John Faye “Meddling Kid”
With two decades in the music business under his belt, Philly rock veteran John Faye (Caufields, IKE) has truly gone solo where he plays every instrument on his newest LP. Fans of his past work will be glad to know that he’s just gotten better with age, “Mere Mortals” and “Back In The Day” are brilliant pop songs that touch on getting older without sounding old. The wonderful anthem “Keep On Hanging Around” almost dares the listener not to raise a fist in support of Faye. Like another late ’90s icon Adam Marsland, Faye has only mellowed slightly, he’s still got that fire on “Platonic” about ending up in “the friend zone.” Great stuff here that easily would’ve reached my top 25 if I heard it earlier!
Les Fradkin “Rehearsals for Retirement”
Guitarist Les Fradkin was one of the original members of the hit Broadway show “Beatlemania” playing lead guitar and the part of “George Harrison” in New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago from 1977-79. He’s in good company, with fellow former cast members Glenn Burtnik and Marshall Crenshaw. Since that time Les has been busy making lots of music (20 solo albums,) pioneered a Guitar Synthesizer, and played with many bands including The Ventures, The Left Banke and David Sanborn.
Rehearsals for Retirement is a 30 track retrospective of his career with selections from his many albums. If you like lots of jangle and heavy gloss production, this is for you. The opener “Jangleholic” and its exactly what you expect it to sound like, with 12 string McGuinn styled rhythm. Fradkin’s selections are mostly a mixed bag, some sure sound like long lost hits from the early ‘70s like “I Can Never Saw Goodbye” and “God Bless California.” There are some CSNY and Bryds influences on “Get It Together” and “Why Smiling.” So if you’re into rock with a unique point-of-view, this may float your boat.