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Wednesday, 21 March 2018


We are off on holiday so nothing to see here for a few days.
It gives me an opportunity to relax, recharge the batteries and hopefully pick up some new purchases to subject you to upon our return.
As the above map suggests we are not in fact off to Cambodia but rather to Portpatrick in Galloway in the South West of Scotland.
As far as I am aware I have no songs about Portpatrick or Galloway  and this was the first holiday related song which sprang to mind.

Dead Kennedys -Holiday in Cambodia

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

The Boy Wonder in Dreamland

I'd picked up Grandaddy on Friday in my local charity shop and decided to pop in again on Saturday on the off chance. Good job too as I picked up Dreamland by Aztec Camera which was not on their shelves the day before.
Aztec Camera's 5th album from 1993 ten years after the release of their mighty debut album High Land Hard Rain.
It is not one that I was familiar with other than the track Spanish Horses which has features elsewhere on the blogosphere on a few occasions.
Produced by Robbie Frame and Ryuichi Sakamoto it was released to mixed reviews. For what it's worth I quite like it on the first listen.I'd be interested to hear what others think.

Aztec Camera - Birds

Aztec Camera -Spanish Horses.

Monday, 19 March 2018


I was pretty chuffed the other day to pick up Sumday the 2003 third album by Grandaddy for 50p in my local charity shop.
My introduction to Grandaddy was The Broken Down Comfort Collection a compilation of some of their early stuff.
It probably put me off them for a bit and it was not until about 18 months ago that I picked up The Sophtware Slump which was much more to my taste.
On the first listen Sumday, which is the follow up  to that one, sounds even better.
It looks like there are a further three for me to explore including last year's Last Place.

Late to the party but enjoying what I am hearing.Lovely cover too.

Grandaddy - El Caminos in the West

Grandaddy - Stray Dog and the Chocolate Shake

Sunday, 18 March 2018

The Quay Sessions

On Wednesday night courtesy of my good friend Euan I got a ticket to be part of  the audience for the BBC
Radio Scotland Quay Sessions programme which was going out on Thursday evening . For UK readers
details here
Compared by Roddy Hart, adopting a lovable buffon role, there were live sets from two Scottish artists.

First up were 6 piece Edinburgh based guitar band Broken Records who after a break for parenthood are celebrating their 10th anniversary with an album What We Might Know scheduled for release at the end of March.
To steal a phrase from Drew I found them not unpleasant but just not very inspiring
It was the second time this year I had seen lead singer Jamie Sutherland as he had previously supported Siobhan Wilson with an acoustic set

Radio 2 Folk Musician of the Year Rachel Newton on the other hand was absolutely brilliant.
Flitting effortlessly between English and Gaelicand playing her harp beautifully she and her band put on a great show. A red sousaphone, which you can probably just about make out in the picture, even featured at some stage.
As if that was not enough a cover of Jolene was thrown into the mix as well!
Here 2016 album Here's My Heart Come Take It (sometimes mistakenly called Here's My Harp Come Take It!) is a high new entry on my must have list. Available along with a download of Jolene on her Bandcamp page.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

You Can't Beat a Bit of Bully

Never mind Brexit or the spat with the Russians (whose bots are not yet boycotting me) it has been a sad week in the UK given that we have lost three cultural icons.

First there was a comedy genius in the shape of Ken Dodd dying at the ripe old age of 90.
Finally we all got a topical opportunity to wheel out the old joke.

"Ken Dodd died today"
"Did he?"
"No Doddie"
The old ones are the best.

Then we lost the  mathematical genius Stephen Hawking at the age of 76 .Rol posted a fine Top 10 tribute over at his place on Thursday.An intellectual giant, socialist and an inspiration for anyone with a disability.And Stephen Hawking was pretty impressive as well!

Finally we lost a comedy AND a mathematical genius in the shape of  former teacher Jim Bowen the brilliant host of the Bullseye  darts game show at the age of 80 or twenty, twenty, double tops if you prefer.

Sadly the above news is the opposite of one of his many great catchphrases - Great, Smashing, Super

Rest easy gentlemen

Say Zuzu - Bull's Theme

Darts -Daddy Cool/The Girl Can't Help It

Friday, 16 March 2018

Derry on the Telly

I don't know if any of you saw the comedy series Derry Girls on Channel 4 recently.
Set in the 1990's and featuring a group of Catholic school girls (and an English boy  being taught in a girl's school for his own safety) navigating life in Derry during the Troubles. It's well worth a watch.

Tonight it is the turn of the Derry Boys as Feargal Sharkey, John and Damian O'Neill, Michael Bradley and Billy Doherty collectively know as The Undertones feature on the  regular Friday night BBC4 music slot.
Again it should be well worth a watch.

The Undertones - Here Comes the Summer

The Undertones - Get Over You

Thursday, 15 March 2018

If You're Feeling Sinister

I thought that I had featured more of indie favourites Belle and Sebastian than I actually have.
I also thought that I had featured this album and the title track before (I have however featured The Stars of Track and Field in a themed post).
It seems that I was wrong there.
From 1996  (22 years ago for goodness sake) on the Jeepster label this was their second album and the one which shot them to fame.

Tweemendous stuff

Belle and Sebastian - If You're Feeling Sinister

Belle and Sebastian - Me and the Major

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Songs From Ohio

Yet another early album by yet another Americana artist who subsequently yet again completely slipped off my radar shortly thereafter.

Apologies if this music is not to your taste and for the lack of variety recently but I am short on time and on inspiration at the moment.
Today's offering is Rehearsals For Departure the second album  by Damien Jurado from 1999 on the Sub Pop label
There are another 15  of his out there should I or you get the urge.

He's actually from Seattle but Ohio had a nice ring to it.

Damien Jurado - Ohio

Damien Jurado -Letters & Drawings

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Shouting Words of Wisdom

If you only ever get round to purchasing one album called Let It Be you should make sure that it is the one from 1984 by The Replacements.
The third album from the band and one which has been critically acclaimed and which finds itself in many of the top lists which we know and love and one which influenced many a band.
It features the classic line up of Paul Westerberg (guitar and lead vocals), Bob Stinson (guitar), Tommy Stinson (bass) and Chris Mars (drums)
The photograph on the front cover is of the band sitting on the roof of the Stinson brothers mother's house.
The two racks featured open sides 1 and 2.
A must have.

The Replacements - I Will Dare

The Replacements - Unsatisfied

Monday, 12 March 2018

No Never Alone

No Never Alone is the 2004 debut album by Canadian singer songwriter Justin Rutledge. According to the internet it was put out on Six Shooter Records although my copy appears to be from Shady Lane Records.
Credited to Justin Rutledge and the Junction Forty it received clinical acclaim in the UK with comparisons being made with Ryan Adams.
I saw him live around then and he then slipped off my radar.
He is still on the go with another six albums under his belt.

Having just given this one it's first listen in a while I feel that I should probably check out some more of his stuff.

Justin Rutledge and the Junction Forty - Too Sober To Sleep

Justin Rutledge and the Junction Forty - 1855

Sunday, 11 March 2018

A Sunday Single #10

There are many in the blogging fraternity, myself included , who will argue that Talking Heads best work was contained within their first four albums.
However it was after this when they enjoyed their greatest commercial success. Road to Nowhere from Little Creatures  their 6th studio album was their most successful single in the UK Released on 12th October 1985 it was their only UK Top Ten single peaking at number 6. It only reached 105 in the US charts
The b-side Televison Man is another song from Little Creatures. The single version jumps so here is the album version. Both come in at just over 6 minutes and are probably one and the same.

Talking Heads - Road to Nowhere

Talking Heads - Television Man

Saturday, 10 March 2018

Sorry Johnny

First the good news - this is the last time that I will be subjecting you to this bloody GIF!
Now the bad news - Johnny was comprehensively beating by Neil Young with Pocahontas to give a final score of Cash 9 The Rest 10.
The first of the featured artists to lose following Bob Dylan's 10- 6 victory and Springsteen's 10- 8 win.

For the record Johnny beat The Eagles, Elvis Costello, Depeche Mode, Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits, Tom Russell, Beck, Gordon Lightfoot and Sheryl Crow.

He lost to Kris Kristofferson, Tom Petty, Simon & Garfunkel, Bruce Springsteen, HankWilliams, Roberta Flack, Neil Diamond, Bob Marley & Joe Strummer, Steve Earle and Neil Young.

He drew with Nick Cave.

Had  I played this he would have won. The video has been seen over 100 million times on You Tube but is worth seeing again.

Johnny Cash - Hurt

Nine Inch Nails - Hurt

I'm having a break from this series but doubtless it will returm

Friday, 9 March 2018

Some Soul with Your Coffee Sir?

Photo from Tripadviser

There I was in the Millbrae Hill CafĂ© in Glasgow's Battlefield area nursing a coffee and ruminating as to how a seemingly innocuous  flattish tyre managed to open up a Pandora's Box of car defects and an associated huge hole in my wallet.
Gradually through the gloom I became aware of the music playing gently in the background which was some rather good soul music.
When I went to pay the chap (I refuse to use the term barista) I complimented him on his choice of music and on featuring Sharon Jones. He advised that it was a Spotify Soul playlist and seemed impressed with my  powers of observation.

Now here's the thing. It is a couple of days later and I have absolutely no recollection as to what song it was!
I know that it was not one of these two from the Daptone Gold compilation but let's face it anything by the late, great Miss Jones is surely worth a few minutes of your time.

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings - How Long Do I Have To Wait?

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings -Make It Good To Me

Thursday, 8 March 2018

Country Rides Again

It's funny how one song often leads to another.
When filing Josh Rouse away Caitlin Rose was in close proximity and I thought that I would give her album Own Side Now a spin.
The first song had me immediately thinking of the brilliant Jonathan Goes Country..From there I was off to the plains of Texas and some Tex Mex courtesy of Patricia Vonne.

Further coincidences - the three songs featured are the first tracks on their respective albums.
Not content with appearing on three songs featuring horses Caitlin Rose has previously appeared on three songs featuring rabbits.
I think I'll stop there.

Caitlin Rose -Learning to Ride

Jonathan Richman - Since She Started to Ride

Patricia Vonne - Joe's Gone Ridin'

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Sequential Saint Etienne

I stuck on Too Young to Die - the album featuring the early singles of Saint Etienne a week or so ago and thought I should share some of it with you.
On checking the back catalogue to ensure I was not duplicating any tracks I was quite surprised to notice that they have appeared on these pages once  a year since 2013.
Surprised given that I would not consider myself a huge fan, I only have two albums and a single of theirs plus I can't say that I play them all that often.

Time to maintain the sequence though.

Saint Etienne - Kiss And Make Up

Saint Etienne - People Get Real

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Ended Up A Stranger

The recent charity shop acquisition Ended Up a Stranger is the 4th of the 14th studio albums released by The Walkabouts to grace the shelves.
I think it may be a promo as there is a sticker advising that the release date will be 29th October 2001.
It lists some recommended tracks (the first featured here being one) and handily lists the songs which contain swearing (so you don't have to go looking for them).
It also gives a quote from Q Magazine  advising that since 1984 The Walkabouts have been making music with a graceful, epic sweep as big as the heavens.
I've just read that they finally hung up their boots in 2015.
They never did anything  that came remotely close to their album Satisfied Mind (the greatest covers album of all time) but this one, on the Glitterhouse label, is another enjoyable outing by Carla Torgerson, Chris Eckman and the gang.

The Walkabouts - Lazarus Heart

The Walkabouts - Cul-de-Sac

Monday, 5 March 2018

Road to Hell

Back to work today after two snow days, an annual leave and the week end.
These songs seem somewhat appropriate.
Mrs CC came in with this album the other day the one which saw Chris Rea moving from a respected blues musician to an artist with an international profile.
Fair play to him in that he never let success go to his head and was quite happy doing what he felt like doing.
Sadly his health has deteriorated in the last couple of years and in December he was taken to hospital after collapsing on stage in Oxford.

I'm sure we all wish him a speedy recovery. One of the good guys and true to his Middlesborough roots.

Chris Rea - The Road to Hell (Part 1)

Chris Rea - The Road to Hell (Part 2)

Sunday, 4 March 2018

A Sunday Single # 9

Apologies for the quality of the recording. I could have posted a less crackly version from the Best of CD but that  would rather defeat the point of this series.
Having said that I'm not sure how much gas is left in the tank but we will plod on for a wee while yet.

Victims was the single which came after Karma Chameleon apart from in the States where it was felt to be too depressing to release as a single.They opted for Miss Me Blind instead.
Apparently about the not then publicly known relationship between Boy George and the band's drummer Jon Moss.
It reached number 3 following its release on 28th November 1983 remaining in the charts for 10 weeks. Another one of Mrs CC's.

The b-side Colour By Numbers is the title of the album on which Victims appears but does not feature on the album.

Culture Club - Victims

Colour By Numbers

Saturday, 3 March 2018

Covered By Cash - Pocahontas

It's the final countdown and would you believe it it has gone right down to the wire.

Accusations of subterfuge were flying around after Johnny was pitched against Sheryl Crow scoring a decisive victory with his interpretation of Redemption Day  making the score Cash 9 the Rest 9.
In my defense Sheryl was originally scheduled to be before Steve Earle which would have resulted in the same score but in a different order.

I was considering pitching Johnny against Soundgarden this week with their respective versions of Rusty Cage but I figured that would be too easy.
So he is up against Neil Young. I've decided not to go with Heart of Gold as I think Neil would win easily.
Instead I've gone for Pocahontas as I feel this will be a lot closer.
Mr Young may feature in a similar cover series further down the line.

Two excellent versions. I guess it boils down to whose voice you like best or which you dislike least.
I'm going for the Man in Black. However had I chosen the version from Unplugged as opposed to Rust Never Sleeps my decision may well have been different.
Your last chance to concur or disagree.
Next one the winner.

Johnny Cash - Pocohontas

Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Pocahontas

Friday, 2 March 2018

Don't Talk To Me About Heroes

I was probably too old for Madchester and  was certainly too old when the dregs of the Happy Mondays got together as Black Grape in 1993.
I also always felt that necking copious amounts of pills whose provenance was unknown was an incredibly stupid thing to do.
It didn't stop me liking some of the music though.
It's Great When You're Straight ... Yeah unsurprisingly reached number 1 following it's release in 1995

The three singles still sound pretty good to me but I feel that the rest of the tracks are pretty weak and haven't aged too well.
An iconic cover featuring Carlos the Jackal. An album which regularly pops up in charity shops these days.

Black Grape - Reverend Black Grape

Black Grape - Kelly's Heroes

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Artists I've Seen in Someone's Garden in Austin - Volume 2

The reason we were prowling the streets of Austin suburbia was not to see the Polyphonic Spree, pleasant though they were, but to catch a glimpse of Will Johnston.
He was the lead singer of Denton, Texas band Centromatic who we had first been alerted to by Adam Reichmann of the band Nadine while chatting to him in a pub in Helensburgh, as you do.

We had previously caught Centromatic at SXSW proper and they put on an excellent show. We subsequently got to see Will a couple of times in Glasgow when his other band South San Gabriel played at King Tuts and when he performed solo as the support act to The Great Lake Swimmers at the Admiral Bar.

Sheryl Crow used to be his babysitter.

These two tracks from one of his solo albums Vultures Await conclude this mini-series.

Will Johnson - Catherine Dupree

Will Johnson - Vultures Await

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

The View From the Afternoon

Today I have been mostly working from home.

Code Red!  Code Red!

Arctic Monkeys -The View From the Afternoon

Time to Right Two Gigantic Wrongs

Over 1800 posts in and the Pixies have never appeared on these pages.I'll say that again. The Pixies have never featured.

Frank Black and the Catholics appeared as part of my Burnt Offering series but never the Pixies.
I was sure that Kim Deal had appeared as part of The Breeders with the brilliant Cannonball but apparently not. Another shocking omission.

I saw them at Meadowbank alongside Idlewild and Teenage Fanclub and yet  they still have never featured.

This monkey clearly ain't going to heaven.

Pixies -Gigantic

Pixies - Monkey Gone to Heaven

The Breeders - Cannonball

Tuesday, 27 February 2018


When I featured Josh Rouse in my Burnt Offerings series (number 9 since you asked) Rol commented that while he never knocks me socks off, he always manage to deliver some decent tunes. 
 This was a view that was shared by other commentators including myself.

I've always had him down as Americana artist.
However it appears that I may not have got my genres  or my views entirely correct if his fourth album 1972 (released in 2003 on Rykodisc) and a recent charity shop purchase (and a find) is anything to go by.
A re-listen to my burn of 2007's Country Mouse City House also confirms my initial misdiagnosis.
Sure there are Americana elements but I'm also hearing pop, some jazz noodling, a touch of gospel and some Shuggie Otis style psychedelia along with the occasional homage to 1970's bands.

Josh Rouse - Love Vibration

Josh Rouse - Sparrows Over Birmingham

Monday, 26 February 2018

Birthday Boys

Three birthdays to acknowledge today.
Johnny Cash was born on this day in 1932 in Kingsland, Arkansas. Had he been still with us he would have been 86.
You are probably fed up with me featuring him given that he has appeared pretty much every Saturday since mid October last year.So instead of featuring him today you are getting covers of a couple of his songs.

The other person pictured above is a non mulleted Michael Bolton who is 65 today. Sadly there are none of his songs or indeed covers of his songs on the shelves.

Finally our mutual friend George is 55 today so we extend best wishes all the way to Portugal.

Birthday greetings to you all.

Robbie Fulks - Cry Cry Cry

Jawbone - Get Rhythm

Sunday, 25 February 2018

A Sunday Single # 8

This series seems to be currently stuck in the 80's - obviously the peak single purchasing period of Mrs CC and her sister.
From March 1984 People Are People was Depeche Mode's 10th single and their biggest hit peaking at number 4 during a 10 week residence in the UK singles charts. It is also the one that first brought them to the attention of our American friends.
Despite it's success its writer Martin Gore describes it as one of his least favourite songs and has not performed it live since 1988. Popstars can be quite obtuse.
The b-side In Your Memory written by Alan Wilder is pretty tasty.

Depeche Mode - People Are People

Depeche Mode - In Your Memory

Saturday, 24 February 2018

Covered By Cash -Redemption Day

The week before last Johnny succeeded in stopping the rot but sadly for him and all his fans it appears to have been only temporary as there was a fairly comfortable win for Steve Earle with The Devil's Right Hand.

That takes the score to Cash 8 The Rest 9. So the Man in Black requires to win this week to take it to a final end.Plus it's his birthday on Monday. So no pressure then.

Given his life story Mr Cash is no stranger to redemption and this is certainly the case when it comes to his choice of cover.We have previously had Bob Marley's Redemption Song and this we you are getting his version of Sheryl Crow's Redemption Day from his final American Recordings album - American VI: Ain't No Grave
When the subject matter has a whiff of religion Johnny usually comes into his own and this week there is no exception
It's JC for me by a distance this week.
Others ,of cours,e may choose to disagree but I suspect we are going to the wire

Johnny Cash -Redemption Day

Sheryl Crow -Redemption Day

Friday, 23 February 2018

Ooh - La - La! - Old Favourites

As promised/threatened I am revisiting the Uncut compilation Ooh -La -La! Rock'n' Roll in the Spirit of the Faces which I featured last week
This time around I am focusing on acts that I am familiar with and who have graced these pages before albeit somewhat briefly.
The Detroit based band The Deadstring Brothers are the ones who probably come closes to emulating the Faces. There is a touch of the Rolling Stones in there too. I saw them at the old Stereo bar in Glasgow's Kelvinhaugh street where they put on a stonking show.
This song is taken from their 2007 album Silver Mountain on the ever wonderful Bloodshot  label.
Okkervil River are an Austin band and  name from a short story by Russian author  Tatanya Tolstaya on the river in St Petersburg but then you probably knew that already.
This is from their 2007 album The Stage Names  on Jagjaguwar which is the one after their best known record 2005's Black Sheep Boy.

Deadstring Brothers - Queen of the Scene

Okkervil River - Unless It Kicks

Thursday, 22 February 2018

Hello My Captor

This is a bit of a strange one.
I know how a copy of Hello My Captor by The Amazing Pilots ended up on the shelves. It is a burn from my pal Gogs.
What I don't know is how he stumbled across it given it is somewhat different to what he normally listens to (Americana, The Fall and Teenage Fanclub) or quite why I got a copy.
From 2005 on Undertow Records it is a perfectly acceptable piece of indie rock from Northern Irish brothers Paul and Phil Wilkinson .
Other than that I know no more.
I don't recall ever having seen them live but I could well be wrong.
One I haven't played for years but quite enjoyed when I recently got round to giving it a listen.

The Amazing Pilots - All My Wasted Days

The Amazing Pilots -I Don't know Where Are You

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Consternation in Lochgilphead

One of the joys of frequenting charity shops is watching lovely old ladies trying to come to terms with computerised tills.
What do I do with Gift Aid? Do records come under media?  I think I've pressed the wrong button.

The two ladies in the Red Cross shop in Lochgilphead were enjoying some banter with an elderly gentleman and the glitches with the till took a while to resolve.
I them handed over the two CD's featured earlier in the week and two LPs.
The first was the Soundtrack to Local Hero a particular favourite of Mrs CC .One of the ladies rang it up on the till and then came to the album above which had been hidden underneath it.
"Oh my goodness" she said to her friend before quickly turning it over then muttering "Oh it's the same on both sides"
A cover you probably wouldn't get away with today and my apologies to my new found  friends although it did give them something to talk about!

Average White Band - Cut The Cake

Average White Band - You Got It

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Artists I've Seen in Someone's Garden in Austin - Volume 1

The acquisition of The Beginning Stages of The Polyphonic Spree in the Red Cross shop in Lochgilphead took me back to the early years of the century when my pal Gogs and I attended the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas on three consecutive occasions.
This was in the days before social media so it was word of mouth or local  intel that led you to acts appearing on the Fringe of the festival. Thanks to an internet forum we found ourselves wandering the streets of an Austin suburb one year in search for some acts that were performing.
It was quite a bizarre experience to turn a corner and to come across 20 or so folk dressed in white robes singing on someone's front lawn (which was in better nick and the one on the album cover).
Tim de Laughter and his entourage quickly  and briefly acquired a degree of cult status on both sides of the Atlantic although given their outfits I have always associated them with a different kind of cult along the lines of the Wickerman
The album contains 10 songs listed as sections which were originally intended as a demo until they quickly hit the big time and 4 alternative versions which are somewhat more polished.

I'm not yet convinced that it is a keeper although Mrs CC thinks it could find a home in her Zen Zone

And yes there is a volume 2.

The Polyphonic Spree - Light and Day

The Polyphonic Spree - It's The Sun

Monday, 19 February 2018

Out of the Ether

It was only last October when I picked up my first Turin Brakes record namely their debut The Optimist LP.
A band who had  up until then pretty much passed me by but a record I quite enjoyed.
I was therefore pleasantly surprised and delighted to pick up their second album 2003's Ether Song for 50p in the Red Cross charity shop in Lochgilphead.
A slight change of direction in that it is more electronic than its acoustic predecessor . Still pretty good though.
Totally coincidentally I have opted for the two tracks which feature on a sticky on the front of the jewel case which I have just noticed.. Great minds and all that.

Turin Brakes - Long Distance

Turin Brakes - Pain Killer (Summer Rain)

Sunday, 18 February 2018

A Sunday Single #7

I am reliably informed that Mrs CC's sister was The Cure fan of the family, so presumably this is one of hers.

In Between Days was released in 1985 and was the first single from the album  The Head on the Door.
It only reached number 15 in the charts but hung around for 10 weeks.
Interestingly although they released some great singles they only troubled the Top 10 on 2 occasions with The Love Cats peaking  at number 7 and Lullaby at number 5.
I suspect all but the most ardent Cure fans if quizzed wouldn't come up with Lullaby being their biggest hit and would probably also be surprised that Boy's Don't Cry only reached 22.

There is debate as to the spacing and title of the song but In Between Days seems to be the one most quoted.

The Cure - In Between Days

The Cure - The Exploding Boy

Saturday, 17 February 2018

Covered By Cash - The Devil's Right Hand

The Man in Black is back! After 5 straight defeats on the bounce Johnny finally gets another win this time over Gordon Lightfoot with If You Could Read My Mind.
That takes the scores back to Cash 8 The Rest 8. This one could go right to the wire.

I was struggling a bit for material and then my mind turned to the Unearthed compilation.I don't own it but fortunately I know a man who does so thank you George.
This week Johnny is up against Steve Earle  with The Devil's Right Hand.
I've gone for the live version from Shut Up and Die Like an Aviator as opposed to the studio version on Copperhead Road. a) because I think it's better and b) it is less hassle to rip from the CD as opposed to vinyl.
It's another tough call this week as it is a song and subject matter that are right up Johnny's street.Two slightly different version and I am giving it to Steve as he gives it slightly more oomph.

Others, of course may chose to disagree

Johnny Cash - Devil's Right Hand

Steve Earle & the Dukes -The Devil's Right Hand

Friday, 16 February 2018

Ooh -La- La! New to Me

After leaving Oban on our way back from Ballachulish  we stopped off in the small Argyll town of Lochgilphead which I hadn't been in for over 30 years.
The main street is pretty much the same albeit  somewhat rundown. On the plus side for me that means more charity shops.
One was Mary's Meals - a Scottish charity set up to provide meals to school children in the world's poorer communities, originally primarily on Malawi which has historic links with Scotland.
Following a very quick visit I came away with the above Uncut compilation Ooh -La -La! Rock'n' Roll in the Spirit of the Faces.
I was familiar with half the artists which sealed the 50p deal .However equally excitingly I was looking forward to exploring those I was unfamiliar with. These two most caught my attention after an initial listen.

500 Miles to  Memphis are a country punk band from Cincinnati who have produced four studio albums since 2005.This song is from their 2007 album on Deep Elm records the wonderfully named Sunshine in a Shot  Glass.
The Wrinkle Neck Mules from Richmond,Virginia have 6 albums and an EP to their name.This is from their 2007 album The Wicks Have Met on the ever wonderful German label Blue Rose.

I shall shortly revisit this CD and feature two of the bands that I had heard before.

Thursday, 15 February 2018


A slice of Alt Country today from Kathleen Edwards with her album Voyageur .You will note that I have opted for Alt Country as opposed to Americana mainly because Ms Edwards is in fact Canadian.
It is her fourth album  which was released in 2012 and co-produced with Justin Vernon of Bon Iver fame.
She's not the most prolific of artists as this was only her 4th album since her debut in 2003.

I've always been a bit ambivalent about her as although she is clearly talented I saw her early in her career where she made what I considered to be derogatory comments about the artist who had been on stage before her the great Ray Wylie Hubbard. I'll put it down to the immaturity of youth.

It seems that she has now left the music business opening a coffee shop in the Ottowa suburb of Stittsville.
Something which stumped me in one of Rol's  excellent Saturday Snapshot conundrums.

My last Oban purchase - we are of to Lochgilphead next

Kathleen Edwards -Sidecar

Kathleen Edwards - For The Record

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Celtic Connections Review - Siobhan Wilson

Photos © Rhiannon Law
I'm on a roll now. The second Celtic Connections concert this year was Siobhan Wilson at the lovely Macintosh church near Partick Thistle's ground in the north west of Glasgow. I decided to forego the beer as Portaloos in February are not an enticing proposition
Support was provided by an acoustic set from Jamie Sutherland who is a member of  the band Broken Records. Some pleasant singer song writer stuff.
Then Siobhan came on with her guitarist Matt and a string quartet as as she would have it a Demi Octet.

Showing no nerves, despite the large (and impeccably well behaved crowd) she flitted from guitar to piano playing her album There Are No Saints (on Song by Toad records) in it's entirety and it order.
It was absolutely mesmerizing. What a voice she has whether singing in English or French. The only track which didn't really work  for me was the"experimental"  instrumental Dystopian Bach.
In the comments section on my previous post JC commented that he tends to avoid the Mackintosh church given its acoustics. I'm happy to report that from our position there was absolutely no issues. Both her voice and the music were crystal clear and you could here a pin drop.
When introducing her band she mentioned that she was at school with the guitarist Matt who mentioned that they were bullied for being different.I take a degree of pleasure in them living the dream and touring the world while the bully's remain in their little local bubble.
She then moved onto some older numbers and to a couple of encores including a version of Richard Thompson's Beeswing

She advised that she was entering the studio the next day to start the recording of her next album. I've already pledged  for my copy via Kickstarter and suggest you do to as she is a true talent.

Siobhan Wilson - Dear God

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Celtic Connection Review -Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer

Photograph: Wattie Cheung for the Guardian

Better late than never - I did say I would review this concert. Any later and we would be into next years's schedule.

The night started with a minor gripe. The tickets said first band on stage at 8pm (Celtic Connection gig times are usually pretty sharp). We got in at 7.40 to find that we had missed the first song of Teddy Thompson's set.
Where we were sat we were interrupted by others in the same situation which detracted slightly from Teddy's set. However he was excellent.Easily the best support act I've seen at Celtic Connections and worthy of a highlight show . And he played a few numbers from Bela my favourite album of his.

Shelby and Allison are both great singers in their own right. They freely acknowledged that they have had little experience of performing together as a duet and had little opportunity to rehearse. Consequently some songs worked better than others although they got better as the night went out with some standout songs.
An example as to the lack of rehearsal time was Lithium when they forgot the words to the second verse and had to borrow a phone from the wings.It was all quite naturally done and quite amusing as opposed to awkward.
Lithium is probably the one of their covers which doesn't really work although they gave it far more welly than on the album version.
The covers of I'm Looking for Blue Eyes, Into My Arms and Silver Wings were all excellent.
The finished with some of their old solo numbers some being about their home state Alabama and seemed more at ease then.
They are planning to get together to to a follow up album with more of their own songs and will only get better.
So all in all a pretty good night.
A shout out for Mrs CC who had excruciating toothache. It was touch and go as to whether we would make it but she rallied round like the trooper she is and enjoyed her night.

Here is a more professional review from the Gruniad

Teddy Thompson - The One I Can't Have

Shelby lynne & Allison Moorer - I'm Looking for Blue Eyes

Monday, 12 February 2018

More Lushious Sounds

You may be surprised to see Lush reappearing so quickly after their recent debut post. However I received a request from SWC from the ever  wonderful The Sound of Being Ok asking whether I would post the other two songs from the single. Who am I to deny the great man?

Look out for one of their albums appearing on their countdown of The Best Britpop Albums in the World ... Ever  with a beautifully written and highly amusing  anecdote by one of the Triumvirate tenuously linked to the tracks on offer

Lush - Heavenly

Lush -Plums and Oranges

I hit the 500,000 page views stat last week. I would have been more excited had it not been for the bot invasion of the last month or so.
The 7500 plus comments is a much more significant statistic!

Sunday, 11 February 2018

A Sunday Single #6

Japan were a band that I always thought were ok but not  one that I ever got round to purchasing anything by.They and their fans were maybe a wee bit to arty for me.
Not so Mrs CC who is the owner of their 1982 single Nightporter.
Not as well known as their bigger hits Ghosts and I Second That Emotion  it was in the singles charts for 9 weeks but only reached  as high as number 29.
It originally appeared as a track on on the 1980 album Gentlemen Take Polaroids with the single being a remixed and edited version.

Japan - Nightporter

Japan - Ain't That Peculiar

Saturday, 10 February 2018

Covered By Cash - If You Could Read My Mind

There are more twists and turns in this series than a twisty and turny thing.
Last week was the clash of the Titans - Johnny and Joe Strummer up against Bob Marley with Redemption Song.
A lot of love for JC and JS but in the end a narrow victory for Bob by 8 votes to 6 .
The score is therefore now Cash 7 The Rest 8 and it is the first time that Johnny has been behind since week 3.
That may well change as we feature something from American V - A Hundred Highways from 2006 but with songs recorded during the period September 2002 right up to 21st August 2003 shortly before his death on 12th September 2003.
Now the original of If You Could Read My Mind by Canadian singer- songwriter Gordon Lightfoot is a mighty fine song but I defy any of you to listen to Johnny's version and not have a lump in your throat or even a little bubble.
So it is Johnny for me all day long. The heartless among you may choose to disagree.

Johnny Cash -If You Could Read My Mind

Gordon Lightfoot - If You Could Read My Mind

Friday, 9 February 2018

No Longer a Smog Free Zone

I'm happy to report that the muso room is no longer a Smog free zone thanks to the acquisition of Cold Blooded Old Times a 1999 CD single on the Domino label by Bill Callahan in his Smog guise.
I've been meaning to get some of his stuff for a while so it was a pleasant surprise to find this in an Oban charity shop.

I wasn't aware that this had appeared on the Hi Fidelity sound track although it did sound vaguely familiar.
Described by AV Music as almost too sad to listen to.
With lyrics like The type of memories that turn your bones to glass you can see why.

The second track featured takes a wee while to get going but it is well worth persevering with.
I think I need more Smog in my life.

Smog - Cold Blooded Old Times

Smog - I Break Horses

Thursday, 8 February 2018


The first of the Oban purchases is the Blondie-esque Ladykillers probably the best known single by Brit pop band Lush.
From 1996 on the 4AD label it reached number 22 in the UK charts and 18 in the US Modern Rock charts.

As was the way then there were two different versions of the CD single . Mine is disc 2 which in addition to the title track features Heavenly, Carmen and Plums & Oranges
It also appeared on the 1996 album Lovelife.

Another Oban purchase tomorrow.


Lush - Ladykillers

Lush - Carmen

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Driving Through Glencoe with Carly Simon

On Sunday we drove up to Ballachullsh for an overnight a Christmas present from my brother and sister-in-law.
The weather was pretty stunning for this time of year and the views were pretty spectacular as you will see if you click on this link of us driving through Glencoe with Carly Simon

Apologies that my technical limitations don't allow a simple press play.
The weather on Monday was pretty reasonable and we drove home via Oban and Lochgilphead where there were some charity shop purchases.
Stay tuned.

Carly Simon - My One and Only Love

Carly Simon - You're So Vain

And for Brian

Carly Simon - In the Still of the Night

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Through The Trees

I read somewhere recently that a deluxe 20th Anniversary version of Through the Trees by The Handsome Family is shortly to be released.
20 year anniversary versions of American albums? Who would have thunk it? God, that makes me feel old

The Handsome Family are one of these American bands who are at least as popular, if not more so on this side of the Pond..
They are constantly visiting these shores and have a tour coming up in March
If you haven't seen them it is one to tick off your bucket list. I've seen them a couple of times and they don't disappoint. The music may be dark but Brett and Renee's patter is always highly entertaining

The Handsome Family - Weightless Again

The Handsome Family - Cathedrals

Monday, 5 February 2018

It Came From Memphis

I'm currently reading and enjoying Memphis 68 by Stuart Cosgrove and I will probably write something about it upon completion.
It had me reaching for It Comes From Memphis - The Legendary Sounds of Memphis
A compilation including artists who featured at the Barbican It Came From Memphis Festival in 2005.
Curated by Robert Gordon  who is the author of the book of the same name , one which should probably be added to the list.
The city which spawned Elvis, Sun and Stax it is a wonderful mixture of blues, soul, country, rock 'n' roll and more modern stuff such as The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion and the North Mississippi Allstars.

Given my current reading material I have decided to stick with soul on this occasion. Syl Johnson makes his debut on these pages whilst William Bell appears for only the second time..

Syl Johnson - Anyway The Wind Blows

William Bell - You Don't Miss Your Water

Sunday, 4 February 2018

A Sunday Single # 5

The first of the job lot belonging to Mrs CC and one of the best of the bunch if not the best. Mrs CC claims it was one of hers.
The title track from Absolute Beginners the film by Julian Temple based on the book by Colin MacInnes.
As well as Bowie the film features fellow musicians Ray Davies, Sade and Patsy Kensit.
Both Steve Nieve and Rick Wakeman provide keyboards on the single.

The film pretty much bombed but the single was a resounding success reaching number 2 in the UK  singles chart following its release on 3rd March 1986
You are only getting the A-side as the B-side Absolute Beginners (Dub Mix) kept sticking. Consider yourselves fortunate

David Bowie - Absolute Beginners

We are off to Ballachulish for an overnight so there is every chance we may hit the charity shops of Fort William and/or Oban. Stay tuned.

Saturday, 3 February 2018

Covered by Cash - Redemption Song

Well I didn't see last week's result coming. Seems that I was the only one. A resounding victory for Neil Diamond and his single version of Solitary Man.
Which means that for the fourth successive week that the Man in Black has been defeated and that therefore the scores are now even at Cash 7 The Rest 7

Maybe this week's selection will stop the rot.  But then again maybe not. Yet again Johnny calls for haunners and he is ably assisted by Joe Strummer when up against Bob Marley with  their respective versions of Redemption Song.
Their version didn't make the American Recordings series ,which shows the depth and quality of the songs on offer, but made an appearance on the 2003 Unearthed box set.
I featured the two versions before last March  but didn't put them to the vote on that occasion.

This time I'm making you choose and it is a really tough call. Three absolute legends all of who are sadly no longer with us.
For me this is probably the toughest yet but I am going for Bob but only just.
Others, of course, may choose to disagree.

Johnny Cash (with Joe Strummer) - Redemption Song

Bob Marley & the Wailers - Redemption Song

Friday, 2 February 2018

Celtic Connections - Siobhan Wilson

Whereas last week's Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer gig was pretty much a mutual decision this week's is down to me.
We are off tomorrow night to the Mackintosh Church  in Maryhill to see Siobhan Wilson.
Her album There Are No Saints on the Song by Toad record label was one of the highlights of last year and I jumped at the chance to see her live.
Classically trained she comes form Elgin originally but has stayed in France for a few years meeting she is bilingual and able to produce great songs in both languages.
Today's song is a free download from her 2012 EP Glorified Demons which  is available on Bandcamp.
Sadly I was not quick enough of the mark to buy a physical copy which came with a home made cover that is modelled above.
The match report from the concert will follow in due course

Siobhan Wilson - Laugh and Die