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1  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / Video & Audio / Behind The Music / Storytellers / Ain't That America on: March 12, 2016, 09:12:22 am
Someone has posted John's 1998 VH-1 "Behind The Music" and "Storytellers" (both 90 minutes long) to Usenet.  Also posted is "Ain't That America" from 1984 (with all his videos up to that time) plus additional footage from Cinemax's "Album Flash" that featured John, his band, his brother, and reminiscences from others who knew him growing up in Seymour.
2  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / The Band / Re: Larry Crane's Book on: January 04, 2016, 06:11:20 pm
It looks like it is privately published, $9.99 for the eBook, and $28 for the actual book.

It is remarkable that Larry worked with John since 1975 up to the beginning of 1991, and John got upset with him one day and "bam", the relationship ended.  Forever.

I know John is a  (not so) benevolent taskmaster, but that is really pushing it.

I would love to read the book.  They had to have gotten on pretty well for a long time, seeing as how they went from nowhere to stardom as a team.  A real shame the way it ended.

Now if Mike and/or John were to write something ...
3  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Merry Mellencamp Christmas on: December 25, 2014, 03:10:59 pm
John's two classic Christmas songs are always on our annual Christmas favorites playlist.  "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" is from the original epic "A Very Special Christmas" (1987) which is probably the finest collection of rock and roll talent ever put together on a Christmas album.  Consider the artists from that album (which raised millions for the Special Olympics):  John, Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Madonna, The Pretenders, Whitney Houston, The Pointer Sisters, The Eurythmics, U2, Bob Seger, Bryan Adams, Bon Jovi, Stevie Nicks, Alison Moyet, and Run D.M.C.  That album is deservedly mega-multi-platinum and will never stop selling for as long as Christmas music exists.

John's "Teddi's Song (When Christmas Comes)" is also a wonderful Christmas song and deserves way more attention than it gets.  It is a perennial part of our Christmas's and I wish it was on the radio more.  A real gem.

Merry Christmas!
4  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / Video & Audio / John live interview circa 2001-2 (Bob and Tom?) on: September 13, 2013, 10:31:47 pm
This great site, I believe had an awesome download of a John interview circa "Cuttin' Heads" where John is interviewed by, I think, someone like Bob and Tom.  I'm not sure if its where John pretends to be the redneck, but I do know that John and the guys play a live killer version of "Crazy Island" -- not as polished as the album cut (instead, its John and the guys, rather than the gals), but pretty damn good. 

Is that still on this site or downloadable anywhere?
5  MELLENCAMP.COM ANNOUNCEMENTS / Announcements & Updates / Re: Falling From Grace on Sony Movie Channel Music Marathon Month on: March 01, 2013, 11:52:24 am
Thanks for the heads up!  I rented this in the 90's and loved it.

This is a very good movie.  John did so well -- so comfortable and natural in front of a lens -- that it was obvious his talent was suited for films too.   I wish a "making of" special feature had been made of this one.  It would be a kick to know how it all went down behind the scenes.  A lot of folks from John's circle are credited in the movie (check out IMDB). 

It was released in 1992, but it seems late 80s to me (from John's appearance and Larry Crane being in it).

Great stuff.

6  MELLENCAMP.COM ANNOUNCEMENTS / Ask / Re: Trivia Question on: December 10, 2012, 12:01:01 am
      Very interesting insights, everybody.  I respect all of your opinions but let me give you my two cents:
      By the time of “Whenever We Wanted”, John had likely been “on his own” (i.e. estranged) from Vicky for a good long while.  He had blown up his marriage to Vicky even before “Big Daddy” (as least as I recall).  Of course John wrote about Elaine in the mid-90’s, but I frankly believe John never wrote much about either of his previous wives in his earlier albums. 
     All of us enjoy his home movies with Vicky in his “Jack and Diane” video.  But let’s face it, for the most part, prior to “Human Wheels”, John wrote about gals he “encountered” in the 70’s and 80’s.  In my opinion, none of his songs were about Priscilla and there was very little about Vicky either.  Now, very few of us have the charisma or star power to “encounter” the quantity or quality of potential partners that John did, either before, during, or after, his marriages.  I believe John captured a lot about these encounters in his early (John Cougar and after) albums.   And those songs are all very enjoyable, both musically and lyrically.
   I think only John can clarify his early career and I know nothing more about his personal life than any of you – most likely much less.  But I feel strongly that John was always meeting, getting to know, and writing about, relationships that most of us know nothing about.  And since John was married essentially continuously from before he “made it” up through his divorce from Vicky, all of his “encounters” that made it – in whatever fashion – into his songs, were about “other women”. 
       If I am right (and I could very well be wrong), then most of his early songs are about women that none of us will ever know anything about.  Hence, my original questions.  I believe even John would have trouble explaining most of his writing from his early albums.  To me, that makes them especially interesting and mysterious.  But of course we will never know. 
       I love his early albums because he explored territory, and musical styles, that he never came back to in his later career.  Listen to “Taxi Dancer” – with the strings and piano accompaniment.  John never ever did that kind of stuff again.  And his “slice of life” human portraits are represented especially well in his early albums.  Yes, I love the hits from “American Fool” and the amazing hit “I Need A Lover”, but it was his less-well-known stuff – the music and lyrics from “Sugar Marie”, to “A Little Night Dancing”, to “The Great Midwest”, to “Do You Think That’s Fair”, to “Tonight”, to “Wild Angel” that really hooked me.  In fact, now that we have the “additional” songs from those early days like: “Latest Game” and “American Fool” (the song), I think it is even more clear that John was writing about life on the road, and doing it from a very personal perspective.  That is frankly my favorite part about him as a songwriter.
   If we know anything about the “Whenever We Wanted” period, it is that John was a big time rock star during that period – and single – and was basically living the “cliché” lifestyle of a male rock star with his male-dominated rock band.  His songs about women on that album are unabashedly about the vicarious life of a single male rock star.  But as Tim White said about the song “Key West Intermezzo” -- after John met Elaine, everything changed.  But before that, John was living it up like “Lucky Pierre” in “Get A Leg Up”.  It is likely that John lived that way basically his whole career, up to Elaine. 
   Now that Christmas is upon us, I of course am enjoying John’s amazing single “I Saw Momma Kissing Santa Claus” (especially the video) and “Teddi’s Song” (When Christmas Comes) again.  John may not have written all that much about his early wives, but he wrote wonderfully about his girls with Vicky (as he would later about his boys) and Teddi Jo’s appearance in his Christmas video is as memorable, to me, as “A Charlie Brown Christmas” or the kids in Albert Finney’s “Scrooge” or the boys in “A Christmas Story”. 
       Merry Christmas, everyone!
7  MELLENCAMP.COM ANNOUNCEMENTS / Ask / Re: Trivia Question on: November 30, 2012, 10:55:48 pm
Great questions!

And who the heck was "M.G." Huh

And for a few questions completely impossible to answer:
1.  Who was John writing about in "Whenever We Wanted"?
2.  Who was John writing about in "Crazy Ones"?
3.  The "Taxi Dancer" girl?
4.  Sugar Marie?
5.  The "Welcome To Chinatown" girl?
6.  Was "Wang-Foo" completely made up?
7.  Better to not even ask about "Can You Take It"  (-;
8  MELLENCAMP.COM ANNOUNCEMENTS / Ask / Re: heavy drum version of jack and diane on: November 30, 2012, 10:44:55 pm

Sorry to request "another" upload of these great versions of those tunes, but those previous links are all dead now (argggghh!).  Much appreciated!
9  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: John's Mom Passes Away on: January 31, 2012, 10:40:01 pm
She was very gracious and honest in the interview clips they used of her on John's "Behind The Music" program.  A very endearing lady.  To raise a big family -- especially the difficulty of raising some of those kids! -- during the 60s (that crazy decade) -- shows that she deserves accolades regardless of the worldly success her famous son brought to the family.  I love that, given John's great dislike of the "Cougar" handle in his early years, his Mom insisted "I thought the name suited him"!  And when he insisted on going to New York to be discovered, she said: "Let him get a few doors shut in his face, let him get it out of his system."  She understood the odds against him, in the earliest days. .  A loving, independent-thinking, honest, and remarkable lady.  She will be missed
10  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: Was he considered for the Superbowl Halftime show? on: October 19, 2011, 09:31:34 pm
Regarding the "pre-1987" period, I forgot to mention "True Blue" as yet another Madonna hit.

And, while we are talking about the 80s (or, at least I am) many of us tended to frequent dance clubs or aerobics classes "back in the day".  I don't need to emphasize the huge influence Madonna had in the world back in those days.  And please, don't forget, John's most commercially successful period was the 80s too.  And why not?  From American Fool through Big Daddy, John established his Rock and Roll Hall of Fame credentials during that amazing decade.

And I will be happy to talk about John's contributions in the 90s and 2000s too.  Whenever We Wanted was tremendous, Human Wheels perhaps even better, and Key West and Just Another Day showed John at his absolute best in the mid-90s. 

His Columbia debut showed what legions of us always knew -- that John is an amazing song writer, singer, and performer.  We all knew he was awesome, and the late 90s only confirmed what we all had known for so long.

And, to carry it forward just a little, I maintain that "Cuttin' Heads" is on a par with his best 80s stuff.  That album, which he showcased live on NBC's Today show the week before 9/11 (and in Manhattan, no less), is the "type specimen", in my opinion, of John's mature career.  His music will always be brilliant and timeless.  And though I have a special affinity with his late 70s / early 80s pre-stardom period, I proudly proclaim his brilliance into the 2000s and, let us hope, into the 2010s and beyond as well.

But of course I am preaching to the choir here.

In fact, let's get off Madonna and start a groundswell to get John selected to a Superbowl.  It would be icing to a career that many of us knew would be brilliant three decades ago.

We are endlessly proud of you, John. 
11  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: Was he considered for the Superbowl Halftime show? on: October 13, 2011, 10:42:08 pm
The list is not quite as long as my favorite Mellencamp hits, but, off the top of my head:

Dress You Up
Burning Up
Crazy For You
Into The Groove
Lucky Star
Material Girl
Open Your Heart
Papa Don't Preach
La Isla Bonita
Live To Tell

Well, that's just from before 1987. 

Madonna's live shows, especially her early shows, featured her dancing as well as her music.  The live concert video "The Virgin Tour" is of course legendary.

And for those of you who loved and love John's looks and stage presence --  for many of us fans, Madonna took that to a whole new level.  Her "Desperately Seeking Susan" movie was an early peek at the quality actress and amazing beauty that she of course conquered the world with a few years later.  And I don't just mean beautiful.  She was drop dead gorgeous.  Her videos of course defined the medium.  Like Michael Jackson, she worked with the best people in the business, and it showed.

John's in good company. 
12  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: Was he considered for the Superbowl Halftime show? on: October 07, 2011, 10:48:32 pm

Please..Springsteen is still selling out 80,000 seater stadiums..a relic of the 70's he ain't.

Absolutely no disrespect intended.  The Boss is amazing, and God bless him that he is still thrilling fans like crazy.

But for those who witnessed his 70s shows, and were actually part of it, ...., well better leave it alone.

But, absolutely, see him now and enjoy.

John, to me, is the same.  His shows in the 80s and 90s were beyond belief.

I feel extremely blessed to have gone to them.
13  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: "Jack and Diane" Video Cost $3K on: October 05, 2011, 11:07:38 pm
And it is one of his best videos, too.  I loved his home-movie type stuff.  The "Small Town" video comes to mind.
14  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: Was he considered for the Superbowl Halftime show? on: October 05, 2011, 11:04:03 pm
What is it with the Super Bowl?  They are finally picking amazing artists, but 2 to 3 decades too late.  Petty, Springsteen, Madonna, the Stones, the Who, Prince.  Those are all awesome choices, but all deserved to be selected back in the 80s (or in Springsteen, the Who, and the Stones case, the 70s or 60s).

Perhaps some of you missed the 80s.  Madonna and MJ ruled it.

John would obviously be an awesome choice too.

God, I miss the 80s!
15  MELLENCAMP DISCUSSION / All About John / Re: Mellencamp lyricist dies, is remembered on: September 12, 2011, 09:51:53 pm
I still remember (as I should, given that it is on the Behind The Music show) where John showed his exasperation with record companies, and the music business in general, when he lamented that the record company only got "one of the best songs George Green and I ever wrote" [Human Wheels, the single] to some low-level ranking on the charts.  John has had so many close friends and colleagues pass away prematurely that it is seriously messing with my head.   I have always felt John demonstrated his excellence by the people he chose to work with, and nowhere is this more true than with George Green.  He will be missed.

My prayers are with him and his family.  When I kick, I absolutely intend to look George up.  If he puts up with the line of admirers in front of me, that is.
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