Bobby Gillespie Presents Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down
I’m a sucker for a great artist-driven compilation/mix-tape. They’ll tell you that you can do it yourself via Spotify or almost any other platform. And you can. But the best mixtapes are the ones your friends make you – because you get to see a part of them you didn’t know, or knew was there but now you get to hear it. And the best compilations are those with some direction from a person you admire or are interested in. Yes, we can all do it – but the ones with the right feel and flow come from someone (deeply) in the know.
Here’s a mix from Bobby Gillespie of Primal Scream, made for Ace Records, he shows off his knowledge of music, his love of collecting and adheres – strictly – to the wonderful titular theme; a compilation of songs for your hungover/slow to start/lovelorn Sunday morning.
Kris Kristofferson’s title song is here – eventually – but before that we move through a fascinating opening sequence where 13th Floor Elevators’ May The Circle Remain Unbroken ushers in a newly mixed Beach Boys medley of ‘Til I Die, Forever and You’re Welcome. Then we’re carried along by gems from The Byrds (Wild Mountain Thyme), Gene Clark (American Dreamer), Dion (Born To Be With You), Evie Sands (Any Way That You Want Me) and Little Feat’s Willin’.
The Monkees, Tim Buckley, John Barry’s wonderful score from Midnight Cowboy – it’s all perfectly chosen and lined up correctly.
When the big, obvious things are struck – Gram Parsons’ Love Hurts, say – it’s only after the nice surprise of Link Wray’s Ice People or a bit of Skip Spence (War In Peace).
Ronnie Woods’ Breathe On Me seems like a perfect mixtape song. Well, it does now. Until now it’s probably never been used on any mixtape – even ones Woods’ makes. And Gillespie does, eventually, include himself with Primal Scream’s take on Darklands by The Jesus and Mary Chain.
This album works for many reasons – mostly it’s down to expect choices and exquisite flow, but it’s also an old-fashioned “album” – with terrific liner notes where Gillespie justifies every choice and writes sagely about this set of favourites.
Talking about Willie Nelson singing Precious Memories he writes, “What I love about this is the stillness. It stays in the same place. It has a meditational quality which is very beautiful and hypnotic. It holds you in a spell. At the same time it’s kind of gospelly and religious or spiritual”. That could stand true as summary of this compilation, as description of the work Gillespie has done arranging these songs, picking out favourites and placing them accordingly to channel a wonderful mood.
Your Sunday morning heartbreak or foggy slow start is going to sound righteous and wonderful with its new soundtrack.