Everyone’s on their Phone

It seems that everywhere I go without fail, everyone is on their phone. I’ve noticed this fascination that so many people have with their mobile devices has significantly increased in the past five years. I don’t understand why so many people have to be constantly connected.

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Sound Systems 1

Sound Systems

  

  • Receivers
  • Amplifiers
  • Turn-tables
  • Tape decks
  • Speakers

 

Old Verses New

Old Stereo System

Old Stereo System

 My other hobby involves the art of collecting music and audio components; audiophile is the term for this pass time. I owe my dad credit for being an audiophile; he got me started on this fascination back in my childhood days. My dad started his album collection back in the 1950’s. He currently has over 500 LP’s; I on the other hand only have about 200 LP’s.

Old stereo systems verses new digital systems, I’m referring to analog sound compared to digital (cd). My view on this subject is that I prefer the old analog sound over the digital format for several reasons. One main reason is the analog sound has a warmth feeling (timbre) as to the digital sound has a flat, always the same signature. This term timbre has been explained to me by other audiophiles and I have to agree, the analog systems have this more natural sound.

However, depending on the condition of the vinyl record, one would prefer compact disk over vinyl. I can see this side of that argument. If a person’s record collection was not properly maintained, naturally the sound will suffer. Fortunately my vinyl collection is in excellent condition.

There’s a ritual involved when playing vinyl records, one has to wipe down the record with a static free cloth every time before and after each play. And of course handling the record by the edges is highly recommended in pro longing sound quality.

My record just ended and I have to go flip it over in order to hear the other side. I think the part of the digital argument concerning old vs. new is about convenience. Everything is so much easier these days.

On my next blog I will cover the topic of Stereo Receivers.

 

Metal Bands 4

Metal Bands 4

  

  • IRON MAIDEN
  • SCORPIONS
  • DEF LEPPARD
  • MOTORHEAD
  • ACCEPT

 

                   SCORPIONS

Scorpions_Lovedrive_alt

LOVEDRIVE 1979  

Scorpions are another great metal band that I also started listening to in high school. The first song that I heard from this band was entitled “Steam rock Fever”.  I was about 16 years old when I heard The Scorpions, which is also another metal band from the category of New Wave of British Heavy Metal.  An interesting fact about this band is that they were actually from Germany, not Britain. However they were considered New Wave Heavy Metal. One other band that was in this category (NWOBHM) was Accept, they too hailed from Germany.

 

 

Back in the days of MTV, when they actually played music videos, Scorpions hit song “Rock You like a Hurricane” quickly put the band on the road to fame. A string of hits soon followed and this particular song (Rock You like a Hurricane) according to VH1 is Number 18 out of 100 top hard rock songs of all time.

The band is still touring, the only two original members remaining are Rudolf Shenker (lead guitarist) and Klaus Meine (lead vocalist).

Since the band’s formation back in the early 1970’s the Scorpions have released numerous albums and played many concerts. Two years ago, the Scorpions announced they were retiring, but that hasn’t happened. I listen to the Scorpions music frequently, and I consider them my top five metal bands of all time.

 

 

Metal Bands 3

Metal Bands 3

  

  • IRON MAIDEN
  • SCORPIONS
  • DEF LEPPARD
  • MOTORHEAD
  • ACCEPT

 

DEF LEPPARD

High 'n' Dry

High ‘n’ Dry

Def Leppard is another great metal band that I started listening to in high school. The first song that I heard from this new band was entitled  “Hello America”. This song title was appropriate due to the fact the band had recently arrived in America. I was about 17 years old when I heard Def Leppard, which is also another metal band from the category of New Wave of British Heavy Metal.  An interesting fact about the first time I heard that first song “Hello America” was on my friend’s cassette car stereo system.

Def Leppard was formed in 1977 by Rick Savage (bass player) and Joe Elliott (lead vocalist). Another interesting fact regarding this band was their age range. When DL’s First album premiered (On through the Night) in 1980, the average age of the band members was only seventeen. Their second album release (High & Dry) was a major success and got the band instantly famous. Back in the early days of MTV, when they actually played music videos, Def Leopard’s song “Bringin’ on the Heartbreak” quickly rose to #38 on the billboard charts in 1981.

Def Leppard’s sound is considered melodic metal, a combination of pop and rock. In my view I think this type of new sound the band produced is why they had so many radio hits.

The band is still touring, but sadly they’ve lost two members over the years, Steve Clark (original lead guitarist) and Pete Willis (original bassist). I still listen to DL and one last interesting item to add, I still have that original cassette tape of Def Leppard, “On Through the Night”, and it still sounds great on my system.

 

Metal Bands 2

Metal Bands 2

  

  • IRON MAIDEN
  • SCORPIONS
  • DEF LEPPARD
  • MOTORHEAD
  • ACCEPT

 

IRON MAIDEN

Iron_Maiden_-_Iron_Maiden

 

Iron Maiden is another great metal band that I started listening to in high school. I remember the first song by Iron Maiden I heard on the radio, “Running Free”. I was about 17 years old when I heard this new type of Heavy Metal music. This new type of metal was called New Wave of British Heavy Metal.

This new addition to my music category was great, I got into it rather quick and I still listen to this heavy music. Some-one once told me way back in the days of my youth that the music you listen to when you’re fourteen or fifteen years old, is the music you’re probably going to keep hearing throughout your adult years. I believe that was an accurate statement, I still listen to this metal music quite often. It actually helps me get motivated in the early morning hours of the day.

Back to Iron Maiden, this band was formed in the East End of London back in 1975 by Steve Harris, the bassist. They’re considered the other Pioneers of New Wave Heavy Metal. Judas Priest, my other favorite band was the first. Iron Maiden has gone through numerous changes throughout the years. They’re currently touring and still recording albums. I rank this band number two out of my top five list.

 

Metal Bands 1

Metal Bands 1

  

 JUDAS PRIEST

220px-Judas_Priest_SforV

Screaming For Vengeance

This is another great band. I remember the first song by Judas Priest I heard on the radio, “Exciter”. I was about 14 years old when I heard this new, but heavy sounding type of music Heavy Metal.

This new sound was great; I got into it rather quick and I still listen to this heavy music. It helps me to get going, especially in the early morning hours. I use to be an overnighter, I mean; I worked the Overnight Shift at my past jobs for several years. It took me a while to adjust to this regular type of normal hours (9AM-5PM).

Back to this new music, Heavy Metal, just the name itself describes the feel and the sound quite well. When I first started listening to Metal, it was a brand new experience for me. My initial response was, man’ it’s loud!  And it sure was, it’s a matter of fact I remember an old saying that some-one told me way back, If it’s too loud, you’re too old. Well, that was an accurate description, and I still like it loud.

Judas Priest is a British band that formed in 1974 by Rob Halford, Lead Singer, and Glen Tipton, Lead Guitarist. They were considered The New Wave of British Heavy Metal.  This metal band has stood the test of time and they’re currently producing albums. Some of the original members left the band, but they still got it, in my view.

Soon after hearing this band and a few others, I became a Metal head, and thus my nickname Metal Mike was established. I still listen to Judas Priest on a regular basis, and it does help get my day off to an energetic start.

Favorite Bands 5

Favorite Bands 5

  

 DEEP PURPLE

TN_perfectstrangers DP84

 

This is another great band. I remember the first song by Deep Purple I heard on the radio, “Smoke on the Water”. I was about 10 years old when I heard this simple, but heavy set of chords that still sound good to this day. This song is also the first guitar riff that many beginners start on, including myself.

Everyone recognizes the riff: ‘Thun, da-da, thun, da-da -da, thunda-da-da, na, na’. And the rest is what is known as History. Deep Purple is also known as one of the Founding Fathers of Heavy Metal.

The other two were Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin. Deep Purple has gone through many line-up changes over the years, their main singer is Ian Gillan, and he was my favorite. He defined the band’s sound that was the most successful.

Deep Purple is still together and touring, but sadly last year the keyboardist, John Lord passed away. We lost a great musician that day, but as some-one once said to me “Rock On”. So that’s what we do. I still listen to Deep Purple, they are on my top ten list.