Other than a post marking their demise it has been a wee while since I have played anything from Bloodshot Records.
It is even longer since I have played anything by Wichita, Kansas band Split Lip Rayfield -10th September 2013 to be precise as part of my Bloodshot Tuesday series one of the first series on this blog
Never Make it Home (Bloodshot BS 068) from February 2001 is their third album but the only one of theirs on the shelves.There is a bluegrass base to their music but it is none of that stuffy and earnest bluegrass that you often hear. They are (fortunately) no Alison Krauss and UnionStation or Nickel Creek
The band consisted of Kirk Rundstrom (Guitar and vocals), Wayne Gottstine (Mandolin and vocals),Eric Mardis (banjo and vocals) and Jeff Eaton (Gas Tank Bass, vocals and crucially Kazoo) The name was inspired by a person who went to school with Eaton's parents who acquired the nickname Split Lit due to constant chapped lips
Sadly Kirk Rundstrom died following esophagael cancer in February 2007. The band continued but have only released two further records in 2008 and 2017
We are in new territory this week as we delve into the digital world for all things Jones. Three each week until I run out of choices or enthusiasm. It's not a competition but I may indulge in a bit of compare and contrast. Three genres for you this week.
VivianJones is a Jamaican born British reggae singer who played in a number of bands prior to going solo from 1980. He has released 14 albums and is probably best known for his Lovers Rock material. This track is called Extra Classic Super Fantastic. I can't find too many details although it seems that it is also billed as Extra Classic Supa Fantastic Love here which I suspect is its proper title.
As the name suggests Meilyr Jones is Welsh. He was formerly the frontman of a band called Race Horses prior to going solo in 2013.His music is described as chamber pop and he seems to be a favourite of The Guardian who describe him as a Welsh Jonathan Richman
Joyce Jones is an American Soul/Disco singer who was a member of the band First Choice up until 1975. A reference on You Tube tells us that Help Me Make Up My Mind was an answer track to Tyrone Davis’ masterpiece “Can I Change My Mind”. Originally from from Mississippi, Jones co-wrote both sides with Reginald Hinesinger atATCO Records, released in 1969.
None of them are particularly outstanding but for me Joyce just shades it this week.
There is a simple explanation as to why I have both a vinyl and CD copy of Nights to Forget the 2020 album by Martha Ffion. It is because the good people of Lost Map, the record label from the Isle of Eigg run by Johnny Flynn AKA The Pictish Trail, saw fit to provide a CD copy with the vinyl album. As I bought it off Bandcamp I also received a digital copy which made for a perfect hat trick.
Claire Martha Ffion McKay from Warrenpoint in Northern Ireland but is based on Glasgow's Southside and is married to CraigAngus the front man of label stablemates Savage Mansion .
Nights to Forget is her second album following on from 2018's Sunday Best which was released on the Welsh independent label Turnstile Records and which was nominated for the Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) award.
She has been out and about in Glasgow recently trying out some new acoustic material so some new music is hopefully on its way. File under Quirky Indie Pop
The late 90's/eary 00's were probably about the time when I was almost exclusively fixated with Americana music. I can't remember how Gretchen Peters crossed my radar but I wouldn't be surprised if it was on the back of her cover of Steve Earle's I Ain't Ever Satisfied which I probably would have first heard on the Andy Kershaw show.
There were a few young female Americana singers around at this time - Gretchen, Stacey Earle, Maria McKee and Michelle Shocked spring to mind.
The only Gretchen Peters album I have is her 1996 debut album The Secret of Life which was released in June 1996 and which would have formed the basis of her show given that it was all she had released by that date and her next was not released until 2001. I actually think that the copy of the album didn't appear on the shelves until some years later so with the exception of the Steve Earle cover I was going in cold.
Surprisingly what I consider to be her best tune, the one by which she is probably best known On a Bus to St Cloud was not one of the singles from the album. I Ain't Ever Satisifed and When You're Old hadthataccolade.
I next saw her in 2014 at the Mitchell Theatre as part of that year's Celtic Connections by which time her music was even more mainstream. She did however play the first two of the following tracks from the first album at that show too
2022 Charity Shop Purchases 27 - Free -Walking in My Shadows- The Free Collection
Some more Bluesy Rock this week for the final "Classic Rock" purchase picked up in Sue Ryder in Newton Stewart.
Free were a band from London who were on the go from 1968- 1973 consisting for the most part of that period of Paul Rodgers on lead vocals and keyboards, Paul Kossof on guitar, Andy Fraser on bass and Simon Kirke on drums.They released 6 studio albums and one live album during this period, When they broke up Rodgers and Kirke went on to form Bad Company.
Walking in My Shadows is a double CD in one of those old fashioned cases which take up about the space of 3 CDs on your shelves. Such things can determine whether it is a keeper of not (the jury is currently out). Released in 2007 by Spectrum, who seem to specialise in this sort of thing, it contains 34 tracks with all the ones that you will be familiar with.
After a slow start they struck gold with All Right Now leading to an appearance at the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival and super stardom thereafter. All Right Now was their only singles hit in the States.They did considerably better in the UK charting 7 times including an All Right Now remix.
Here are their top ten hits (peaking at 2,4 and 7) in the order that they were released
I'm not sure how many of you out there remember the Scottish band Sons and Daughters. They were on the go from 2001 to 2012 which is much longer than I thought. During this period they released 4 albums (or 5 if you count the re-issue of the debut Love the Cup) all on the Domino label.
I have two of them on the shelves the afore mentioned Love the Cup and The Repulsion Box their second album released in 2005 when it reached number 70 in the UK albums chart. It also led to an invite to tour with Morrissey on the first part of his UK tour.
The personnel were Adele Bethel on vocals, guitar and piano, David Gow on drums, Ailidh Lennon (who is married to Roddy Woomble) on bass and ScottPaterson on vocals and guitar.
They have a bit of a garage rock feel about them and maybe could be described as a grungier version of the Detroit Cobras all of which obviously is no bad thing.
Dance Me In was a single from The Repulsion Box and is an excellent choice given that it is an absolute belter with maybe a hint of Franz Ferdinand in places.Monsters isn't to shabby either.
The second collection given to me was by a teacher friend who took a year long sabbatical and asked me to look after his records. Charity Chic was down for a visit a few weeks after, and together we investigated and probably alphabetised the 7-inch singles. Of course, it was accompanied by comments/exclamations along the lines of “got it”, “had but lost/sold” and “wah hey”, the latter when an especially good or memorable single was found, like “Seasons in The Sun”. And CC also came out with one of his belting phrases “this is the most fun I’ve had while keeping my clothes on”. One of his other personally memorable phrases was a warning to me, given 16 years ago, and I am glad to say I have heeded that advice and thus not suffered from the physical violence with which I was, quite rightly, threatened.
If you want to hear a really terrible Nick Cave song, listen to “Till the end of the World”, track 11 on the album “Until the End of the World: Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack” Note to Mr Cave, I think you mean ‘til as in until, not till as in cash register or tend the land. There’s a song by that irish band too. And such is my dedication to listening to every track on the albums in this collection, I did listen to it all. It’s not the worst track on the album, it is actually perfectly listenable. The entire track listing can be seen here.
Some decent songs, but most not to my taste (the Irish band’s song is one of the better ones on the album), so it’s another bird-scarer. I almost selected the track by german avant garde band Can, but it’s a bit dull, and I prefer these two:
(a different version appears on Mr Reed’s 1992 album Magic and Loss)
I typed “until the end” on startpages, and autocomplete suggested Until The End Of Time by Justin Timberlake and Beyoncé. So, I played it. Complete nonsense, and also, sadly, no discernible Pussycat influence
It’s Star Wars Day as I write this, a lovely day, white fluffy cotton-wool clouds in the sky, the sparrows are chirping away, the goats are chewing their cud, dogs barking. And an album of Christmas songs to listen to, the next album selected. It is, I think, going to be a challenge to (a) listen to all the way through, and (b) pick a decent song from. It’s not exactly one for listening to in May, it’s Canções de natal. You know that song “When a Child is Born”? You do, you remember Johnny Matthis singing it! Well someone called Brook Benton absolutely bloody murders it, what an ordeal it was to hear that ordure all the way through. Followed by Rosemary Clooney singing Jingle Bells. The Drifters are credited with a few songs here, but it’s not the Clyde McPhatter version, nor the early 1960s Ben E King version, and not the 1970s “Sitting in the back row of the movies” version. The album sounds like, maybe, Des O’Connor singing the songs, backed up by a studio orchestra. You know the thing, a 1970s Saturday night TV entertainment show, and the host says something like “and now time for a song”, I have to say, though, that Bing Crosby does have a lovely velvety voice:
What's the difference between Bing Crosby and Walt Disney? Bing sings! (and Walt disnae……) I wish I’d put that joke in my thesis .But when the next song, after Bing, came up, I just couldn’t help singing along, and nodding my head in time to the tune.. It is entirely possible I was on the threshold of hysteria or a major breakdown
The last 6 songs pass me by, I’m in some sort of daze or stupor, they leave no imprint.
The label responsible for this is on the Rua Vitor Gordon, which is near Cais de Sodre (in Lisbon) where you can sit with a picnic by the river and get fed up with the constant “hashish-cocaine” sellers pestering you every two bloody minutes. You could then nip along and ask them (the label people not the “hashish-cocaine” people) why they think Auld Lang Syne is a christmas song.
Two more next week…
CC writes: I've never followed through on a threat of physical violence but had you posted Justin Timberlake and Beyoncé.....
I was all set to feature The Singular Adventures of the Style Council today when I noticed that I have never featured their1984 debut album Cafe Bleu on Polydor before which is the only other one of theirs that I have. In such circumstances I usually plump for the stand alone album as opposed to the compilation.
References to solid soul-tinged pop and a mix of blue-eyed soul, jazz and modern influences were unlikely to go down well with die hard Jam fans following Paul Weller's fairly radical shift of mood.
While I liked the Jam I would not say that I was that huge a fan. I was not that adverse, but not completely sold,on the change given that a couple of the instrumental numbers would not be out of place on the Fast Show's Jazz Club
I suspect that it may have been a deliberate ploy by Weller to frontload the album with instrumentals to reinforce his change of direction. The band consisted of Paul Weller on vocals, guitar and bass, Mick Talbot on piano and Steve White on drums. Tracey Thorn provides the wonderful vocals on The Paris Match. There is even a pretty poor attempt at rap by Dizzy Heights on the track A Gospel which I will not subject you to.
It was not an album that I got at the time. My CD copy is a subsequent charity shop purchase. An alternative version of You're The Best Thing and a 12 inch version of My Ever Changing Moods are the only songs from the album to appear on Singular Adventures.
The final Jones on the shelves is the late great Sharon who sadly died from cancer in November 2016 aged just 60.
She was the pocket rocket front woman of the band Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings who recorded about half a dozen albums on the great Daptone label from Brooklyn. Incredibly she only released her first album at the age of 40 but she left an impressive legacy in a relatively short period of time.
Sadly I never got to see her live.I'm sure that she and the band would have put on a great show. I've just read that she was sometimes referred to as a female James Brown but she was a far nicer person than him. Shortly before she died she suffered a stroke attributing it to the election of Donald Trump!James Brown would probably have voted for him had he still been alive.
That's the last physical Jones on the shelves but I have got a good few digitally so this series will continue albeit in a slightly different format.
My recent CD purchase of Combat Rock plus my on-going cataloguing has highlighted that there are a number of albums on the shelves which I have in both vinyl and CD format.I've not counted them but I think that there are in excess of 30 which should make for a reasonable series that shouldn't involve too much work on my part. Also they cover a variety of formats which is good and I will post them in a reasonably random way
It some cases there may well be a rational explanation as to why there are two copies and if so I shall share that with you. In a few cases there will be no explanation that I can think of and that will be fine too.
Let's start then with Standing on a Beach-The Singles by The Cure from 1985 on the Fiction label. It does what it says on the tin -13 singles from between 1978 and 1985 on the vinyl album and 17 on the CD. For some that would be a good enough reason to acquire both but not in this case.
I'm not 100% sure on this one but I think the vinyl came from a pile belonging to Mrs CC and her sister when her mum was moving house. I think that the CD also came from Mrs CC's sister (suggesting that she was the fan) as I got their CD collection when they went digital. I'm beginning to sound a bit like George there in acquiring other people's records.
For the record I quite like the Cure but I've never got round to picking up anything by them and these two versions of Staring at the Sea will probably suffice.
As you can see from the ticket this show had been moved from The Arches to King Tuts. I'm not sure wither this represented an upgrade or downgrade. The latter I suspect although the Arches had a variety of areas of differing size where shows could be held.
I went to see this one on the back of the album Good Morning Spider which had been released at the end of July 1998 and is the only thing of theirs that I have.* My cataloguing has now reached S which sort of prompted me to feature this at this stage of proceedings.
I went to this one with an American student called Stacey who we had met at a Victoria Williams concert which was also at Tuts. I can't find the ticket for that one so it will not feature in this series.
Sparklehorse was the band of singer and multi- instrumentalist Mark Linkous. In 1996 he suffered a near fatal overdose passing out with his legs pinned beneath him which cut off the circulation.iit was over 14 hours before he was discovered and the resulting potassium build up caused his heart to stop for several minutes.The resulting surgery led to him being confined to a wheelchair for several months.
As well as his physical ailments he had a history of depression and sadly completed suicide in March 2010 at the age of 47
His music has been described as exporing themes of frustration,resignation,wonder and gratitude. Throw in some distortion and static and electronic squiggly bits and it can be a hard listen but its worth it. There is certainly an Americana feel to his singing which obviously is no bad thing with obvious comparisons to the likes of Mercury Rev and Grandaddy
From memory it was loud but I enjoyed it
*I've just discovered that I also have a copy of their 2001 follow up album It's a Wonderful Life which I was totally unaware that I had. It seems that I picked it up from a local Charity Shop.I'm off to listen to it now
2022 Charity Shop Purchases 26 -Canned Heat - Let's Work Together - The Best of Canned Heat
Maybe this should more properly read " Classic Blues Rock" . I'm only really familiar with the songs below and am slowly working through the 20 tracks . I've yet to pluck up the courage to listen to the last track - The Chipmunk Song by The Chipmunks with Canned Heat. I suspect that it may be last for a reason.
The band formed in Los Angeles in 1965 and remarkably a version of the band is still on the go with drummer Adolfo "Fito" de la Parra the only member from the original line up. The vast majority of the tracks are taken from their first five albums released on Liberty Records between 1966 and 1970
They performed Blues standards alongside their own material.Their two most famous songs are re-hashes of early Blues numbers.Going Up the Country is a remake of the Henry Thomas song Bull Doze Blues first recorded in Louisville, Kentucky in 1927. On the Road Again is a remake of the 1953 Floyd Jones song of the same name which in turn is reportedly based on the Tommy Johnson song Big Road Blues recorded in 1928. An American version of Led Zeppelin then!
I played 77 the debut album by Talking Heads for the first time in ages the other day and what a fantasic album it is too. 11 tracks ,just under 20 minutes per side and not a duff note let alone track anywhere.
45 years old for goodness sake and still as fresh as a daisy - just like the picture of Martina Weymouth (as she was billed then),Jerry Harrison, David Byrne and Chris Frantz on the back cover
It set a very high bar which the next three albums More Songs About Buildings and Food, Fear of Music and Remain in Light and not forgetting the live albums The Name of This Band is Talking Heads and the brilliant Stop Making Sense just about managed to live up to.
After that it was a case of diminishing returns for the final 5 albums although Speaking in Tongues and Little Creatures still have their moments.
Here are the first tracks from both sides. I could have chosen any of the 11 and they would have been equally as good.
This is, I think, the 4th time I have been given someone’s record collection. The first time was when a friend went to live in Germany, and gave me his entire collection of albums and singles. I did take some to him at his request, on a visit (to Bremen). Of the remaining albums I kept a few for myself, and sold the rest. But I still have his collection of 7-inch singles.
On to the next two blind selections, which are a pair that I could never imagine myself buying First up, it’s “Sucessos de 1998” on the “nova gente” label. I think it’s fair to say that this is not the kind of thing that finds its way onto these pages. But, dear reader(s), I have listened to it all, and was surprised that I recognised a couple of tunes, the one immediately below, that theme tune from Titanic, and one of the two Spice Girls songs. I don’t see the need for an mp3 of any of these, I can’t imagine anyone wanting to snaffle a copy for a collection, but they are perfectly decent pop songs:
The album has songs by some artistes I had never heard of: Aqua, The Rhapsody, Sweetfox, whose contributions, frankly, were bloody awful.
I like my pop songs up-beat, so those heartfelt songs by Ms Dion and Boyzone do nothing for me (Oh Vienna). Apart from irritate. Although not as much as something totally bland like the Lighthouse Family track, remarkably forgettable whilst actually being listened to. The Sweetfox track has borrowed from Whiter Shade of Pale or J S Bach, and although the former was joint best pop song of all time (1952-1977) this effort will never be afforded any accolade. They were also very insistent that “everything was going to be alright” and indeed it was, when the song finished. The final track is by Ricky Martin and sounds like a remarkably poor rehash of his famous song whose name I really cannot be bothered finding out. Here’s the other acceptable track:
If anyone wants a copy, you will either have to ask me to send it to you, or work very very hard to source it. Well, it’s not on discogs.
Next out is an album that suggests it is the best music from Brasil. I’ve played it. I hope the title is not accurate. I would describe most of the first 9 tracks as belonging to the genre of bossa nova, so a new wave album! But not the new wave of last week, of course. For the most part those songs are nearly listenable (and track 7 has really grown on me), but, alas, things go from bad to worse with the onset of track 10, which is an annoyingly bad samba-style song.
Here’s the aforementioned quite good, almost, track 7:
I think the title means Love Bubbles (or Bubbles of Love), and not Love Pimples (or Love Plukes to the scottish contingent). But if it’s a song about sexual incontinence it could be the latter. And here’s a track with Flaco-type accordion flourishes:
Track 11 is not great; it is possible the compiler(s) ran out of steam. Or maybe it was a case of CBA. Track 12 sounds as if the singer is more unfamiliar with the Portuguese language than me, given her pronunciation, and that is taking into account that she could be Brazilian. Anyway, I’ve decided to play the first 9 again to pick out something. This seems to have inspired our dog to go into a shed and eat something from the cat litter tray. Is this his way of commenting on the quality of the music he has listened to?
The majority of songs have left me in a cloud of tears, nevermind Fafá
This too is a hard-to-find album. Unless you’re in my music room, and let me tell you this, that would cause me no end of stress, I don’t even like my partner being in that room, nevermind some internet stalker type.
There’s a series of these “O melhor da música internacional”, and maybe this Household Clearance collection contains more. Part of me would really like to see what the Country and the Soul collections contain. We shall see.
I'm sure the readers are greatful to George for introducing The Spice Girls and Natalie Imbruglia to these pages
2022 Charity Shop Purchases 25 - The Clash - Combat Rock
Combat Rock the fifth and the last worth having album by the Clash turned 40 on Saturday.
As is the way of these things a 40th anniversary issue called Combat Rock/The People's Hall isscheduled for release on Friday
It contains an additional 12 tracks with the two collaborations with the late Ranking Roger the most interesting.
Again as is the way of these things a vinyl copy of the album will cost you in the region of £45 to £50 quid. That is a bit too steep for me. I did, however, somewhat coincidentally last Friday fork out a quid in a charity shop for a CD copy of the album to accompany the vinyl copy which I got when it was released.
You will all be aware of the three big singles from the album but the other nine tracks are also pretty damn good. Here are a couple of them.
The second last individual Jones before we continue with multiple Jones and who better to feature than a knight of the realm. Steady ladies - it is the one and only Sir Tom Jones
From 1999 on the Gut label the album Reload has somehow found its way onto the shelves. It is the one where he does duets with various artists . Just be grateful that I haven't decided to include Simply Red, Robbie Williams or the Stereophonics. There are some depths to which even I will not stoop.Remarkably it was the highest selling album of his long and illustrious career.
The first two sons below are taken from this album with the third song Evil, a Howling Wolf song, being a collaboration with Jack White from 2012 as part of a Blues Series on Third Man Records
I thought that I had a copy of his version of Delilah but no. The only versions I have are by Jon Langford & Sally Timms with the Pine Valley Cosmonauts and by The Sensational Alex Harvey Band. That's a post for another day.
No Depression - The Bi-monthly Journal of Alt- Country
#62 March -April 2006
Today sees the final instalment of this series. We started out on 15th August last year with #32 March -April 2001 featuring Billy Joe Shaver.
30 additions later we reach March -April 2006 with the great Kris Kristofferson as cover star.
The date symmetry is nothing more than a fortunate coincidence. It just seemed like a good place to stop. It wasn't cheap importing this magazine from the States and I wasn't devouring it as thoroughly as I used to.
This series has resulted in me opening most of them for the first time in years. I must confess that I haven't gone through them in any depth and I am now faced with the quandary as to whether I keep them or either try to sell them or give them away.
The lead article notionally features This Old Time a 2006 album by Kris on New West Records. I don't have it but it seems that it takes a retrospective and reflective look at what he deems to be the most important elements of his life and the article goes down those roads.
Many of you will be familiar with the back story - Rhodes scholar to Oxford , helecopter pilot, disowned by his family for working as a janitor while trying to pursue a musical career, meeting Johnny Cash, marrying Rita Coolidge, becoming famous.
There are those who would say that his best song is Me and Bobby McGhee but that is a bit like saying Glen Campbell's best song is Rhinestone Cowboy when the dogs in the street know it is actually Wichita Lineman.
No, Kris' best by a country mile is Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down and I'm willing to fight anyone who thinks differently. The Pilgrim:Chapter 33 also gives a fairly good whistlestop tour of his lifestyle back in the day.
We had the privilege of seeing him very briefly on two occasions at Celtic Connections in 2016 when he did a cameo appearance with The Chieftains and a few songs as part of the Roaming RootsReview.He was quite frail as he had been suffering from Lyme disease but he still had a huge aura and presence.
For my final One from the Top I'm going for Calexico as a fine example of Alt Country.
I enjoyed doing this series (hope you did to) but am quite glad that its now over.
My ticket tin tells me that I have seen Chuck Prophet twice at King Tuts, thrice if you include GreenonRed. I think that I have seen him there more often as he regularly appeared in Glasgow and was one of those artists that you would always go and see.
On one occasion I witnessed him getting an electric shock as the guitar wires touched the mic. If he thought he was going to get any sympathy from a Glasgow audience he was in for a shock (do you see what I did there?) as they were too busy slagging off his shirt.
I've also seen him in Austin as guitarist to Alejandro Escovedo in a couple of blistering concerns at the Continental Club a venue held by many in the same regard as Tuts.
I saw him more recently at Cottiers. When I say recently I've just checked and it was actually September 2018. That still seems recent to me. He was pretty disappointing and was blown away be support act Jesse Malin.
No such problems at the shows listed above when him and his band were firing out great tracks from albums such as Feast of Hearts (1995) andHomemade Blood (1997) and in the case of 2005 Age of Miracles (2004) from which these songs below are taken