Friday, April 24, 2009

Dion DiMucci: King Of The New York Streets

"Long before John Lennon, Dion discovered the perils of being a working-class hero."- Dave Marsh
"There was an affinity between John Lennon and I - rock n' roll caused our lives."- Dion
I've been soaking up this box set King Of The New York Streets from Dion "The Wanderer," DiMucci, the Prince of the Bronx.

There was something very special about this early rock n' roll rebel - he combined the toughs of a Brando with the vulnerability of a Sinatra in the wee small hours. Classics like "Runaround Sue" or "Ruby Baby" smolder with sex and swagger and like a modern day gangstah he's a bit too wild for this crowd:

Then he delivers the soulful introspection of a James Taylor on later songs like "New York City Song" or "Abraham, Martin & John," a #1 hit in Canada in 1968:

Then there's stoner Dion on "Your Own Backyard," this gem from 1970:

"Now since I've been straight
I haven't been in my cups
I'm not shooting downs, I'm not using ups

You know I'm still as crazy as a loon
Even though I don't run out and cop a spoon
But thank the good lord God, I had enough"
Dion took the bus the day the music died and unlike Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens & The Big Bopper, survived:

"Dion had heard his parents argue for years over the $36 rent for their apartment and could not bring himself to pay an entire month's rent for a short plane ride..."
$36 a month! A working class hero is something to be...


  1. Your blog is so different form the ones I read so often.. I really enjoyed listening to "Your own backyard". It was for the first time I heard it and found it so soulful.. I also liked Runaround Sue" that was nice too, foot tapping music...Didn't know such songs exists...

    Thanks for posting them on your blog.