One Hit Wonders #23: “Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl)” by Looking Glass (Epic Records 1972)

cracked rear viewer

You couldn’t go into any bar, pub, or tavern in my fishing port hometown of New Bedford, MA for literally decades without someone playing Looking Glass’s #1 hit from 1972, “Brandy (You’re A Fine Girl)” on the jukebox – usually more than once a night!:

(And yes, that’s future country legend Kenny Rogers doing the introduction!)

The song/story of a barmaid in love with a sailor she can never truly have, because as he says “my life, my lover, my lady, is the sea” resonated with us locals, as I’m sure it did in every “harbor town” where barmaids work “layin’ whiskey down” to hard working seafaring men (not to mention that fact that it made a helluva great slow-dancing tune as closing time neared – ah, those were the days, my friends!).

The band Looking Glass was from New Brunswick, New Jersey, and consisted of Elliot Lurie (lead singer…

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Song of the Day: I Am the Highway (by Audioslave)

Chris Cornell passed away on May 17, 2017 and the world is that much more empty with his passing.

He was 52 and joins the others Gods of Rock in the afterlife.

R.I.P. Chris Cornell.

I Am the Highway

Pearls and swine bereft of me
Long and weary my road has been
I was lost in the cities
Alone in the hills
No sorrow or pity for leaving I feel

I am not your rolling wheels
I am the highway
I am not your carpet ride
I am the sky

Friends and liars don’t wait for me
‘Cause I’ll get on all by myself
I put millions of miles
Under my heels
And still too close to you
I feel

I am not your rolling wheels
I am the highway
I am not your carpet ride
I am the sky
I am not your blowing wind
I am the lightning
I am not your autumn moon
I am the night, night

I am not your rolling wheels
I am the highway
I am not your carpet ride
I am the sky
I am not your blowing wind
I am the lightning
I am not your autumn moon
I am the night, night
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

Horror Song of the Day: Thriller (by Michael Jackson)


What better way to end another month of horror here at Through the Shattered Lens than with a showing a the greatest music video ever made (not even a contest or a question). No matter what one’s personal opinion of Michael Jackson as a person there’s no denying the genius talent the man had and this video just speaks to the horror fan even if one was not into his music.

It has a werewolf (though here it’s a werecat), 50’s horror trope of the girl in distress, zombies, John Landis directing, Vincent Price with one of the best spoken word performance in a music video…and did I say zombies courtesy of make-up FX guru Rick Baker.

A music video that was more a short film plus horror musical, Thriller would become a cultural phenomenon that spread across the globe. It didn’t matter whether one lived in the US or the furthest corner of Mongolia. Everyone saw and enjoyed this music video. Even it’s detractors could only nitpick flaws from the final product.

Oh yeah, it has ZOMBIES!

Hope everyone had a great, happy and safe Halloween!


It’s close to midnight, and something evil’s lurkin’ in the dark
Under the moonlight, you see a sight that almost stops your heart
You try to scream, but terror takes the sound before you make it
You start to freeze, as horror looks you right between the eyes
You’re paralyzed

‘Cause it’s a thriller, thriller night
And no one’s gonna save you from the beast about to strike
You know it’s thriller, thriller night
You’re fighting for your life inside a, killer, thriller tonight, yeah

You hear the door slam, and realize there’s nowhere left to run
You feel the cold hand, and wonder if you’ll ever see the sun
You close your eyes, and hope that this is just imagination
Girl, but all the while, you hear a creature creepin’ up behind
You’re outta time

‘Cause it’s a thriller, thriller night
There ain’t no second chance against the thing with the forty eyes, girl
(Thriller, thriller night)
You’re fighting for your life inside a killer, thriller tonight

Night creatures call and the dead start to walk in their masquerade
There’s no escaping the jaws of the alien this time
(They’re open wide)
This is the end of your life

They’re out to get you, there’s demons closing in on every side (boom!)
They will possess you, unless you change that number on your dial
Now is the time, for you and I to cuddle close together, yeah
All through the night, I’ll save you from the terror on the screen
I’ll make you see

That it’s a thriller, thriller night
‘Cause I can thrill you more than any ghoul would ever dare try
(Thriller, thriller night)
So let me hold you tight and share a killer, diller, chiller thriller here tonight

‘Cause it’s a thriller, thriller night
Girl, I can thrill you more than any ghoul would ever dare try
(Thriller, thriller night)
So let me hold you tight and share a (Killer, thriller)

I’m gonna thrill you tonight

(Vincent Price voiceover)

“Darkness falls across the land
The midnight hour is close at hand
Creatures crawl in search of blood
To terrorize your neighborhood
And whosoever shall be found
Without the soul for getting down
Must stand and face the hounds of hell
And rot inside a corpse’s shell”

I’m gonna thrill you tonight
(Thriller, thriller)
I’m gonna thrill you tonight
(Middle of the night, thriller)
I’m gonna thrill you tonight
Ooh, babe, I’m gonna thrill you tonight
Middle of the night, babe

(Vincent Price voiceover)

“The foulest stench is in the air
The funk of forty-thousand years
And grizzly ghouls from every tomb
Are closing in to seal your doom
And though you fight to stay alive
Your body starts to shiver
For no mere mortal can resist
The evil of the thriller”

Song of the Day: Mr. Crowley (by Ozzy Osbourne)


Why is it that those with creative talents that border on genius tend to die young and much too soon. This has become almost synonymous with the premature passing of some of the greatest musician of the last 50 years. Most seem to be from the rock and metal corner of the musical landscape. Some has been due to the very lifestyle led by these musicians. A lifestyle of libertine excess that catches up to their talent way too soon.

One such individual who went before his time yet made such an impact on the music scene that he’s considered one of the greatest metal guitarist of all-time (I say one of the best guitarist in or out of metal). His name was Randy Rhoads.

Only 25 when he passed away not due to a life of excess (he was actually quite responsible a rock star in his era where sex, booze and drugs were commonplace) but to a tragic accident that didn’t need to happen.

While some always point to his guitar work on the Ozzy Osbourne song “Crazy Train” from his solo debut album, I always thought one of his best guitar work was on another song from that debut album. The song I speak about is “Mr. Crowley”.

The song itself is one of those songs that drove parents crazy when they first heard their young teenage sons listening to it. I mean it’s a song about self-proclaimed Anti-Christ, libertine and sex magick user Aleister Crowley. Yet, it’s not Ozzy’s vocals that make the song memorable. It’s Rhoad’s lead guitar performance with special focus on the two guitar solos which rise up in the middle of the track and closes it out.

Mr. Crowley

Mister Crowley
What went down in your head?
Oh, Mister Crowley
Did you talk to the dead?

Your lifestyle to me seems so tragic
With the thrill of it all
You fooled all the faithful with magic
Yeah, you waited on Satan’s call

Mister Charming
Did you think you were pure?
Mister Alarming
In nocturnal rapport

Uncovering things that were sacred
Manifest on this earth
Oh, conceived in the eye of a secret
Yeah, they scattered the afterbirth

(guitar solo)

Mister Crowley
Won’t you ride my white horse?
Mister Crowley
It’s symbolic, of course

Approaching a time that is classic
I hear that maiden’s call
Approaching a time that is drastic
Standing with their backs to the wall

Was it polemically sent?
I wanna know what you meant
I wanna know
I wanna know what you meant, yeah!

(guitar solo/outro)

Great Guitar Solos Series

Song of the Day: Texas Flood (by Stevie Ray Vaughan)


It’s difficult to do any sort of greatest ever guitar solo list and not include this latest entry for our “Song of the Day” series.

Stevie Ray Vaughan was a musical talent who was taken too soon. Stardom was finally his after years and years of toiling as a sessions guitarist for other bands and singers. His guitar playing brought back memories of other greats of the past like Jimi Hendrix, Albert King and Muddy Waters. He was both a god in the two worlds of rock and blues.

“Texas Flood” will be SRV at his best and no matter how much others try to cover and replicate what he did with a Fender Stratocaster he will always and forever be king.

Texas Flood

Well theres floodin down in texas….all of the telephone lines are down
Well theres floodin down in texas….all of the telephone lines are down
And Ive been tryin to call my baby….lord and I cant get a single sound

Well dark clouds are rollin in….man Im standin out in the rain
Well dark clouds are rollin in….man Im standin out in the rain
Yeah flood water keep a rollin….man its about to drive poor me insane

Well Im leavin you baby….lord and Im goin back home to stay
Well Im leavin you baby….lord and Im goin back home to stay
Well back home I know floods and tornados….baby the sun shines every day

Great Guitar Solos Series

27 Days of Old School: #24 “Here and Now” (by Luther Vandross)


“One look in your eyes and there I see
Just what you mean to me”

Those opening lyrics are instantly recognizable to anyone who grew up during the late 80’s. Whether one was in junior high, high school, college or already settled down. It’s a song with not a single cynical bone in its making.

“Here and Now” was the song that introduced the velvet-voiced crooner Luther Vandross to the general public. He was already a favorite singer for those who followed the R&B and soul music scene, but for the rest of the world he was an unknown. After the release of “Here and Now” in 1989 he was not an unknown to the rest of the world.

It’s a song that’s become a staple at proms and formal dances. The song soon became at weddings and continues to this day.

27 Days of Old School: #20 “Whip Appeal” (by Babyface)


“‘Cause you’ve got that whip appeal
So work it on me”

It would be impossible not to include one of the most popular old school ballads from my era.

“Whip Appeal” was the third single off of singer-producer Babyface’s second R&B album, Tender Lover. The single released in early 1990 just in time for the song to put it’s melodic hooks into everyone who heard it for the first time. I can confirm that this was a staple of all high school dances and proms from 1990 and onwards. It was one of the go-to ballads that would get couples and potential ones to get on the dance floor and just sway to the song.

Ballads like this are truly old school. When I say they don’t make them like this anymore there’s some truth in that. The lyrics themselves are quite risque, but definitely more subtle than what R&B artists nowadays put into their own form of ballads. There’s a classic soulful sound to the music that harkens back to the Motown sounds of the 60’s that have been lacking in most R&B today.

A song that’s 25 years old and yet still planting it’s soulful hooks into old and new listeners alike.