Monday morning. He puts on his favourite Joe Bonamassa tee-shirt and kicks the cat. And after that he knows it’s gonna be a beautiful day. The very best day to have the blues. He’s paid his dues, and enough taxes too. He starts to whistle. But there’s no tune. No worries about that. And fuck he’s great. Have no doubt about that.
One of the greatest records of my lifetime – an album that did so much for me, offered so much to me, an album that I still play, that still sounds great – is Introducing The Hardline According To Terence Trent D’Arby. It mixed soul and funk with the pop sound of the day. It offered up a bunch of killer singles, but it was a listening experience as a full album. My mum bought the LP when it was released, I still have that copy in my collection. Read More »
Maurice Jarre, Dr. Zhivago [OST] (1965)
I’ve not watched the nearly 200-minute long Dr. Zhivago and I’m not likely to now. In a weak moment, 20 years ago, I mighta strolled along to a Film Fest re-screening, but not now. It’s too late for me. But I’ve recently got a little hooked on Maurice Jarre’s score. And I think this is because I’ve loosened up on the whole “must watch the film if you own the soundtrack” – there’s still that curiosity for me, always, to know how/why the music was used. But I’m also enjoying the openness to hear some scores detached – forever – from the film. In the case of this it was a tip-shop find. 50c. And I did really well. Checking Discogs it tells me some mongrels are charging as much as 87c here in NZ for this. So I’m glad for the bargain. Read More »
Depending on where you are at with Rod Stewart you walked out after Smiler (or because of it) or A Night On The Town or Blondes Have More Fun – and if you hung in there until Tonight I’m Yours and didn’t mind the “comeback” albums that were Vagabond Heart and Unplugged…and Seated you were, at some point, brutally offended by his American Songbook series (that now stretches to several volumes), Still The Same…Great Rock Classics Of Our Time (which is a musical vasectomy) and Soulbook. Even the “comeback-again” record, Time, couldn’t quite do it for me… Read More »
Some songs reference songs musically, quoting parts of the melody, ripping off riffs intentionally. There’s Neil Young’s Borrowed Tune which ends up announcing that he has ripped off (parts of) the tune from elsewhere: “I’m singin’ this borrowed tune/I took from the Rolling Stones/Alone in this empty room/Too wasted to write my own”. Read More »
It would have been 1981 and we were rehearsing in Rob’s front room in Mt.Victoria
Louise was a postie and she just dropped him off there with us
I was pretty sure I’d seen him at gigs – the whirling dervish guy dancing alone up the front in pyjama pants Read More »
What Makes A Music Collection? Are Your Files as Valid as My Records – Do My Records Mean Anything If I Don’t Listen To Them?
It’s never been easier, via the internet and the sharing/caring attitude of fans hooking up other fans, to get close to completing the set – that is to say collecting everything by your favourite artist.
But, as my uncle is fond of saying, “it’s a big thing when you look in to it”. I don’t really know a) what that means or b) why he says it or c) if it comes across as weird that I’m sharing this phrase void of any context (I’m not actually sure it has a context).
The more you seek the more you find, the more there is to find. Can you ever really complete the set? And do you really need to? Will you die trying? Read More »
Paul Simon, The Paul Simon Songbook (1965)
The first I knew of this was the reissued CD – a few years back now. But until then I didn’t know that Paul Simon had recorded prior to the Simon & Garfunkel albums. I mean, I knew they had cut a single years earlier, together, under a different name (Tom & Jerry). But I didn’t know there was a Paul Simon solo album floating about…and it’s good too. Plenty of the songs that would go on to be S&G tunes – but I like a lot of them in their stripped back/solo versions even more than when re-dressed as/for Simon & Garfunkel. He’s a curious chap though isn’t he…the stories about him are often neither fond nor kind and yet I love so much of his music. His songwriting is among the best and most important in the post-War era and beyond. I’m sure of that. But I think the closest I ever want to get to Paul Simon is his songbook. His albums. His songs. I was chuffed to find a slighty-beat-up but totally playable copy of this vinyl just the other day. A nice find. And a lovely wee record. Perfect for the weather right now… Read More »
I bought an Elvis Presley compilation record for my mum one Christmas – it was 1987 and so this album was subtitled the “10th Anniversary Commemorative Album”. And it was the first set of Elvis songs I heard. I knew a few of the big, big hits: Hound Dog and That’s All Right Mama and Are You Lonesome Tonight and All Shook Up and all the usual things. But this was also my introduction to a few songs (like G.I. Blues and Wooden Heart). It’s an interesting compilation and arguably one that still works. But the real reason I’ve retained a soft spot for it is not for the music as much as for this story: So on the very day I handed it over, the Christmas Day which was at the end of 1987; we were all around at our house in the evening, my grandparents and some cousins and aunties and uncles and friends. It had been the usual lunch earlier in the day and this was a Christmas Day-night spectacular. The adults getting on the booze. Quart bottles etc. The kids high-as-fuck on Soda-Stream. There was a spa pool, discreetly hidden from view by a very classy Ponga fence. And there was a Para pool too! So the stereo is going and people are having a good time. And so on. Then my mum decides she wants to give this Elvis record a spin you see. It had been played at least three times earlier in the day but it was such a novelty. It was the first Elvis Presley my mum had had on vinyl since she was a kid collecting the singles. And so she puts on the Words & Music LP and people are digging Jailhouse Rock and Guitar Man. But one man wasn’t digging any of this guitar carry on. My grandfather had, within seconds of the needle dropping, stood, collected his things, his present from us (a big tri-pillow). And he just stormed out. No way was he having Elvis. No way. He left his wife (my grandmother) in the house to chatter or whatever. And after a few minutes when the realisation kicked in that he wasn’t coming back we went out to check where he was. He was in his car in the driveway – reading a book. He wasn’t expecting my grandmother to follow. He wasn’t angry with anyone enjoying themselves. He was just not going to sit around while Elvis played. No way. No chance. He was in to classical music only. Well, some Charley Pride too on the odd occasion. But Elvis? Hell no. No Elvis. No Beatles. Rock’n’roll had, we later figured, threatened his core values and all but stolen his son from him. (My dad played bass in a band, a Beatles-styled violin bass). I still think about that – often when Elvis plays, and whenever I so much as look at the cover to this album. It’s a magical moment for me. It’s as if that was the day I learned to appreciate Elvis. And learned the stroppy, silly power of intolerance. In a way I thought my grandfather was a stupid old fool for not wanting to be part of the party. But in a way I respected the hell out of him for storming out. With his tri-pillow. Off to read his book. I’ve spent most of my adult-life so far torn between wanting to turn the music up louder and wanting to sneak off anywhere else and tuck into a good book…
But If You Try Sometime You Just Might Find You Get What You Need: 50 Great Things About The Rolling Stones
You’ll find it is music the whole family will love. Together. That might – ordinarily – sound horrible but the family that plays (music) together stays together.
I’m always intrigued to see a version of a gig poster available for sale at the gig – usually at a ridiculously high price. And then you see people with them, after or during; the poster scrunched up like the last bit of Christmas wrapping paper on the roll. A complete waste. I would never buy a poster for a gig – at the gig. Not at the start of the gig anyway. I did get a Kirstin Hersh numbered print after a gig had finished. To me that’s a different story. Read More »
Based in Wellington, Dylan Frater is a recording artist, music producer, music coach and international solo performer. He has released an EP (The Torch Songs EP) and is due to release his debut album, “From Winter to Winter” (featuring Georgie Swan-Hay) in June 2017. Sometimes described as cinematic, Dylan’s sound is all about creating worlds – his atmospheric guitar creates landscapes and his narrative lyrical style takes listeners on unexpected journeys. Here are five albums he’s loving right now… Read More »