52 Music Moments, Part 1

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On the 52nd birthday of co-founder Karyn Albano (her “younger” husband Ric will be 52 in exactly 5 months on December 10th), we celebrate this brave milestone we are putting together a special list of Karyn’s personal 52 great moments in music since July 10, 1968.

Beatles 1968

First, let’s start at the beginning. The Billboard #1 song on July 10, 1968 was “This Guy’s in Love with You” by Herb Alpert, in it’s third of four weeks on top of the charts. The number one album that week was Bookends by Simon & Garfunkel. July 1968 was the moment of conception for what would become Led Zeppelin as The Yardbirds officially broke up that month but Jimmy Page was granted use of their name if he agreed to form a new band and fulfill their commitments to several concerts in Scandinavia. And as for Karyn’s favorite band, The Beatles, they were smack in the middle of recording The White Album and pretty much focused on the songs “Ob La Di, Ob La Da” and “Revolution 1” at Abbey Road studios during the week of July 9th-13th. So from here, we move forward with the 52 moments.

  1. Sugar Sugar by The Archies – Karyn’s favorite song when she was around 2 years old (1970)
  2. American Pie – she remembers a very cool Montessori school teacher playing guitar and singing to this Don McClean classic (1971 or 1972)
  3. Tony Orlando and Dawn – watching their variety show with grandma and singing “Tie a Yellow Ribbon” (early to mid 70s)
  4. Discovering The Beatles – through a friend’s parents record collection in 2nd grade. Before this, Karyn was into Barry Manilow and Donny and Marie, so the Beatles were a true revelation. “I Saved all my pennies and bought my Sgt Pepper album at the Listening Booth in Wyoming Valley Mall at age 8.” (1976)
  5. Barricuda by Heart – instantly bought this single after first listen (1977)
  6. The Flute – choosing this instrument to play from grades 4 to 8 after a music teacher presented the music of Traffic and Jethro Tull (1977-1981)
  7. Parallel Lines – great album by Blondie (1978)
  8. “Help” Movie – on “Dialing for Dollars” television show, solidified love for The Beatles (late 1970s)
  9. Discovering Rock 107 – first real rock station in NE Pennsylvania (around 1980)
  10. Rock 107

  11. Glass Houses – Karyn’s gateway to discovering and purchasing many other Billy Joel albums (1980)
  12. Elvis Costello – introduced to Karyn by her Aunt, starting with the My Aim Is True album (early 1980s)
  13. Warren Zevon on Lettermen – this 1982 appearance led to Karyn discovering his vast library and becoming a lifelong fan,
  14. Early MTV – when they actually played music (1983-1986)
  15. Rolling Stone Magazine – when they actually covered music (early to mid 1980s)
  16. Howard Jones – great synth songs (mid 1980s)
  17. First Rock Concert – The Sharks at St, Joe’s Gym in Hazleton, PA (1985)
  18. First Hooters Concert – at King’s College in Wilkes Barre, PA, the first of around 20 or so (and counting) shows by this Phiily band (November 1985)
  19. The Mandolin – from Led Zeppelin’s “Battle of Evermore” to Steve Winwood’s “Back In the High Life” to several songs by The Hooters, Bret Alexander and others, Karyn is a life-long enthusiast of its sound (mid 1980s to present)
  20. Billy Idol with The Cult – memorable times in the mosh pit(getting pulled out of it by security before being crushed to death) at Allentown Fairgrounds (1986)
  21. Backstage Passes – to meet The Hooters after their show at St. Joe’s Gym in Hazleton, PA (August 1986)
  22. Strong PersuaderRobert Cray album which sparked great love of blues and soulĀ as Karyn went on to become a great fan of Aretha Franklin, Luther Vandross, Anita Baker, Prince and many others (late 1980s)
  23. U2 from the Parking Lot – couldn’t score tickets but had a blast with several Deadheads leftover from the Grateful Dead’s show the night before, outside JFK stadium in Philadelphia (September 1987)
  24. Tommy Conwell after a Phillies Game – several late night shows at the old Vet in Philadelphia (late 80s, early 90s)
  25. Billy Joel from the 3rd Row – great tickets, right in front of the piano, offered by a friend’s aunt for just $35 at the Spectrum in Philly (1990)
  26. Reggae – from Bob Marley to Peter Tosh, Jimmy Cliff and UB40, Karyn has been an avid fan of the genre since the early 90s
  27. The Batty Bat – Sesame Street song loved by Karyn’s daughter Erin (born 1992)
  28. The Badlees New Year’s Eve Show – Karyn and Ric’s first concert (as part of a larger group, not yet a couple) at The Silo in Reading, PA (New Year 1996)
  29. Collective Soul – Karyn and Ric’s first concert as a couple at King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, PA (March 1996)
  30. The Steel Breeze – a unique Pink Floyd tribute set during a Dreaming Tree show at Cousin’s in Hazleton (2000)
  31. The “Accidental” Neil Diamond Show – Karyn scored a ticket to see the first ever show at The First Union arena in Wilkes-Barre when the driver for her in-laws and their friend couldn’t attend. Turned out to be a heck of a show (December 2001)
  32. Paul McCartney Live – first time actually seeing a former Beatle live and it was a fantastic show in Philadelphia, featuring a great backing band during the beginning and end sets with a long solo set by Paul in between (April 2002)
  33. Arts Fest – during our initial years in the Harrisburg area, this 4th of July riverside festival featured some fantastic performances by Central Pennsylvania artists like the Martini Brothers, Darcie Miner, Tripp McNeely, Herbie and the Jellybricks (2004-2010)
  34. Rush at Radio City Music Hall – a spectacular array of sound and light and an unbelievable drum solo by Neil Peart (August 2004)
  35. Briggs Farm Blues festival – Karyn and Ric attended their first Briggs festival in July 2005, featuring Big Jack Johnson. They have attended and/or covered this fantastic festival in Nescopeck, PA virtually every year since.
  36. The Cellarbirds – Karyn discovered the fantastic 2001 album Perfect Smile (their one and only) and went on top buy up about a dozen copies to give out as Christmas gifts (2005)
  37. Tommy Conwell with Hot Wing Jones – fantastic show at Gullifty’s Underground in Camp Hill where Tommy sat at our table and chatted between sets. (November 2007)
  38. Dollars for Diane – after Karyn’s sister Diane suffered a major stroke in 2007, many local businesses, venues and musicians donated towards throwing three benefit concerts and helping us produce a compilation album to benefit Diane and brain injury research in general (2007-2010)
  39. Concert with The Kids – in the summer of 2008 Karyn saw the one and only concert with her husband and all four of her kids, Rush at Hersheypark stadium
  40. The River of Rock Music Network – started by Karyn and Ric with the launching of Modern rock Review in October 2010. In the 10 years since, we have grown to five distinct websites covering vast genres and eras of music with nearly 1000 published original articles.
  41. River of Rock logo

  42. Sound Off for Vets – Karyn helped promote a concert series to benefit Wounded Warriors, organized by Chris Nelson and featuring several talented musicians including Nelson, Mycenea Worley, Shift Seven, Fools On Sunday, Brian Xander, Carmen Magro and many more (2010-2011)
  43. Little Buffalo Music Festival – an excellent festival each October featuring great music such as Jefferey Gaines (2011-2018)
  44. Interviewing Greg Kihn – Karyn had been an avid fan decades before interviewing this classic rocker after he published his fictional rock thriller Painted Black (2015)
  45. Paul McCartney Once Again – a fantastic outdoor show at Hershey stadium where Sir Paul once again impressed (July 2016)
  46. Karyn in Mississippi 2017

  47. Southern Music Odyssey #1 – our trip to many historic music sites in Muscle Shoals, Tupelo, the Mississippi Delta (BB King museum, Dockery Farm, Clarksdale), Memphis (Sun Records, Stax Studio, Beale Street)and Nashville with Karyn taking footage later used in a music video (March 2017)
  48. The Journey – the initial Sinclair Soul album, The Journey remains Karyn’s favorite of all her husband’s projects (June 2017)
  49. Southern Music Odyssey #2 – focused mainly on Virginia and North Carolina with stops at The Carter Family Fold, many sights in Asheville, Virginia Beach and wrapping up with Ric’s performance at the Cape May Singer/Songwriter festival in New Jersey (March 2018)
  50. The Hooters Return – first live performance of the year and a great one on the Ocean City, NJ pier (June 2018)
  51. Van Morrison – during his only North American appearance of the 2018 Outlaw Festival, Van the Man put on a show for the ages at Hersheypark stadium (September 2018)
  52. The Good Guys Session – On her husband’s 50th birthday (December 2018) Karyn joined Ric at Eight Days a Week studio for a super session featuring Bret Alexander, Paul Smith, Ron Simasek, Mycenea Worley, Phil Brosius and her son Jake Albano, making his studio engineering debut. The session yielded much material that was included on the 2019 Sinclair Soul album The Good Guys.
  53. Floyd, VA – a quaint little town that is an absolute incubator for music in the remote mountains of Southern Virginia (December 2019)
  54. Jeremariah – fantastic wedding featuring the Cellarbirds and Ric performing a dedicated song at the wedding of her step-son and daughter-in-law (May 2019)
  55. Southern Music Odyssey #3 – this time focusing on Florida and Georgia, including Ray Charles hometown, Southern Avenue at Bradfordville Blues club, a day in Macon, GA including The Big House and Rose Hill cemetery and topped by a fantastic show by the Allman-Betts Band. This all happened just weeks before the COVID-19 spread and remains the most recent music event to date (February 2020)

 

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