwriter (and founder). He was with the band from 1980 to 1986.

Leigh Foxx was on bass, and was with the band from 1980 to 1986.

Billy Elworthy was on lead and rhythm guitars, as well as a co-songwriter. He was with the band from 1980 to 1984.

Claude LeHenaff was the drummer from 1980 to 1982.

Blake Levinsohn was the keyboardist and was with the band from 1980 to 1982.

Tommy Ayers was keyboardist and back-up vocals from 1981 to 1986. He was a session musician on the bands debut album, and officially joined the band after the release of the album.

Tico Torres was the drummer from 1982 to 1984.

Bobby Messano was on lead and rhythm guitars, and back-up vocals from 1984 to 1986.

There were other session players that include: Charlie Dominici, who supplied back-up vocals on their debut album. Dominici would go on to front the band, "Dream Theater."

Al Wotten was a session musician (drummer) on their second album, "Below The Belt".

John DeNicola played bass on several demos, including a bonus track on their third album, "Makin' The Point". He also co-wrote the songs, "Hungry Eyes" (sung by Eric Carmen and released in 1987) and "(I've Had) The Time Of My Life" (featured in the 1987 film, "Dirty Dancing") with Franke Previte, the original versions of which were recorded during his (DeNicola) tenure with the band but went unreleased, until they both later appeared on "The Sweetheart Collection".

I was fortunate enough to go see them once in concert. Had a great time. It would have been nice if they could have had better success as I always thought they were awesome. They still made a lasting impression on me that I still carry with me today.

The group disbanded in 1986.  

I still have all of their songs / albums / cassettes / CD's. I continue listening to them on a somewhat fairly regular basis. It takes me back to my Navy days in Norfolk, Virginia. Fond memories of a time that I wish would have never ended. Friends and girls that I cherish, and nights that last forever. Everything about my time in the Navy comes back alive when I listen to Franke and The Knockouts. Even a few memories from when I was in / and came back home from Fort Dix when I was enlisted in the Army Reserve.

Great times.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Mannequin - By Carroll Bryant

MANNEQUIN - By Carroll Bryant

It means everything
Your eyes looking into mine
I can feel the heat from your breath
It thrills me every time 

Don't say, don't say, don't say no to me
Don't walk away like this or that 
Don't think about leaving me
Don't leave, don't leave

Nothing is nothing 
Your hand is the touch that awakens me
I can feel your heart rip apart
It chills me to the bone

Don't know, don't know, don't know what to do
Don't even think twice, don't even blink
Everything freezes and believe me
Nothing ever changes again

I'm just another mannequin

I captured a merry-go-round
Plastic horses running in the wind
I listen to the sound of another one
As distant as a friend 

Don't cry, don't cry, don't drop the tears
It's a paradox hiding in sin
Don't even think about it
You can never win

Something is something
I've the fastest legs to runaway 
I can sense the end of time
Watch you destroy my brains

Don't know, don't know, don't know what to do
Don't even think twice, don't even blink
Everything freezes and believe me
Nothing ever changes again

I'm just another mannequin

Nothing is nothing 
Your hand is the touch that awakens me
I can feel your heart rip apart
It chills me to the bone

Don't know, don't know, don't know what to do
Don't even think twice, don't even blink
Everything freezes and believe me
Nothing ever changes again

I'm just another mannequin

I'm just another mannequin

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Democrat Hate: Past And Present

Like so many Americans, I, too, am getting very frustrated by what I see on my television screen. So many democrats rioting (under the guise of protesting) and watching them destroy property and start fires in the streets and shutting down other people's right to free speech. It sickens me greatly. To observe so much hatred from so many people for unknown reasons can drive you up the wall. Criminal behavior beyond normal comprehension. I get it. Enough already, right?

Well, sure, however, there is a part of me that tries to always look on the bright side. I mean, let's face it, the democrats have a long history of hate that extends far beyond reasonable measures. When I see their hate in the here and now, since around 2014 to 2017, I think how lucky we are that we're not back in the 1960's or something. Back then, that hate by the democrats was targeted at the African-American community, and the results from that was black people being murdered and killed at a record pace by democrats. They were beating them senseless and hanging them in trees. It was horrible. But that's what democrat hate is all about, taking other people's rights away by any means necessary. Even by murder!

So, yeah, when I see what the democrats are doing with their hate in today's world, I shudder, but for now, at least they are not murdering people. YET!

By yet, I mean, who knows what tomorrow will bring. Hate is a powerful drug that brings about insanity. The manner in which democrats are spewing their hate, it appears to be growing and expanding. Let us not forget that during the campaign for president, outside of many of his rallies, Trump supporters were attacked physically at times. Even after the election, Trump supporters were being attacked. So maybe we are witnessing the evolution of this democrat hate and perhaps, they will soon begin killing people again.

We have already heard some of them, like Madonna, threaten to blow up the White House so, who knows, we could be sliding into history again like back in the 1960's. The only question is, will they (democrats) start targeting black people again? Or will it just be republicans in general, regardless of their skin color? Or gender?

One can only wonder.

This could mean that republicans, or independents like myself that voted for Trump, might want to consider carrying their firearms with them for protection. Let's be honest here, these democrats have a tremendous amount of hate in their hearts. They have shown themselves to be extremely violent when they want to be. It is only wise to protect yourself from these liberal criminals.

So yes, when I see democrats acting in such a violent manner, with disregards towards property, laws, and life, I do become somewhat annoyed and concerned. But when I reflect to the ways democrats used to show their hate in the 1960's, I am grateful that they progressed somewhat slightly. But I also worry for how long? How long before we start to see them reverting back to those days in the 1960's, and how long before they start going on their murderous rampage again?

And who will they target this time?