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Saturday, 28 February 2015

Saturday Lucky Dip

This week's selection is This is Music an Uncut compilation from October 2004.
Initially I was looking to give you two tracks from artists who had not previously featured but it was a bit of a struggle to be honest.
So therefore you are getting one new artist to CCM and one old favourite.
We'll start with the new one.Up until now I'd never heard of The Czars.However, I now know that they are from Denver , that they released 6 studio albums and that their membership included John Grant who went on to have solo success with Queen of Denmark.
This song Paint the Moon is from their fifth album Goodbye and is on the Bella Union label.
Next up is our old pal Dave Alvin with Rio Grande co-written with Tom Russell track 2 from his fantastic album Ashgrove on Yep Roc.
Maybe she’s in Brownsville
She’s got some family there
She was always talkin’ ‘bout
The salty Gulf Coast air

Lovely stuff

More random nonsense next Saturday

Friday, 27 February 2015

New Country

Some new Country music tonight in the shape of Ward Thomas.
From the Deep South - that is Hampshire in the deep south of the UK as opposed to the US of A  twins Catherine and Lizzie Ward Thomas come from a musical family
If their music sounds familiar it is perhaps because they cite The Dixie Chicks among their influences.
Warning - this song contains Vince Gill on guitar but we will forgive them -they are only young

Their album From Where We Stand is well worth a listen if you like your Country traditional.They do a good version of Caledonia - much better than Dougie MacLean's dirge of an original

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Birthday Boys


George (a 52 year old man writes) celebrates his birthday today.
He shares his birthday with Michael Bolton and if you visit his pages I suspect that today he may be paying some sort of tribute to the hirsute crooner.Let's face it he has mentioned him several times recently.
But not on these pages, oh no!. No Michael Bolton here. Not now, not ever.

Instead we pay tribute to a true legend born on this day in  1932 - the one and only Mr John R Cash.
Quite simply one of the greatest singers ever to have walked this planet.
And here's the proof.

Johnny Cash -Wanted Man

Johnny Cash -Give My Love to Rose

I suspect there might even be some Johnny featuring over at George's place. Happy birthday youth.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

The Last Internationale

I bumped into my pal Harry at Celtic Connections and we got chatting as to new music we had heard or seen since the last time we had met.
He told me that he has seen The Last Internationale supporting Robert Plant and that he would be first in the queue the next time they came back to Glasgow.
On the strength of his recommendation I explored them further and was impressed enough to purchase their  album We Will Reign which is very good indeed
From Brooklyn, New York they are guitarist Edgey Pires, vocalist Delila Paz and drummer Brad Wilk.
They have pretty strong left wing leanings as some of their songs clearly demonstrate.

I'm not posting anything from We Will Reign as you should go out and buy it.
The album is all original tracks and quite rocky in places -a bit like a nosier Noisettes
Also,as I am low on bandwidth, I am posting links to two covers they have on their Soundcloud page which you can download from there.

The Last Internationale -A Change is Gonna Come

The Last Internationale - Deportees

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Sleeps With Angels

Neil Percival Young has released around 40 solo studio albums in his long and illustrious career.
Some have been brilliant and some have been pretty dreadful.
He seems to have become more prolific of late with, I would argue, a diminishing level of quality.
However, he has to be admired for constantly trying new things.
I purchased Sleeps With Angels recently in Auchterarder.
From 1994 it is about midway through his career being his 21st studio album and his 7th with Crazy Horse.
As well as being somewhere in the middle of his career it is probably also pretty much in the middle in terms of quality.
You are only getting one song Change Your Mind as it is over 14 minutes long.
It starts out all Harvesty and ends up all Crazy Horsey - no bad thing

Neil Young and Crazy Horse - Change Your Mind

Monday, 23 February 2015

Party For The World

A few years ago I picked up a batch of CDs at a record library sale.
One of them was Private Revolution by World Party. I think I may have given it a cursory listen at the time and then filed it away.
I was reminded of this recently when Brian of Linear Tracking Lives! fame posted one of their tracks as number 98 in his soon to be legendary Top 100 tracks from the 1990s.
This prompted me to give it another listen and I'm very glad I did as it is a pretty good album.
It is their 1986 debut after Karl Wallinger left The Waterboys and it is effectively him, some session musicians and Sinead O'Connor providing some backing vocals.
To these ears I can hear shades of both Dylan and Chuck Prophet on the  first track I've posted whereas the second would not be out of place on Exile on Main Street.
In line with Brian's comments I may well explore their next two albums further

World Party - The Ballad of the Little Man

World Party - Hawaiian Island World

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Some Sunday Soul

I have only ever spend approximately 30 minutes of my life in the Angus town of Forfar.
This was long enough however to purchase Portrait the stunning 2012 debut album by Josephine.
Josephine is Josephine Oniyama from Hulme in Manchester but with Liberian and Jamaican roots.
It is  a pleasant mixture of soul, gospel, country and jazz
Here are the title track and Original Love which were both released as singles.
On this basis the follow up album is eagerly waited.

As well as selling me this great record Forfar's main claims to fame are that it is the Scottish centre for guide dog training and also the home of the Forfar bridie, a  Scottish equivalent to the Cornish pastie

A Forfar Bridie

Josephine - Portrait

Josephine - Original Love

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Saturday Lucky Dip

There is an argument that there is too much Americana posted on these pages. There is also a counter argument, and one I subscribe to, that you can never have enough Americana.
This week's random compilation Uncut: For Your Pleasure - New Music for a New Year 2011 contains a shed load of Americana as this track list demonstrates.
So that's what you are getting - not all of it just the two stand out tracks.

Firstly there is Samuel Beam better known by his stage name Iron and Wine with the sublime Walking Far From Home from his album Kiss Each Other Clean. He has five kids and a big beard.
Then we have the lovely Jessica Lea Mayfield from Kent, Ohio with Our Hearts Are Wrong from her second album Tell Me.

More random nonsense, Americana or otherwise, next Saturday God willing and if the creek don't rise.

Iron and Wine -Walking Far From Home

Jessica Lea Mayfield - Our Hearts Are Wrong

Friday, 20 February 2015

The Sound of The City

As promised/threatened here is the follow up to the brilliant The Sound of the Suburbs.
From 1992 here is The Sound of the City
Seventeen great songs and artists
A great album but not quite in the same league as it's predecessor. It is probably Europa League compared to the Champions League that is the Suburbs.
You will be familiar with most, if not all, of the songs so I have gone with two of them that are perhaps played less often in the shape of The Jags and Spizz Energi  Two bands who rarely, if ever, troubled the charts

The Jags - Back of My Hand

Spizz Energi - Where's Captain Kirk

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Big in Japan?

Like most bloggers I take an almost obsessional interest on my viewing figures.
Mrs CC often asks are you Big in Japan? as I head off to check the numbers.
The truth is I don't really know - Japan used to feature in the 10 most popular viewing countries but no longer does.
I know that I still get quite a few hits from Japan so if you are out there let me know.

Big in Japan was Alphaville's only hit single in the UK entering the charts on 18th August 1984 prior to charting for 13 weeks peaking at the dizzy heights of number 8. It was only  when looking up this information that I discovered that they were in fact German.

It's a small world -but I wouldn't like to paint it

Alphaville -Big in Japan

Alphaville -Seeds

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

New Zealand Country Focus

When I went to see Allison Moorer at Celtic Connections I picked up a free CD called New Zealand Country Focus.
Twelve tracks from six New Zealand Artists (two each) - the previously featured Tiny Ruins plus Maisey Rika, Trinity Roots, Thomas Oliver, Louis Baker and Waiora. A mixture of the traditional and the contemporary.
For me the pick of the bunch is  easily Maisey Rika - someone I intend to explore further.
I was sorely tempted to post her two tracks but that somewhat defeats the purpose of a sampler with various artists.
So for the second track you are getting Louis Baker with Birds

It is always good to get something for nothing especially when the quality is this good.

Maisey Rike - Tangarda Whakamautai

Louis Baker - Birds

Tuesday, 17 February 2015


The other night as I was settling down to do some serious blogging  I could hear music from the other room.
Intrigued, I decided to investigate and found that it was a song accompanying the closing credits of a film on TV (I've no idea what film)
So I did what you do in these situations - I stood about 6 inches from the telly in an attempt to read the credit's which were getting ever smaller.
Turns out it was a song called CBGBs by Syd Straw and it is pretty dammed good.
Some investigation tells me it is from her 1996 album War and Peace. She was also in a band called The Golden Palominos who included Michael Stype, Matthew Sweet and Anton Fier.

CBGBs (Country Bluegrass Blues) was perhaps the most famous punk rock venue in the world
Opened in 1973 by Hilly Kristal at 315 Bowery New York, it became the home from home for the likes of The Ramones, Blondie, Television and The Talking Heads.
It closed on 15th October 2006 with a show by Patti Smith ending in a rendition of Gloria

Syd Straw -CBGBs

Patti Smith - Gloria

Monday, 16 February 2015

Some Daintee Music

I didn't get to Martin Stephenson and the Daintees via the traditional route of Boat to Bolivia.
Rather the first album of theirs I purchased was Salutation Road following their appearance at the Fleadh on Glasgow Green on 24th May 1992.
From memory other good acts were Christy Moore, the Levellers, Kirsty MacColl and the great Frankie Miller.
Van Morrison on the other hand was a major disappointment.
Needless to say I did subsequently acquire Boat to Bolivia and only recently I picked up a copy of Gladsome, Humour & Blue.
A terrific and seriously underrated artist and band.
I have just noticed as part of my research that I am in fact one day older than Martin Stephenson!

Martin Stephenson & the Daintees - Big North Lights

Martin Stephenson & the Daintees - Morning Time

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Some Sunday Soul

Frank Sinatra once said of Lou Rawls that he had the classiest singing and silkiest chops in the singing game and who are we to argue with Old Blue Eyes

Lou was born in Detroit in 1933 and cut his teeth in local groups where he met and sang with Curtis Mayfield and Sam Cooke.
He was in the Pilgrim Travelers Gospel Group prior to enlisting in the US paratroopers prior to returning to the band
He was in a serious car crash in 1958 being pronounced dead at the scene.Fortunately this was not in fact the case but he was in a  coma for over 5 days and understandably took a number of months to recover.Sam Cooke was also in the car but only sustained minor injuries.
Following the crash he switched from gospel to secular music and had a fairly glittering career. He died in 2006 aged 72.

These tracks are taken from Groovy People - the Best of Lou Rawls which I got in a Blairgowrie Charity Shop last week for a pound.
Silky and mellow - just the thing for some Sunday listening

Lou Rawls - Trade Winds

Lou Rawls - I Wish You Belonged to Me

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Saturday Lucky Dip

Sometime on the Saturday Slot I try to select some of the less obvious tracks from a compilation.
On other occasions such as today I  prefer to opt for the absolute classics
The twin icons of Glam Rock  Bolan and Bowie feature today from an NME Compilation - Under the Influence.
You could have had the Pistols, Iggy, Miles Davis, Nick Drake or indeed a number of others.
However, who can argue with I Love to Boogie and Suffragette City.
As Mr Bowie was want to say Ohh, Wham Bam Thank You Ma'am!

More random nonsense next Saturday

T-Rex - I Love to Boogie

David Bowie - Suffragette City

Friday, 13 February 2015

The Sound of the Suburbs #2

Ha, got you there!
Here were you expecting a follow up to last week's well received Sound of the Suburbs and instead you get that Canadian mob Arcade Fire with  a couple of homages to Suburbia from their 3rd album released in 2010.
A few weeks ago there was a debate over at C's place as to the merits or otherwise of Arcade Fire.
Many of those commenting indicated that they could take or leave them or that they particularly liked the occasional song.
For me, my abiding memory of them is a tremendous televised  Glastonbury performance of Keep The Car Running.
To be honest I don't find myself reaching to the shelves for The Suburbs all that often.

But panic not as there IS a sequel to Sound of the Suburbs which will feature in the next week or so

Arcade Fire - The Suburbs

Arcade Fire - Suburban War

Thursday, 12 February 2015

The Blues Collection - Piano Red

We have another ivory tinkler this week in the shape of Piano Red.
Now on a farm near Hampton, Georgia on October 19th 1911  Mr and Mrs Red did not have a wee boy whom they had  the foresight to christen Piano
No, rather Willie Lee Perryman came into the world who was subsequently nicknamed Piano Red on account of his albino pigmentation and his piano playing ability.
These two songs are taken from an album Live and Feelin' Good recorded in London in 1977.
Mr Red also went by the moniker Dr Feelgood and obviously it would be foolhardy in the extreme not to post a song with that title.
The second song goes out to our esteemed comrade Singing Bear
Mr Perryman left this world on 25th July 1985 at the ripe old age (for a Bluesman) of 73

Piano Red - Dr Feelgood

Piano Red - Everyday I Have The Blues

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

If Paradis is Half as Nice

It's mid week and we are hurtling  rapidly towards mid February so the situation clearly calls for some lightweight French pop.
And who better to provide this than Vanessa Paradis, child star, chanteuse, actress and significant other of both Lenny Kravitz and Johnny Depp over the years.
Two tracks from her 1988 debut album M&J which you will either find formidable, merde or peut-etre  comme-ci  comme-ca depending on your taste.
Altogether now

Joe le taxi
Y va pas partout
Y marche pas au soda
Son saxo jaune
Connaît toutes les rues par cœur

In a similar vein to Camper vans I often shout this out when looking for a cab

Vanessa Paradis - Mosquito

Vanessa Paradis - Joe le Taxi

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Early UB40

UB40 were a great band up to,and I would argue including, 1983's Labour of Love.
Sure most of us grew to become heartily sick of that album and the subsequent inexorable full on rush towards commercialism with the associated reduction in quality and integrity.
However, along with the Clash, it did introduce me and countless others to many reggae bands  and artists we would probably have remained in ignorance off.
These two tracks are taken from the 1980 Singles Album whilst they were still recording for Graduate Records, 196 Wolverhampton Road, Dudley, West Midlands.
Who would have thought then that the same band would later come up with such dross as Rat in the Kitchen and allow their 2008 album TwentyFourSeven to be given away free with The Mail on Sunday (FFS!)

UB40 -Tyler

UB40 -The Earth Dies Screaming (12'' version)

Monday, 9 February 2015

Celtic Connections #2

Our second Celtic Connections concert was Allison Moorer at the stunning St Andrews in the Square.
I was a wee bit apprehensive about the venue as being an old church with high ceilings the acoustics have been pretty poor at previous gigs I've attended there.
However, I'm glad to report that whilst not brilliant they were considerably better than I remember.
Support was from Shetland singer songwriter Arthur Nicholson who has a fine album Sticks & Stones out at the moment. He put me in mind a wee bit of Teddy Thompson and let's face it that is no bad thing.He also does a pretty good version of God Only Knows.
On to the main act. Allison Moorer was absolutely superb. She was accompanied only by her
producer Kenny Greenberg who played some quite  ace (as Singing Bear  would say) guitar.
Hayes Carll joined her from the wings for a duet on one song.A friend popping by or a new beau perhaps?
She is shortly to release Down to Believing the compulsory break up album following the ending of her marriage to Steve Earle.
Believe me, it will be well worth acquiring if the concert is anything to go by.

Arthur Nicholson - Go For It

Allison Moorer - Is It Worth It

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Some Sunday Soul

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings are now six albums into their career.
For a while it didn't look as there was going to be a sixth after Sharon was diagnosed with cancer.
Thankfully she appears to have made a positive recovery and in January 2014 Give The People What They Want finally saw the light of day.
She remains very much the poster girl of the great Daptone label who continue to bring their brand of retro soul and funk to the attention of the masses.
By way of tribute today you are getting the title tracks from 2007's 100 Days, 100 Nights and 2010's I Learned The Hard Way.
Long may she and the band continue to make great music.

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings - 100 Days, 100 Nights

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings -I Learned The Hard Way

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Saturday Lucky Dip

This week's offering is Blue Notes an Uncut compilation of new music from December 2013.
The pick of the bunch is  undoubtedly The Corner Man by Barrence Whitfield and the Savages. That will not feature today as I have previously posted it.
Rather you are getting Lily and Madeleine, the Jurkiewicz sisters, a folk duo from Indianapolis with the lovely I've Got Freedom
Then we have a change of tempo with the North Mississippi Allstars' interpretation of the Sleepy John Estes and Furry Lewis song  Goin' To Brownsville.
We conclude with the Syrian musician Omar Souleyman with Yagbuni. There is a hell of a lot going on in this song - terrific stuff.

More random nonsense next Saturday.

Lily & Madeleine - I've Got Freedom

North Mississippi Allstars - Goin' to Brownsville

Omar Souleyman - Yagbuni

Friday, 6 February 2015

The Sound of The Suburbs

Brian recently correctly stated that That Summer was the best film soundtrack out there.I would go further and say that it is also the best New Wave Compilation. Regrettably I no longer have my copy.
However The Sounds of The Suburbs probably comes a very close second
How could it not be when tracks 3 to 5 are Ever Fallen in Love With, Another Girl Another Planet and Teenage Kicks?
The rest are top drawer too.
Here is the title track by The Members followed by the magnificence that were the Buzzcocks.
I still, on occasions, wake up in a cold sweat having had a nightmare about Roland Gift murdering this song.

The Members - The Sound of the Suburbs

Buzzcocks - Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn't've)

Thursday, 5 February 2015

A Mid Tempo Ballad

I usually find that mid tempo ballads are best avoided. However I am prepared to make an exception for Arms of Mary by Sutherland Brothers and Quiver.
Who can argue with a song which was number one in Belgium, Netherlands AND Ireland!

It also appears on their 1975 album Reach for the Sky which I have actually bought twice , the first copy being too scratched to play properly. Regrettably the rest of the album is no great shakes.

The Sutherland Brothers are Iain and Gavin - Iain wrote Arms of Mary, Gavin wrote Sailing
Quiver appears to be the collective name for the other two members Willie Wilson and Tim Renwick

Apparently there is a German version  "Ich seh' dich mit meinen Augen"  by  Rebekka, which I'm sure Walter  and  Dirk are familiar with.

Sutherland Brothers & Quiver -Arms of Mary

Sutherland Brothers & Quiver - When The Train Comes

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Roll over Beethoven

For years Mrs CC has had to put up with me shouting enthusiastically and very loudly Camper Van Beethoven every time we pass a Volkswagon Camper Van.
Also until recently I shared an office with a colleague who is a very good lawn bowler. She had to put up with me uttering Take the Skinheads Bowling at frequent intervals.

What can I say? I'm easily pleased.

Camper Van Beethoven - Take The Skinheads Bowling

Camper Van Beethoven - Northern California Girls

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Celtic Connections #1

Mrs CC and I managed a couple of concerts at this year's Celtic Connections
The first gig we attended was to see Tiny Ruins at the Tron Theatre.
This was a pretty random choice based on the blurb in the brochure
They are a band from Auckland, New Zealand consisting of Holly Fullbrook on vocals and Cass Basil on bass. There was also a drummer Benjamin someone or other.
I must admit we were a tad disappointed.
They play indie folk which is not unpleasant. However all their songs seemed to be a touch one dimensional.
All right in small doses I suspect
The support act was Ross Wilson from Edinburgh but now based in London who goes under the name Blue Rose Code.
A pretty interesting character as this blurb shows.
His songs were pretty good and he is worth checking out on his forthcoming British  tour

Tiny Ruins - Me at the Museum You in the Wintergardens

Blue Rose Code -Boscombe Armistice (Soundcloud) I can't work out how to get the Soundcloud thingy up!

Monday, 2 February 2015

The Blues Collection - Professor Longhair

When you are born in Bogalusa, Louisiana it is perhaps inevitable that you will eventually become a boogie woogie pianist and indeed that was the fate of one Henry Roeland "Roy" Byrd better known as Professor Longhair.

He began his career doing rhythm and blues but over the years he slowly graduated towards jazz.
These songs are taken from a concert at the New London Theatre, Drury Lane, London on 26th March 1978 and he is accompanied by Alfred "Uganda" Roberts on Conga Drums.
We start with his version of the Ray Charles classic Mess Around.
We  then have some tremendous whistling as he pays tribute to Erik Bartlam's favourite town New Orleans on Go To The Mardi Gras
Sadly he (Professor Longhair not Erik ) died fairly shortly after this concert in January 1980 at the relatively young age of 61.Happily, Erik is still going strong.

Professor Longhair - Mess Around

Professor Longhair - Go To The Mardi Gras

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Some Sunday Soul

I picked up The Best of Ruby Turner for a couple of quid in a Charity shop the other week.Quite why anyone would give up a record as good as this is beyond me.
Still, their loss and very much my gain.
It is from 1995 and so pre-dates her association with Jools Holland.
It contains a mixture of her versions of the standards together with some other less well known singles by her.
We start with I'm in Love from 1986 which reached number 61 in the UK charts. it also reached number 9 in New Zealand - Ruby appears to be big there.
This is followed by her quite awesome version of I'd Rather Go Blind from 1987

As the Guardian rightly wrote Ruby Turner is truly the genuine article. Blessed with a voice that can breathe life and meaning into any song, whether it be a passionate ballad or a fast groove

Ruby Turner - I'm In Love

Ruby Turner -I'd Rather Go Blind