This time, I got some Stadium Club and some Allen & Ginter.
You know me well, though, if you think I need music to go with it. I mean, I even snuck in a marching band video in the Ray Nitschke post to get music in there. And the fun thing? After that last post where I took Ray Peters's suggestions for music, he sent me a few more names of bands. The first one I listened to blew me away -- so I felt like I wanted to share a few songs from Sean Bonniwell and his band, The Music Machine.
This song is listed as being a previously unreleased demo by the person who posted it on YouTube. It was released as part of the 1999 compilation album called Turn On: The Best of the Music Machine, which included the original Turn On album and a bonus disc of unissued material, including two vintage TV performances.
I'll admit that I had never listed to The Music Machine before Ray mentioned them in his recent email. My first thought was, "Holy crap, this is where punk music came from." Then, I read the Wikipedia article on them, and they are referred to as being "proto-punk" and "one of the groundbreaking acts of the 1960s."
The group started off in the folk music scene in California, starting with Bonniwell's background as a folk singer. Then, Bonniwell, along with Keith Olsen and Ron Edgar, formed a folk trio called the Wayfarers. That sound petered out, so they became the Raggamuffins, playing with a more unorthodox style. Then, in early 1966, they decided to expand the group to a quintet and added Mark Landon and Doug Rhodes to become the Music Machine.
Sufferin' succotash -- it's Ryan Braun in Stadium Club! It's three variations of the card -- the base, the black foil, and the gold foil. Most everyone in the hobby knows that Susan Lulgjuraj a/k/a Sooz a/k/a Yanxchick is one of the minds and sets of eyes behind the Stadium Club set in terms of photo selection. I have to thank her for the fact that she chose a Ryan Braun card that doesn't have bulging eyes. That's two years in a row that Sooz picked a Braun photo that was actually fairly complimentary.
So, thanks, Sooz!
"No Girl Gonna Cry"
"No Girl Gonna Cry" is another of those B-sides that did not get released during The Music Machine's heyday but, instead, was simply a great song. There's a brief intro from Halliwell on this song that says he hopes the listener finds it "interesting." I definitely do. This song would fit in well on a Ramones album right after "I Wanna Be Sedated."
Interestingly, those who knew Bonniwell found him to be an extremely engaging person. As this blogpost from 2012 recounts, the writer first heard "No Girl Gonna Cry" when he let a German traveler crash on his living room floor. The German had found Bonniwell in California. Bonniwell gave the traveler a tape of unreleased songs, demos, and alternative versions of Music Machine songs, and it included this song.
The rest of my purchases from Brent are from Allen & Ginter. A&G was one in a long line of recent Topps releases which essentially told Brewers fans, "give us your money so you can get dozens of Yankees and screw you, you midwestern asses." Okay, perhaps the last part is a bit excessive.
When I got back into collecting in 2014, I really liked A&G and Archives. I liked the mix of people in A&G, along with a decent number of Brewers being included in the set. This year pretty much killed my appreciation of both of those sets. Oh well. I'll just pick up team sets of these uninspiring cards (and the bottom card, which is one of those foil background cards) and ignore the packs in the stores...despite really wanting to have a reason to buy the packs in the stores.
"Talk Talk" was The Music Machine's big hit, charting as high as number 15 on the Billboard charts. Clocking in at just under 2 minutes (1:56), it is considered a garage rock classic.
Sean Bonniwell passed away in Visalia, California, on December 20, 2011 from lung cancer at the age of 71. He remained active musically his entire life despite being so displeased with how little his label supported his solo album in 1969 that he left the music industry completely. He went on a spiritual quest, travelling around the country in a VW bus in what he called his "transcendentalized western guru period."
It's funny -- all you have to do is listen to their music to hear how much influence their sound had on later bands. Yet, it's rare to hear them referred to these days.
But, at least Marky Ramone admits that "Talk Talk" is one of his 5 favorite punk songs (along with the Kinks, The Trashmen, Love, and Richard Hell and the Voidoids).
Yes, this is a complete Allen & Ginter X team set.
I'm hopeful that the Brewers might get a bit more respect from Topps next year. After all, no one thought they would stick close with the Cubs this year. Heck, the Brewers may yet make the playoffs. If that happened, would Milwaukee get more cards in next year's A&G set?
Probably. I'd bet they'd get at least 4 cards. At least.