Spindale Cycle™

Mondays at 8pm

A classic album played in its entirety, because some albums are meant to be played all the way through. (Regrettably, due to Recording Industry Association of America restrictions, The Spindale Cycle is not available online)

A WNCW tradition for the Monday before Christmas for over ten years now, this definitive holiday soundtrack was created in 1965 for the treasured A Charlie Brown Christmas TV special.  Vince Guaraldi's piano and arrangements make the perfect soundtrack for conjuring up falling snowflakes ("Skating"), a relaxing holiday spirit ("Christmas Time is Here"), and the humor, charm, and innocence of Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the entire Peanuts gang.  Pass your holiday joys and traditions on to the little ones around us with this one -- that is if you let them stay up this late. 

The reggae world lost a big one last Monday with the passing of Junior Murvin.  Best known for his huge 1976 hit "Police and Thieves" (which was made further popular by The Clash's great cover), Murvin had a beautiful falsetto that (perhaps) belied the hard-hitting, often brutal reality of violence and inequality he sang about.  This album has the classic reggae production stamp of Lee "Scratch" Perry all over it.  As critic Rick Anderson has written, "There may be eight or ten perfect reggae albums in existence, and this is certainly one of them." 

35 years ago saw the release of this gem from The Byrds, with all the elements that they were known for: 60's pop, spacy psychelia, and country-rock.  Songwriting credits here include Carole King, David Crosby, Michael Clarke, and Roger McGuinn, but the one with the most to his name here might be Chris Hillman, whose birthday we celebrate this week. 

Music critic Thom Jurek refers to it as "the Live at the Fillmore East of redneck Texas folk-rock".  Recorded at the Luckenback Dancehall with his Gonzo Band in August 1973 and released 40 years ago this week, Viva Terlingua has some great covers from Guy Clark and Ray Wylie Hubbard ("Up Against the Wall Redneck Mother") along with some of Walker's best originals (except maybe "Mr. Bojangles"). 

This '72 album is truly "Dedicated To a Brother: Duane Allman", and captures the band both shortly before Duane's untimely death in October of '71, and with some choice recordings made by the surviving members in the following months.   Somehow, they were able to not only come back together and continue hittin' the note, but put together some of their strongest material, in loving tribute to Gregg's, and the rest of the band's, brother.  Celebrate Duane's birthday this week.