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Sunday, 30 November 2014
This week it is the turn of Little Anthony and the Imperials to grace the Sunday Soul slot.
A doo wop and rhythm and blues group they have been on the go since 1958 and feature the falsetto voice and golden tonsils of one Anthony Gourdine better known as Little Anthony.
In chronological order we start in 1964 with Goin' Out of my Head recorded on the DCP label with whom they had 5 hits in a 12 month period.
By 1966 they were on the Veep label with another head song Better Use Your Head released in April 1966
Followed in August 1966 with Gonna Fix You Good (Every Time You're Bad)
Hard working bands in those days churning out records every couple of months
There have been too many Imperials over the years to give them all a name check
Mr Gourdine is still going strong and still performing touring with David Gest's Legends of Soul.
Little Anthony and the Imperials - Goin' Out of my Head
Little Anthony and the Imperials - Better Use Your Head
Little Anthony and the Imperials - Gonna Fix You (Every Time You're Bad)
Saturday, 29 November 2014
Today's picks come from courtesy of Uncut's Unconditionally Guaranteed 2000.8
The Go-Betweens featured two to three weeks ago on Saturday Lucky Dip. I make no apologies for featuring them again with the wonderful When She Sang About Angels from their 2000 album The Friends of Rachel Worth.
The Friends of Rachel Worth is also the nom de plume of the author of the much missed Cathedrals of Sound blog.
Go -Betweens tracks are a bit like Corporation buses - none for ages then two come along at once!
CCM has been on the go for over two years now and so far no reference to the Gang of Four. Time to rectify that with At Home He's a Tourist from their great 1999 album Entertainment.
Two great bands beginning with G.(No Kenny G though!)
More random nonsense next Saturday
The Go-Betweens - When She Sang About Angels
Gang of Four - At Home He's A Tourist
Friday, 28 November 2014
You Don't Believe Me is the third of the five Stray Cats singles in my brothers box and is the one that I , and I suspect most of you will be least familiar with
Their fourth single , their third released in 1981, and the first one taken from their second album Gonna Ball.
It entered the UK charts on 7th November 1981 but only hung around for 3 weeks peaking at number 57.
The three band members receive writing credits for this song with Brian Setzer being credited for the b-side Cross that Bridge
Gonna Ball only reached number 48 in the album charts compared to Stray Cats' number 6 suggesting that commercially the band had already peaked.
Stray Cats - You Don't Believe Me
Stray Cats - Cross That Bridge
Thursday, 27 November 2014
I put horse's heads in people's beds
Cause I am the mob
Back in a previous life the Queen of the Airwaves Cerys Matthews MBE was lead singer of the Welsh rock band Catatonia.
They released four albums between 1996 and 2001 all on Blanco Y Negro of which I own one namely International Velvet from 1998.
You often see their albums in charity shops and I was under the impression that at the very least I also had Equally Blessed and Cursed.
Apparently I don't, something I must remember next time I come across it or any of their other albums
Catatonia - I Am The Mob
Catatonia - Road Rage
Wednesday, 26 November 2014
The View are four young whippersnappers from Dryburgh, Dundee whose debut album Hats of to the Buskers entered the UK album charts at number 1 on 28th January 2007 reflecting a fairly intensive period of hype prior to its release.
Although pretty raw in places it is full of youthful enthusiasm, confidence and energy.
George, if you listen closely on Superstar Tradesman you will hear your erstwhile hometown get a mention.
Whereas I quite enjoy the album I haven't really felt the urge to rush out and purchase any of it's three successors.
They join Michael Marra, The Hazy Janes, Danny Wilson, Swiss Family Orbison, Billy McKenzie and bits of Deacon Blue as Dundonian artists to have featured on CCM
The View - Superstar Tradesman
The View - Same Jeans
Tuesday, 25 November 2014
Charity Chic Music is two years old today
Two years of assorted nonsense much of it culled from the nation's Charity Shops.
If it is on the CCM shelves it has probably featured at some stage.Or if not, it soon will.
It keeps me out of mischief and out from under the feet of the long suffering Mrs CC, happily ensconced in the Muso room thinking up some music to play and some witterings to subject you to
If you have enjoyed it half as much as me then I've enjoyed it twice as much as you!
Here's to year three and beyond
And as Marvin and Kim would have it
It takes two baby , me and you!
Marvin Gaye and Kim Weston - It Takes Two
Associates - Party Fears Two
Monday, 24 November 2014
The more objective among us would probably describe them as more like a Mancunain Hall and Oates
Olé was an album from 1981 towards the later part of their brief flirtation with fame which reached the dizzy heights of number 72 in the UK album charts.
However, I suspect that many of you will recognise the two featured tracks suggesting that not unlike Crowded House and The Beautiful South you probably know more Sad Café songs than you think which is not necessarily a good thing.
Their lead singer was one Paul Young - no not that one - but even worse - this one went on to perform with Mike and the Mechanics.
They limped along to 1990 then disbanded before somewhat sadly and predictably reforming in 1998, 2000 and then in 2012 presumably chasing the somewhat lucrative retro market.
It is amazing how quickly those "musical differences" can be put to one side when there is money at stake.
Sad Cafe - Love's Enough
Sad Cafe -Follow You Anywhere
Sunday, 23 November 2014
This week I have been mostly reading The Last Holiday a memoir by the late great Gil Scott-Heron which was published posthumously.
It gives an interesting account of his life with a focus on his participation in Stevie Wonder's Hotter than July tour and the campaign to have Martin Luther King Day recognised and proclaimed as a holiday.
As you would imagine it is beautifully written and also contains a number of snatches of his rhythmic street poetry which served as a forerunner to the rap movement.
I saw him perform in the Tunnel Nightclub in Glasgow.
I have a good few of his songs downloaded but somewhat shamefully I could only find one physical version of one of his songs and even then that was on a Mojo compilation - The Original Funk Soul Brothers and Sisters.
I do have plenty of Stevie Wonder though including Hotter than July
Gil Scott-Heron &Brian Jackson - The Bottle
Stevie Wonder - Master Blaster (Jammin')
Saturday, 22 November 2014
We are going back to 2001 for this week's Lucky Dip - December 2001 to be precise with Uncut's Guide to the Month's Best Music.
One of the best records of that month and indeed that year was surely Time (The Revelator) by Gillian Welch.
It is the only one of her albums which I don't have (yet) which is probably why Elvis Presley Blues jumped out at me.
From one great musical icon to another - ladies and gentlemen I give you Eric Goulden more better known as Wreckless Eric with Reconnez Cherie taken from If It Ain't Stiff a 1991 compilation
Anyone who rhymes Zodiac with Pac-a-mac must be a 24 carat genius.
For those of you who enjoy a good read can I recommend The Immortal Jukebox where Thom provides a series of well informed and very well written essays on a variety of musical legends including most recently old Wreckless himself
Unlike my blog some are carefully crafted as opposed to just thrown together.
More random nonsense next Saturday
Gillian Welch - Elvis Presley Blues
Wreckless Eric - Reconnez Cherie
Friday, 21 November 2014
It is time for some Friday Reggae courtesy of Winston Rodney or to give him his stage name Burning Spear.
Burning Spear is/are named after a military award given by Jomo Kenyatta the first president of an independent Kenya.
These tracks are taken from Harder Than The Best a 1979 Island Records compilation highlighting his work from the previous decade.
He is still going strong with the last of his 28 studio albums Jah is Real being recorded in 2008
Winston was quite rightly awarded the Jamaican Order of Distinction in 2007
To my American friends - please do not panic he is actually singing "Social Living is the best" as opposed to "Socialism is the best"!
Burning Spear - Social Living
Burning Spear - Civilize Reggae
Thursday, 20 November 2014
The Stray Cats second single Rock This Town does not feature in my brother's box so we move swiftly onto the third single Stray Cat Strut written by Brian Setzer.
It entered the UK charts on 25th April 1981 hanging around for a ten week period peaking at number 11.
The b-side is a live version of their song Drink That Bottle Down with Lee Rocker on vocals and is pleasantly bluesy in places.
As the sleeve points out the Stray Cats were Brian Setzer -strummin'n'croonin'. Lee Rocker -slappin'n'howlin' and Slim Jim Phantom - bangin'n'yellin'
More to follow
Stray Cats - Stray Cat Strut
Stray Cats -Drink That Bottle Down
Wednesday, 19 November 2014
George's recent post featuring Lash Lariat had me reaching into the Americana Compilations section to retrieve Cowpunks a 1996 compilation from Vinyl Junkie records.
In that grand punk tradition some of the 24 Trailblazing Tracks are a bit rough round the edges but they are none the worse for that and in some ways it is part of their charm.
Half the songs on the record are exclusive to Cowpunks so it is only fair that we feature some of them
We'll start with The Coal Porters, a band fronted by Sid Griffin, with the much covered truck driving song Six Days on the Road.
This is followed by another cover from Louisville's finest Freakwater with a magnificent interpretation of Richard Thomson's Withered and Died.
And finally a true original from Ottawa's Furnaceface with their tribute to Tipper Gore the wife of former Vice President Al and the person responsible for introducing Parental Advisory stickers (aka Tipper Stickers) onto CDs and records. As you might expect this is somewhat of a protest song and therefore contains the occasional sweary word.
The Coal Porters - Six Days on the Road
Freakwater -Withered and Died
Furnaceface - We Love You, Tipper Gore
Tuesday, 18 November 2014
Phil Solem and Danny Wilde collectively known as The Rembrands are the artists responsible for I'll be There For You the theme song for Friends.
Don't get me started on Friends. It represents the worse of American TV. It is not funny. It is however ubiquitous- you can't turn on the telly at any time of the night or day and not find it on at least one channel. It features grown men who meet together for a coffee rather than a beer FFS. Oh, and did I mention it's not funny?
Before this song became their nest egg resulting in them not having to bother too much they had released a couple of albums including 1992's Untitled which is a perfectly acceptable pop album.
Mrs CC picked this up for 50p with about a dozen others in an Oxfam bargain bin in St Andrews. Some were so awful that they have been dispatched from whence they came. The remaining ones could well feature at some stage.You have been warned!
The Rembrandts - Johnny Have You Seen Her?
The Rembrandts -I'll Come Callin'
Monday, 17 November 2014
I am aware that Bruce Springsteen is a bit like Marmite - you either love him or you hate him.
Some of my fellow bloggers (hi George and Adam) think he is the devil incarnate whilst others such as Scott are big fans.
I'm with Scott - I like Springsteen there I've said it.
I don't necessarily think that he is the greatest thing on two legs and I find some of the hype and the nickname of the Boss a trifle irritating.
However, he is terrific live and has released some great albums - Darkness on the Edge of Town, Born to Run, The Wild the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle, The River , the Seeger Sessions and Ghost of Tom Joad to name but six.
Like all artists with a large canon of work he has also released some shockers - Human Touch and Lucky Town spring to mind
I'm not a particular fan of Born in the USA.My brother and I went in a coach from Glasgow to see him at St James Park, Newcastle when this was out and we were the only two who knew anything from his back catalogue.
In my opinion Nebraska is his masterpiece and one of the top 10 albums of all time. Others of course may choose to differ
Bruce Springsteen - Nebraska
Bruce Springsteen - Highway Patrolman
Sunday, 16 November 2014
What's happening $tateside I here you ask.
Well to tell you the truth I've no idea
However, I do know that in 1987 a sampler What's Happening $tateside featuring 16 songs from the legendary label was released and that I picked up a copy in Oxfam for 99p last week.
The track listing represents a veritable who's who of the great and the good of Soul music - The O'Jays, Bobby Womack, Garnett Mimms, Ike & Tina, Irma Thomas and the Isley Brother to name a few.
There is every chance that the tracks from those artists and the others I have not mentioned will appear on CCM at a later stage.
However today you are not getting one or two but indeed three absolute crackers.
First up is the great Bettye Swann with Tell it Like it Is. The NME stated that "you'd have to be virtually dead not to like this record" and they are right there..
Bettye is followed by Z.Z. Hill with a tremendous version of Bobby Bland's Ain't Nothin' You Can Do.
And finally we have Homer Banks with a "soothing, sizzling and sensual" A Lot of Love.
A terrific find!
Bettye Swann -Tell It Like It Is
Z.Z. Hill -Ain't Nothin' You Can Do
Homer Banks - A Lot of Love
Saturday, 15 November 2014
"So, what lessons did you learn from Chappaquiddick Senator Kennedy?"
"Never drive over narrow bridges when you're off your face"
All of which probably has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with Chappaquiddick Skyline one of the many incarnations of Joe Pernice who grace Uncut's Unconditionally Guaranteed 2000.4 with a splendid cover of New Order's Leave Me Alone.
Covers seem to be the order of the day as Joe and the boys are followed by Sonic's Rendezvous with a version of Chuck Berry's Sweet Little Sixteen which totally rocks.
Hardly surprising really given that the band contained Fred "Sonic" Smith from MC5 and Scott Asheton from The Stooges within their number.
Chappaquiddick Skyline - Leave Me Alone
Sonic's Rendezvous - Sweet Little Sixteen
Friday, 14 November 2014
|More hair than a hair convention|
Guitar god Ritchie Blackmore, Ronnie James Dio on vocals and Cozy Powell on drums - the're all there.
What on earth possessed me to purchase this in 1978 when I was old enough to know better and there was a lot of terrific music about I have absolutely no idea.
I have it in my head that I bought it in Ayr - maybe punk had not reached the Ayrshire coast by then..
You are only getting the one track today which arguably is more than enough
Rainbow -Long Live Rock'n'Roll
Thursday, 13 November 2014
I like a little bit of Robert Cray
I have a couple of his mid 80s albums (Strong Persuader and Don't Be Afraid of The Dark) purchased from the much missed Echo record shop on Glasgow's Byres Road.
The Blues Collection however takes us back to 1980 and Robert's debut album Who's Been Talkin' although he had been performing with the Robert Cray Band in Eugene, Oregon for a number of years prior to this release.
He even had an uncredited part as the bass player in the house party band Otis Day and the Knights in the film National Lampoon's Animal House.
He has gone on to pick up 5 Grammy Awards and is one of the very few members of The Blues Collection still with us at the tender age of 61.
Plenty of life in the old dog yet.
Robert Cray Band -Too Many Cooks
Robert Cray Band -Who's Been Talkin'
Wednesday, 12 November 2014
Pottering about at my mother's the other day I stumbled across a small singles box containing four of five Stray Cats singles belonging to my brother.
I thought it would be a good idea to dust them down, give them a listen and share with you good people.
So for starters here is their debut single from 1980 Runaway Boys written by Brian Setzer and Jimmy McDonnell (aka Slim Jim Phantom)
The b-side is My One Desire written by Dorsey Burnette brother of Johnny and a member of the Rock'n'Roll Trio.
It entered the UK singles charts on 29th November 1980 and was in the charts for 10 weeks peaking at number 9 their equal highest position along with Rock This Town
Stray Cats - Runaway Boys
Stray Cats - My One Desire
Tuesday, 11 November 2014
Anthem for Doomed Youth
BY WILFRED OWEN
What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
— Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle
Can patter out their hasty orisons.
No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells;
Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs,—
The shrill, demented choirs of wailing shells;
And bugles calling for them from sad shires.
What candles may be held to speed them all?
Not in the hands of boys, but in their eyes
Shall shine the holy glimmers of goodbyes.
The pallor of girls' brows shall be their pall;
Their flowers the tenderness of patient minds,
And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds.
Monday, 10 November 2014
Former Disposable Hero of Hiphoprisy star Michael Franti has released eight studio albums with his band Spearhead
Their 6th All Rebel Rockers from 2008 is their most successful to date and has a lovely reggae feel to it - hardly surprising really given that Sly and Robbie are at the controls.
Cherine Anderson and Marie Daulne also pitch up to assist in the vocals department.
Around this time Franti even found time to play at three different events to commemorate Barrack Obama's inauguration.
An excellent post -holiday discovery in a Cathcart Charity shop
The rude boy's back in town
Rude Boys Back in Town
A Little Bit of Riddim
Sunday, 9 November 2014
If you like today's offerings I'll happily take the credit.
However, if you don't it is quite clearly Scott's fault!
His postings and writing on songs by both Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway had me tracking down Best Of's by both artists recently to hear a little bit more of what they are all about.
And two excellent artists and albums they are too.
Roberta Flack is obviously best known for for the ballads Killing Me Softly With His Song and First Time Ever I Saw Your Face and has a great soul voice.
I hadn't really heard of Donny Hathaway and he was a great discovery. Another great soul voice sounding not unlike Stevie Wonder at times.Sadly Donny had significant mental health problems and took his own life at the tragically young age of 33.He did however leave a tremendous legacy of music.
Roberta and Donny recorded a couple of best selling duet albums and seeing as how I bought their records on the same day it would be somewhat churlish not to share a couple of duets which feature on both albums with you.
Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway -Where Is The Love
Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway - Back Together Again
Saturday, 8 November 2014
Last week's selection was particularly well received.
I can't promise the same for this week but here goes.
Two tracks selected from Uncut's CD from April 2001
Captain Soul were a band on Alan McGhee's Poptone label named after a song from The Byrds' Fifth Dimension album
Compared to the likes of The Hollies, The Zombies and Big Star here is Your Time from their 2001 album Beat Your Crazy Head Against The Sky
A band who were no strangers to beating their crazy heads against the sky were The Soft Boys led by national treasure Robyn Hitchcock.
Here is I Wanna Destroy You from their 1980 psychedelic folk album Underwater Moonlight.
More random nonsense next Saturday
Captain Soul -Your Time
The Soft Boys - I Wanna Destroy You
Friday, 7 November 2014
Quiz Culture is a new album from Scottish band Dancing Mice to be released on 1st December 2014 on Squeak Audio.
Described by the band as indie delux they are a four piece with this being their fourth album - further details here
If you are in the Edinburgh area next Thursday (13th November) there is a free launch night in Henry's Cellar Bar on Morrison Street with the band on stage around 8.00pm
Well worth checking out
If you are unable to attend in person here is a sample of what you will be missing
Dancing Mice -Eleanor
Thursday, 6 November 2014
Steve Earle has had over twenty albums in his long and illustrious career.
There was Copperhead Road from 1988 perhaps his most famous and most successful album
Then there is 1995's album Train a Comin' a comeback album after five years of prison and heroin addiction.
Or there is The Mountain his bluegrass album with the Del McCoury Band
I Feel Alright and El Corazon are clearly worth a mention.
However, my favourite and one of the ten best albums of all time is his debut album from 1986 Guitar Town -twenty eight your ago for goodness sake.
And here is the proof, the title track Guitar Town, the haunting Hillbilly Highway and My Old Friend the Blues brilliantly covered later by The Proclaimers.
What a brilliant debut album and an introduction to one of the best songwriters of his generation.
My mother when hearing the name Steve Earle thought he was the singer from Hot Chocolate - close but no cigar!
Steve Earle - Guitar Town
Steve Earle - Hillbilly Highway
Steve Earle - My Old Friend The Blues
Wednesday, 5 November 2014
When Smokey sings I hear violins
Don't we all Martin, don't we all?
Here is the man in the golden suit paying tribute to the man with the golden tonsils
ABC -When Smokey Sings
Smokey Robinson & the Miracles - The Tracks of My Tears
Tuesday, 4 November 2014
It's time for 10 minutes or so of some pretty good indie pop from 1993
Kingmaker were a three piece from Kingston on Hull who reached number 29 in the UK singles charts with Queen Jane.
I have CD 1 of a 2 CD set which includes Your Place and Electric Sue in addition to the title track
They produced 4 albums and about a dozen singles between 1991 and 1995 but never really came to anything.
Their biggest claim to fame appears to be that a pre- Pablo Honey Radiohead supported them on tour in 1992
I saw them in 1995 at King Tuts by which time Radiohead had thankfully gone onto bigger things
Kingmaker -Queen Jane
Kingmaker -Your Place
Kingmaker -Electric Sue
Monday, 3 November 2014
Albums I've bought because of the cover? - Song of the Wild West Island by Loomer?
Purchased in the previously mentioned Greenhouse in Dingwall.
Although immediately attracted by the cover I had it in the back of my mind that I had vaguely heard of them. I was wrong there.
Loomer is both a band and a person - the person being Scott Loomer on vocals, guitar and "cheater's banjo"? (no, me neither)
As a bonus it turned out to be a pound well spent as it is a pretty good slice of Americana.
Shades of Jay Ferrar and Son Volt in places which is no bad thing.
Loomer - Only Lovers
Loomer -Paper Doll
Sunday, 2 November 2014
Madeline Bell is from Newark, New Jersey but found fame in the 60's in Britain as a backing singer with Dusty Springfield, Elton John (Honky Chateau), Rod Stewart (Every Picture Tells a Story ),Rolling Stones (You Can't Always Get What You Want) and a host of others
She was also a member of the band Blue Mink who had that great Melting Pot single.
She also found time to pursue a solo career and here are a couple of tracks from her 1967 album Bell's a Poppin'
First up is Beat The Clock a terrific B side from the single I'm Gonna Make You Love Me .
Then we have Can't Get Used to Losing You first recorded by Andy Williams and also covered brilliantly by The Beat
As the record sleeve would have it "a melting pot of US Soul and the finest Brit-girl sounds distilled through one unique and remarkable singer"
Happily, she is still going strong
Madeline Bell - Beat The Clock
Madeline Bell -Can't Get Used to LosingYou
Saturday, 1 November 2014
Uncut's freebie album from July 2002 is entitled Neat Neat Neat in recognition of the issuing of Smash It Up -The Damned Anthology.
It would therefore be somewhat churlish if we were not to play what is perhaps the finest 2 minutes 44 seconds in the careers of Messrs Vanian, Sensible, James and Scabies
Their second single from 18th February 1977 produced by Sir Nick Lowe
This one is for Dirk
Ah when music was music.
The Yeah Yeah Yeah's featuring the fantastic Karen O keep up the high tempo with Miles Away from their eponymous 2002 EP.
To relax you somewhat after all that frenetic activity I give you Australia's finest The Go- Betweens with Draining the Pool for You from their Spring Hill Fair album