RAM On L.A. :: A Los Angeles Music Sampler

Los Angeles: huge, sprawling, and eclectic, has been likened to microcosm of the country as whole — truly a melting pot of various cultures, ethnicities, tastes and influences.   So is her music.   With various scenes and sub-scenes, rarely has there been a defining “sound” that marks the overall zeitgeist of what is happening in the city at any one time.   In 2008 I set out to create a compilation of a dozen or so L.A. based artists that I felt were creating something both unique and diverse.   After some thought I decided that there needed to be a running theme, something to tie the artists together into a cohesive whole, a common bond.

As records tend to do, a revisited appreciation of Paul McCartney’s 1971 solo album, RAM, had begun to see a resurgence of sorts within a number of local eastside artists, coming up in conversations and on the turntables of various house parties.

The theme was found.   Over the course of the second half of 2008 eleven Angeleno artists individually went in to various studios, rehearsal spaces and apartments to record their take on what is my favorite, and arguably, McCartney’s best solo work…. the end result is RAM On L.A.

Released as a high-quality 320kbps MP3 digital download, the not-for-profit compilation is available free via Aquarium Drunkard.   Listeners are encouraged to make donations to No More Landmines, the fantastic cause that “helps and empowers communities around the world by removing the threat of landmines and unexploded weapons.” A cause championed by Sir Paul McCartney himself.   Donate here.

Download: RAM On L.A. :: A Los Angeles Music Sampler (Zipped 132 MB)

Tracklisting:

Earlimart :: Too Many People
Frankel :: 3 Legs
The Parson Redheads :: Ram On
Bodies of Water :: Dear Boy
Radar Bros. :: Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey
Naptunes :: Smile Away
Los Baby Fools :: Heart Of The Country
Le Switch :: Monkberry Moon Delight
The Broken West :: Eat At Home
Amnion :: Long Haired Lady
The Parson Redheads :: Ram On (reprise)
Travel by Sea :: The Back Seat Of My Car

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66 thoughts on “RAM On L.A. :: A Los Angeles Music Sampler

  1. Kudos on the coverset — from the album choice (inspired) to the “here and now” community nature of the project, a job well done all around.

    May many folks donate to the cause in honor of your curatorship and the fine performances you have solicited.

  2. So so so fabulous, thank you! One of my favorite albums of all time. It’s so great to rediscover these songs through today’s artists.

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  4. Spiral Beach did a cool acoustic cover of Monkberry Moon Delight a couple of years ago in some interview. Like the comp.

  5. Great comp, my favorite was the Aminon, “Long Haired Lady.” They didn’t completely alter it but added their own distinct ideas. Good stuff.

  6. Damn I’m getting an error message…

    “We are unable to play media on this page at this time. Refresh the page and try again”

    ?????

    Idid refresh twice….

  7. wow, such a nice cover album… thanks for this! also thanks for posting monkberry moon delight originally, that is how i found out about ram in the first place… immediately went out to buy it on vinyl and loved it. thanks again aqd!

  8. Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ version of Monkberry Moon Delight is perfect because he was completely insane (which is kind of required for the song):
    http://www.amazon.com/Monkberry-Moon-Delight/dp/B000QO2TP4

    Yes, he’s the “I Put a Spell on You” guy who emerged from a coffin at each show a full decade before Alice Cooper.

    Thanks for this compilation. I’m a huge Beatle/McCartney fan and Ram is my favorite McCartney solo album hands down.

  9. I may be a bit biased–but that disclaimer aside—the cover of Monkberry Moon Delight is without doubt one of the best on this compilation–the “calypso” sounds and raspsy vocals are a sweet combination. BIG thanks for putting together one historic comp!

  10. i can’t believe that i went 15 days without knowing this was posted. i learned how to love music growing up with this album. so fucking stoked you put this together.

    i love you, aquarium drunkard.

  11. All of these covers prove just how great the original recordings are simply because none of these covers is as good as the original! Listen to the real Ram with good headphones to hear the vast array of sounds and music and harmonies swirling around the backgrounds and throughout this McCartney masterpiece!!

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  13. Yay! I’ve been waiting for indie artist to get on a cover of Ram. If no one else had stepped up I was going to start my own band called Ram of God and play it live. Thank you for saving me from that since I don’t really play or sing well enough.

  14. Ram definitely is one of my favorite albums.

    The interpretations by the LA artists are just great! Probably the one that I liked the most was ‘My Long Haired Lady’.

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