WCJM Free Internet Radio Station: “The Best Guitar Riffs Show – 2000

Originally posted 2008-08-03 03:07:05. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By WCJM Free Internet Radio:

After the greatness of the Best Song EVER! Show, the WCJM free Internet radio cast wondered how they would top themselves.  If the criteria are music quality and professionalism, then the answer is The Best Guitar Riffs Show.  This show held 26 of the best the guitar riff songs ever made, and even had two songs written by the hosts themselves!  Guitar riffs, or repeating guitar patterns as you hear in the background, were combined with Chris Moore’s radio personality, Jim Fusco’s producing power, Mike Fusco’s color comedy, Alberto Distefano’s lasting sense of humor, and Dave Perrelli’s witty interludes to make this show take over the title of the best Moore Hits in the Morning show ever!

The grouped gathered on the day between Good Friday and Easter (April 22, 2000) to have a part Easter celebration, part guitar riff show.  The show began with Mike’s famous theme song, and a three-minute clip of the best guitar riffs of all time, as you hear in the background.  Then came a shout out to the Parker Farms elementary school homework club, in which each cast member read off a list of names.  After that, the show began with Jim Fusco passing the hosting reigns on to Chris Moore, allowing him to do the tedious job of producing the show.  Right off the bat, they went into a song which also was the first candidate for the best guitar riff of all time.  After that the show moved right into the traffic, News, weather, sports, and technology information reports.  After this, the show went on with six more songs, and then the ending of the first side.

The second and third sides followed the same format, with a twin spin; traffic, News, and weather; and then a block of songs.  The last side however, followed at different format.  The last few songs were played, then traffic, News, and weather followed.  Then came a dedication to Jim Fusco by playing “Birthday” by the Beatles for Jim’s 16th birthday on April 29.  After that, Dr. K’s “Where Have All the Midgets Gone” aired, as well as a special song written by Jim Fusco about a friend of his on vacation in Germany.  The song was to the tune of the Beatles’ song “Back in the USSR”, but was more properly titled, “Back in the Good Ole Deutschland”.  These songs gave the cast some time to calculate the average score of each guitar riff.  (Throughout to show, each host rated each guitar riff on a scale from one through five, and five being the highest)  After the totals were calculated, two songs ended up with a perfect five score.  These two songs were then voted on a scale from one through ten.  After the recount, one song beat the other by only .4 of a point!  To find out what song won, click on the links below to listen to the tape in Real Audio!  Then, after listening to the songs, vote for what you think the best guitar riff is by clicking the poll link below.

If I may quote Chris, “We don’t need any of us here, because we’ve got the music.”  This is very true when speaking of the Best Guitar Riffs Show because of the pure quality of the music that was showcased in it.  The lead-ins to each song sound well thought out, and there are very few times when there is more than one conversation going on.  I guess after doing seven prior shows, the cast has now moved into true professionalism.  Moore Hits in the Morning has now set the standard for its future comedy radio shows.

WCJM Free Internet Radio Station: “The Theme-less Show” – 2002

Originally posted 2008-08-03 03:16:56. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By WCJM Free Internet Radio:

The year 2002 started off for WCJM free Internet radio on January 5. This was the day of the “Theme-less” Show. The idea, or lack of one, came from Jim losing the sheet with the show ideas on it! Instead of spending hours thinking of another idea, Dave came up with show’s theme. The cast would play any songs they liked and would throw in any skits they had, with no particular order.

Jim invited the entire cast over, but Jeff had to go to a UCONN basketball game and couldn’t make it. Mike happened to have his friend, Steve Tarca, over and Jim asked Steve to take Jeff’s place. As part of the show, Steve did a great job and had a great time. The cast did a tribute to George Harrison and gave the guitar great a moment of silence.

The show clocked in at almost 150 minutes long! This is the length of a double-play MiniDisc with 23 seconds to spare! The show included all the bands usually showcased on WCJM but with some extras making their first appearance on the station. Matt did his famous comedy routine and a special Bob Dylan skit that left Dave, Chris, Jim, Mike, and Steve gasping for air! Jim did his usual Food Critic and World Report skits including a comedy routine by the Food Critic. Jim also collaborated with Mike to make the “Wong Number” skit that proved to be one the show’s funniest segments.

Dr. Keck came on the show to give another ten minutes of hilarious puns and quips about his height and the world above him! Stuffy D. Bear made his appearance at the end of the show, as usual, and completely brought the house down. He even got his brothers, Stuffo and Stuffu for Christmas this year! And, as always, the Traffic, News, and Weather gang gave their hardly reliable information to the world.

The cast had a great time performing this show and for once, there were no fights! Even though Alberto had to leave three-quarters into the show, the show came out very professional and one of the best to date. Hey, it’s worth it to listen to the comedy radio show just to hear Dave’s new, hilarious, laugh!

Music Review: Jim Fusco’s “Halfway There”

Originally posted 2009-04-13 23:55:34. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

RATING:  4.5 / 5 stars

By Chris Moore:

When Jim Fusco released What About Today? in May 2005, his official website claimed that “this album will prove to be Jim’s best work to date.”  I didn’t think about it much at the time, but that tag of “to date” is key, particularly now — four years later — as he releases a new album.

Now, his website asserts that Halfway There is “his most professional and mature album to date.”

There is certainly something very appropriate about the title of this new release.  Careful listeners will certainly appreciate the conceptual and thematic connections.  In most places on the record, Fusco seems upbeat and generally optimistic, and yet there is a clear feeling of being stuck in a transition phase.  “You go on for miles then you stop,” he sings in “On For Miles,” possibly referring to his fiancee (now only months away from their wedding).  On “Exception,” he sings, “Why can’t we be an exception to the rule?”

Fusco is even more blunt on “I Got You,” as he wails, “I’ll always have you here and shouldn’t that be enough?”

Halfway There is truly unmatched — as promised — in Fusco’s catalog in terms of not only sound quality and “professionalism,” but also lyrical content and overall effect.  This is an album that should draw listeners in and make them feel something.  From the opening track, this is apparent, as much from the snarl of the verse as from the fed-up indifference of the chorus.  The guitar solo is emotive and supported with a classic Jim Fusco — no, better — bass riff.

Go on: I dare you not to get it stuck in your head.

The Best Indie Album of 2009!

The Best Indie Album of 2009!

“Go Back to Him” sets the tone for an album that does what great albums are supposed to do, leading you from highs to lows as you wind your way through its eleven tracks. Perhaps due to his experience with the recording process (and life in general) or an array of new equipment and instruments, Fusco’s vocals are warmer, his guitar effects are more unique and authentic, and the overall sound quality is higher.  The volume level is impressive — sometimes to0 much so, as I’ve had to turn down a couple tracks during pronounced, high-pitched guitar parts.

Indeed, longtime Jim Fusco fans will find traces of sounds here and there that are reminiscent of past work, but this time around there is sense of evolution and a clear progression.  “Our Love Doesn’t Translate” should clearly be the single, as catchy and pretty as it is, weaving a tale of two lovers who don’t always understand each other or see eye to eye.  “A Night Away” is the distortion-drenched track for this album, showcasing just one of many energetic guitar solos and — although he sings “I’d rather be ashamed than proud and angry” — some considerable resentment.

The standout track of the album is “I Got You.”  It is placed perfectly on the album, just past the halfway point.  It begins as a quiet song, just an electric guitar, then a bass, and finally a lead vocal.  When the drums shake and roll into place about a minute in, the song picks up speed and continues its slow assault until just over a minute and a half in when Fusco belts out the first chorus.  The lyrics are my favorite on the album; indeed, this would be the first song I would discuss with him if I were to sit down for an interview.

The album closer, “Ruins,” makes a final and interesting statement on the overall theme of the album.  Using the metaphor of ancient historic ruins for a relationship, Fusco sings, “There was a time when everyone had admired you from afar… But nature has a way of tearing apart what we’ve built, and if it stands, it’s eroded away.”  He leads up to the conclusion in the chorus, “I guess that’s what you call progress.”  The song itself is a dark, haunting number, and you won’t find a better mix anywhere on the album.

As “Ruins” fades, you are left with a momentary silence before a quiet hum fills the speakers.  Almost a minute later, a guitar fades in to the pop powerhouse that is “Winning You Over.”  Not officially included on the album, all I can say is that this song fits firmly into the company of such songs as America’s “Here and Now” and the Wallflowers “Empire In My Mind” — all quality tracks that make you wonder, “Why not include this on the album proper?”

Fusco has said the song was recorded much later than the other songs and didn’t really fit into the album as a whole, which does make sense.

Halfway There is easily his best, most accessible and enjoyable album to date — it is clearly a prime time for Fusco to attract new listeners while impressing his current fanbase.

In his review of Jeff Copperthite’s 2008 album Greenlight, Fusco wrote, “As an independent artist, I’ve found that people don’t take our music seriously. They won’t listen to it in the car like every other album they own. They won’t recommend it to their friends and write online reviews. It just doesn’t happen very often.”  Halfway There is an infectious record.  I’ve already listened to it a half dozen times in the car alone, not counting just as many iPod listens, and I don’t see a time coming when I will want to take it out.  (Well, maybe when the Dylan album is released later this month… :-))

Oddly — perhaps sadly — this level of mastery comes at a time when Fusco, for the first time, has eschewed all the frills, including music videos, enhancedCD content, and even his own original design for the album cover.

Fusco at work in the Meriden, CT-based FMP Studios

Fusco at work in the Meriden, CT-based FMP Studios

This is yet another visible sign of advancement — he brought in talented and accomplished painter Ben Quesnel to design and create an original work that would be used for the cover.  If you watch Fusco’s Laptop Session for “Our Love Doesn’t Translate,” you can see the painting in all its glory.

The album isn’t perfect, though.  The fourth track, “Write it All,” is both a writing collaboration and a rare duet — his first since My Other Half.  Fair warning: that second voice is disconcerting and may lead listeners to frisbee-toss their discs out the windows of moving cars.  (Actually, that second voice is me!)  In all seriousness, “Write it All” is perhaps my favorite collaboration I’ve ever written and performed — and there have been many — with Jim, and I think fans of MoU will especially appreciate this track.

Another notable collaboration showcased for the first time on this album is with longtime friend Alberto Distefano.  “Go Back to Him,” “Our Love Doesn’t Translate,” and “Ruins” were written while on vacation in Italy, and the influence of a new environment with a rich history and unique language is apparent in the writing.  His previous album may have been “purely Jim Fusco from top to bottom,” but the injection of a second perspective seems to have sparked new and different ideas and perhaps even a new era for this already established, accomplished songwriter.

If you’ve made it this far in reading my review, there really isn’t much more that can be communicated in words.  The bass is bassier.  The guitars are crisper, more jangly.  The vocals are as ambitious as ever.  Truly, this is an album that deserves your attention —  it’s only the second great album of 2009, in league with Bruce Springsteen’s Working On A Dream.

Click HERE to listen to the album for free!

Trust me, you’ll be glad you tuned in.

“The Voice” (Moody Blues Cover)

Originally posted 2008-01-27 23:00:32. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

And now, pinch-hitting for an under-the-weather Jeff, is Jim Fusco!  I’m sitting in to bring you yet another great acoustic cover song music video here on the best music blog around: The Laptop Sessions!  Tonight, I bring you one of my favorite songs from the Moody Blues, “The Voice”, from their #1 album, “Long Distance Voyager”.

Actually, this tune is climbing up my all-time favorites list as it has all the criteria for a song I would love: a catchy tune, faster paced, that glorious late 70’s, early 80s sound that’s not too overdone, and a great guitar solo.  Of course, I’ve stripped all of that out in my version here, except for the tune and the tempo, but I think it gives a different take on the song as a whole.  And that’s what you should expect from all of my cover songs- a different take on my favorite songs of all time.  And, if you like the same songs I like, you’re sure to love my original music, as well!  Visit my website at http://jimfusco.com and take a listen!

I actually recorded a full version of this song a few weeks ago, complete with synthesizers! I think it sounds just like the original and was a lot of fun to try recreating the sounds.  There’s something about that synthesizer sound that the Moody Blues used.  They hired Yes keyboardist Pat Moraz and updated their sound for the late 70s.  Of course, they didn’t have Mike Pinder’s mellotron anymore, so they had to have something to replace it.  I know the songs probably sound very “80s” to everyone now (“The Voice” is very heavily based on synthesizers), but to me, the music has worn pretty well.  There are some 80s songs that I can’t even listen to.  The synthesizers sound so fake and dated.  But, the music of the Moody Blues during the Pat Moraz years doesn’t sound embarrassing like those other songs from the same time period (like the synths the Beach Boys used on “Love You”).

But, again, my acoustic cover song versions take away the synthesizers (and everything else, for that matter) and give you the song in its raw form.  I want people to know what the song really sounds like.  It’s interesting, though- you’ll actually hear all of the other parts in your head as you listen to my cover video.

By the way- if you haven’t heard “Long Distance Voyager” yet, please get a copy!  It’s an amazing album and features some of my favorite songs of all time in “The Voice” and “Gemini Dream”.  Plus, there are great contributions from drummer Graeme Edge (“22,000 Days”) and Ray Thomas (“Veteran Cosmic Rocker”).

Okay, look for a new cover song music video from Jeff tomorrow and again on “Original Wednesday”, as no matter the circumstance- you’re getting a Session a Day in ’08!