Had dinner last night at Pizza Moda, and had a great conversation with owner Jeff Davis, who has been around the music business for many years. Jeff is a wonderful raconteur with plenty of stories about the biz, and this time the talk made its way to Jaan Uhelszki, the legendary rock critic who goes back to the days of Creem. Jeff and Jaan are friends, and Jaan is married to Matthew King Kaufman, who started Beserkley Records. This took me back to the label’s early anthology, Beserkley Chartbusters Vol. 1. Here we go. (Whenever possible, I’ve chosen the version that appeared on this particular album.)
- Earth Quake, “Friday on My Mind.” Cover of the Easybeats’ song. We saw Earth Quake open for Lou Reed in 1974.
- Greg Kihn, “All the Right Reasons.” By the time Kaufman shut the label down, Kihn was the only artist still on the roster. He is probably the second-most famous person to record for them.
- The Rubinoos, “Gorilla.” They once filed a plagiarism lawsuit against Avril Lavigne. It was settled out of court.
- Jonathan Richman, “The New Teller.” More famous than Greg Kihn.
- Jonathan Richman, “Roadrunner.” Most famous song on the album.
- Earth Quake, “Tall Order for a Short Guy.” Cover of the Jonathan King song.
- Earth Quake, “Mr. Security.” They wrote this one themselves.
- Jonathan Richman, “Government Center.” We gotta lotta lotta hard work today.
- Jonathan Richman, “It Will Stand.” He did cover versions, too.
- Greg Kihn, “Mood Mood Number.” Turned up as the B-side to his cover of Bruce’s “For You.” Never turned up on YouTube, far as I can tell.
- Earth Quake, “(Sitting in the Middle of) Madness.” One last original.