Friday, March 7, 2008

Grab bag a-go-go

Time for another episode of grab bag. Every Friday you´ll get a mix of songs old and new that got me all excited during the past seven days. And that´s no mean feat I´ll tell you. This week´s batch includes the nearly forgotten folky Eric Von Schmidt, a fatal game of Russian roulette, some ´nederbeat´ from the Dutch Stones, and much much more. Enjoy the weekend!

Let´s start with a song that matches the weather here at the moment. After a nice week of false spring it´s mighty cold in the great city of Barcelona, with an icy wind blowing from the north. So "we sit and pray together that they may change the weather..." That´s Hüsker Dü of course, from their Warehouse: Songs And Stories album (´87). Bring on la primavera. 
Hüsker Dü - Ice Cold Ice MP3

Please mister record company man, do us a favour and finally release the first couple of albums by Eric Von Schmidt on cd. As Joshua Gone Barbados shows, his sixties folkblues still sounds fresh today. Giles Joshua was the president for the tiny Caribbean island of St. Vincent once upon a time by the way. He split for Barbados after a while, no doubt with government money in his pockets, leaving the country in misery. Bob Dylan did a take on this song too, with The Band during the Basement Tapes sessions in Woodstock. No strange choice, as Von Schmidt was an old pal. And since I´m such a nice guy, I´ll give you that version as well. 
Eric Von Schmidt - Joshua Gone Barbados MP3
Bob Dylan & The Band - Joshua Gone Barbados MP3

The Outsiders were more or less the Dutch Rolling Stones. Lying All The Time (´66) has an intro to die for, but it´s the unique vocals of singer Wally Tax - check out his English with an Amsterdam accent - that really steal the show. Collectors (especially the Japanese for some reason) were always paying top dollar for Outsiders vinyl, but since Bam Caruso released the excellent compilation Strange Things Are Happening everyone can enjoy their so-called nederbeat.
The Outsiders - Lying All The Time MP3

Time for some more modern sounds now. Brightblack Morning Light´s self-titled album (Matador records ´06) still makes my day every time I play it. Under the motto "it´s easy being green" these tree hugging, teepee dwelling neo-hippies came up with a highly original, organic and relaxed sound. This is my music to chill by.
Brightblack Morning Light - Star Blanket River Child MP3

Mose Allison is one of my favorite piano players. Is it jazz, is it blues, is it boogie? Who cares, it´s just Mose, doing his thing. If You´re Goin´ To The City is from The Best Of Mose Allison (Atlantic) and gives some great advice to all you country hicks planning to move to the big city.
Mose Allison - If You´re Goin´ To The City MP3

Last but not least here´s the late great Johnny Ace. This young soul singer was hanging around backstage at Houston´s City Auditorium on Christmas Day of 1954, waiting to go on, and decided it would be fun to play a game of Russian roulette. He first pointed the Colt 45 at his girlfriend and pulled the trigger. Nothing. Then he aimed at her friend, but again the revolver´s chamber proved empty... So he pointed it at himself and ended a promising career. You can find Never Let Me Go - and many other gems - on the Memorial Album compilation (Duke/MCA). And guess what, Bob Dylan performed this one too a couple of times, during his Royal Thunder Revue tour, duetting with Joan Baez. And as I´m getting nicer by the minute, I´ll include an example (recorded live in Augusta 26-11-´75) of that here too. 
Johnny Ace - Never Let Me Go MP3
Bob Dylan - Never Let Me Go (live ´75) MP3

1 comment:

wolff said...

Curious how The Bright Black Morninglight sounds live. Luckely they drop by in Amsterdam Paradiso 28 of may!Tinca