Summer Song: It’s Summer by the Temptations

I REALLY loved the Temptations, and even more so after they stopped being primarily the background singers for David Ruffin, who left the group in 1968. They became more a five lead-vocal group, under the production leadership of Norman Whitfield, who, with Barrett Strong, wrote most of their songs in this period.

While primarily doing psychedelic soul at this point, the Temps recorded, on the 1970 album Psychedelic Shack the ballad It’s Summer [LISTEN!]. I’m not a big fan of songs that involve a lot of talking rather than singing. But Continue reading

Ask Me?

Interesting unsolicited e-mail of the month. I’ve obviously fictionalized a couple things, but not the name of the available website: “Hello, my name is AAA with BBB. will be listed for sale in the next couple of days.
You are one of 19 companies/individuals who are either bidding on, have organically integrated or operate domain names related to the keyword set “ask roger”.
You can lower or eliminate any current/future advertisement expenses by becoming number one in search engines for this keyword set.
Purchasing can help you become the market leader. If you are interested please visit: Continue reading


The Wife and I left the Adirondacks on Saturday, picked up the mail that was being held. And since the Daughter was still in the mountains with her cousins (and their parents and grandparents), we took the opportunity to go to the Spectrum Theatre to see the movie Buck, which we had seen in previews.

Buck Brannaman travels the country for 40 exhausting months a year, usually without his family, “helping horses with people problems.” As Buck put it, “Your horse is a mirror to your soul, and sometimes you may not like what you see. Sometimes, you will.”

For much of the movie, one might mistake it for a laconic documentary travelogue. Continue reading

How Can You Miss Me If I Don’t Leave?

I was away the past couple weeks. The family essentially circumnavigated Lake Ontario. We were in Niagara Falls for 2 days, 4 days in Toronto, 2 days in Peterborough, ON for the Olin family reunion, 2 days in Canton, NY (near my wife’s alma mater, St. Lawerence University), then 4 days in the Adirondack Mountains of NYS. I was gone from Saturday, July 30 through Saturday, August 13.

Yet I posted every day, though the magic of the thingamabob that allows me to post ahead. If you did miss me, it was that it took me longer to read and comment on your posts, to approve your comments to my posts, and the like.
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E is for Ecology

Seriously, I have no energy to ‘debate’ the fact that global warming is occurring, and people are causing it. “The glaciers are melting and are a contributor to sea-level rise,” and “many communities won’t be able to adapt to rapid climate change.” The radical flooding in some parts of the planet and droughts in others are just a couple reflections of the phenomenon.

The deniers, dangerously to my mind, downplay and distort the evidence of climate change, demand policies that allow industries to continue polluting, and attempt to undercut existing pollution standards.
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Summer Song: Summer in the City

When I joined the Capitol Record Club in 1965, book and record clubs had this thing called the negative option. That is, you would get the selected book or record UNLESS you sent in the response card in time. I was really bad at negative option; I almost NEVER got the card in on time.

Which is how I ended up receiving the album Daydream by the Lovin’ Spoonful on Kama Sutra Records; loved that yellow label. Turns out, I was very fond of the early Spoonful. And when the subsequent single Summer in the City came out in 1966 Continue reading

David Crosby is 70…

…and somehow, I think the person most surprised by that fact may be David Crosby.

When he got kicked out of the Byrds in the late 1960s, he joined up with Stephen Stills, formerly of Buffalo Springfield, and Graham Nash, who had left the Hollies, to form what was generally considered to be the first “supergroup.” If I could remember the name of the group, I’d tell you. At least one of their first two albums, the latter with Neil Young, also formerly of Springfield, was in every dorm room at college. I saw CSN st some point in the 1980s at Albany’s Palace Theater.

Crosby was known for his left-leaning politics, and his excessive use of drugs and alcohol, which resulted in numerous arrests, multiple rehabs and a liver transplant.

My sister Leslie gave me this album about a decade ago Continue reading

Rear View Mirror QUESTIONS

Film critic Roger Ebert wrote an essay called Clinging to the rear view mirror. He quotes Marshall McLuhan:

Most people…still cling to what I call the rearview-mirror view of their world. By this I mean to say that because of the invisibility of any environment during the period of its innovation, man is only consciously aware of the environment that has preceded it; in other words, an environment becomes fully visible only when it has been superseded by a new environment; thus we are always one step behind in our view of the world.

Ebert notes, among other things: Continue reading

Let’s talk about me

Of course, everything in this blog, one way or another, is about me.

But I admit to be utterly fascinated by tests that supposedly explain me. For instance, at my last work conference, the speaker gave us a test to see what our individual communication styles are. The choices were:

Driver (dominant, bottom line, panther)
Expressive (influencing, needs interaction, peacock)
Amiable (steady, wants nice & fair, dolphin)
Analytical (careful, detailed, owl)

So what two characteristics do you think are most like me?
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