Category Archives: John Lennon

The Day The Music Was Murdered

Hi folks. Today is a sad day for me, when it comes to some of my favourite bands and I will explain why, as you read the rest of this post.
Today marks the anniversaries of two murders in rock and heavy metal music and they have both affected me in varying degrees. On December 8, 1980 John Lennon, probably the most famous of the Beatles was shot and killed by mark david chapman, outside of his apartment in New York City. This took place after both him and Yoko Ono had finished a recording session for a song, which would appear on a Yoko Ono album years later. It’s all there on Wikipedia if you would like more information about the events that day. However I will say that John conducted his last interview that day, a few hours before mark david chapman murdered John. You will notice I didn’t capitalize his name because like the other murderer in this post, they don’t deserve to have their names written out properly, as they have killed two important iconic musicians who were and are loved by millions around the world.
Also on December 8th 2004, guitarist Dimebag daryl Lance Abbott was also murdered by a piece of nothing named nathan gail. The difference being that this murder took place in full view of everybody, who was at the Alrosa Villa in Columbus Ohio. This merger took place while Daryl was on stage with his band Damageplan and his brother Vincent Paul Abbott on drums, as they both were on their respective instruments and Pantera. The other big difference with the story is that in this case the murderer was killed, after he had shot, killed and or wounded various members of the road crew or fans. Then, a policeman came in and fired one shot and killed nathan gail, thus saving the lives of many people including Vinny Paul.
Now I will talk about where I was when I heard about both murders. In the case of John Lennon, I heard about it when I was at school when one of the staff mentioned it to me. He said something like “he was shot and he fell down” and I immediately thought that he was killed. I didn’t know yet that you could be shot and survive! I and many other fans of The Beatles were very saddened to hear of this and years later, it finally clicked and how important a figure John Lennon was to not just music but other things like politics. We’ve been robbed of a man who was a very good wordsmith and brought genres like musique concrete almost to the mainstream. If he was alive today I think he would be quite impressed with all the music out there, including the grunge, industrial, Brit pop and even ban such as Radiohead. Of course, he would always go back to his childhood music such as: Gene Vincent, Elvis Presley, buddy holly and the other people he listen to before getting full-time into music. Also, I learned to write songs through a radio program about him called The Lost Lennon Tapes. Most of the demo recordings ended up on the Beatles Anthology albums and elsewhere and that gave me more of the drive to want to try to be a musician.
In the case of Dimebag Darrell, I had actually seen him back in June 2001, when Pantera and a number of other bands played at what was then known as Copps Coliseum, now known as First Ontario Center in Hamilton Ontario Canada. One thing I can talk about is that some asshole threw a beer on me during the first song of one of the opening bands sets. In case you’re wondering, I was wearing shorts and a T-shirt plus my shoes and socks at the time and yes, I did kind of smell like a brewery for a while. However, it was a great show and of course, the last time Pantera would set foot in Canada before both the September 11 attacks and their break up.
 When the album New Found Power from Damageplan was released in 2004, I bought it on CD the day it came out and I loved it instantly. A highlight for me is the guitar solo on the song Moment Of Truth, which should have been released as a single. Then December 8th happened and I had actually heard about it the next morning at home on the radio. At first nobody said if any one was killed but I learned soon after hearing about it that it was Daryl, who had been murdered. It also happened that I was doing my grocery shopping that day and as you can imagine, it was difficult to concentrate after hearing such tragic news.
As for how heavy music has changed since then, not much has changed except the increase in guitar solos from newer bands like: Disturbed, Avenged Sevenfold and Five Finger Death Punch. Even bands like Mud Vayne decided to start putting guitar solos on their albums to augment the sound.
As a guitar player, I was and still am impressed with all the things he is done on Pantera albums and on New Found Power. I’m also quite happy that Brian May of Queen spoke up about the death of Daryl and I have a sneaking suspicion that Daryl was influence partly by Brian and his playing as well. However, he has never said that in interviews that I know of. If Daryl was alive today, I think that he would still be making music and still have the chops. Both of these guys were taken from us too early and if I could go back in time, I would make sure that they were both out of the way, of any danger to their lives.
As for the killers, I am glad that mark david chapman hasn’t been allowed to be paroled and I hope it stays that way. He can say sorry for what he did all he wants but it won’t change the fact that he did what he did to John Lennon. As for nathan gail, he got what he deserved and I’m happy. As for the families, I am glad that everyone is doing what they are doing and I am on their side, with all the annual events and such. I the case of the Lennon estate, keep fighting to keep mark david chapman behind bars and when he dies I will be happy. Shouldn’t he be on death row? After all, he did kill somebody and he knew what he was doing.
Anyway, I will be listening to an album with John Lennons last interview, which is available on iTunes and as for Daryl, I will probably be listening to New Found Power today as well.


Christmas Stories And Other Stuff

Hi folks and welcome to another Simpsons Sunday. If you watched the latest episode Paths Of Glory and you are a fan of Ozzy Ozbourne, you noticed that they used Crazy Train. It was in the seen when Bart decided to be a psychopath, since Homer and Marge thought he was becoming one anyway. I noticed the original version wasn’t used and I wonder why? They used the version on the 2002 reissue of Blizzard Of Ozz with Mike Bordin on drums and Robert Trujillo on base, who is currently with Metallica. As opposed to the original with Lee Kerslake on drums and Bob Daisley on bass. Not that it’s a bad thing but I just notice these things and wanted to point it out to anyone who may not have caught it on the first watch and listen.

This week I’m going to talk about the episode Simpsons Christmas Stories and my favourite part of it. Okay, the first and third act are my faves, just to put it out there. The second act was alright but 1 and 3 are just lol funny and I’ll explain.

In the first act (The First DohEl) Homer delivers the sermon for Reverend Lovejoy and Ned Flanders, who is supposed to be his replacement but he fainted after a Papercut. It was about how The virgin Mary and Joseph Learned that they were expecting the baby Jesus. In this case, Homer was Joseph and Marge was the Virgin Mary and Lisa was Gabriel. When they needed a room at the inn, Moe was the inn keeper. The three wise men were: principal Skinner, Dr. Hibbert and Professor Frank who came bearing gifts: gold, frankincense and myrrh, regifted by Professor Frink to the King of the Jews because “who needs myrrh? ” The two shepherds were Lenny and Carl and of course, Mr. Burns was King Herod. Oh, and Bart was the baby Jesus. If you know the real story you get the idea why characters were what they were and let’s not forget that Cheif Wiggum, Lew and Eddie were King Herod’s man. Let’s just say the sermon homer gave was successful.

Act III was basically focusing on the music of The Nutcracker and various character sang songs to the tune of some of the peaces, mostly about getting gifts for each other or forgetting to get them, in Homer’s case. If you really want to dig deep into the episode here is the link.

As for the first act, I like how The Simpsons make fun of such things as religion, in their own edgy yet respectful way. If you watch the episode it may seem a bit subversive to make fun of the birth of the baby Jesus but, they don’t mess with the story which is good. I think by them Simpsonizing it they make it more fun yet palatable to those who aren’t really into that sort of thing. That’s the main thing I appreciate about The Simpsons and refreshing to hear a comedic take on any type of religion and or religious stories.

On the birthday front, Singer Frank Sinatra would’ve turned 100 years old yesterday, had he lived today. Of course, we know that he died in 1988 at the age of 82 and some of his songs were used on The Simpsons. For example: the song witchcraft was used in the Season three episode BART the murderer, sung by Bart. His signature song New York New York was used at the end of the Season 9 episode The City Of New York Vs. Homer Simpson, sung by a soundalike. His son Frank Sinatra Junior is a good friend ofFamily Guy creator and Season 24 guest star Seth MacFarlane. Will the younger Sinatra or his daughter Nancy appear as guest starrs on The Simpsons one day? Well, it’s hard to say but I don’t close the door on any possibility and I’m still holding out the hope that Corey Taylor will guest star as himself or as a character.

Speaking of Corey, his birthday was on Tuesday, as well as the anniversaries of the murders of Dimebag Daryl and John Lennon. Had Lennon survived, I think maybe, just maybe he would have guest starred, along with his ex Beatles band mates. Oh, The Doors singer Jim Morrison would’ve turned 73 years old on Tuesday as well, had he lived or if he is still alive.

Well that’s about it for this Simpsons Sunday post. In the mean time, I recommend checking out Chris Ladesma’s blog. He is the Music Editor for The Simpsons and has been since day 1.
Also, check out Yeardley Smith’s blog at
Don’t forget about Marchez Vous, which is her women’s shoe designer company, which she started earlier in the decade. You can check out their website at
Additionally, for more news on The Simpsons, you can go to
You can also comment here or you can email me at and I will reply as soon as I can to all messages I receive. If you follow me on Twitter or are my friend on Facebook you can comment directly to me that way too.
You can follow Simpsons Executive Producer Al Jean on Twitter and his Twitter handle is @AlJean.
He has ran the show since Season 13 and has ran it during Seasons 3 and 4.
Anyway, that is it for this weeks post. Talk to you again on Weather Wednesday.