Today’s Free Download – Toni Ballard “From This Moment On”

pict-2.pngChicago’s gift to New England jazz, singer Toni Ballard has shared the stage with top-notch big bands (Nelson Riddle, White Heat Swing Orchestra), in addition to working behind the radio microphone and doing publicity for Berklee Music College.

With her permission, here’s a track from her last album featuring Larry Coryell on guitar.

From This Moment On – Toni Ballard (From “I’m Your Pal”)

Deals, Deals, Deals

picture-1.pngUMG has just about made nice with MySpace, according to news reports. This clears the way for MySpace Music, an enterprise offering music streams, MP3s and concert tickets. Propping up the gazillion unknown bands already giving away music on MySpace with a Led Zeppelin or Radiohead wouldn’t be a bad move. Here’s one anonymous comment:

“It’s really creating a robust monetization component to MYSPACE and having a focused music effort that could be the MTV of a new generation,” said a music industry executive who asked not to be identified before the deal is formally announced.

MTV of a new generation? Well, they’ve got the reality TV part of it down – without the television.  30 million lonelyheart scrapbooks – sort of makes “The Bachelor” seem like art, doesn’t it?

But until they fix the awful look and feel, I’m staying away. Thanks to all the DIY page-building tools made available to its denizens  (which is sort of like handing out SkilSaws to kindergarteners) there are more execrable sites per capita in MySpace land than anywhere else on the web.

Today’s Free Download – Ratdog: “Feel Like a Stranger”

picture-3.pngIt’s free and it’s the Dead – that’s worth some space on your hard drive, right?  Recorded last month on Ratdog’s current tour.  A little too much cheering, but a lot of impressive playing.  A long time ago, Branford Marsalis sat in with the Grateful Dead, and this is a bit reminiscent of that.

Ratdog – “Feel Like a Stranger”