Robert Baird

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Robert Baird Posted: Jan 20, 2012 2 comments
Publishing has a way of keeping you humble. Many years ago, after a scheduled show by her had been abruptly canceled, a club owner told me that Etta James had died.
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Robert Baird Posted: May 11, 2012 10 comments
Many if not most of the world’s most admired albums attained their fame slowly. In the case of Exile on Main Street which was released forty years ago on May 12, 1972, it took years for its ragged, bluesy charms to percolate into the collective psyche and eventually emerge as if not the best, then one of the contenders in the Stones catalog.
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Robert Baird Posted: May 08, 2008 4 comments
It drives me nuts when people, some of them intelligent and not prone to idiotic statements, say things to me like a colleague did the other day: "Do you ever hear a good record anymore?"
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Robert Baird Posted: Jun 22, 2006 1 comments
This just in:
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Robert Baird Posted: Apr 06, 2007 0 comments
Why rage against an ill wind? I realize that complaining incessantly about the ongoing plundering of rock, classic and otherwise, by Madison Avenue ain't gonna make it stop but is there no one who can resist the allure of cash?
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Robert Baird Posted: Aug 22, 2006 1 comments
I've always been a huge Pixies fan. I was so excited at 2004's reunited tour that I practically needed a minder to get me to the gig. But Frank Black solo, now there's a whole other experience.
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Robert Baird Posted: Aug 07, 2009 2 comments
They were quite a couple. Like a pair of Octopi in heat. First, he was grabbing her ass. Then he had his hands up the back of her shirt. Then, up the front. Then he had his hands down the back of her pants. Then, down the front. Both hands and about half of his forearms. Her only reaction was to smile, swoon and stick her tongue in his mouth. I'm damned impressed that she was able to keep her clothes on during this determined assault upon her New Jersey virtue. Best of all, during this entire spectacle, they were simultaneously kissing and falling down at the same time. Groping does not begin to get what was happening in my section on Thursday night at the Beacon Theatre.
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Robert Baird Posted: Jul 18, 2008 6 comments
Calling anything “IMPORTANT,” particularly a record, often sucks the life out of it and dooms it to a kind of overly academic hell to be debated by talking heads and those that “were there.”
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Robert Baird Posted: Oct 16, 2008 1 comments
I live by the axiom, “So many records to listen to, so little time.” That’s not an excuse; just reality. And it has nothing to do with being a music writer. If you’re a voracious music fan, there’s no way, no matter how many records per day you slug through, that you can hear it all. If today, I started listening to just my Beethoven Symphony cycles, it would literally be months before I could come up for air.
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Robert Baird Posted: Nov 15, 2011 0 comments
"So where did it all go wrong, George? When did the major-label record business begin slipping away?"

Before he can answer, I recall something George Avakian once told me over the phone. "Goddard Lieberson [former president of Columbia Records] said, 'I'm tired of sitting in A&R meetings with record guys. Get me some lawyers and accountants who don't want to argue about music.'"

"I don't remember saying that, but that's very interesting," Avakian says with a mischievous smile of recognition.

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