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Tuesday 31 October 2017
First Aid Kit are a band that I am more familiar with than Turin Brakes
I have copies of the Drunken Trees EP and their second album The Lion's Roar on the shelves.
So I was pretty chuffed to stumble across a copy of their last album from 2014 Stay Gold
Perhaps a wee bit more mainstream that its predecessors which is maybe not surprising given that they are now on a major label namely Columbia.
Nevertheless the Swedish sisters Klara and Johanna Söderberg continue to impress with their indie/Americana sound.
I read that they have a new album Ruins scheduled for release in January.
First Aid Kit - My Silver Lining
First Aid Kit - A Long Time Ago
Monday 30 October 2017
After the holidays I returned three CDs to a local charity shop, 2 duffers and a doubler, Turns out I already had If The Oceans Get Rough by Willie Mason..I knew I had a couple of his but wasn't sure if this was one of them.It was.
As you would expect when I handed three in I ended up coming away with three new ones.
Turin Brakes are one of the many bands that I have heard of but have not really heard. The only thing of theirs I was familiar with was an excellent cover of the Rolling Stones song Midnight Mile which I have on a compilation and which I have featured here before.
I decided to take a punt on The Optimist LP which is their debut album from 2001. It was a good punt in that the album is very good indeed.
Further exploration required I feel.
Turin Brakes - Emergency 72
Turin Brakes - Starship
Sunday 29 October 2017
I'm Walking, one of the Fats Domino tracks featured in Wednesday was taken from a terrific Uncut Compilation Radio Bob -Another 17 brilliant tracks taken from Dylan's Theme Time Radio Hour.Volume 2
Note to self - must track down Volume 1
Theme Time Radio Hour was a satellite radio show hosted by Bob Dylan which ran from May 2006 to April 2009.An eclectic mix of songs on a weekly theme featured showing that Bob has excellent taste. It also showed his fine sense of humour and a nice line in self deprecation .
While the CD was down from the shelves I took the opportunity to give it a listen and what a belter it is.
I could have chosen any of the 17 songs. Obviously Fats has featured before as have the featured songs by George Jones and Johnny Burnette.
However, as I'm sure you will all agree these three are not too shabby.
Faron Young - Live Fast, Love Hard, Die Young
LaVern Baker - Soul On Fire
Webb Pierce - Drifting Texas Sand
Saturday 28 October 2017
What the Dickens is going on here! Despite almost universal love for the legend that is Johnny Cash he has been on the wrong end of another whooping. Week 1 - 10-3 to Kris Kristofferson and Week 2 9-3 to Tom Petty.
So the score so far is Cash 0 The Rest 2.
I suspect that this week the balance may well be redressed in that I have gone for a band that are pretty much loathed by the musos ,
Desperado is a song from the album of the same name from 1973 by the Eagles. One of their most famous songs but surprisingly it was never a single.
Johnny's version comes from American IV:The Man Comes Around.
Is it the dulcet tones of Don Henley or the smooth baritone of Johnny Cash?
Somewhat controversially I'm going for the Eagles this week, I actually quite like some of their stuff including this one.
Others (and I suspect there may be a few), may choose to disagree.
Next week a compare and contrast submitted by the great Ernie Goggins
Johnny Cash - Desperado
Eagles - Desperado
Friday 27 October 2017
I used to have a double Ian Hunter and Mott the Hoople album which has gone missing somewhere along the way leaving me with only The Best of Mott.
Therefore when I stumbled upon The Journey a 53 song 3 x CD Retrospective of Mott and Ian for 3 quid in a Pitlochry charity shop it was a bit of a no brainer.
However, sadly it has proved to be somewhat of a disappointment.
With the exception of the 9 songs which are on the best of Mott there are probably only about another half a dozen which I would describe as reasonably good.
With the exception of the magnificent Once Bitten Twice Shy, his only hit single, I felt that the solo stuff from Ian Hunter was particularly poor. To be honest I struggled to pick out a second number before opting for Standin' in My Light a song from his 1979 album You're Never Alone with a Schizophrenic.
Rightly, you would never get away with an album title like that these days.
Ian Hunter -Once Bitten Twice Shy
Ian Hunter - Standin' in My Light
Thursday 26 October 2017
I have long been an admirer of the music of Patty Griffin but until recently I have had to make do with the occasional download or song from a compilation.
So I was pretty chuffed to pick up her latest (from 2015) album Servant of Love from the Community Charity Shop in Ullapool for 50p
It was released independently in conjunction with the Thirty Tigers Nashville based entertainment company and is her 9th studio album to have been released since 1996.
There are distinct similarities with Emmylou Harris in places which let's face it is no bad thing and perhaps hardly surprising given that she has toured with her, Buddy Miller, Gillian Welsh and Dave Rawlings as part of the Sweet Harmony Traveling Review.Also Emmylou is one of many artists to have covered Patty's songs.
She featured on Robert Plant's Band of Joy album and was in a relationship with him for a few years thereafter.
Harry would have seen her.
Patty Griffin - Good and Gone
Patty Griffin - Rider of Days
Wednesday 25 October 2017
Back to the holiday purchases today - but don't worry we are nearing the end.
I've never been quite sure what to make of Ed Harcourt.
Is he one of those bland acoustic type artists such as James Blunt or is there something more about him?
I had a promo copy of From Every Sphere for a while (which I think I have only played the once) and picked up his Mercury nominated 2001 debut Here Be Monsters for 50p in Pitlochry.
I must admit that even after a couple of listens I'm still not quite sure.
However, I think there may be something about it that would be worthwhile persevering with as I like that he is prepared to get a wee bit noisy on occasions.
Ed Harcourt - God Protect Your Soul
Ed Harcourt -Wind Through the Trees
Tuesday 24 October 2017
On Friday night I attended the Hug and Pint in Glasgow for the second evening of the album launch of An Unforgiving Light by Annie Booth the first having been at Edinburgh's Sneaky Pete's the previous evening.
A collaborative release by Last Night From Glasgow and Scottish Fiction proof, as if proof was needed, that the future of Scottish music is in safe hands.
I saw Annie play a nervous but faultless acoustic set when supporting Sister John back in September.This time out surrounded by her band (Ross Campbell on guitar, Craig Stoddart on bass and Rohan Bumbra on drums and a keyboard player whose name I missed) she was far more assured.
She was ably supported by young Jared Celosse and by Jo Whitby who performs as Laurence Made Me Cry.
As you would expect her set concentrated on show casing the new album with a couple of older numbers thrown in for good measure. I was particularly taken with her recent singles Chasm and Over My and The Line where she was joined on stage by Leo Bargery from the other band that she is a member of Mt Doubt.
The album is available on both vinyl and CD.
An exclusive bonus for Charity Chic Music readers from our good friends at Last Night From Glasgow who have kindly offered a 25% discount on all their non-sold out releases for a two week period here by using the discount code in the comments section below.
Pay day shortly and Christmas is coming up so please take them up on this extremely generous offer. Thanks Ian!
Monday 23 October 2017
At Friday's Annie Booth gig (more of which later) I dumped into a friend Tom who I hadn't seen for years.
We got talking about mutual friends and when I asked after Harry Thomson he told me that he had died last year.
Anyone who has attended a concert in Glasgow in the last 30 years, particularly one with a Country connection, has probably been in Harry's company.
He had an artificial leg following a shipyard accident and walked with a stick leading to my pals and I dubbing him "the man with the stick" until I got to know him better.
He told a story of going through airport security. "You need to take of your shoe sir" the security officer requested."If I do son , the whole leg will have to come aff" was Harry's reply. Needless to say he was waved through.
Harry must have attended at least 100 concerts per year. When you met him he would rattle off an impressive list that he had attended since you had last met him.
His main love was Americana particularly music from Texas. His email address was harrytexas hence the picture above.
I had the pleasure of being in his company at the SXSW festival in Austin on a couple of occasions where he quickly acquired legendary status.There was a bar stool right in front of the stage at the Continental Club reserved for his exclusive use. He also took great pride in introducing folk from Austin he knew to other Austin residents they didn't know but he did.
I attended countless concerts with Harry mainly Americana although we also saw Toots & the Maytals and Joss Stone where I was the second oldest member of the audience and Harry the oldest.
We gradually lost touch as I attended less and less concerts although our paths would occasionally cross at Celtic Connections concerts.
The last time I saw him was at an Allison Moorer concert at St Andrews in the Square which I attended with Mrs CC and her mum.
We were chatting outside to Harry and another guy at the end when Harry mentioned that he was going onto the club event at the Art School. Mrs CC, who was driving, offered him and the other guy a lift.
We dropped the other guy off at a hotel in the town centre."Who's your pal?" I asked Harry. "No idea" he replied "some guy from Aberdeen who was sitting next to me and we got talking"
I'm sorry I never found out about his death at the time and didn't get my opportunity to pay my respects.
I hope that this belated tribute to the most passionate person about live music I have ever met goes some way to making up for that.
Rosie Flores - West Texas Plains
Dave Alvin - East Texas Blues
Steve Wynn & the Miracle 3 - A Fond Farewell
Sunday 22 October 2017
Some whimsical and flighty English folk music for your Sunday morning courtesy of Kirsty McGee and her 2002 debut album Honeysuckle.
Each year when on holiday we usually take the occasional punt on someone we have never heard of and this year Kirsty fell into that category.
The fact that the album features such luminaries as Clive Gregson and Boo Hewerdine probably helped.
On the Fellside Recordings label from Workington.
Pleasant stuff which you would be happy to stumble upon in a pub or folk club.
The album is available free to download on Bandcamp for those of you who are taken with this.
Kirsty McGee - Rich
Kirsty McGee - Wild Garlic
Saturday 21 October 2017
|I'm not sure how long I'll persevere with the GIF!|
I would argue that this also applies to this week's compare and contrast when Johnny is up against the recently departed Tom Petty with his version of I Won't Back Down with Tom and the Heartbreakers providing the music and backing vocals.
Johhny's version is from American III : Solitary Man. The American Recordings series will feature fairly heavily over the next few weeks.
Another very tough call this week.After having given both of them a listen I will go for Mr Cash this week.A close call though.
Others, of course may choose to disagree.
Up above us on a cloud somewhere Tom Petty and Johnny Cash as sitting trying to work out what they are going to call their new duet!
Johnny Cash - I Won't Back Down
Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - I Won't Back Down
Friday 20 October 2017
Like many of you, I suspect, I have been thoroughly enjoying the seemingly never ending stream of obscure Garage classics coming out of Drew's place recently.
Therefore I was quite excited to spot a Mojo compilation entitled Instant Garage again in the Highland Hospice shop in Dornoch.
An impressive 28 tracks. There is however a much wider interpretation of Garage than Drew would offer with artists such as MC5, New York Dolls, Kinks, Love, Jonathan Richman and the Ramones featuring. Not that I am complaining too much about any of the above you understand.
For the purpose of this post I thought I would go for some of the slightly more obscure artists who perhaps fit the Garage label more neatly.
So here are The Sonics (1965), Rocky & the Riddlers (1965) and She (1970)
It is highly likely that some of the other 25 tracks will make an appearance at some stage.
The Sonics -Psycho
Rocky & the Riddlers - Flash & Crash
She - Outta Reach
Thursday 19 October 2017
Pictured above is your humble author anxiously pacing the beach in Dornoch seeking inspiration for future posts.
Fortunately help was close at hand in the nearby Highland Hospice charity shop.
I came away with Uncut's Best of 2004 Reissues Volume 2.
Some excellent stuff on there including Willard Grant Conspiracy, the Go-Betweens, Gun Club and Pavement to name but a few
However I've gone for Bangkok a solo number from the great Alex Chilton.
From one great artist to another. Here is Eddie Hinton possibly the owner of the greatest white Soul voice. Actually, there is no possibly about it.
Alex Chilton - Bangkok
Eddie Hinton - Help Me To Make It (Power of a Woman's Love)
Wednesday 18 October 2017
For once I didn't come across too much Americana during our trip up North. It has been a fertile hunting ground in the past but not this time.
I did manage to bag a couple though.
The name 16 Horsepower rang a bell in the deeper recesses of my mind when I picked up 2000's Secret South in Pitlochry but it was only later that I discovered that it was on the legendary (to me at least) German Glitterhouse label.
Sure enough back home I checked and I have a couple of their tracks on Glitterhouse compilations including one from this album.
They are out of Denver. David Eugene Edwards is the head honcho ably supported by Steve Taylor on guitar, Pascal Humbert on bass and Jean-Yves Tola on drums.
The album was recorded and self produced in a cabin n the mountains around Denver and then mixed in Bath.
16 Horsepower - Clogger
16 Horsepower - Straw Foot
Tuesday 17 October 2017
We are busy battening down the hatches (or hatchets as Mrs CC would have it) in preparation for Storm Ophelia which will hopefully have passed by the time you get round to reading this.
Downgraded from a hurricane it has unfortunately already reeked havoc in Ireland.
As you can imagine the media is in a total frenzy.
When we we in Giarloch it got a bit blowy and the power went out. People just got on with it.
Nothing I'm sure compared to what the Caribbean has recently had to endure
All of the above is really just an opportunity to post these two songs and to mention that there used to be a woman at my work called Ophelia.
The Band - Ophelia
Natalie Merchant - Ophelia
Monday 16 October 2017
Picked up Love Over Rage a 1994 album by Tom Robinson on the great Cooking Vinyl label in Ullapool.
The first CD I have by him although I have a fair bit of vinyl both solo and as part of the Tom Robinson Band all of which was at least 10 years previous to this release.
The lyrics are as always excellent but the music is a bit like the curate's egg - good in parts.
For me these are probably the pick of the bunch.
The personnel on the album include Chris Rea on slide guitar and TV Smith of Adverts fame on backing vocals.
His middle name is Giles.
Tom Robinson - Roaring Days
Tom Robinson - Days (That Changed The World)
Sunday 15 October 2017
The more observant among you may have noticed that my recent Brothers,Sisters series has disappeared.
The reason? Momentum has disappeared following my holiday break. As those who do this stuff know it is all about momentum.It may or may not reappear at some stage
The Pointer Sisters were one of few acts to feature.
I have since doubled my Pointer Sisters collection by acquiring a Greatest Hits CD in Ullapool.
Had I had it then one of these songs may have featured.
Indeed Fire could also perhaps have featured in the Springsteen covers series.
Worry not , all things come to those that wait.
Pointer Sisters -I'm So Excited
Pointer Sisters - Fire
Saturday 14 October 2017
A new Saturday Covers series for you today - but with a twist.
Instead of comparing an artists songs with covers by others we are comparing songs covered by Johnny Cash with the originals.
Usual rules apply and I have more than enough material for the first to ten being the winner
I think that I probably heard Johnny's version of Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down before I heard the Kris Kristofferson original. Good though it is it doesn't hold a candle to the original.Also Kris looses the G's while Johnny keeps his.
A thought . When Glen Campbell died Rhinestone Cowboy was regularly trotted out as opposed to his greatest song Wichita Lineman.
When Kris finally shuffles off this mortal coil we shall probably get Me and Bobby McGee played more than this. Wrongly in my opinion.
So it is Kris for me this week. Others, of course may choose to disagree.
Another compare and contrast next Saturday
Johnny Cash - Sunday Morning Coming Down
Kris Kristofferson - Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down
Friday 13 October 2017
The Red Cross charity shop in Dingwall had a pretty meagre collection of CD's on display mainly Uncut and Mojo compilations
Given that I am trying to be more discerning primarily for space reasons (finance comes into it as well but not in this case as they were only 50p) I decided to ration myself to one.
And I think I got a cracker.From May 2009 as part of Island Records 50th Anniversary celebrations they gave us Island Folk - an acoustic-led celebration.
It includes such luminaries as Sandy Denny, The Incredible String Band, Fairport Convention and Nirvana (no, not THAT one).
There is even some Jethro Tull thrown in to keep George happy.
However I have gone for two of Folk's most famous husband and wife combinations for your listening pleasure today.
John and Beverley Martyn - Primrose Hill
Richard and Linda Thompson - The End of the Rainbow
Thursday 12 October 2017
A couple of cover versions of classic songs today from Susannah Hoffs - settle down at the back Swiss Adam
One is reasonably good and the other utterly appalling.
Let's start with the reasonably good. Another one from the Austin Powers soundtrack with Susannah covering the Burt Bacharach classic The Look of Love. There are obviously better ones out there but it passes muster.
She has connections with Austin Powers in that she is married to it's director Jay Roach and the band Ming Tea consisting of her, Matthew Sweet and Mike Myres also features.
Brace yourselves now. The title of her 1991 debut solo album When You're a Boy gives a clue. A dreadful album and one which is going back.Allmusic gives it 1.5/5 which is overly generous
The final track the cover of Bowie's Boys Keep Swinging is truly awful
Bought in Dingwall.
Something better tomorrow
Susannah Hoffs - The Look of Love
Susanna Hoffs - Boys Keep Swinging
Wednesday 11 October 2017
Writer's Block -the scourge of the blogging community.
Who better then to turn to than the wonderful Swedish trio of Peter, Bjorn and John with their 2006 album of that name on V2 Scandinavia/Wichita
That'll be Peter Morén on vocals and guitar, Bjorn Yttling on bass and John Eriksson on drums and percussion.
The lady accompanying Peter on the second number is none other than Victoria Bergsman of Concretes fame.
Obviously big in Pitlochry as that's where it was purchased.
Peter Bjorn and John - Objects of my Affection
Peter Bjorn and John - Young Folks
Tuesday 10 October 2017
We have returned with a mish mash of stuff for your listening "pleasure".
Some good others perhaps not too good. In no particular order.
Talking of mish mashes that would be a pretty good description for the tracks on Austin Powers - the Original Soundtrack picked up for 50p in the Community Shop in Ullapool.
It is a lot better than I thought it would be albeit that for every Cardigans there is a Mike Flowers Pop.
I was pleasantly surprised when the first song on the CD turned out to be by Edwyn Collins. We visited Helmsdale where he stays on our travels but sadly didn't bump into him.
More shagtastic tunes tomorrow.
Edwyn Collins - The Magic Piper (Of Love)
Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66 - Mas Que Nada
Monday 9 October 2017
That's the holidays finished then. Back to auld claes and porridge as my Gran used to say.
A few new goodies to share with you.
But firstly a reference to the sad death of Tom Petty.
I didn't have the wherewithall to do a post at the time but read the many fine tributes others posted.
When we go married in Skye we stayed in a Highland blackhouse in the hamlet of Clachamish.
We were taken by how much the view of the road reminded us of the cover of Into the Great Wide Open.
The A850 as opposed to The Kings Highway it will always be our lasting memory and reminder of Tom Petty.
Rest easy Tom.
Ton Petty & the Heartbreakers - Learning to Fly
Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers - Kings Highway
Saturday 7 October 2017
As you would expect the late great Kirsty MacColl has graced these pages before.
However her early stuff has never featured.
Chip shop could I supposed be described as a novelty record of sorts. If so, there are few if any better.
As for A New England she takes an already great Billy Bragg song to an altogether higher level.
That's the holidays pretty much over. Normal service shall resume shortly.
Hope you enjoyed this little interlude
Kirsty MacColl -There's a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop Swears He's Elvis
Kirsty MacColl - A New England
Thursday 5 October 2017
We are off to Sheffield today to catch up with Martyn, Ian and Glenn collectively known as synth pop band Heaven 17.
A song from each of their two classic albums Penthouse and Pavement and The Luxury Gap.
Sadly still treading the Retro boards
Heaven 17 -Height of the Fighting (He-la-hu)
Heaven 17 - Come Live With Me
Tuesday 3 October 2017
Like Squeeze and The Kinks who featured last week Bolton band Buzzcocks were one of the great British singles bands
Although the reformed band have been on the go since 1989 it is the period from 1976 -1979 that is best to focus on when they could do no wrong
The previously featured Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn't've) remains one of my favourite all time songs
Buzzcocks - What Do I Get?
Buzzcocks -What Ever Happened To?
Sunday 1 October 2017
The husband and wife duo was once considered "one of the hottest, most durable, and potentially most explosive of all R&B ensembles"
Then came the stories of wife beating, control freakery and drug taking on the part of Ike and Simply the Best on the part of Tina.
How the mighty have fallen.
Ike & Tina Turner - River Deep, Mountain High
Ike & Tina Turner - I Want to Take You Higher