Thursday, August 30, 2012

Trucker Ghost Stories: And other True Tales of Haunted Highways, Weird Encounters, and Legends of the Road edited by Annie Wilder

When I first saw this book in my local book store I almost shit my pants. A book on two of my favourite things; Trucking and Ghosts. So, I bought the book hoping that it would not turn out to be one of those ghost books that tend to just make me mad because they are so much bullshit.

The first thing that sticks out on this book is look real close at the headlights on this Kenworth. See what I'm talking about? That's cool.

I have to say this is a great book. There are a couple of stores that I really thought didn't fit the book format at all,"Ghost Dogs of Waverly Hills Sanatorium," which really had nothing to do with ghost on the road and "Lovers' Lane Legend," which is a crappy old story used to just scare kids and why it was published in this book astounds me.

There really are too many stories for me to say this is my favourite, but I think that Annie Wilder did a great job putting this book together and I hope that if there is a Volume 2, it will be just as good.

If you like short ghost stories about trucking, for the most part do yourself a favour and pick this book up.

This was published by Tor in 2012 and is still available.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Eddie Spaghetti - Sundowner LP (review Only)

Okay, I have to admit that I'm a big fan of the Supersuckers and Eddie Spaghetti so this review might be a little biased.

First my complaints. According to the sticker that I have on my copy there is supposed to be a code to download the album + bonus tracks well, my copy didn't come with that so that pisses me off a bit, also there is a little skip in the first track. Now, I really love the label that this album is on Bloodshot out of Chicago, IL is right up there with Diesel Only of Brooklyn, NY as the best Alt Country labels on the planet, so I am a little disappointed in the label. I still support Bloodshot 110%.

Now on to the music. 12 songs on this LP and I have to say that they are all classic Eddie Spaghetti styling which for me is true heaven. I love the cover of "Girl on the Billboard," who I think was originally done by Del Reeves. Eddie totally makes this song his own, without making is sound like crap. I believe "Everybody's Girl" was done by Rick Springfield, but I could be wrong. We also get a countrified version of "Marie," which is a great song supposedly about the death of Eric Martin who was the original lead singer for the Supersuckers.

So, support Bloodshot Records and support Eddie Spaghetti.


Brian Guy

The Man Behind the Wheel LP - va

This is a pretty good truck driving album, again like the previous record posted there are a few trucking standards on this platter of wax,"Six Days on the Road," "Phantom 309," and "The Gearjammer and the Hobo."

"Phantom 309 is not called that on this record it's "Big Joe....Phantom 309" I've never seen it listed as that before not sure if that was just something Starday did or what.

The best song on this record is "What is an American," my the late Minnie Pearl. this song is as true today as it was when it was written. You'll have to download it and listen to it to get the drift of it. "The Hi Jacker" by Johnny Bond is another great song. George Morgan has a couple of songs as do The Willis Brothers. I honestly don't think you can have a trucking record from the 60's with out a song by the Willis Brothers from Oklahoma. and of course Dave Dudley and Red Sovine have a couple of songs on this to. I have to admit just like I did in the last post I am not a big fan of Tommy Hill, but I have to make an exception to that rule on this release. The song that Tommy Hill does with Pete Drake, who was an excellent musician, makes this worth wile.

This was released in 1967 on Starday of Madison, TN

Brian Guy

Blog Update

I will be posting my Truck Driving music and Alt. Country and old Country here on this blog instead of on Down Underground. I just feel that this blog is a little bit more oriented in this musical direction.


Brian Guy

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Wendy O. Williams - Bump 'n' Grind DVD

This is 100% a bootleg DVD, how can I tell? Well when I looked at the DVD it's self it was totally off the shelf with no labeling or anything, so that's a good indication that this was a bootleg.

Well, the video its self is a good copy of a live show in London, UK from 1985. Lemmy makes a brief appearance for one song, "No Class," which is pretty cool considering that they recorded at least one single that I know of together so that was neat.

As for the performance you get a typical W.O.W. performance. There's a chainsaw and smashing of a TV with a sledgehammer and of course she isn't wearing much at all.

If you can find a copy of this and are a fan of W.O.W. or even the Plasmatics this is a pretty cool DVD.

I always enjoyed Wendy O. Williams if it was in a movie or with The Plasmatics or her own band. Her suicide in April 1998 was a shocker, I never thought she'd go out that way.

By the way Bernando (the person who was kind enough to talk me into doing contributing to the DU blog and starting my own) has a review of the movie, "Reform School Girls," staring Wendy O. Williams, here:

This was originally released by Rocket Media.


Brian Guy

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Classic Punk Volume 1 - v/a DVD

This is a bootleg of live performances, attempts at music videos and some short interviews of some US punk bands from mostly the 80's.

Angry Samoans start the DVD off and since I've always been a big fan I really enjoyed this. I think most of this video was from the old cable access show "New Wave Theatre." Eight Songs in total.

Wierdos have one song on this "Helium Bar."

Circle Jerks, "Wild in the Streets," more "New Wave Theatre" footage. Pretty funny because Keith Morris starts to do another song and the host wants to do an interview, and Morris just keeps on singing and the band keeps on playing for about 30 seconds or so.

The Plugz have one song, "In the Wait."

New York punkers Kraut play four songs. I have to admit I never really was into this band too much, but I think I may have to go and listen to some more of their stuff as they are really pretty good. I forgot how good the song,"Kill for Cash," is.

San Francisco via Seattle we have the Screamers doing one song "Eva Braun," which just seems to go on forever and ever. It's not bad but it just is way to long for my taste. Yeah, I know it's the Screamers and that's how they played.

San Francisco's Crime have one song, "Piss on your Dog," which is from a Target Video from 1984.

Dead Boys from Cleveland, OH originally have four songs.

The Cramps have seven songs and an interview on this DVD. I have to say It is probably the most interesting  part of the DVDs. Lux really was pretty funny when he wanted to be. Some of the Cramps footage really looks like it came from the late 80's maybe even early 90's, but I'm really not sure.

X have a music video of "Because I Do." Which is pretty interesting in black and white.

Gears do "Elk's Lodge Hall."

45 Grave have four songs including two versions of "Wax." I forgot how much I liked 45 Grave. Diana Cancer really is pretty. I wonder if she's the reason why I have a thing for Goth girls. This is another band that I really need to listen to more of because they really do rock out.

UXA have one song "Paranoia is Freedom," which is really good.

We finish up with Fear doing seven songs. It looks like this was cleaned up video DVR'd off of Comedy Central. I always enjoyed Fear as the fan baiting was pretty fucking hilarious if you ask me.

For a bootleg that most of the footage is almost 30 years old this isn't bad. There where parts that you could tell that the VHS tape that it was ripped from was pretty worn-out and makes it hard to watch and hear for a couple of seconds here and there but still, it's worth it to me to just remember what these bands used to look like and how they sound.

Yeah, I know I am old.

Good luck finding this.


Brian Guy

Anthrax (NY) - Black Lodge 7"

I was really stoked when I found this little seven inch record earlier this year and was kind of ticked off when I thought I had lost it, but now that I found it and actually listened to it, I kind of wish it had stayed lost.

This has John Bush of vocals, he was with the band Armoured Saint before joining Anthrax. Now, I have to admit I was never impressed with him as a singer. Armoured Saint had one song "Can You Deliver," which was a great song, but that's about the only song they did that I liked.

When I bought this I thought this had Joey Belladonna on vocals so I was kind of disappointed to start with but the that was just the start of my disappointment, as the songs are just boring as all hell and go on way to long. So, I am not going to throw all of this musical abortion on John Bush. The band just seems to be going thru the motions on this release, which is a damn shame because I really enjoyed a lot of their earlier releases.

Oh well that's the way it goes.


Brian Guy

The Trucking Pioneers Book III- V by M.K. Terebecki

 Unfortunately I do not have the complete set of this series, which is too bad, as I find this kind of thing very interesting and M.K. Terebecki does a wonderful job of tracking down information on Pioneers of Trucking.

I can not find any issues with any of the three books that I have. They are all very well in detailing the history of trucking companies in the United States.

Each entry has a history of each company plus what kind of tractors and in some cases trailers they ran/run. Which is pretty interesting you can really see how things have changed. By reading this book you also can see how de-regulation of the industry really destroyed a lot of old time freight haulers which is kind of depressing, but that's progress right?

Some of the companies in these books I have never heard of before because of where I live or the fact they where long out of business before I new what semi-trucks and trucking companies were. New Penn Motor Express Inc., of Lebanon, PA, (Book III) Olson Transportation Company of Green Bay, WI (Book IV) to name a few.

The strangest thing was in book the entry for Werner Transportation Company of Minneapolis, MN.(Book V) I mistakenly thought this was Werner Trucking of Omaha, NE. Well, they are not related, but their flags look a little a like.

The thing that I found kind of depressing is how many of the names I recognized that no longer exist. Delta Lines of Emeryville, CA. (Book IV),
Transcon Lines, Inc. of Los Angeles, CA (Book III) Both of these companies delivered a lot of freight into to where my dad worked.

It was also fun reading about the history of Roadway Express of Akron, OH (which I believe has merged with Yellow) (Book V), Old Dominion Fright Lines of High Point, NC, Saia  Motor Freight Lines Inc., of Houma, LA (Both Book IV).  Since these books where written from 1993 to 1995 some of the information is somewhat out of date but this is still a great set of books with a lot of history in them and a lot of pictures with colour pictures in the middle of each book.

Book IV also has a small section on Russian Transportation which was okay, but didn't really talk about any companies but more or less bad roadways and bad equipment. It just seemed really out of place.

Over all I would recommend this series of books to anyone who has an interest in the history of the trucking companies that kept the country                                          rolling before and after deregulation.

All of these books where published by Pioneer Press of Mariettta, GA. I think that these books are still in print put kind of heard to find. I'd recommend checking out American Truck Historical Society of Birmingham, AL. They have a web site                                                      


Brian Guy

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A Tribute to Trucking (Western Edition) by Jack Thiessen

An interesting book on trucking. I really don't know what the difference is between the western edition and any other edition. My guess is that the forward might be different.

I enjoyed the pictures more than I enjoyed the text of this book. I just couldn't get into the whole history of trucking aspect, it just kind of bored me, which is kind of strange because I like to read the history of trucking.

The pictures are outstanding and make the book worthwhile. I'm still glad that I only paid $10 instead of the $34.95 that it originally retailed for.


Brian Guy

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

924 Gilman compiled by Brian Edge

I was so thrilled when I picked up this book when it first came out. I have/had heard so much about 924 Gilman St, in Maximum Rock n Roll and from other punks that it was an "how can this go wrong?" type of moment. Well, I was wrong.

The book it's self I bet is excellent.  Well, what I read I really liked, however I only got to page 109, because every-time I turned a page the page would fall out. I don't know who the hell was in charge of the binding of this book but they did a half-ass job to say the least.

There is nothing fun about trying to read a book that the pages fall out randomly or in this case every-time you turn a page. I know this was a MRR thing and all but, damn it this is totally unacceptable and made what should have been a really fun read pure hell. I know MRR is volunteer and everything but have they not heard of quality control?

I know I am not the only person that has had this issue with the book. It would be great if they republish it correctly the next time so I'm not having to try and make sure that I'm not going to lose a page here and there.

Wondering what everyone else out there who has read or attempted to read this book thinks.


Brian Guy

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Among the Thugs by Bill Buford

First of all I have to say I am no expert on soccer (football for you who life out side of the US). Having listened to Punk Rock for most of my adult life I have heard a lot about football hooligans in the UK. So, when I saw this book I just had to pick it up for a read.

I really loved this book, I think it is well written has some pretty hilarious stories and some tragic ones to.

One of the funniest parts of the book in my opinion was the chapter when he spoke to Police Superintendent R. McAllister of the Wearside Police Station in Sunderlund. McAllister seemed really confused by the fact that we don't have the same hooliganism in American football. For some reason I found that pretty damn funny.

The book also touches on the National Front using football as a recruiting tool, which was pretty interesting.

It seems to me that the true hooligans have little interest in the sport of football it is more about the spectacle of football and the mob mentality.

If you have a chance to read this book please do, if you have read it I'd love to hear what you thought of it.


Brian Guy

"Big Rig: Comic Tales from a Long Haul Trucker" by Don McTavish

If you follow the other blog that I contribute to Down Underground you probably know that I have a love for big rigs and trucking in general. Well, that love continues on to some of the books I read.

Don McTavish's "Big Rig: Comic Tales from a Long Haul Trucker." is a wonderful well written book about McTavish's career as a truck driver from his first job hanging out in a truck yard until they hired him to stories of being on the road.

I think the thing that really made me like this book the most is the humor that he rights with, which keeps the book from becoming boring.

I really enjoyed reading about trucking in Canada. From his days in Calgary, AB to Vancouver, BC.

The book was printed in 2001 Lone Pine Publishing, Edmonton, AB.

Welcome to my blog....

I am currently still getting this site together and up and functioning. This will be basically what it says it is book reviews and music reviews. I may have a podcast up sometime in the future. We will see how this goes.


Brian Guy