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Saturday, 31 May 2014
It's time for a new series!
Like many of you, I suspect, I have shedloads of compilation CDs just lying around gathering dust and rarely listened to.
Mostly from the likes of Mojo and Uncut but also a variety of other sources.
So this series will encourage me to actually listen to them and to select a couple of tunes every Saturday for your listening pleasure.
First up is Rebellious Jukebox an Uncut CD from February 2003.
It contains such luminaries as The Fall (hence the title of the CD), Neko Case,The Blasters,Billy Bragg and Orange Juice
However the first track I've selected is Gold in Them Hills by the great Canadian singer/songwriter Ron Sexsmith.
This is followed by a cover of The Bee Gees To Love Somebody by the mighty Slobberbone , out of Denton Texas and possessing the world's tallest bass player (Brian Lane) within their number.
I suspect this series could run and run.
Ron Sexsmith - Gold in Them Hills
Slobberbone -To Love Somebody
Friday, 30 May 2014
With 6 tracks and weighing in at 26 minutes and 17 seconds the jury is out as to whether 1982's Mesopotamia by The B-52's constitutes an EP or an LP.
At the end of the day I don't suppose it really matters particularly when you pick up a copy in a curiosity shop for the grand total of a pound.
I used to have this on tape and I don't think it is as good as I remember
It is not anywhere near their previous two albums 1979's The B-52's and 1980's Wild Planet.
I'm not really familiar with Whammy from 1983 and Bouncing of the Satellites from 1986.
The general view appears to be that there was a dip in form after their first two and then a bit of a revival with Cosmic Thing in 1989 and Good Stuff in 1992.
Produced by David Byrne apparently which I was unaware of until now.
The B-52's -Mesopotamia
The B-52's - Throw That Beat in the Garbage Can
Thursday, 29 May 2014
Potentially the first artist to appear on CCM who was born in the 19th century.
Alonzo "Lonnie" Johnson was born on February 8th 1899 in New Orleans and died on June 16th 1970 in Toronto.
A pioneer of the single string solo guitar style this is Blues at its simplest and quite possibly at its best.
As the sleevenotes say
" His songs were copied or extensively borrowed from by other singers,while his sleek ,imperturbable guitar-playing had musicians practicing furiously,trying to capture his speed, his timing and,above all, his ravishing tone"
A certain skiffle artist one Tony Donegan was so impressed when opening for him in 1952 that he changed his stage name to Lonnie.
However, we are going further back than 1952 for today's songs - much further back - as far back as 1927!
The first being recorded in New York on 3rd October and the second in Chicago on 12th December .
Although these songs are 87 years old the recording quality is pretty impressive and they remain great. great songs.
Lonnie Johnson - Saint Louis Cyclone Blues
Lonnie Johnson - Low Land Moan
Wednesday, 28 May 2014
If this is your introduction to George Jones (that's kind of hard to conceive) you're in for a rare treat.
If you are a Jones fan, like most of the country, settle back and relax... the Jones boy has done it again!
Wise words from the sleevenotes to 1972's Poor Man's Riches.
Not too many men could carry off a green suit with matching cowboy boots!
Nothing more to say really - just sit back and enjoy the music
George Jones - She Still Thinks I Care
George Jones - I Can't Get Used to Being Lonely
Tuesday, 27 May 2014
I've just realised that over half the songs posted during the last week have featured Scottish artists.
This was not intentional and lest I be accused of being somewhat parochial it it time to widen the net somewhat - as far as Algeria in fact.
Two great songs and indeed great artists from The Essential African Album courtesy of Songlines the World Music magazine.
Rachid Taha is probably best known to British audiences at least for Rock el Casbah his cover of the Clash classic,
However, you are getting Ya Rayah the song that put him on the map and which according to Songlines "casts a spell instantly with its seductive oriental strings and Arab percussion"
Rachid is followed by Souad Massi with Ya Kelbi " an introspective lover's lament whose gorgeous Arabic melody traces arabesques underpinned by a romantic cello"
Rachid Taha - Ya Rayah
Souad Massi - Ya Kelbi
Monday, 26 May 2014
When I recently posted El Presidente I mentioned that Dante Gizzi had formerly been a member of Gun best known for their cover of Cameo's Word Up!
Therefore when I saw Gun's album Swagger, which contains said song, for 50p in Oxfam in St Andrews it seemed too good an opportunity to pass up.
Dante(on bass) is joined by brother Giuliano on guitar, Mark Rankin on vocals and Mark Kerr on drums on this album from 1994.
The majority of the album is not unpleasant heavy metal lite if such a sub genre exists. Harmonica's also feature with an interesting attempt at metal rap with Something Worthwhile.
Not a codpiece in sight I'm glad to report!
Gun - Word Up!
Gun - Something Worthwhile
Sunday, 25 May 2014
When I checked a certain on-line encyclopedia for a list of Southern Soul artistes the name Mavis Staples popped up.
I'm never sure where Southern Soul begins and ends but any excuse to play Mavis is good enough for me.
A mainstay of the Stax label (from Memphis - the Southern link?) as part of the glorious Staples Singers with Pop,Cleo and Yvonne, Mavis has since gone on to a solo career
These tracks are taken from her 2004 record on Alligator Records Have a Little Faith a record which would not be out of place on George's Gospel Sunday
You are getting the title from the album together with her rendition of a Staples Singers standard.
She has since gone on to have records produced by the likes of Ry Cooder and Jeff Tweedy
A nice wee quote from Mavis "This is the joy I have, the world didn't give it to me"
Mavis Staples - Have a Little Faith
Mavis Staples - Will the Circle be Unbroken
Saturday, 24 May 2014
I've just returned from holiday with the usual charity shop smorgasbord of CDs and vinyl -some good, some not so good - which I will subject you to over the next month or so. So, don't say you haven't been warned.
We kick off with two Nashville tracks from Leith's finest The Proclaimers tucked away as tracks 2 and 3 of the CD2 single of Let's Get Married.
A quite superb cover of John Hartford's Gentle on my Mind followed by Jimmy Rogers Waiting For a Train.
You should have worked out by now that the picture above is not actually off the Proclaimers but rather the stars of the TV series Nashville.
Mrs CC could tell you their names but it is a series that has pretty much passed me by.
If the music was as good as this on the other hand ...........
The Proclaimers -Gentle on my Mind
The Proclaimers - Waiting For a Train
Friday, 23 May 2014
After some Edinburgh bands (The Felsons, The Sunshine Delay) and some Glasgow bands (Cosmic Rough Riders, Freeloader) now it is the turn of Dundee with The Hazey Janes.
Thursday, 22 May 2014
Sadly and worryingly a number of candidates from the odious xenophobic and racist UKIP will be elected.
I would like to re-assure my European friends that their views are not the views of the majority of British folk who find them absolutely repugnant.
However, we also have a Prime Minister who if he is re-elected (God forbid) has vowed to have an in-out referendum on membership of the EU.
Meanwhile, Scotland desperately wishes to remain a member if we become a separate country following the referendum on 18th September 2014. Reassuringly UKIP have no place on the Scottish political landscape.
If you vote UKIP, or know someone who does, this first song is for you
The Special AKA - Racist Friend
The Clash - Safe European Home
Wednesday, 21 May 2014
Copper Blue is the debut album by Sugar the band formed by former Husker Du frontman Bob Mould which was voted 1992 album of the year by NME.
Bob is joined by Dave Barbe on bass and Malcolm Travis on drums.
It is a fantastic album and one I'm sure that many of you already have.
If not , I'm sure you'll rectify this after hearing these two tracks.
It was followed up by Beaster which is a different beast altogether -a total noisefest.
There was then File Under Easy Listening which I was sure I had but apparently not
I'm also pretty sure that George and I saw them at Glasgow's Barrowlands back in the day
Bob Mould, I'm happy to report, is still going strong and is pretty prolific having just released yet another solo album Beauty & Ruin
Sugar - If I Can't Change Your Mind
Sugar -Hoover Dam
Tuesday, 20 May 2014
We are off to Anstruther in the East Neuk of Fife for a few days.
Kate Victoria (KT) Tunstall is no stranger to that part of the world having grown up in St Andrews and having been a member of the Fence Collective.
She shot to fame with 2004's Eye of the Telescope.
These two tracks, and the picture, however, are taken from her 2007 Drastic Fantastic album - a charity shop acquisition.
Claim to fame - we were married in Flodigarry Country House Hotel in Skye in 2008 , three weeks after her and by the same registrar.
She and her husband, Luke Bullen the drummer from her band divorced in 2013. Mrs CC and I are still going strong.
KT Tunstall - Funnyman
KT Tunstall - Hold On
Monday, 19 May 2014
For years I have on occasions sung the line A Shot in the Dark, The Big Question Mark for no apparent reason.
It is taken from It's a Mystery a song from Toyah which is track 1, side 2 from her 1981 album Anthem her 4th album but the one that shot her to prominence.
It was released as part of an EP - Four from Toyah -which reached number 4 in the UK singles chart in 1981
As well as a career in singing and acting she has recently appeared in some celebrity diving show nonsense.
Toyah was Ms Willcox back them as opposed to Mrs Fripp as she did not marry the former King Crimson front man Robert until 1986.
The album (which I got in Oxfam a few weeks ago -apologies for the scratches) has not really stood the test of time but these two singles are still pretty good
Toyah - It's a Mystery
Toyah - I Want to Be Free
Sunday, 18 May 2014
Apologies in advance for a somewhat lazy post today
The decoration is nearing completion but things are still in a degree of disarray giving me limited access to the Soul section.
Shamefully I own very little stuff by Sam Cooke - something which I should clearly rectify.
I have the occasional track here and there and that's about it.
I was therefore pretty pleased to come across Sam Cooke at the Copa in the library last week
A live recording from the Copocabana, New York City, July 7th and 8th 1964.
Apparently in his own words he "bombed" the first time he played there in 1958 so he was pretty psyched up and determined to put on a good show this time around.
Given the audience there is a focus on show tunes in the set such as When I Fall in Love for as he puts it "I want to be black.I'm not going to desert my people.But to crossover you must appeal to that market" Remember this is 1964.
Interestingly he also does some folk numbers such as If I Had a Hammer and Blowin' in the Wind and a gospel laced version of Tennessee Waltz.
As it is SSS I've gone for the soulier songs and you are getting four for the price of two.
First up a medley of Try a Little Tenderness,(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons and You Send Me followed by his very own Twistin' The Night Away.
As Robert Alden correctly noted in the New York Times in 1964 "Mr Cooke is a hot item"
Sam Cooke - Try a Little Tenderness/(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons/You Send Me
Sam Cooke - Twistin' The Night Away
PS - I also got Dwight Yoakam 21st Century Hits 2000-2012 out the library which confirmed my suspicion that he hasn't had a decent song this Millennium!
Saturday, 17 May 2014
I am off to Parkhead today for the Scottish Cup Final - Dundee United versus St Johnstone.
Pies, sausage rolls and beers in a nearby Bowling club and then off to the game.
United were serial cup final losers for a while but have managed to win it twice against Rangers and Ross County.
This is the first time the Saints have made the final.
I'm supporting United and if they turn up they should win it pretty convincingly.
However St Johnstone have been the form team in recent weeks, whereas United have faded, and have a danger man in Stevie May.
I'm going for 2-1 for United and therefore you are getting two United songs versus one for the Saintees.
Come on you Arabs!
John Paul Young - Love is in the Air
Daniel Boone - Beautiful Sunday
Chris Barber with Ottilie Patterson - When the Saints Go Marching In
Friday, 16 May 2014
It's Friday, the weather appears to be taking a turn for the better, I'm going to the Cup Final tomorrow and I am off work all next week.
Time to celebrate with a bit of Reggae I feel.
Two songs from a cheap and cheerful compilation the ambitiously titled and I would argue erroneously titled
Now don't get me wrong there are some great artists on here - Horace Andy, Max Romeo, Delroy Wilson and Gregory Issacs to name but four.
There are also some good songs on this CD and indeed some very good ones such as this Bob Marley cover by The Heptones and a fine number by Johnny Clarke
But classics? I think not.
Nevertheless, an excellent way to end the week and to set you up for the weekend
The Heptones - Natural Mystic
Johnny Clarke - Keep On Moving
Thursday, 15 May 2014
Although born in New Malden in Surrey Iain David McGeachy spent the majority of his childhood residing at 10 Tantallon Road, Shawlands Glasgow just a mile of so from CCM HQ.
So what I hear you cry -he was better known as John Martyn - that's so what.
I must take a wander down to see if there is a blue plaque in his honour..
John Martyn was an extremely gifted folk, jazz and rock musician.
However he also had a number of faults- he dabbled in drugs, drank far too much which contributed to having his right leg amputated below the knee and he was friendly with Phil Collins.
He did however leave an impressive canon of music in particular Solid Air (1973), One World (1977) and Grace and Danger (1980).
These two tracks are taken from One World- I have the CD somewhere currently buried under a heap of others in the kitchen.
So instead I have taken them from a Primo Collection Anthology purchased in my local charity shop last weekend.
John Martyn - Dealer
John Martyn - Couldn't Love You More
Wednesday, 14 May 2014
The Blues Collection is currently in a green plastic container on the kitchen floor under various other boxes.
However, the generic Blues section which is filed in a different area is more readily to hand.
And it is from there that I have selected Bury Him at the Crossroads from Janiva Magness for your listening pleasure today.
Janiva is an American blues singer. Until today I thought she was Canadian probably due to the fact that this record from 2004 is on the Northern Blues record label from Toronto
This appears to be her 5th from 9 albums starting from 1997 with the last one to date being from 2012.
I first stumbled across her courtesy of the excellent Paul Jones Rhythm and Blues show on BBC Radio 2
As the sleevnotes state - "a vocalist with a belting voice like there is no tomorrow-backed by an incredible roots band"
Janiva Magness - Bury Him at the Crossroads
Janiva Magness - The Soul of a Man
Tuesday, 13 May 2014
There is a new BBC drama out at the moment on Tuesdays called Happy Valley starring the great Sarah Lancashire who started her acting career as Rachel the dotty barmaid in Coronation Street
The theme tune to the series is Trouble Town by Jake Edwin Charles Kennedy better known as Jake Bug with an extra g.
Which seems a perfect excuse to give this an airing.
Now the boy wonder that is Master Bug with an extra g is a mere twenty years of age and is quite possibly the youngest person to have appeared on CCM.
He was born in 1994 when many of the readers of this were already out there trying to earn an honest crust.
His debut album from which these songs are from was released when he was 18.Scary.
I expect that the blog police may well be all over this post like a rash so catch them while you can.
Monday, 12 May 2014
The Muso Room is in complete turmoil at the moment.
The floor is getting varnished and the walls painted.
As a result the hi-fi is disconnected ,the records have had to be moved and the CD towers are stacked horizontally instead of vertically in the kitchen and living room.
On the positive side the tower containing the punk section is at the top of the pile so it was relatively easy to retrieve my X-Ray Spex Anthology.
A little bit of the late and sadly lamented Poly Styrene makes a pleasant change from a little bit of Poly Filla.
It has been a bit traumatic but there is maybe the opportunity to move things around a bit to create some more space.
Never again though!
X-Ray Spex - Oh Bondage! Up Yours!
X-Ray Spex - The Day the World Turned Day-Glo
Sunday, 11 May 2014
As a wise man commented on my recent Aretha post "sometimes you have to post what might be deemed to be obvious. And that's not a bad thing"
I heard (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay on the radio the other day and thought yup this is going on come Sunday.
The world and their wife are familiar with this song and everyone can whistle the refrain. But it is just absolutely terrific.
To compensate for posting Otis' most popular song I'm also going to give you, as a wee treat, one of his rarest.
Here is Otis with his original demo version of You Left The Water Running recorded at FAME Studios in early 1967.
With simple percussion and accompanying himself on guitar here is a 4 minute version where he ran through the song twice adding a few ad libs of his own
Otis Redding - (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay
Otis Redding - You Left The Water Running (original FAME Demo)
Saturday, 10 May 2014
It's the turn of Castlemilk's finest to feature - here are Cosmic Rough Riders from their great 2000 album Enjoy The Melodic Sunshine on Alan McGhee's Poptone label.
Now this is at least the third post on this album, to my knowledge, over the last few months following on fromMartin and George
Friday, 9 May 2014
I find it nigh on impossible to believe that I have reached post number 448 without having included any Lefty Frizzell or William Orville Frizzell to give him his Sunday name.
A shocking omission and one I profoundly apologise for.
However, I'm sure you will agree that it is well worth the wait as he is quite fantastic.
As Merle Haggard put it "The impact Lefty had on country music is not even measurable. ... No one could handle a song like Lefty. He would hold on to each word until he finally decided to drop it and pick up the next one. Most of us learned to sing listening to him"
He is up there with the Hanks, the Johnnies and the George Jones' - a true country legend.
First up is a song he co-wrote with producer Jim Beck in Dallas and which shot him to prominence with his first US Country number 1 in 1950.
Secondly is his version of the country classic The Long Black Veil. Now I have several versions of this but his is the yardstick against which all others should be measured. None come remotely close.
Lefty Frizzell - If You've Got the Money I've Got the Time
Lefty Frizzell - The Long Black Veil
Thursday, 8 May 2014
Not only all of the above but she remains a great advocate for and promoter of reducing the stigma associated with mental health through her work with the Fruit Tree Foundation and the annual Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival.
She is also a great musician and songwriter and the owner of a terrific voice.
And here is the proof - two lovely tracks from her 2007 debut solo album Watch the Fireworks
Emma Pollock - Paper and Glue
Emma Pollock - Limbs
Wednesday, 7 May 2014
Sleater- Kinney from Olympia, Washington have to go down as one of the original Riot Grrrl bands.
Their homage to Mr Ramone is taken from Call the Doctor their second album from 1996.
The line up is Corin Tucker -vocals, guitars ;Carrie Kinney -guitars and vocals and Lora Macfarlane on drums
The group's name is derived from the Sleater Kinney Road, Interstate 5 Exit no 108 in Lacey Washington which is probably slightly more rock 'n'roll than Raith Interchange, Junction 5, M74
These two short and sweet songs are somewhat Pixie-esque which lets face it is no bad thing.
Sleater-Kinney - I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone
Sleater-Kinney - Little Mouth
Tuesday, 6 May 2014
From Houston ,Texas Eddie Vinson (1917 -1988) was an alto saxophonist and singer who occupied one of the jazzier pews in the broad church that is the Blues.
He was nicknamed Cleanhead following his hair being accidentally destroyed when using a dodgy hair straightening product - let that be a lesson to all of you out there!
He started out as a bluesman but gradually graduated towards jazz towards the end of his 50 odd year career.
Here he is accompanied amongst others by T-Bone Walker on guitar on two songs he co-wrote in these recordings from Boulogne- Billancourt, France from the 28th March 1969
As the slevenotes say clean-cut sounds from Cleanhead.
Take it away Eddie!
Eddie Vinson - Kidney Stew
Eddie Vinson - Juice-Head Baby
Monday, 5 May 2014
What happened when hirsute Rock God Robert Plant met bluegrass chanteuse and fiddler Alison Krauss?
2007's Rising Sand on Rounder Records produced by go to Americana producer T-Bone Burnett - that's what
Winner of the Album of the Year in the 2009 Grammy Awards
The first song featured is an Everly Brother's cover - wonder who's playing Don and who's playing Phil.
This is the second time that a cover of Fortune Teller has featured on CCM the first being from Ash back in March 2013.
Given the success of this album you would have thought that a sequel may have been on the cards.
But let's face it it is not as if either of them (especially Bob) needs the money.
I heard a radio interview with Alison Krauss when she was asked the question.
She made all the right noises re busy schedules and competing priorities but between the lines I got the distinct impression that she wasn't keen to repeat the experience anytime soon.
Purchases in a Nairn charity shop
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss - Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On)
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss -Fortune Teller
Sunday, 4 May 2014
Another album as opposed to individual artist this week.
From the mighty Kent label here are three tracks from the utterly marvelous A Soldier's Sad Song - Vietnam Through The Eyes of Black America 1966 - 73.
Before we get to the music a couple of quotes from the sleevenotes.
" Of the 240,00 men recruited under Project 100,000 (the draft) between October 1966 and June 1969 41% were black, although black Americans represented only 11% of the US population"
"They want me to go to Vietnam to shoot some folks that never lynched me, never called me "n*****", never assassinated my leaders" Muhammad Ali
Now to the music - firstly Joe Tex jumpin' out his foxhole to get himself two mo' enemies.
I'm not sure whether Bill Withers constitutes Southern Soul but I couldn't miss out I Can't Write Left Handed.
Finally, on the basis that this could never be followed, Jerry Williams Jr (aka Swamp Dogg) with John Prine's Sam Stone.
Has there ever been a more poignant line written than " There's a hole in daddy's arm where all the money goes"?
If you do not have this magnificent album I'm sure that you will rectify this before the week is out.
Joe Tex - I Believe I'm Gonna Make It
Bill Withers - I Can't Write Left Handed
Swamp Dogg - Sam Stone
Saturday, 3 May 2014
27 Leggies recent On The Buses post put me in mind of Happy Busman by The Frank and Walters a track I have been meaning to post for ages.
Taken from their 1992 album Trains, Boats and Planes (strangely no mention of buses)
You are also getting Trainspotters not to be confused with anything by Irvine Welsh.
From Cork the band are apparently named after two famous Cork characters.
After this album there were no more until 1997 then 3 in 3 years prior to a gap until 2006 and then 2012 -so 6 albums somewhat sporadically over a 20 year period - strange.
Until, I posted this I was blissfully unaware that these songs were produced by Edwyn Collins
The Frank and Walters - Happy Busman
The Frank and Walters -Trainspotters
Friday, 2 May 2014
George has stated on more than one occasion that Satisfied Minds by the Walkabouts is one of the top 10 albums of all time and he will get no arguments on that assertion from this quarter.
His recent post got me to listening to the other couple of things I have by the Walkabouts.
1996's Devil's Road is good but obviously not in the same league.
The only other stuff I have by them is a CD single of Good Luck Morning a track from the 1994 album Setting the Woods on Fire which is the follow up to Satisfied Minds.
The title track is pretty good but it pales into insignificance when compared to a live version of Findlay's Motel recorded at the Paradiso, Amsterdam on 13th June 1993 around the time that the band were at the top of their game.
It is so good that it wouldn't be out of place on Satisfied Minds.
It would also make a terrific Art House film
The Walkabouts - Good Luck Morning
The Walkabouts - Findlay's Motel
Thursday, 1 May 2014
Happy May Day or should that be Happy Clabby Day!
Ireland's brightest star has just released a new album Tribal.
From what I've heard so far it is up to her usual high standards.
However I am taking you back to the previous album with the title track and one to show that although she can rock with the best of them she can also hold a tune
Swiss Adam posted her doing a stonking version of a Johnny Burnette song on his classic The Return of Friday Night is Rockabilly series last week which you really should
Imelda May - Mayhem
Imelda May - Kentish Town Waltz