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Monday, 31 January 2022

A Live One

2022 Charity Shop Purchases # 2  -Boo Hewrdine - A Live One

By rights this should have been the first 2002 CD to feature as it was the first charity shop purchase this year. However techical problems, as detailed yesterday,saw it relegated to number 2. Thankfully they now appear to be sorted.

Boo Hewerdine is a terrific songwriter and an excellent singer and has appeared here several times before either with one of his songs being covered or in his own right. His last appearance was in March last year where he was well received.

From a charity shop in Cupar  A Live One cost me £1.99 which I initially thought was a bit steep. However,it was still sealed and therefore had never been played which is pretty strange considering it was first released by Madan Records as far back as 2002.

Never mind your Hammersmith Odeon or your Shea stadium this one was recorded at the Ram Folk Club, Claygate in what Boo described as a scout hut, on September 21st 2001.

Here is Graceland, a song he recorded with hi band The Bible, and Please Don't Ask Me to Dance. Terrific stuff

Boo Hewerdine -Graceland

Boo Hewerdine -Please Don't Ask Me To Dance


Sunday, 30 January 2022

Posted Sober


2022 Charity Shop Purchases # 1 - Michael Marra - Posted Sober

The  more observant among you will notice that there is not a No Depression post today. There are two reasons for this 
i) technical issues - my PC does not appear to be picking up discs from my USB player. I think an update is required
ii) we had a sneaky wee jaunt to the East Neuk of Fife this week meaning that I had neither the time or the inclination to draft a post given the extensive (I use that word lightly) research required.

On the positive side our trip saw the first Charity Shop purchases of 2022.I can't play them in order due to the above mentioned technical issues. Fortunately I had a burn of Posted Sober an album by the Bard of Lochee Michael Marra courtesy of the record library. It is from 2002  and on the Inner City Sound label..

I picked it up in Cancer Research in St Andrews. There was the usual dross on the shelves and then one of the volunteers came out of the back shop with some new ones. One was Sumday by Grandaddy which I already have and this Michael Marra one enabling me to upgrade the burn.

Hopefully I'll have the gremlins fixed soon.

Saturday, 29 January 2022

Seen at King Tuts -Alejandro Escovedo

 Alejandro Escovedo

Tuesday 3rd December 2002                       £8.50                         Ticket No GA3 28

I was pretty excited to be seeing Alejandro Escovedo for the first time in the UK after seeing him on three occasions playing his legendary Sunday post SXSW concert at Austin's Continental Club alongside Chuck Prophet.

One thing's for sure Austin in March is much warmer than Glasgow in December.We were standing in the downstairs bar when Alejandro and his entourage came in. He is really small and was wearing a Russian Cossack fur hat. I have never seen anyone ever looking so cold.

He had recently released By the Hand of the Father  a collection of songs from the play of the same name many of which featured. I don't have that one  but there were plenty from 1996's With These Hands and his 2001 Bloodshot masterpiece A Man Under the Influence both of which are on the shelves.I've featured the latter several times so today I'll go for  With These Hands.

I remember that at one point he came down off the stage armed with his guitar and did an acappella number as the audience formed a circle around him.

The only time I ever saw him after that was a few years later in the sadly now defunct Glasgow Arches. He's still touring fairly regularly so you never know.

Alejandro Escovedo - Put You Down

Alejandro Escovedo -Pissed Off 2A.M.

Alejandro Escovedo - With These Hands

Friday, 28 January 2022

Rockabilly Riot!


Some great Sun Records era rockabilly for you today but with a slight twist.

No, it is not from the late 50's but rather from 2005 where we find erstwhile Stray Cats front man Brian Setzer paying tribute to some of the rockabilly greats on Rockabilly Riot! Volume 1 - A Tribute to Sun Records on  the Surfdog label. And it is a pretty faithful tribute at that.

Red Hot was written and recorded by Billy "the Kid " Emerson and released by Sun in 1955.It was covered many times probably most notably by Billy Lee Riley.
Mr Riley also came away with Flyin' Saucer Rock'n'Roll.

Carl Perkins was one of the bigger stars on the Sun Roster and was famously one of the Million Dollaer Quartet alongside Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash. Put Your Car Clothes On was one of his biggest hits.

Perhaps the most obscure of the four is Peroxide Blonde in a Bopperd Up Model Ford originally recorded by Jumpin' Gene Simmons  not to be confused with the  much less talented member of Kiss with the same name.

I had originally intended to give you Ignition! by Brian Setzer's '68 Comeback Special but my burning software was playing up. Some other time hopefully.

Thursday, 27 January 2022

Cowboy Sally's Twilight Laments For Lost Buckaroos


Sally Timms is probably best known for having been a member of Leeds post punk band The Mekons.

In the early 90's she and fellow Mekon  Jon Langford moved to Chicago and became immersed in the musical and art culture there graduating to Bloodshot Records. She recorded an EP with Langford called Songs of False Hope and High Values and also featured as part of the Pine Valley Cosmanauts.

She recorded under her own name and as Cowboy Sally after a character she played on a TV show.Cowboy Sally's Twilight Laments for Lost Buckaroos was released by Bloodshot in 1999  and is primarily an album of covers.

She was obviously a big fan of the Handsome Family, and the lyrics of Rennie Sparks as in addition to The Sad Milkman she also covers Snowbird and on her EP Cowboy Sally she sings Drunk by Noon.

You will all recognise Cry Cry Cry a song by the late great Johnny Cash but are probably less familiar with In Bristol Town One Bright Day a song by fellow Chicagoian Robbie Fulks.

I'll finish with a quote from the Chicago Reader which says that she celebrates the long tradition of singer as stylist .. the ethereal sweetness of her tone is cut with the hint of some unbearable sadness that words alone could never convey.

  • Celebrates the long tradition of singer as stylist…the ethereal sweetness of her tone is cut with the hint of some unbearable sadness that words alone could never convey.

    — Chicago Reader

Wednesday, 26 January 2022

Midweek Reggae



I really need to start hitting the charity shops again soon as at the moment I am completely devoid of inspiration.

Over the last few days I have been listening to a Best of Reggae compilation. It has about 50 tracks on it one of which is Suzanne Beware of the Devil by Dandy Livingstone which is probably one of my favourite Reggae songs.Dandy has featured here before when I picked up his album Conscious in a charity shop but this is Suzanne's debut on these pages.

I would argue that you can't have a Best of Reggae without War Ina Babylon by Max Romeo & the Upsetters and Police and Thieves by Junior Murvin but that  appears to be the case.They would certainly be on any Best of that I put together. Both these songs have appeared here before but I make no apology for featuring them again.

Dandy Livingstone -Suzanne Beware of the Devil

Max Romeo & the Upsetters - War Ina Babylon

Junior Murvin - Police and Thieves

Tuesday, 25 January 2022

All Out of Amys


Amy Ray

I thought that I was only going to be able to give you two Amys instead of the usual three today. Fortunately our dear chum Ernie Goggins stepped up to the plate by providing a copy of Black Heart Today by Amy Ray. He then helpfully gave some useful background information so I don't have to. She is one of the Indigo Girls and the song is from her 2001album Stag which has the great Kelly Hogan on backing vocals.
Rites of Passage by the Indigo Girls was one of the first two CDs I ever bought along with Out of Time by R.E.M. I digress.

We are now on to a subset Amy and Whiskey (excuse the North American/Irish spelling) Amy Millan is a Canadian indie singer who is also a member of Stars and Broken Social Scene.

I saw Amy Allison at King Tuts supporting someone but I can't remember who.Like Amy Helm she has a famous musical father - in her case jazz and blues pianist Mose Allison. She has a bit of a quirky voice which is very much an acquired taste. For those of you who don't take to it I am throwing in Laura Cantrell's version of Amy's song.

That's all for now folks. I am thinking of Barbaras somewhere further down the line.

Monday, 24 January 2022



A couple of years ago I finally got roiund to picking up Gene Clark's classic 1974 album No Other and it certainly didn't disappoint.

A few weeks ago I took the opportunity to pick up a re-release of the album Fyrebird which was originally some 10 years later on from No Other
It is not bad but obviously not in the same league as No Other. There are new interpretations of Byrds classics Mr Tambourine Man and Feel a Whole Lot Better.
You will be pleased to know that he is still banging on about Ravens.. Following on from No Other's White Raven we have Blue Raven with the lyric this time the reaven is not white this time the raven's blue.Glad we sorted that out.

I have been on a bit of a Gordon Lightfood trip recently.An artist who is not that dis-similar to Gene. I featured his Sundown just before Christmas.
His song If You Could Read My Mind is the theme song to the quirky and Fargoesque Australian drama The Tourist which is currently on the BBC.Gene does a fairly faithful cover.

AllMusic describes Fyrebird as an artistic triumph and a commercial disaster. Despite that they only give it 3/5 which I feel is pretty much spot on. Glad I bought it though.

Sunday, 23 January 2022

No Depression # 48 - Bottle Rockets


No Depression - The Bi-monthly Journal of Alt- Country

#48 -   November - December 2003

This edition's cover pays homage to one of those bands who seem to have been about for ever but who have never quite "made it" for one reason or another.

The Bottle Rockets were formed in 1992  and have been on the go in some shape or form ever since releasing about a dozen albums in the process. They have true Alt-Country  legendary status with front man Brian Henneman having played on Uncle Tupelo's March 16-20, 1992 album and then on Wilco's debut album AM.

The article concentrates on Blue Sky their 2003 seventh album their first and as it turns out their last album on the Sanctuary label. They then featured regulalry in the Bloodshot stable from 2006 until 2018.
I don't have Blue Sky .Indeed I don't have much be them at all just a few songs from various Bloodshot samplers and a copy of  their 2011 album Not So Loud -An Accoustic Evening with the Bottlerockets which George shared with me. Not much to go on then. I hsve a feeling that I may have seen them live but I couldn't swear on it
The major shock in the article is Henneman professing a fondness for David Gates and Bread with comparisons to Neal Young!

This week's One from the Top is the Queen of Rockabilly herself Wanda Jackson proving that she could also belt out a country tune

You will notice the inset at the top left of the cover acknowledging the death of Johnny Cash which is also covered in the editorial and in an obituary.Former son-in-law Rodney Crowell  thinks featuring on Mount Rushmore would be a fitting tribute.Nate Clesowich duly obliges

The Bottle Rockets -Mountain to Climb

Saturday, 22 January 2022

Seen at King Tuts - Northern Comfort


The Good Sons/The Felsons/Scott MacDonals/Freeloader/Cosmic Roughrider

Sunday 23rd April 2000          £8.50                    Ticket No  00024

Northern Comfort was an evening of primarily Scottish Americana acts many of whom have appeared here before particularly in my Tartan Texans series from the early days of the Blog.

Given that the headline acts are at the top of the bill we will start at the bottom and work our way up.

Cosmic Roughrider is clearly a mis-spelling of Cosmic Rough Riders. From Castlemilk in Glasgow they were formed in 1998 and had their first album Deliverance in 1999.They shot to prominence with their third album 2000's Enjoy the Melodic Sunshine being released on Alan McGhee's Poptone label.It was not released until November or else presumably they would have been considerably further up the bill.Former front man Daniel Wylie is still going strong

Freeloader were also known as Alan Eaglesham & Freeloader reflecting the fact that there is more than one band with this moniker. I have their 2000 album Turn of the Century songs from which I would imagine constitued their set.

Sticking with all things Eaglesham singer/song writer Scott MacDonald is from the village just to the south of Glasgow with that name close to where I grew up and even closer to Mrs CC's childhood home.Scott is still performing with stuff available on Bandcamp. Here I am featuring the title track from his 1999 EP Burn Baby Burn.

The Felsons have featured many times here. Led by Dean Owens, who has enjoyed a reasonably successful solo career, they are one of the bands I have seen most often at King Tuts as they were often wheeled in as the support to visiting Americana acts..

On the subject of visiting Americana acts The Good Sons were the only non-Scottish act on the bill. They were from the Manchester/Preston area and named after a Nick Cave album. I have a solo album by frontman Michael Weston King and didn't think I had anything by the band until I discovered Angels in the End on a compilation.

My memory is not as good as it was but I have a feeling that The Good Sons didn't show. Happy to be proved wrong

Cosmic Rough Riders -What's Your Sign

Freeloader -Turn of the Century

Scott MacDonald - Burn Baby Burn

The Felsons - One Step Ahead of the Posse

The Good Sons - Angels in the End

Friday, 21 January 2022

Worlds in Collision


Very occasionally I feel that I have too many records. Indeed this thought occurred to me the other day when I stumbled across Worlds in Collision by Pere Ubu an album I have absolutely no recollection of acquiring and one that I can't remember ever having played.

Naturally I felt obliged to give it a spin and I'm pleased to say that it was a pleasant experience.From 1991 on the Fontana label it is the 8th album by the Cleveland band led by David Thomas. Classified as art punk/post punk/art rock/avant- rock there are some pretty obvious comparisons with Talking Heads which lets face it is no bad thing.

Any band who manage to include Yogi Bear in the lyrics of one of their songs are almost certainly guaranteed a place on these pages.

Pere Ubu - Worlds in Collision

Pere Ubu - I Hear They Smoke The Barbecue

Thursday, 20 January 2022

As They Pulled You Out of the Oxygen Tent You Asked for the Latest Party


No, not the first thing Boris Johnson said following his apparent Covid hospitalisation but rather the opening lines to the title track of  David Bowie's last glam album. Johnson has probably also crawled down  a few alleys on his hands and knees.

From 1974 Diamond Dogs was recently purchased alongside Low from a Twitter chum to plug two of the few remaining gaps in the Essential Bowie must haves. I'm just about there now.

Less than a year later he would be heading in a completely different direction with Young Americans

There was no Mick Ronson on the album leading to Bowie playing guitar. I think he made a pretty good job of it. Tony Visconti was back in the production saddle. Oh, and a pretty neat cover to boot.

Some essential stuff on here not least the three singles from the album namely the majestic Rebel Rebel (which criminally only peaked at number 5), the title track  and 1984. Interestingly, having been denied the rights for an adaptation  of 1984 by George Orwell's widow he devised an urban apocalyptic scenario based on the writings of William S Burroughs. (Wiki). 
Good preperation for The Man Who Fell to Earth as well.

He really was the great chameleon.

Wednesday, 19 January 2022

In Defence of Whiteout


A few days ago SWC over at No Badger Required was less that complimentary about Greenock band Whiteout and in particular their song Detroit.calling it  the very epitome of landfill Indie.
When he posted this I had never heard the song. I then tracked it down and I have to agree that it is pretty awful.

However, I have to stick by my view that on the whole Whiteout were a great little band. Their 1995 debut album Bite It is well worth tracking down and in particular the track Jackie's Racing. The single Starrclub is also not bad at all.

So there you go! One of the great things about Blogging and Music is that it is all about opinions - even when there wrong!

Tuesday, 18 January 2022

Amy Amy Aimee



The third instalment of Amys with alternative spellings permissable.

We start with Weegie favourite Bishopbriggs girl Amy MacDonald.She shot to fame in 2007 with her debut album Is This the Life and has since released another 4 albums. I'm not sure how big she is elsewhere in the UK but remains huge in Glasgow with her concerts being held in the Hydro, the city's largest venue. She also pops up in Glasgow charity shops pretty often 

I don't have much information about Amy Cook other than she is 42 (shortly about to become 43) and is a singer songwriter from Austin, Texas and has opened for Alejandro Escovedo and Lucinda Williams.

Aimee Mann surely needs no introduction. An artist who has been releasing albums since she was part of Til Tuesday in the 80's and  much admired by Rol and George among others. She used to get a bit sniffy when her songs popped up in blogs but given today's streaming climate I'm sure she has bigger fish to fry.

I thought that this was it but I've got another couple who I will sneak in next week

Monday, 17 January 2022

The Only Ones -Peel Sessions


It is an undisputated fact that Another Girl, Another Planet by The Only Ones  is one of the best songs of all time. It would certainly feature as part of my Desert Island Discs selection.

I suspect that most people would struggle to name another song by them but they certainly weren't a one trick pony. Having said that AGAP was certainly a hard act to follow.

I already had their self-titled debut album but when The Peel Sessions album came out on Strange Fruit came out in 1989 I requested it for my Christmas. This led to my mum's one and only visit to the Virgin Megastore on Glasgow's Union Street.

The three that I have selected below are from sessions from 21/05/80, 05/04/78 and 13/09/77 respectively.

I only own one or two Peel Sessions records so sadly not enough for a series

In case you are wondering I visited my  charity shop of the year the other day but came away empty handed.

The Only Ones -Oh Lucinda (Peel Session)

The Only Ones -Language Problem (Peel Sssion)

The Only Ones - Lovers of Today (Peel Session)

Sunday, 16 January 2022

No Depression #47 - Lyle Lovett


No Depression - The Bi-monthly Journal of Alt- Country
#47 -   September - October  2003

The gentleman who looks like he has been out in the sun is none other than Lyle Lovett probably most famous for his big hair and the fact that he was briefly Mr Julia Roberts.

The article by Geoffrey Himes focuses on his returning to stay in the house which had belonged to his grandfather in Klein Texas (he has an uncle called Calvin Klein!) and the forthcoming release of his album My Baby Don't Tolerate on Curb/Lost Highway. It is not one I have as me and Lyle had parted company by then.

The article also gives a brief resume of his career. He was one of the so called Texas "Class of 86" alongside Dwight Yoakam, Steve Earle and Randy Travis with Nanci Griffiths  snapping at their heels.Throw in couple of old timers in Guy Clark and Townes Van Zandt and Belleville, Illinois' Uncle Tupelo and it was effectively the birth of alternative Country.

However after the release and success of his first two albums Lyle Lovett (1986) and Pontiac (1987) he took a different path  going down a  big band route playing swing, blues, jazz, gospel and honky tonk in a similar style to Willie Nelson and Ray Charles.

I only have three of his albums  - the aforementioned Pontiac, the Grammy winning 1996 The Road to Ensenada which Himes claims is his best album  but one which does nothing for me and Step Inside this House from 1998 a double album of covers of songs by fellow Texans. One track from each I think.

For this week's One from the Top I've gone for Shelby Lynne

Saturday, 15 January 2022

Seen at King Tuts - Neal Casal


Neal Casal

Thursday 28th October 2004           £10.00                       Ticket No  GA0 12

I'd previously seen Americana singer/songwriter Neal Casal at Glasgow's 13th Note Club so King Tuts was very much a step up in terms of size and status

His 2000 album Anytime Tomorrow has long been a   favourite of mine and I had enjoyed the rockier 2003 album that he had released as part of the band Hazy Malaze alongside Dan Fadel and Jeff Hill.

He released a compilation Leaving Traces :Songs 1994- 2004 which may well have been promoted at the gig and almost certainly contributed to a major part of his set.I may even have picked it up at the show.
I kind of lost touch with him shortly after this although I have his 2006 album NoWish to Reminisce which I think George gave to me.

In addition to the above he played as part of numerous bands most notably with Ryan Adams and the Cardinals and the Chris Robinson Brotherwood. I once saw him playing guitar as part of Lucinda Williams backing band in Austin.

Sadly he took his own life at the age of  50 in August 2019. 
Coincidentally I have just recently downloaded Highway Butterfly a tribute featuring 41 of his songs from artists including Hiss Golden Messenger, Steve Earle, J Mascis and Jonathan Wilson which I haven't had a chance to listen to yet. An artist who was clearly held in high regard.

A couple of his songs that would have almost certainly been part of the set and one by Hazy Malaze.

Friday, 14 January 2022

Ronnie Spector R.I.P.


It was sad to hear of the death of the great Ronnie Spector at the age of 76. The first great musical icon to pass in 2022 unless I've missed something.

She was of course the lead singer of the revolutionary all female early 60's band The Ronettes along side her sister Estelle Bennett and her cousin Nedra Tally. They smashed the glass ceiling and many other great all female bands followed.

She was a tough character. Let's face it you would have to be to survive a marriage to Phil Spector. The title of her memoir Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts and Madness,or, My Life as a Fabulous Ronette pretty much says it all.

Rest easy Ronnie

The Ronettes -Be My Baby

The Ronettes - Baby I Love You (Isolated Vocal)

Ronnie Spector -She Talks to Rainbows

Thursday, 13 January 2022



I was watching a video flick through of records for sale when I saw Feline by The Stranglers going for 9 quid.

I've got that I thought and the other day I dug it out for a listen. I couldn't remember how or where I had got it or whether I had ever listened to it before.

From 1993 on Epic it is their 7th album and is as far removed from Rattus Norvegicus and No More Heroes as you could possibly imagine.It is maybe of its time experimenting as it does with electronic drums and synthesizers

Released to a mixed reception with Trouser Press describing it as restained and dignified but also lackluster and boring which is probably fair. All Music wrote while not an instant classic, it does repay repeated listening ... Instead of the belligerent tunefulness of yesteryear, the Stranglers were trying to expand their sound and reach. Too often on this lackluster effort, however, it comes across as boring and unengaging

 The European Female, with vocals by Jean-Jacques Burnel, reached number 9 in the UK singles chart and just about passes muster. The rest is much of a muchness. It comes with a one -sided spoken single called Aural Sculpture Manifesto.

If anyone was daft enough to offer me 9 quid I would bite their hand off. An excellent cover though.

The Stranglers - The European Female

The Stranglers -All Roads Lead to Rome

Wednesday, 12 January 2022

Too Long in the Wasteland


Rol pulled a rabbit out the hat when he announced that The Horses and the Hounds  by James McMurtry was his number 1 album from 2021.
He stated that James McMurtry is an artist who has existed on the periphery of my vision until now. I've got a couple of his albums in my collection, but I obviously haven't devoted enough time to them to pick up the finer details of his craft

That could have been my that wrote that, but obviously not so eloquently.
I'd heard snippets of his work here and there and in particular Ray Wylie Hubbard's cover of Choctaw Bingo. This was enough for my to track down his 1989 debut Too Long in the Wasteland although curiously I have only ever followed that up with a copy of 2015's Complicated Game.

The album title and cover give a clue as to what to suspect. He is primarily a storyteller telling  grizzly tales about the dispossessed and the American way of life that never features in the Hollywood blockbusters.
As AllMusic has it his lyrics are stories, telling about everyday life, the predictability of work, the troubles of teens, and the pain of love when it isn't all roses and sunshine. Maybe some of his writing talent comes from his father, author Larry McMurtry.

I've just discovered that the album was produced by John Mellencamp. Maybe that's another reason why Rol likes him so much!

As I often say on these pages further exploration clearly required.

Tuesday, 11 January 2022

Amy Amy Amii


We will start with one of the more obvious ones  this week namely the late great Amy Winehouse. The sad story of her far too short life has been documented many times before and you don't really need me to delve into it. All I will say is that she was a fantastic talent and a great soul singer, but you knew that already. There is a song on her debut album Frank called Amy Amy Amy but I was unable to record it without including the Outro

Actress, singer songwriter and upright bass player Amy LaVere first came to my attention when her song Rabbit popped up on an Uncut compilation. I subsequently sought out her 2014 album Runaway's Diary on Archer Records.It's not bad but none of the other tracks come close to Rabbit

As you will see from the post title I am allowing deviations from the traditional spelling.I was really surprised that out of all the thousands of physical and digital songs at my disposal I couldn't find a copy of the disco classic Knock on Wood by Amii Stewart despite having about half a dozen Disco compilstions. Remedial action has been taken.

I think I can probably just about squeeze in a third selection next week.

Amy Winehouse -Tears Dry On Their Own

Amy LaVere - Rabbit

Amii Stewart -Knock on Wood

Monday, 10 January 2022

Givin' It Back


A good few years ago when Record Libraries were still a thing I took out The Islay Brothers Original Album Classics  and duly took a copy of each of the 5 CDs (as you do).

For some strange reason the only one that I bothered to burn onto  CD was 3  + 3 probably because it included That Lady and more crucially Summer Breeze.
I really should have burned them all particlarly Givin' It Back their 9th album from 1971 on the T Neck/Buddah Records label. Fortunately I retained the electronic copy.

After years of having songs like Shout and Twist and Shout recorded by other artists and subsequently becoming huge hits they decided to return the favour .
I've posted the opening track a social commentry medley of Neil Young's Ohio morphing into  Hendrix' Machine Gun before and it is an absolute belter.
I don't think that Lay Lady Lay was ever included in my Dylan Covered series. Had it been they would surely have given his Bobness a run for his money.

Twenty minutes of pure quality to ease you gently into the week.

Sunday, 9 January 2022

No Depression # 46 - Drive - By Truckers


No Depression - The Bi-monthly Journal of Alt- Country
#46 -   July - August 2003

Welcome back to this series after a festive hiatus.We are on far more familiar ground than the last time round when Little Miss Cornshucks was the cover star.

The Drive-By Truckers are no strangers to CCM and have graced these pages on many an occasion.The cover article by Grant Alben concentrates on their move from Soul Dump Records to the much larger New West a favourite of the magazine. It also concentrates on the June 2003 release of the band's 4th album Decoration Day claiming thai it was their first great album.
I got on board with the third album  2001's conceptual Southern Rock Opera album exploring varios concepts through the context of the band Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Crucially Decoration Day as well as being released on a more prominent label sees a change of personnel with a young Jason Isbell joining as the third singer and songwriter alongside Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley. At 24 he was considerably younger than the rest of the band . Indeed Patterson Hood's fist wife when to school with his mother  with Mike Cooley going to school with his stepmother. Muscle Shoals is a small town!

Although young Hood described Isbell as an old soul  and he brought a whole new dimension to the band with two of his songs Outfit and the title track Decoration Day being the pick of the bunch for me.
In the spirit of harmony I am also featuring Hood's Sink Hole and Cooley's Loaded Gun in the Closet

For the One from the Top I've gone for CCM debutant Kimmie Rhodes with the title track from her 1996 album West Texas Heaven on Justice Records.

Saturday, 8 January 2022

Seen at King Tuts - The Raveonettes


The Raveonettes

Friday 9th May   2003           £7.00                       Ticket No  GA0 47

It looks as though the sands of time have been playing tricks with my memory. I was always under the impression that the first time I saw the Raveonettes at King Tuts they were supporting Razorlight. It turns out that this was in fact the second time I'd seen them and Razorlight were actually supporting them, The Raveonettes were miles better. The date of that particular concert was 24th October 2003 presumably as part of the promotion of their first proper album Chain Gang of Love released by Columbia on 23th August 2003. I've not come across my ticket for this one.

At the time of the May gig they had only released Whip it On which had 8 tracks but which was billed as an EP. I've stumbled across a setlist for the evening which shows that songs from both records featured.They were fantastic and I was clearly keen to see them again a few months later

The Raveonettes were a Danish due consisting of Sune Rose Wagner  on guitar,synyths, percussion and vocals  and Sharin Foo on bass and vocals. Wiki describes them as performing close two - two part harmonies inspired by the Everly Brothers but there are also shades of the Cramps,Velvet Underground and Psychobilly bands such as the Meteors.
Their choice of songs are very gothic in nature with themes about murder, ghosts, running from the law and prison. Similar then to another less photogenic due The Handsome Family.

They were fantastic live and whereas the records are pretty good the songs never quite had the same energy or menace in a  studio setting. Two from Whip it On and the title track from Chain Gang of Love for your listening pleasure today

Friday, 7 January 2022

The Creeping Ivies


Having a trawl through my Bandcamp collection I stumbled across The Witch House an EP from 2015 from Scottish band The Creeping Ivies that I'd forgotten I had.

They are not a band that I know much about .Some internet trawling tells me that the lead singer and guitarist is Becca Murray with Ian Duncan on drums and Christy Taylor on bass.
There are obvious comparisons with The Cramps with  Louder than War describing them as having a raw feral sound that's difficult to ignore. They also describe the EP as a fantastic slice of sleaze that is aching to be heard. 
The bands Soundcloud page states that they play the kind of balls out garage punk rock that could very well exist in 1978 at CBGBs
That's good enough for me.

I can't find any evidence of them having released anything following this but they have a reasonable  back catalogue going back to 2011 that you can pick up on Bandcamp

A good way to end the first week of the year. I think this might be right up C's street.

The Creeping Ivies -The Witch House

The Creeping Ivies - Only the Moon

The Creeping Ivies - Bye Bye Babe

Thursday, 6 January 2022

Atlantic R&B Volume 6


A trip to Missing Records last summer saw me acquiring Volumes 5 to 8 from this magnificent series to accompany Volumes 3 and 4 which I picked up in a charity shop earlier in the year. I've had Volume 1 for ages so only Volume 2 to go.

I'm featuring them chronologically (except for Vol 2 obviously)  and it is now the turn of Volume 6. The short time period, compared to other volumes, of 1965 -1967 reflects that this was indeed the golden days of soul.

A look at the tracklist shows that many of the true legends put in an appearance with classic songs that are still played today. Aretha, Otis Joe Tex, Sam &Dave, Wilson Pickett, etc,etc. This is as good as it gets.

The vast majority of the artists have graced these pages before and you will be familiar with the songs so I have decided to focus on some of the lesser known names.

Wilson Turbinton  a keyboard player and singer songwriter from New Orleans was better known as Willie Tee and briefly recorded with Atlantic.

The Capitols were a Detroit based trio with Cool Jerk being their best known song.

Jimmy Hughes was a cousin of Percy Sledge and an important part of the Muscle Shoals scene particularly with his song Steal Away. On the back of Percy Sledge's success he had a brief stay at Atlantic prior to moving on to Stax. He quit music around 1970 and is still going strong at the age of 83.

Willie Tee - Teasin' You

The Capitols - Cool Jerk

Jimmy Hughes - Neighbor, Neighbor