Monday, May 29, 2017

Playlist for 5/29

Jimmy LaFave - Buffalo Return To The Plains
Bop Apocalypse - Martin Torgoff  (Book)
Scorpions - Blackout
Poco - s/t (1970)
Poco - Pickin' Up The Pieces
Chris Stapleton - From A Room:Volume 1
John Moreland - Big Bad Luv
Robert Cray & Hi Rhythm
Gregg Allman - Playin' Up A Storm
Gregg Allman - I'm No Angel

Saturday, May 27, 2017

RIP Gregg Allman

Gregg Allman was 69 when he died, but he had been an old soul for years.  The world-weary voice was there from the Allman Brothers' earliest recordings.  On his greatest recordings, whether in the studio or even better on their live albums, you believed every hard fought word.  With that voice he was able to stretch beyond Rock into Blues, Gospel, Country, R&B.

The Allman Brothers were inducted into the Rock Hall in 1995.  Definitely the greatest Southern Rock band. The ones who set the template for groups like Lynyrd Skynyrd to expand on. Gregg's brother, the extraordinary guitarist, Duane died in 1971.

Here are 20 great Gregg Allman songs, both with the band and solo:

1.  Whipping Post
2.  Midnight Rider (solo version)
3.  Melissa
4.  Statesboro Blues (Live at Fillmore '71)
5.  Dreams
6.  These Days
7.  Revival
8.  One Way Out
9.  Trouble No More
10. Ain't Wastin' Time No More
11. No One To Run With
12. Good Clean Fun
13. I'm No Angel
14. Just Ain't Easy
15. Please Call Home
16. Little By Little
17. Can't Lose What You Never Had
18. Wasted Words
19. It's Not My Cross To Bear (Live Peakin' at the Beacon)
20. Done Somebody Wrong (Live at Fillmore '71)



Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Playlist for 5/24

Sade - Promise
Sade - Stronger Than Pride
Sade - Love Deluxe
Mary J. Blige - Strength Of A Woman
Arto Lindsay - Cuidada Madame
Heavy Metal - Soundtrack
Orchestra Baobab - Tribute to Ndiouga Dieng
Barry Manilow - This Is My Town
George Jones & The Smoky Mountain Boys (reissue)

Monday, May 22, 2017

RIP Jimmy LaFave

Jimmy LaFave, the Texas singer-songwriter who died of cancer today is definitely one of those "ripe for rediscovery" musicians that I love to champion.  But I've been aware of his music since his first album in 1992.  He is a mainstay on the great Americana radio station, KPIG (based in Freedom, California).  It was there that I've heard LaFave's music grow from album to album.  LaFave is also one of those regional acts that never quite broke nationally.  If you follow the Americana genre, then you know him.  If not, chances are you missed him.  What drew me to him was his soulful voice.   There is a world-weary ruggedness to it.  You'll be drawn in to his stories.

The deaths of musicians often brings new light to someone who never quite go their due.  LaFave was one of them.  Now we all have a chance to get to know him.

All of LaFave's albums are worth checking out.  I happen to love 1995's Buffalo Returns To The Plains and 2007's Cimarron Manifesto.  He is also due for an updated Anthology.  If you can get your hands on 2010's out-of-print Favorites 1992-2001, scoop it up as it's his only compilation.

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Thursday, May 18, 2017

RIP Chris Cornell

Chris Cornell's vocals always steered closer to the Classic Rock of the 70's, which Soundgarden's music touched on, and that's what set him apart from his 90's contemporaries.

1994's Superunknown is the must-own in their brief (6 albums) catalog.  Listen and you'll see what I mean about their debt to 70's AOR.  After that, the one before,  1991's Badmotorfinger is the perfect set up for what was to come.  And don't forget 1990's Temple of the Dog, a one-off tribute to the late Mother Love Bone's Andrew Wood.  Featuring Pearl Jam, it also set the template for Superunkown.

After Soundgarden too a hiatus in the late 90's, Cornell put out some okay solo albums and hooked up with Rage Against the Machine, minus Zack de la Rocha, for three decent albums as Audioslave. But eventually Cornell got back together with Soundgarden and put out a pretty good album in 2012.  

Cornell will be remembered as one of the Grunge era's greatest vocalists.  Make sure Superunknown is in your collection.  1997's A-Sides is their best compilation,  It has most of their essential sides up to that point.  2010's Telephantasm is the other one. Eight of its 12 songs are on the A-Sides (which has 17 songs).   A 2CD/DVD version of Telephantasm digs deeper into their pre-Badmotorfinger years.

My favorite Cornell solo song appeared on the Grunge-themed Singles soundtrack from 1992, It's a track called "Seasons" and it sounds like a lost gem from a 70's classic rock album.

BTW- If you are looking for a definitive cover of a Soundgarden song, check out Johnny Cash's Rick Rubin produced "Rusty Cage" from 1996.  

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Playlist for 5/17

Beach Boys: Making Pet Sounds (Documentary)
Joe Cocker: Mad Dog With Soul (Documentary)
Johnny's Cash & Charley's Pride -  Peter Cooper (Book)
Charley Pride - In Person 1969
Charlie Worsham - Beginning of Things
Bobby "Blue" Bland - Dreamer
Little River Band - Sleeper Catcher

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Great Mother's Day Songs

When most people think of Mother's Day songs, sentimentality usually wins out.  I've got a few of those listed below, but also some that avoid the teardrops.

If I had to pick a favorite it would be "I'll Always Love My Mama" by the Intruders.  Written by Kenny Gamble/Leon Huff and McFadden & Whitehead (of "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now" fame), and released on the Philadelphia International label in 1973, it was a minor Top 40 hit (#36) and Top 10 R&B one (#6).  I remember first hearing it when I lived in Germany in the early 70's.  It's got that uptempo Philly Soul that I've always loved, and the lyrics aren't overly soggy.

Check it out:  "I'll Always Love My Mama" (Video)

                                                                                                                                                              2017 is the first year that I've posted this. Will be adding to it.  Suggestions welcome.

Anthony Hamilton - Mama Knew Love
Beatles - Julia
Bill Anderson - Mama Sang A Song
Boyz II Men - Song For Mama
Carrie Underwood - Mama's Song
Dolly Parton - Coat Of Many Colors
Electric Light Orchestra - Mama
Elvis Presley - Mama Liked The Roses
Gerry Rafferty - Mary Skeffington
Gregory Porter - Mother's Song
Intruders - I'll Always Love My Mama
Jamie O'Neal - Somebody's Hero
Judds - Mama He's Crazy
John Lennon - Mother
Junior - Mama Used To Say
Lefty Frizzell - Mom and Dad's Waltz
Lenny Kravitz - Thinking Of You
Linda Ronstadt - Sweetest Gift
Lynyrd Skynyrd - Simple Man
Merle Haggard - Mama Tried
Miracles - Shop Around
Miranda Lambert - Mama's Broken Heart
Outkast - She's Alive
Paul Simon - Loves Me Like A Rock
Pink Floyd - Mother
Ruth Brown - Mama He Treats Your Daughter Mean
Shirelles - Mama Said
Sizzla - Thank You Mama
2Pac - Dear Mama
Spinners - Sadie
Sufjan Stevens - Fourth Of July
Taylor Swift - Best Day

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