Author Archives: Jon Sidel

TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

We found a new kind of dance in a magazine / Tried it out, it’s like nothing you ever seen / You sweet talk like a cop and you know it / You bought a new bag of pot, said, “let’s make a new start” / And that’s the way to my heart / The way to my heart / That’s the way we get by / The way we get by

Not sure what to lead off the new year /new decade with. “Howdy y’all,” or “What the fuck am I gonna do?” So of course I’ve taken the question to the godz of rock ‘n’ roll and song and came up with an Idelic muse. Oh yeah, it’s this week’s Idelic Hour playlist muse: “Anything I can get, I’ll fucking take it!”

Over this past month of “holiday hibernation” two things came to mind while listening to music. First one, of course, my obsession with new bands, artists and songs. What sound will be next and who and where are the next rock stars?

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The Best of The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

And if you turn up the dream to cure yourself free from searching for a new afterlife / The purpose of life, you know there’s still time to tune into the right side / Well I assumed that we were lovers yesterday / The turning tide that that love us to pray / You know what I would do if I were you

As The Idelic Hour says hello to 2019, I’m blasting into the year like a rocket to Russia. ’18 is gone and I haven’t met a soul who’s missed those recent days.—although it’s fairly pathetic how much Mr. Donald is trying ruin everyone’s new year.

Fuck it, fuck him, and anyone with a sour word or note. If it’s cold, let’s turn the heat up, swing and shake it up until the punch is sweet.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

What can I say on this Friday the 13th?

It’s the final Idelic Hour of the decade and my birthday! I’m so old—my number looks too weird to write. Another bookmark in my rock ‘n’ roll journey. It’s been weird and truly wonderful. Let’s carry on into this second decade of the this new millennium. What a trip it will be.

Thank god for all the musicians and songs that made “the teens” sometimes cool and sometimes bearable. Also thank to all who have checked in and listened. And of course Jon Meyers, props my friend rockkkk!

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Goin’ back to the time when I didn’t need a thing / Just the tappin’ of my foot and a little song to sing / That’ll do just fine / Yeah that’ll do just fine / And maybe? / Tell me where I go, tell me where I come / Take me anytime you like hon’ / Take me as I am or as who I might become / Never ever ever goin’ back / Never ever ever goin’ back…

In a meeting this week, my music biz boss mentioned that “December is a weird month.” Tyler was referring to how the holidays effect the ebb and flow of the our business in the lead up to them.

In truth, everything I’m doing has been effected by the practical and emotional understanding that the year—and in fact the decade—is coming to a close. I often wake up feeling like a marathon runner coming to the end of a tough race. I seem to wage an internal struggle between hope and remorse. As 2019 draws the decade to a close, hope is winning—thanks to music. Its sounds literally inject my DNA with love and compassion.

These last few weeks I’ve been listening intensely to all the of the songs that have helped me make it through 2019. In fact, many of them are songs from the last ten years. And, in my 50s, I often ask my myself questions.

Where has it all gone?

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I’m on, I’ve never burned brighter / How’s the wine where you live? / Bet it’s expensive / One day we’ll share a glass together and ride the dunes / I’m writing too / There’s a definite vibe / You can’t be pure and in love / In the corner in blue / Is my name (In the corner)

It’s a very cool morning in the canyon. Not to sound like a “Californian,” but now that Mercury has gone out of retrograde, it feels like the angels will allow winter to proceed. And my my, this week we had a lot of electronic devices go haywire around here.

All said, we head into turkey week. Let’s celebrate and be grateful with some of the best news of 2019: Part 2 of my annual countdown of favorite “Idelic Hits”—the songs and/or artistry that made life just… way better dude!

I won’t write too much about 2019 this morning, but I will tip my cap to the Idelic Artist of 2019.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

(In good faith) Rocks are buried beneath tons of earth / To become diamond / (In good faith) With the gift of the sunlight / The kudzu vine goes climbing / (In good faith) Instruments play songs / Brought forth from the minds of their makers / (In good faith) These vibrations resound / Bringing union and joy to all takers

(In good faith) We open our eyes / To a parade of first morning’s breaking / (In good faith) We pray what we see and we hear / Might be ours for the taking / (In good faith) We rise every day / And we will ’till our golden star bursts / (In good faith) We open our hearts / And say, “Lord, do your best, do your worst”

Shortly after last week’s Idelic Hour posted, I started thinking about my year-end list. After all, this is the end of the second decade of the second millennium! Not only do we need a year-end list for this end of the decade, but we need an end of the decade list. Wow!

I guess I have a little time to gather my thoughts about 2019. This last decade…wow…IT’S A LOT TO CHEW ON! I better start now.

First thought: So much has changed since the dawn of this decade when I started posting and doing this online radio show. I guess the greatest gift of the whole experience has been to share music. Sometimes I do give a fuck who is paying attention, and THANK YOU because so many of you have. The act of sharing music is part of who I am, and this is the week I’m on my annual journey, flipping through my music files (the record crates in my mind), compiling and organizing my favorite songs released this year. I’ve noticed in past years I’ve seemed to average about 60-80 artists and/or songs that have made the year…

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Don’t get my sympathy, hanging out the fifteenth floor / You’ve changed the locks three times / He still comes reeling through the door / One day I’ll get to you / And teach you how to get to purest hell / You do it to yourself you do / And that’s what really hurts / Is you do it to yourself,  just you

When I think of health food I think of my dad. He was the first vegetarian I ever met. In truth it would be almost a decade before I came across another veggie. In the ’70s people thought you were crazy if you ate brown eggs, nuts, dried fruit, and raw milk.

For most New Yorkers, health food made its screen debut in Woody Allen’s Anne Hall. Woody lunching at The Source Cafe on Sunset seemed absurd, but for many Sunset strip, health food, and driving in convertibles made a lasting impression.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

This is more than I wanted / Take me out of the dark, I roam there / Cold and black, you’re out of touch, yeah / Lightly falling through a whisper, you’re scared / It’s the weight of the world, I know, as I’m struggling to be / It’s the weight of the world, I know, as you were mine, and we will find…

I can’t seem to remember the last time Halloween fell on a Thursday. For most of my life Halloween has been my favorite holiday—maybe it’s the “nightclubber” in me? After all, it is the darkest of holidays. Now as I’ve moved into my post “nightlife” days, when I think of Halloween I think of past events—from trick or treat, to rock concerts, to partying with John Waters or Susanne Bartsch.

This Halloween I got a random text from my old friend Jimmy Gamillia. As I was thumbing back and forth, a light bulb went off about the night Jimmy dragged me to go see Frank Zappa at The Palladium (in NYC). I was a 16 year old punk rocker thinking I was too cool for Zappa’s annual Halloween bash (circa ’70s!). Jimmy was dressed as a jailbird with a rainbow afro! The crowd was outrageous and high as fuck. Zappa was jamming. It was a Halloween like many…like no other! Thank you for that Jimmy!

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Thank you for the days, / Those endless days, those sacred days you gave me. / I’m thinking of the days, / I won’t forget a single day, believe me. / I bless the light, / I bless the light that shines on you believe me. / And though you’re gone, / You’re with me every single day, believe me. / Days.

A best friend. “BFF” as my daughter used to say.

Yeah, a best fucking friend is something to certainly have. Throughout my days of “rock ‘n’ rolling,” I’ve lived a charmed life with many friends. I’ve always had a truly diverse bunch of pals. Since my sandbox days of Central Park (NYC), I’ve identified my best friend as my childhood pal Bram Towbin. Bram is a flower farmer in Vermont. We try to stay in touch but it’s mostly via emails. Still, I am thrilled by our history, trustworthiness, sense of humor and lilacs, so we shall remain BFFs.

In reality my current best friend is a female cat I named Nori. (Yes, as in the seaweed you wrap sushi in.) She’s a constant with constant companionship and understanding.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I want to live at / The Holiday Inn / Where somebody else makes the bed / We’ll watch TV while / The lights on the street / Put all the stars to death / It’s been on my mind since Bowie died / Just checking out to hide from life / And all of our problems, I’m gonna solve ’em / With you riding shot-gun, speeding, ’cause fuck the cops

And you, you must have been looking for me / Sending smoke signals / Pelicans circling / Burning trash out on the beach

These days I rarely compile The Idelic Hour on a Tuesday. Monday I was feeling under the weather. Although we tried to stay out of last weekend’s “smokey conditions,” my body felt heavy and slow to start the week.

By Tuesday I was feeling back to par and spent most of the day in my cozy office, working away at the hustle of the 21st century music business, drinking coffee and eating delicious vegetables from my beloved Hollywood Farmers Market. The thought dawned on me that both “smoke” and “Tuesdays” have a fair share of tunes. I nonchalantly threw a few tunes on a playlist. My mind went from “Smoke on the Water” to a childhood favorite from The Platters. Then from “Ruby Tuesday” to Bowie’s Deram Records classic “Love You Til Tuesday.”

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Every time just like the last / On her ship tied to the mast / To distant lands / Takes both my hands / Never a frown with golden brown

Golden brown, finer temptress / Through the ages she’s heading west / From far away / Stays for a day / Never a frown with golden brown

As Jon, the editor of The Vinyl District knows, I tend to dig chatting about the weather. It’s a habit that runs in both my wife’s and my family. I’m not exactly sure if there is some symbolic, underlying meaning to this heritage. I guess we’re just passing time or interested in the weather?

Well, so how is the weather?

Here in LA? It’s mostly pretty good, think you!

In fact this past week the weather has been magical. That was up until this morning—there’s a fire burning in Porter Ranch about 20 miles northeast. If not for this morning’s slightly smoky haze, today would be absolutely “golden.”

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

I was nowhere / Till you changed my mind / Love is sent through being good to you / Then you were somewhere / Somewhere hard to find / Only what you always were, it’s true / I’m looking for an open door / Where I can sit, and play in peace with you / Tomorrow changes / Fields of green today

Smack in the middle of the Jewish high holidays—according to the ancients, this the year 5780. To this, Jews say “L’Shana Tova.” Its basic translation is “good luck dude!”

Musically, today’s Idelic Hour set has been very satisfying. Honestly in a week of crazy energy, I wasn’t thinking of music, new or comfortable. I felt far off. As October 1 rang in, I reached for The Doors’ first album. There is something about that album that goes with the quality of sunlight in southern California in October. It’s almost as if it’s now part of my DNA.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Fare you well, my honey, fare you well my only true one. / All the birds that were singing are flown, except you alone.

Going to leave this brokedown palace, / On my hand and knees, I will roll, roll, roll. / Make myself a bed in the waterside, / In my time, I will roll, roll roll.

In a bed, in a bed, by the waterside I will lay my head. / Listen to the river sing sweet songs, to rock my soul.

We lost Robert Hunter this week. It’s nuts to say he was an underrated songwriter—I don’t know if there is a more fanatical fanbase than the Grateful Dead, but for me it wasn’t that Hunter was the greatest songwriter or that I’m a Deadhead in mourning.

What got my Idelic brain motoring about this week’s hour of songs was that Hunter was a poet at a time when great poets united with magnificent troubadours. As fortune would have it, Hunter met Garcia, the banjo man from Menlo Park. The two closely follow in the footsteps of Bob Dylan; writing meaningful words put to music.

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

Oh help me make it / I know that you can / Oh the power of a woman’s love / Can change a man / You can make me feel as cold / As I hold nothing / Then I get a warm feeling / When you treat me like your best friend

You can lift me on up / Make my spirits fly high / But oh how you drag me down / I’m not ashamed to cry / Oh help me make it / I know that you can / Oh the power of a woman’s love / Can change a man

Have you ever heard the expression, “stay out of your own way?” It resonates for me some days. A few weeks ago an old friend sent me a self-help book. I think my wife is reading one too called The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A Fuck. I hear that’s pretty “fine?”

While driving earlier in the week, my Spotify on a random shuffle took me to “Autumn Sweater,” an old Yo Le Tengo record. What a great tune. It got me thinking—self help is kind of a sweater for the soul? What the?

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TVD’s The Idelic Hour with Jon Sidel

Greetings from Laurel Canyon!

It’s Friday the 13th with a full moon on the rise—and I gotta say, I’m in a pretty celebratory mood. I’ve dug the fall in LA. The light at sunset is heavenly.

Tomorrow we’re throwing a party for my wife. It’s a special birthday, and I’m happy to report I think I got it all together. The spot, the cake, the card, the gift—and yeah man, the Sidels have the music! If you have the moon and the music on your side? Fuck it, just rock and have a party!

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