10 Songs Where Bands Compromised Their Integrity and Wasted Their Talent

Jumping the shark. Everyone knows the phrase. Some, not all, know that it derives from a 1977 episode of “Happy Days” in which Fonzie, on water-skis, jumps over a shark.

Jumping the shark is typically applied to TV shows…


Ah, the mighty Zeppelin. Bringers of legendary 70s rock. They are still all over classic rock radio today, deservedly so. For true believers, they created music of mythic stature, with legendary power.

They are written about, celebrated, imitated, and have become a symbol of a vanished musical era where bands…


10 Favorites from his short career

Gram Parsons’ recording career lasted about 7 years, punctuated with starts and stops. Alcoholism, drug abuse, contractual conflict, arguments with band members, and a certain lack of motivation (perhaps because he had a trust fund) all undermined the quality and productivity of his recording…


Cosmic American Music

Grievous Angel album cover

When Gram Parsons was helping to invent Country-Rock in the late 1960s, it must have seemed that he had it all. …


Five Rock artists who still aren’t in the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame, but should be

As a late period baby boomer (born 1963), I was too young to properly experience Beatlemania and the burst of creative music which followed it. …


Using Continuous Improvement Tools Effectively

Continuous Improvement has become a central concept in manufacturing processes over the last three decades. Large industrial producers may be staffed with a Continuous Improvement department. Virtually all industrial producers of any size would describe CI as a key operational initiative, even if they are…


An Engineer Ranks the Top 10 Songs by the Beatles

1. In My Life (from Rubber Soul)

A simple guitar figure opens this wistful Lennon composition. To a slow, rolling melody, Lennon evokes a sentimental tribute to past friends, and to his current love. Ringo’s drumming is sublime. While basic…


When you invite worms to live in your basement

We are all at least somewhat familiar with the concept of the compost pile. It’s that pile of decaying plant material hidden back behind your neighbor’s garage. We also know that nature can make compost with no direct human intervention. …


Yes, cats have their own personalities, just like us

Cat lovers who have served (or owned) more than one cat in their lifetime invariably comment on the fact that every cat they’ve lived with is different. Personalities, energy levels and schedules can vary substantially from cat to cat.

These differences are obvious to see when a household has more…


How Much Music Theory Should I Know?

I am an amateur rock’n’roll/blues musician. My skill level is best described as mediocre. I am an acceptable rhythm guitarist. I play bass well enough to provide the bottom for a bar band, if one comes calling. My keyboard skills include basic chording…

Peter Carlson

Engineer, amateur musician, amateur gardener, amateur cook

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