Monday, April 16, 2007

BBQ Albums 101

Summer is approaching, kind of. To be prepared for summer you only need 4 things.

1) Flip flops
2) A blender
3) directions to a place that sells rum (this place will probably also sell beer)
4) BBQ CDs, or at least a BBQ Mix on your Dell DJ

Ok, I'll give you a moment to get over the fact that I don't have an iPod. [Pause]. I also don't use iTunes, but rather MusicMatch Jukebox. [Double Pause]. Cool, let's move on.

A BBQ CD is an album which can be comfortably played in an outdoor summer setting during the day while everyone is drinking pina coladas and playing wiffle ball. Ideally, a BBQ CD should have content appropriate for all ages and should not have any tracks that you need to race over to the CD player (or Dell DJ) to skip. Finally, in this era of mix CDs and mix playlists, I would also classify a CD as a BBQ album if the majority of the songs could be put on a BBQ Mix.

Throughout the summer I will try to point our readers (both of them) in the direction of new albums coming out which should be purchased for just these BBQ situations. (One important disclaimer: it is not essential that and grilling is done to enjoy a BBQ CD, but it is preferred).

First, I'll establish a scale to rank a BBQ CDs quality as a BBQ CD.

5 Pina Coladas
Sublime - 40 oz to Freedom
Billy Joel - Innocent Man

0 Pina Coladas
Jackson Browne - Everyman

So, all albums will be ranked on a 0 to 5 scale with those albums setting the parameters for quality (or lack thereof in the case of Jackson Browne).

Without further ado: BBQ Album #1 of 2007

John Butler Trio's Grand National

I picked up this CD the other day after hearing Groovin' Slowly on WFUV, Fordham University's radio voice - the only radio station in metro NYC that I will listen to. I don't know anything about John Butler Trio's earlier work, but this CD is a pretty fun jammy ride full of tons of catchy hooks and hippy peaceful vibe (and occasional protest). They may be from Africa too, which adds to their cred. No need to get into unnecessary analysis - these tracks are just for fun. The only real downside is that it sometimes gets into some unfocused jamming.

Stick these in your first summer mix:

Groovin' Slowly - surprisingly trance-inducing.

Used to Get High - used to?? really John Butler?? used to...

Overall - a solid 3.5 Pina Coladas. Happy Boozing.

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