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Wednesday, 27 November 2019

State of the Union - Arizona

George writes
Last week it was only possible to create 4 track EP from the state of Massachusetts. That’s a poor showing. Let’s see if Arizona, this week’s state, can do better. Given that Phoenix is in Arizona I think there’s a good chance. 

The shop WH Smith in England (I’m not sure they existed in Scotland at the time) banned the album because of its allegedly rude title…..the one that is a biblical quote….

Lynda (“In her satin tights, fighting for your rights---------------WONDER WOMAN!!!”) Carter was born in Phoenix.  

Unfortunately the Wishbone Ash track on their first album, side 2 track 2 cannot be included, which is a great pity, a ten-and-a-half minute masterpiece. But that’s the rules. And so to a song by singer-songwriter Dan Fogelberg. My initial reaction to this was, well, unfavourable, it’s a bit cheesy, it’s got that smooth production that can be irritating, it has an extended guitar playout that is decidedly bland, and yet it’s somehow a quite wonderful 8-and-a-half minute pop song……

There’s a song of the same name by Rory Gallagher. Not here. And there’s a bizarre track by Giorgio Moroder, called Arizona Man, dating from 1970.

A man from Arizona sold, for $5.50 on ebay, an air-guitar he had played at a Bon Jovi concert.

And there are 11 types of rattlesnake to be found in Arizona. And no, no chance of anything by Lloyd Cole.

And Tombstone does seem to be a place in Arizona, and there might even have been a gunfight there. And if Johnny Cash sings about it, it must be true!

There is also the Dylan song (“the sun ain’t yellow, it’s chicken”), but given all the references to death it is probably not referencing the town in Arizona.

So 5 tracks, an extended EP?

And that’s Arizona. Another one next week

CC writes
That's a great picture of you on air guitar. I bet his version was better than Bon Jovi's
Here is the brilliant Alejandro Escovedo from The Boxing Mirror album

There are many versions of By The Time I Get to Phoenix. This is probably the longest one.


  1. "Mama's in the factory, she ain't got no shoes
    Daddy's in the alley, he's lookin' for food
    I'm in the kitchen with the Tombstone blues..." ("Tombstone Blues" - Bob Dylan)

    Ps - That photo at the top looks a bit like a Little Feat album cover.

  2. Think you're right about Dylan's Tombstone Blues not being Tombstone, Arizona as it's nowhere near Highway 61.

    That said, Chuck Berry does mention "Flagstaff, Arizona" in the song "Route 66".

  3. Saadly none of the songs on the wonderful Tuscon Songs album name either the city or the state

    1. Did you know the bloke from New Jersey has a song with Tuscon in the title?

    2. Ah yes
      Tuscon Train from Western Stars
      Forgot about that one

  4. Public Enemy as part of Curriculum for Excellence? Just do it...

  5. .........



    The moment George reveals he's a secret Dan Fogelberg fan.

    Wilco - Hotel Arizona

    Aimee Mann - Phoenix

    I appear to have more versions of By The Time I Get To Phoenix than just about any other song in my music collection.

  6. Congratulations George, award yourself 10 points just for mentioning Wishbone Ash's seismic track Phoenix from their eponymous album. Sadly you must deduct yourself 10 points for not playing anything from Lloyd Cole's Rattlesnakes. Sorry but them's my rules!