Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. just released his third album, Momentary Masters (Vagrant/BMG). Now sober, married and living in upstate New York, Hammond has made his finest solo effort to date. We always knew that Hammond has great taste in music, so we sent him a handful of songs to get his feedback.
The Clash, “Clampdown”
from: London Calling
I never knew this song until the Strokes covered it. Such a fun song to cover. I’m a bit of a whiner when it comes to learning something new, but it was fun. It was cool to see that we couldn’t play it like they did. We had our own way, but they were a very special band.
Fountains Of Wayne, “Richie And Ruben”
from: Sky Full Of Holes
I only know “Stacy’s Mom.” Seriously, I only know her mom. I don’t even know the song. What a hot mom.
Julian Casablancas + The Voidz, “Human Sadness”
I remember riding my motorcycle when I first got a copy of this record. I was riding along this mountain with sharp corners, and when the bass line came in, I felt a tremendous curiosity and excitement. I couldn’t understand anything vocally, but I knew there was something special in it. I sat at home and read the words as I listened, and I began to pretend to understand my friend more. It made me want to talk to him.
The Velvet Underground, “Beginning To See The Light”
from: The Velvet Underground
My favorite VU album, but not my favorite song on this record. “Pale Blue Eyes” and “I’m Set Free” are classic.
John Lennon, “Jealous Guy”
I remember when I first heard this, I was a little kid in London. I had stayed up way past my bedtime to finish watching the movie Imagine. Sonically, the song transfixed me. I didn’t understand how he did it, but I wasn’t jealous. I felt connected. I felt a true curiosity.
Guided By Voices, “Yours To Keep”
from: Bee Thousand
GBV was and always will be one of my favorite bands. Their melodies and words shaped my life more than I could ever express. I owe them so much. I wish everyone had a little GBV in them. Their music always brings me back some innocence. I wrote “yours to keep” on my Yours To Keep album demos to friends never realizing that GBV had a song called that.
Frank Black & The Catholics, “If It Takes All Night”
from: Dog In The Sand
I remember seeing FB&TC at the Bowery after only knowing his self-titled debut album, Frank Black. I remember being alone and just wanting to one day be able to be in a room filled like that. He played some amazing covers of Del Shannon and said how much he wished he could be him. I at the time had never heard anyone in modern rock ‘n’ roll say that, and I was ecstatic to hear it.