Category Archives: Music we like

Blogs on the subject of music in general. Marjorie and DC musings on other artists they like, on recordings, gigs, and on anything related to music itself or to the music business.

Sam Phillips Blog - click to read

Sam Phillips doesn’t blog often, which is a pity because…

My musical drug Sam Phillips doesn’t blog often, which is a pity, because not many musicians possess her wisdom, or, if they do, they’re not letting on.

In this latest one, I like the way she contrasts her station in life to that of heiresses and scientists.

“A young heiress thinks I’m poor, a scientist thinks I am wealthy and have an interesting life”

Read it here!

Sam Phillips Blog - click to read
Sam Phillips Blog – click to read
Bob Dylan-basement-tapes-Bootleg-Series-Vol-11

Thought You’d Heard All Of The Basement Tapes? Think Again!

What an incredible body of work Dylan has put out, and he (or his record company) continues to do so at an ever-increasing rate, both new material and, with the Bootleg Series, a large archive of previously unreleased music. And for fans, almost all of it is precious in one way or another.

The Basement Tapes

Marjorie and I fell in love with the original Basement Tapes when we got the album way back just a few years after it was finally released on LP, a staggering eight years after it was recorded. I know, it doesn’t quite seem the eon that it did at the time. In 1975, 1967

Bob Dylan-basement-tapes-Bootleg-Series-Vol-11

seemed almost antediluvian!  And these recordings, made by Dylan and the band in the basement of their Woodstock abode, Big Pink, and in various other domiciles, had become the stuff of legend. Some of the tapes had been passed around as demo tapes for other artists to cover, and had found their way into the hands of collectors, eventually being released on what is considered the first ever bootleg, The Great White Wonder.

I’ve been listening to that original release again very recently and it’s still amazing. Sure, you have to have a certain appreciation of absurd humour to appreciate most of the original songs, seemingly composed on the spot in many cases. And it’s not glossy, it’s jammy, offhand playing, although it’s actually a lot more sophisticated than the home-recorded circumstances might have suggested.

The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11

So now we have SIX CDs of it to look forward to!

Newly discovered tapes have added to the archive, and the compilation has been overseen by Garth Hudson and Canadian music archivist and producer Jan Haust.

The original release focused on original songs, but this hugely expanded release ranges from traditional folk, country, blues and gospel to more recent and contemporary songwriters such as Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, even the likes of Bob Crewe and Curtis Mayfield.

I actually found out about this when I reloaded the fascinating and ground-breaking iPhone app: “Bob Dylan: The Bootleg Series“, which originally only dealt with the recent expanded Self Portrait release. The app takes the old art of liner notes to a new level, being an extensive compendium of photos and information about the music, and the ability to play the songs while reading about them.

Bob_Dylan_and_The_Band_-_The_Basement_Tapes
Cover of the original 1975 Basement Tapes album

Anyway, as I was saying, I went back to the app last night and discovered that there’s a new song on there! “Odds And Ends” from the upcoming expanded Basement Tapes! How cool!

There will also be a 2-CD condensation for the more casual listener: BOB DYLAN- THE BASEMENT TAPES RAW: THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 11

Listen to the preview track, courtesy of Rolling Stone, at the link below from Dylan’s official website:

http://www.bobdylan.com/us/news/bob-dylans-basement-tapes-complete-bootleg-series-vol-11-set-november-4-release

And look at the mouthwatering track listing!


 

BOB DYLAN – THE BASEMENT TAPES COMPLETE:
THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 11

(all songs written by Bob Dylan unless otherwise noted)

CD 1
1. Edge of the Ocean
2. My Bucket’s Got a Hole in It (written by Clarence Williams)
3. Roll on Train
4. Mr. Blue (written by Dewayne Blackwell)
5. Belshazzar (written by Johnny Cash)
6. I Forgot to Remember to Forget (written by Charlie A Feathers and Stanley A Kesler)
7. You Win Again (written by Hank Williams)
8. Still in Town (written by Hank Cochran and Harlan Howard)
9. Waltzing with Sin (written by Sonny Burns and Red Hayes)
10. Big River (Take 1) (written by Johnny Cash)
11. Big River (Take 2) (written by Johnny Cash)
12. Folsom Prison Blues (written by Johnny Cash)
13. Bells of Rhymney (written by Idris Davies and Peter Seeger)
14. Spanish is the Loving Tongue
15. Under Control
16. Ol’ Roison the Beau (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
17. I’m Guilty of Loving You
18. Cool Water (written by Bob Nolan)
19. The Auld Triangle (written by Brendan Francis Behan)
20. Po’ Lazarus (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
21. I’m a Fool for You (Take 1)
22. I’m a Fool for You (Take 2)

CD 2
1. Johnny Todd (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
2. Tupelo (written by John Lee Hooker)
3. Kickin’ My Dog Around (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
4. See You Later Allen Ginsberg (Take 1)
5. See You Later Allen Ginsberg (Take 2)
6. Tiny Montgomery
7. Big Dog
8. I’m Your Teenage Prayer
9. Four Strong Winds (written by Ian Tyson)
10. The French Girl (Take 1) (written by Ian Tyson and Sylvia Tyson)
11. The French Girl (Take 2) (written by Ian Tyson and Sylvia Tyson)
12. Joshua Gone Barbados (written by Eric Von Schmidt)
13. I’m in the Mood (written by Bernard Besman and John Lee Hooker)
14. Baby Ain’t That Fine (written by Dallas Frazier)
15. Rock, Salt and Nails (written by Bruce Phillips)
16. A Fool Such As I (written by William Marvin Trader)
17. Song for Canada (written by Pete Gzowski and Ian Tyson)
18. People Get Ready (written by Curtis L Mayfield)
19. I Don’t Hurt Anymore (written By Donald I Robertson and Walter E Rollins)
20. Be Careful of Stones That You Throw (written by Benjamin Lee Blankenship)
21. One Man’s Loss
22. Lock Your Door
23. Baby, Won’t You be My Baby
24. Try Me Little Girl
25. I Can’t Make it Alone
26. Don’t You Try Me Now

CD 3
1. Young but Daily Growing (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
2. Bonnie Ship the Diamond (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
3. The Hills of Mexico (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
4. Down on Me (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
5. One for the Road
6. I’m Alright
7. Million Dollar Bash (Take 1)
8. Million Dollar Bash (Take 2)
9. Yea! Heavy and a Bottle of Bread (Take 1)
10. Yea! Heavy and a Bottle of Bread (Take 2)
11. I’m Not There
12. Please Mrs. Henry
13. Crash on the Levee (Take 1)
14. Crash on the Levee (Take 2)
15. Lo and Behold! (Take 1)
16. Lo and Behold! (Take 2)
17. You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere (Take 1)
18. You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere (Take 2)
19. I Shall be Released (Take 1)
20. I Shall be Released (Take 2)
21. This Wheel’s on Fire (written by Bob Dylan and Rick Danko)
22. Too Much of Nothing (Take 1)
23. Too Much of Nothing (Take 2)

CD 4
1. Tears of Rage (Take 1) (written by Bob Dylan and Richard Manuel)
2. Tears of Rage (Take 2) (written by Bob Dylan and Richard Manuel)
3. Tears of Rage (Take 3) (written by Bob Dylan and Richard Manuel)
4. Quinn the Eskimo (Take 1)
5. Quinn the Eskimo (Take 2)
6. Open the Door Homer (Take 1)
7. Open the Door Homer (Take 2)
8. Open the Door Homer (Take 3)
9. Nothing Was Delivered (Take 1)
10. Nothing Was Delivered (Take 2)
11. Nothing Was Delivered (Take 3)
12. All American Boy (written by Bobby Bare)
13. Sign on the Cross
14. Odds and Ends (Take 1)
15. Odds and Ends (Take 2)
16. Get Your Rocks Off
17. Clothes Line Saga
18. Apple Suckling Tree (Take 1)
19. Apple Suckling Tree (Take 2)
20. Don’t Ya Tell Henry
21. Bourbon Street

CD 5
1. Blowin’ in the Wind
2. One Too Many Mornings
3. A Satisfied Mind (written by Joe Hayes and Jack Rhodes)
4. It Ain’t Me, Babe
5. Ain’t No More Cane (Take 1) (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
6. Ain’t No More Cane (Take 2) (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
7. My Woman She’s A-Leavin’
8. Santa-Fe
9. Mary Lou, I Love You Too
10. Dress it up, Better Have it All
11. Minstrel Boy
12. Silent Weekend
13. What’s it Gonna be When it Comes Up
14. 900 Miles from My Home (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
15. Wildwood Flower (written by A.P. Carter)
16. One Kind Favor (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
17. She’ll be Coming Round the Mountain (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
18. It’s the Flight of the Bumblebee
19. Wild Wolf
20. Goin’ to Acapulco
21. Gonna Get You Now
22. If I Were A Carpenter (written by James Timothy Hardin)
23. Confidential (written by Dorina Morgan)
24. All You Have to do is Dream (Take 1)
25. All You Have to do is Dream (Take 2)

CD 6
1. 2 Dollars and 99 Cents
2. Jelly Bean
3. Any Time
4. Down by the Station
5. Hallelujah, I’ve Just Been Moved (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
6. That’s the Breaks
7. Pretty Mary
8. Will the Circle be Unbroken (written by A.P. Carter)
9. King of France
10. She’s on My Mind Again
11. Goin’ Down the Road Feeling Bad (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
12. On a Rainy Afternoon
13. I Can’t Come in with a Broken Heart
14. Next Time on the Highway
15. Northern Claim
16. Love is Only Mine
17. Silhouettes (written by Bob Crewe and Frank C Slay Jr.)
18. Bring it on Home
19. Come All Ye Fair and Tender Ladies (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
20. The Spanish Song (Take 1)
21. The Spanish Song (Take 2)

* * * * *

BOB DYLAN- THE BASEMENT TAPES RAW:
THE BOOTLEG SERIES VOL. 11

(all songs written by Bob Dylan unless otherwise noted)

CD 1
1. Open the Door, Homer (Restored version)
2. Odds and Ends (Alternate version)
3. Million Dollar Bash (Alternate version)
4. One Too Many Mornings (Unreleased)
5. I Don’t Hurt Anymore (Unreleased) (written by Donald I Robertson and Walter E Rollins)
6. Ain’t No More Cane (Alternate version) (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
7. Crash on the Levee (Restored version)
8. Tears of Rage (Without overdubs) (written by Bob Dylan and Richard Manuel)
9. Dress it up, Better Have it All (Unreleased)
10. I’m Not There (Previously released)
11. Johnny Todd (Unreleased) (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
12. Too Much of Nothing (Alternate version)
13. Quinn the Eskimo (Restored version)
14. Get Your Rocks Off (Unreleased)
15. Santa-Fe (Previously released)
16. Silent Weekend (Unreleased)
17. Clothes Line Saga (Restored version)
18. Please, Mrs. Henry (Restored version)
19. I Shall be Released (Restored version)

CD 2
1. You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere (Alternate version)
2. Lo and Behold! (Alternate version)
3. Minstrel Boy (Previously released)
4. Tiny Montgomery (Without overdubs)
5. All You Have to do is Dream (Unreleased)
6. Goin’ to Acapulco (Without overdubs)
7. 900 Miles from My Home (Unreleased) (Traditional, arranged by Bob Dylan)
8. One for the Road (Unreleased)
9. I’m Alright (Unreleased)
10. Blowin’ in the Wind (Unreleased)
11. Apple Suckling Tree (Restored version)
12. Nothing Was Delivered (Restored version)
13. Folsom Prison Blues (Unreleased) (written by Johnny Cash)
14. This Wheel’s on Fire (Without overdubs) (written by Bob Dylan and Rick Danko)
15. Yea! Heavy and a Bottle of Bread (Restored version)
16. Don’t Ya Tell Henry (Alternate version)
17. Baby, Won’t You be My Baby (Unreleased)
18. Sign on the Cross (Unreleased)
19. You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere (Without overdubs)

Musicians:
Bob Dylan
Robbie Robertson
Rick Danko
Richard Manuel
Garth Hudson
Levon Helm

U2-Songs Of innocence-cover art

REVERSE BURGLARY! Woke up to find that I own the new U2 album…

U2’s new album came down my chimney last night!

U2-Songs Of innocence-cover art
Artwork for new U2 album

I can go quite a long time without listening to them, but in just the last few weeks I’ve been on a bit of a U2 binge, not just listening to my favourite albums, Boy, Achtung Baby and All That You Can’t Leave Behind, but delving into long-unheard treasures like October (I was right to give it a good review in Northern Ireland’s short-lived streams magazine when it first came out!)

I had no idea that a new album was hiding just around the corner but this morning I discovered that it’s already there in my music library. Songs Of Innocence, its called, and it’s somehow something to do with the launch of the two new iPhone 6 models.

What’s It Like?

And it’s pretty good on first listen.  I’m not a U2 sceptic, as you can already tell, although I’m always willing to use their “easy target” status for a bit of a laugh, as is any right-thinking person, Bono included.

I can hear actual tunes, I can hear interesting words with intriguing ideas, I can hear a bit of controversy and pot-stirring, I can hear good sounds and a lot of energy and variety.

Is it really free?

If you have an iTunes account, you’ve already “bought it” for free and it’s in your library (see below if you have trouble finding it). And if you don’t have an account, set one up for free within the next five weeks and you’ll get the album too.

I wish I could burgle my own album into the homes of 500 million listeners, but if you want mine you’ll have to pay a small sum of money for it, in iTunes, or here.

U2-Songs Of Innocence on iTunes
The new U2 album in iTunes – click for larger view

How do I find the album on my computer?

If you have trouble finding Songs Of Innocence on your computer, here’s how I did it:

  1. Open iTunes in your computer
    You don’t have to have an iPhone/iPod/iPad plugged in.
  2. Click on LIBRARY in the left SIDEBAR
    If your sidebar isn’t visible, hit control-S (PC) or command-S (Mac)
  3. Sort your albums by artist.
    Click on ARTIST at the top of the columns
  4. Scroll down to “U”, find U2 and Songs Of Innocence should be there!
  5. You can play it right away, but if you want to download the tracks to your computer, click on the little cloud icon to the right of each track.

QUESTION: There’s also a digital booklet in PDF form, and I downloaded it but I couldn’t open it in Adobe Reader, even though it’s updated to the latest version. Tips, anyone?

I Met The Walrus - screenshot

John Lennon at his most eloquent – enhanced!

To me, this is John Lennon at his most eloquent, his thoughts beautifully animated in this short film produced in 2008 by Jerry Levitan, who interviewed him as a 14-year old in 1969.

You should watch this if you’ve got five minutes, and even if you don’t agree with everything John says or the way it’s interpreted, you might agree that a masterful work of art has been built on his generous impromptu interview.

The film was directed by Josh Raskin and the illustrators, James Braithwaite and Alex Kurina, have beautifully enhanced and elevated an amateur “rock interview” with arguably the greatest rock star of them all.

I Met The Walrus - screenshot from video
Click on the screenshot to watch the video!

PS: John’s kindness to this kid, in contrast to the more acerbic (or worse) way he might often treat other people, reminds me of the scene in that Imagine film where the stoner guy comes to the door of his house, and Lennon really goes out of his way to spend time talking with him and try to help him. It conjures up in me an idea that he may well have been being similarly nice to Mark Chapman in his last moments.


 

 

Greenbelt-Jean-Pierre-Rudolph-Rod-Cordner-photo-by-DC-Cardwell

Rod Cordner and Jean-Pierre Rudolph tour England, June 2014

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see Cordner & Rudolph in England!

Exactly 26 years ago, on 7th May 1988, we left Northern Ireland, but for nearly 10 years before that we played all over the country with Rod Cordner and spent a huge amount of time with him, his wife Jennifer, and his whole family, to whom we are eternally thankful for their inspiration, friendship, prayers, love and kindness.

In those years we also became great friends with French virtuoso violinist Jean-Pierre Rudolph, who became Rodney’s musical partner when he toured all over Europe, which he did frequently. And, again, we have much to thank Jean-Pierre and his wife Anne for – we even managed to avail ourselves of their generosity when we were in their home town of Strasbourg, France and Anne put us up for a few days even though we’d never met her before!

We catch up with Rod and Jenny every time we’re back in Ireland, and their home is still the haven it always was for us when we visit Portadown, where we both grew up.

Sadly, I haven’t seen Jean-Pierre (or Paddy-John as we used to call him) since we both happened to be back in Ireland at the same time in 1996, and I would love to be able to see the two of them perform together again. But if you’re in England you have a chance to catch them on this short tour in June.

If you do make it along, say hi to Rod and Jean-Pierre for us. And if you can, grab a little bit of video on your mobile phone and share it with me, OK? :)

- DC
Rod-Cordner-Jean-Pierre Rudolph-tour-poster-2014

Here’s a photo that I took of them when they played at Greenbelt Festival in England in 1986.

Greenbelt-Jean-Pierre-Rudolph-Rod-Cordner-photo-by-DC-Cardwell

Tuesday 3rd June 2014
Bradford BBC Radio 106.6FM
Drive programme with John Hebden, 4-6 pm
www.bcbradio.co.uk
Listen LIVE HERE!

Friday 6th June 2014
Hartlepool TS24 0QJ
Contact David Taylor (see poster for phone no.)

Saturday 7th June 2014
Chapel A House Concerts
Leeds LS7 4LF
Contact Alan Gibson (see poster for phone no.)
www.chapelahouseconcerts.co.uk

Sunday 8th June 2014
Old Royal Oak
Knaresborough HG5 8AL
(see poster for phone no.)

Monday 9th June 2014
Bishop FM 105.9
The Folk Show with Terry Ferdinand 9-11 pm
Listen LIVE at www.bishopfm.com

Wed 11th June
Ravenscourt Arts
London W6 0UH
Contact Darren Hirst (see poster for phone no.)
www.wegottickets.com/event/271690

Cover of Ex Norwegian's #TBT EP

Pete Ham? Andy Pratt? Family? Patto? Ex Norwegian covers E.P. pays tribute to these classic artists.

Pete Ham? Andy Pratt? Family? Patto? PATTO!

You wouldn’t think those young guys and gals from Florida’s Ex Norwegian would have even heard of any of those bands or artists*, never mind having played with at least one, and – what the! – releasing a covers EP with their songs on it!

I thought for a moment one of our cats had dragged an old 1974 Melody Maker from one of my studio filing boxes. (Yes, that could actually happen.)

As the band’s Roger Houdaille says, “Carbon copies were not what we were after. We hope the little fun experiment worked”

Going by the somewhat clever & hip name of #TBT, it’s a really great, just-right-produced little collection. Well, perhaps there’s a little bit of slightly over-enthusiastic distortion in a place or two – kids these days!

But it’s a great listen, and it’s available for FREE here:

http://shop.exnorwegian.com/album/tbt-ep

* Don’t worry, I do actually know that musically inclined infants, cool kids, numerous young adults, plentiful older adults, a huge number of middle-aged people and even some certified geriatrics are, indeed, familiar with the works of Pete Ham (his legendary band was the Beatles-endorsed Badfinger), the renowned, brilliant, Boston singer-songwriter Andy Pratt (Roger Daltrey of The Who had a hit with Andy’s signature song “Avenging Annie”), hard-working UK band Family (featuring the distinctive vocals of Roger Chapman), and Patto (fronted by the soulful, full-throated singer Mike Patto and extraordinary guitarist Ollie Halsall.)

Ten records that changed my life

Ten Records That Changed My Life… REALLY changed my life.

 

Ten records that changed my life

Yesterday (8th Jan, 2014) a Facebook friend of mine, Bill Mallonee, posed the following question:

10 life changing records. (I know! It’s impossible!)
Take a deep breath & list ‘em in less than 3 minutes.
Don’t over think it.

Well, you know what? I did over-think it. It’s pretty easy to reel off some of your favourite records, like I did here and here, but (being a pedantic git) I felt that if you’re going to describe something as life-changing it had better be something that really did have some particular concrete effect on your existence. So it took me longer than 3 minutes, but not much longer. Here’s a slightly edited and expanded version:


Ten Records That Changed My Life

DC’s Response to Facebook post by Bill Mallonee, 7th Jan, 2014

Life changing? Life. Changing. Lifechanging. Records that really, really truly changed my life. Hmm. Not necessarily albums. Nor my favourite, nor the best, nor the coolest records.

1: Johnny Cash‘s first gospel LP (Hymns by Johnny Cash) – My parents had it it and it was probably the first record that felt blissful to me – that showed me how powerful music could be, even before I really became a “music fan”

2: Elton John‘s Crocodile Rock. For some strange reason hearing it on Top Of The Pops was a revelation to me that stupid, freakish, long-haired, ungodly, noisy rock’n’roll music was actually really great. [I know Crocodile Rock, while great, is not exactly the pinnacle of the form, but for me it was the key that unlocked the door.] It was the first record I ever bought and it instantly made me into a “music fan”.Ø

3-5: Larry Norman‘s three albums Upon This Rock, Only Visiting This Planet and Bootleg – My sister borrowed them and they taught me that rock’n’roll wasn’t evil and you could be funny, clever and talk about whatever you wanted [The Ku Klux Klan, Paul McCartney’s Hofner bass, venereal disease, Jesus] while making music that felt blissful.

6 – Neil Young‘s Zuma – I heard John Peel play the track Looking For A Love on the little transistor radio under my pillow one night in 1976. I’d never heard Neil Young before but I fell for the sound immediately. I went out and bought the album and it’s still, in my mind, the definitive “perfect electric guitar sound” that I basically strive for in my playing [much of the time, anyway].

7-9: Jonathan Richman & The Modern LoversRock’n’Roll With The Modern Lovers, Patrik Fitzgerald‘s Safety Pin Stuck In My Heart E.P.* & Wild Man Fischer‘s Wildmania!§ – the fact that Marjorie owned these three records that I also loved was a major factor in bringing us together at school in 1977, and we’re still married.



10 – Crowded House‘s Woodface – I’d gradually grown fond of them on the radio (They played Better Be Home Soon, Don’t Dream It’s Over, Fall At Your Feet, Sister Madly quite often on CFMI) when we lived in Vancouver, and finally bought the CD. Marjorie and I felt it was immediately fell for the album in a very, very deep way, particularly the first half, which seemed to representative another kind of perfect sound which we felt we’d been looking for all our lives. Marjorie loved them so much that (to cut a long story short) she went to New Zealand to see them, stopped off in Melbourne (where they had formed and developed) on the way home, fell in love with it, and so we moved here, to Melbourne, Australia. That’s life-changing! 

11 – Some other Johnny Cash record – I was listening to him one day at work in the lab about ten years ago [I can’t remember which song but I think it was from his Sun years] and I thought, “If he can make records, with a wobbly voice like that, then so can I!” That was the moment when I decided to do the unthinkable and become a singer.


 

NOTES

Ø I subsequently bought the Daniel and Goodbye Yellow Brick Road 45s and was settling in for a lifetime of brilliant Elton John releases, but I wasn’t so sure about Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting (it was OK, but I could think of better things to spend my 45p on)  and never again bought another Elton John single, or, for that matter, a post-1973 album of his. This was my first lesson in pop disappointment.

* Patrik was the first “folk-punk” guy (to release a record) in the original UK punk scene of 1976-78. I’ve always thought that Marjorie and I don’t have an “our song” in the way that Americans talk about it, but I guess Patrik’s Safety Pin Stuck In My Heart was Our Song!

§ Wild Man’s first, and most famous album, was the double album An Evening With Wild Man Fischer, about eight years before Wildmania!. This was his “comeback album”. John Peel played a track every night and I taped the whole album. I used to go round school singing the songs from it (and to think I say I only became a singer about ten years ago!) and some of the songs became quite popular among my friends. (“My name is Larry, I have a canary”, “I went to a disco in San Francisco” – you can see why).

One day Marjorie told me she’d got the album. I actually thought she was only joking as it wasn’t the kind of thing you’d find in the records shops in Portadown. And I think she was disappointed but didn’t really impress the fact on me. But some time later, when we were closer friends, I found it in her record collection and nearly died! It turned out she’d ordered it from “overseas” (i.e. England) out of an ad in the NME.

I spent years wondering how I could get the first album and I eventually found it in a shop in London. But despite it being, by far, the most famous and well-regarded, it’s nowhere near as good as Wildmania!, which, in my opinion, is where his art all came together in its most cohesive and beautiful form; in short, his masterpiece.

Mondo Quinn-Love Is The Reason-single

New single by Mondo Quinn (produced by me!)

Mondo Quinn: Produced by DC Cardwell

My Tasmanian friend Mondo Quinn has a new double-A side single out. He recorded it at my studio a couple of weekends ago. Both songs have got his usual early-Beatles melodic verve: they’re what I believe the young people are calling “earworms“.

Mondo is on lead vocals and played all of the electric guitars. I think it’s his best vocal performance yet – I told him to sing more aggressively and do his best “John Lennon voice” and he came up with the goods admirably! We double-tracked them and that was it – no need for multiple takes and a lot of “comping”.

As well as producing it, I played everything else and helped a little bit with the arrangements. But Mondo writes such perfect little melodic songs that they don’t need much dressing up. I particularly love the clever, slightly “rushed” transitions into the different parts of “Love Is The Reason“. The whole thing moves along with a great sense of momentum, which is something I love in a song!

It’s up on Bandcamp on a “pay what you want” basis, in other words you can put in zero dollars and get it for free – Radiohead-style! The address is mondoquinn.bandcamp.com – that takes you to his main Bandcamp page.

~ DC

 

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George Harrison by Marjorie, 1977

George Harrison in Graphite and Vinyl – from Marjorie’s archives

Marjorie was a huge fan of George Harrison right from the beginning of his solo career (when she was a very little girl). Here’s a nice portrait she drew of George for her ‘O’ Level Art submission. I recall she left everything to the last minute and did a whole lot of drawings the night before she had to hand them in. We still have the sketch book and it largely consists of this picture of George, a quick self-portrait (also below) and various items around her, e.g. a cup, her hands, her glasses, her boot, a banana etc. They make quite a nice couple, don’t they?

She still has the singles/45’s/7 inches (or what you young hipsters sometimes call the “vinyls” – ugh) to prove that she was a fan when she was just a little girl! She was much more advanced musically than I was at the same age.

You can see the full size version of her George Harrison portrait on our Flickr site at http://www.flickr.com/photos/dc-cardwell/9381761109/.
I wish I had a video or recording of Marjorie singing one of George’s songs, but in the meantime, here’s me doing a ukulele & vocal version “Here Comes The Sun”, one of his two tracks which were major highlights of the Beatles final, iconic “Abbey Road” album.

Crowded House, New Zealand 1995 - by Marjorie Cardwell

Crowded House are the reason we’re in Australia

 

If it weren’t for Crowded House we wouldn’t be living in Australia. Kinda. Sorta. Pretty much.

Marjorie and I came to the band late, not long before Together Alone came out, when I picked up Woodface somewhere on CD and we instantly realised that tracks such as It’s Only Natural and Fall At Your Feet were a kind of music we’d been yearning for but had never really managed to find except in our own heads. We lived in Vancouver, Canada at the time and when we moved there in 1988 from Northern Ireland we were simultaneously perturbed by the prevailing poodle bands on the charts and heartened by the fact that every time we turned on CFMI classic rock radio while driving we heard the likes of Steely Dan, Van Morrison and other artists who seemed forgotten back home, swept away by the punk that we ourselves had loved and followed.

We were both “pop music literate” and knew that Neil had been in Split Enz. We loved I Got You when it was a hit in the UK. I’d heard Better Be Home Soon in the car on this “classic rock radio” which seemed unique to the New World, and been struck by its Beatlesque qualities. And we both knew Don’t Dream It’s Over, of course, and had admired it vaguely from a distance. And I recalled seeing them once on the MTV VMA awards (see video) and being astounded that they seemed to be a real band, playing real instruments and singing a real song. With a Hammond organ! In the 80s! Ever since then I’d made a mental note to buy one of their albums, but it simply didn’t happen until I picked up Woodface at a bargain price in 1993.

Live in Canada

Sadly, drummer Paul Hester had quit the band just two weeks before we first saw them in Vancouver and Seattle, but they were still a revelation live, a band who played smart, concise pop songs in the spirit of the “jam bands” – they never played a song the same way twice and you never knew what was going to happen at any moment. Neil Finn was edgy in the sense that at any moment he felt the freedom to do whichever option popped into his head, whether it was to morph into a random cover, play an extended free-form guitar solo, swap instruments with the drummer, write a song on the spot based on the support band’s setlist, have the band jam along to a demo CD that an aspiring musician threw onto the stage…

Crowded House backstage pass! Yeah! Wow! Cool!Crowded House backstage pass!

We managed to score backstage passes for their Seattle show. The show was great but being backstage afterwards wasn’t the most exciting of experiences. However, I guess there was a certain thrill of anticipation and the pass itself is quite nice!

I was hacking gently into the hospital computer system at my work and discovered that the network was hooked into a mysterious entity, The Internet, involving such things as “gophers”, a search engine named “Veronica” and something called “email”. Much to my surprise I found that there was an active group of Crowded House fans exchanging information, and that I was even able to set up an email account on my home computer using Vancouver’s Freenet text-based email service. Marjorie and I joined this community, known asTongue In The Mail, and in fact we’re still in it (although it’s been partly superseded by the Frenz forum, which I also use).

Trip to New Zealand

At one point in 1995 Crowded House were about to tour New Zealand and there was a vague feeling in the ranks that they might split up soon and this could be their last outing. I vividly recall saying to Marjorie, “You should

Marjorie's Ticket for the show in Palmerston North, New ZealandMarjorie’s Ticket for the show in Palmerston North, New Zealand

go and see them!” while realising that this was completely unfeasible. However, she took me at my word and three days later she was in New Zealand! She’d made arrangements to meet up with various people we’d met online, and she traipsed around after the band. Some of the people she met were close to the band and managed to get her backstage where she met, not only the Crowded House members and Tim, but Mr. and Mrs. Finn senior. This was, needless to say, quite a bit of fun. She had coffee with Mike Chunn (Split Enz bass player) and Dave Dobbyn and generally was made very welcome on the other side of the world. Even back then we felt really old and grown-up, having two children and being well settled down, so it seemed almost ridiculous that Marjorie should be on such an adventure. We’d sometimes play our own gigs at Vancouver’s rock clubs, look around and think “we’re old enough to be these people’s parents and I’m sure they think we’re like old fogies from another era!” Of course, looking back, we were only in our early 30s and nearly 20 years later we’re still running after bands and and still playing to people who now could practically be our grandchildren!

Marjorie's photo of Crowded House in New ZealandMarjorie’s photo of Crowded House in New Zealand

But that’s beside the point. Marjorie had a stopover in Melbourne on her way back to Canada. Neither of us had ever been to Australia before, but Marjorie simply fell in love with this city. Another internet friend took her round to see some of the Crowdie sites, such as Paul Hester’s café and Neil Finn’s old house where he wrote many of the Woodface songs.

When she returned to Vancouver, Marjorie simply said “We should move to Melbourne, it’s really nice!” Of course, this is easier said than done, especially when you have two small kids and an elderly mother-in-law (Marjorie’s mother) who lives with you. But we got the permanent residence visa application forms and had a look at them. We’d already emigrated once so the forms weren’t daunting in the least. We figured out that I, as a medical scientist, would have a reasonable chance of being accepted, but that if you were over 35 you had extra “points” taken off which would effectively scupper your chances of getting a visa.

Just up the road from where we lived in CanadaJust down the road from where we lived in Canada

And anyway, Vancouver is “really nice” too, to say the least! It consistently vies with Melbourne for the title of “The World’s Most Livable City” and it’s undeniably beautiful and comfortable. And we loved the Canadian people and had many close friends. So we filled out the forms but didn’t bother sending them.

However, two weeks before I turned 35, I mentioned that if we didn’t do it now we’d never get a visa. So we sent of the forms just so that we could say we’d had a go. Very shortly afterwards we got a letter saying that we’d been accepted into Australia! No interview or anything! And with that piece of paper in hand, we decided we may as well go and see what it’s like to live in Australia.

We moved in 1996, two boys and aging mother-in-law in tow (she’s still living with us 16 years later!) and have never regretted it, despite occasionally longing for real mountains, snow, the smell of cedar and the warm hospitality of Canadians… not that Australians aren’t hospitable, but they’re different.

Move to Australia

We stopped over in Auckland on our way to Australia, and were wined and dined very generously by ex-Split Enz members Paul Crowther and Mike Chunn. (We’d previously met Paul Crowther at a Mutton Birds show in Vancouver’s Railway Club when we popped in after our own gig over the road.)

One of our ENZSO ticketsOne of our ENZSO tickets

As soon as we arrived in Melbourne we heard that there was to be an ENZSO concert in the Rod Laver Arena. Exasperatingly, we couldn’t afford to go but I got a job after only two weeks and the first thing I did was buy tickets. Due to a slight misadventure we arrived slightly late and it was a very bizarre feeling to walk into a packed arena-sized venue and hear a full orchestra playing Six Months In A Leaky Boat with the audience lapping it up!

We’ve seen an amazing run of Finn-related events here in the hometown of Split Enz and Crowded House. The most memorable – sorry, unforgettable – were the warm-up shows for the Sydney Opera House Farewell To The World mega-show in which we got to see Crowded House with Paul Hester two nights in a row, up close, at the intimate Corner Hotel, thus more than making up for having missed out on seeing him with Crowded House before he quit them. It was very much a “who would have thunk?” experience for us.

We saw two more impromptu reunions of core members Finn, Seymour and Hester, one at “Hessie’s Shed” in the Espy Hotel, St Kilda and one at the TV recording of a Neil Finn solo show. And then, tragically, Paulo was gone, his life snuffed out by his own hand in this very city. But that awful incident doesn’t erase our memories of the sheer, joyful, uninhibited exuberance that he personified on stage.

Ticket for Corner Hotel warm-up show, 1996Ticket for Corner Hotel warm-up show, 1996

We got to see another Crowded House warm-up at the Corner Hotel, this time for their comeback tour. And it was surprisingly magnificent! Neither Marjorie nor I have warmed hugely to the two albums by the reunified band (save for about three great tracks on the first one which are up there with their greatest work), but the live shows have been almost as good as ever. And it’s typically admirable of Finn and Co. that they haven’t just done the get-together-and-play-the-old-hits-for-the-money-on-a-nostalgia-tour thing, but they’ve done it as a real band, written new material and simply carried on from where they left off. We may never get another Woodface, but on the other hand, perhaps we will!

~ DC Cardwell

 

NOTE: This is a quick, rough piece that I wrote as a comment on another blog, but it got too big so I posted it here instead. I may well come back to it , tidy it up and expand (or maybe contract) it later on. It’s also subject to revision by Marjorie if I’ve got some of the facts wrong!

Bob Dylan at Slane Castle, Dublin,1984 - photos by DC Cardwell

The Adjectival Bob Dylan

Today we have a guest host – our son Samuel Cardwell posted this on Facebook and it’s too good not to share with the world!

___________________

This morning my father and I were talking about how rubbish it would have been if people had kept calling albums things like ‘With the Beatles’ and ‘The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan,’ and I got to wondering what it would have been like if Bob had kept using ‘The + Adjective+ Bob Dylan’ formula throughout his long career. I think it would have gone something like this:

 

  • The Hillbilly Bob Dylan (Bob Dylan)
  • The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan
  • The Political Bob Dylan (The Times They Are A Changin’)
  • The Sarcastic Bob Dylan (Another Side of Bob Dylan)
  • The Dreamin’ Bob Dylan (Bringing It All Back Home)
  • The Growlin’ Bob Dylan (Highway 61 Revisited)
  • The Surreal Bob Dylan (Blonde on Blonde)
  • The Garagey Bob Dylan (The Basement Tapes)
  • The Countrified Bob Dylan (John Wesley Harding)
  • The Weird-Voiced Bob Dylan (Nashville Skyline)
  • The Desultory Bob Dylan (Self Portrait)
  • The Optimistic Bob Dylan (New Morning)
  • The Cinematic Bob Dylan (Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid)
  • The Desultory Bob Dylan Vol. 2 (Dylan)
  • The Married Bob Dylan (Planet Waves)
  • The Divorced Bob Dylan (Blood on the Tracks)
  • The Collaboratin’ Bob Dylan (Desire)
  • The Shrill Bob Dylan (Street Legal)
  • The Evangelical Bob Dylan (Slow Train Coming)
  • The Devotional Bob Dylan (Saved)
  • The Hymnal Bob Dylan (Shot of Love)
  • The Reggae Bob Dylan (Infidels)
  • The Downhill Bob Dylan (Empire Burlesque)
  • The Regrettable Bob Dylan (Knocked Out Loaded)
  • The Forgettable Bob Dylan (Down In The Groove)
  • The Revitalised Bob Dylan (Oh Mercy)
  • The Giddy Bob Dylan (Under the Red Sky)
  • The Musicological Bob Dylan (Good As I Been To You)
  • The Musicological Bob Dylan Vol. 2 (World Gone Wrong)
  • The Bleak Bob Dylan (Time Out Of Mind)
  • The Pre-War Bob Dylan (“Love and Theft”)
  • The Languid Bob Dylan (Modern Times)
  • The Cajun Bob Dylan (Together Through Life)
  • The Joyeux Bob Dylan (Christmas in the Heart)

___________________

I think that list of Samuel’s is pretty much spot-on but does anyone have any other suggestions?

Bob Dylan at Slane Castle, Dublin,1984 - photos by DC Cardwell

More from The Band

Treated myself to the Last Waltz Box Set today. (20% off all CDs in JB until Sunday!) Enjoyed disc 1 so far – really nice stuff that’s not on the original album or in the film. 

I downloaded it years ago from N#$^%er or some such place, but it sounded really weedy and disappointing, but it must have been either the bootleg version or badly ripped because the sound quality on this set is fine.

This Wheels On Fire” is the most rollicking, least creepy version I’ve heard. And the live version of “The Weight”  is great. Muddy Waters swinging through“Caldonia” is also great fun.

The Band really were amazing for a big 70s rock band. They could play many rootsy styles of music with great authenticity, especially blues-based and New Orleans styles. Imagine any other major rock act of the time having to back up Muddy Waters, Paul Butterfield, Van Morrison, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Bobby Charles, Dr. John etc, and doing it with such aplomb.

Considering that they were known for getting away from the whole white-blues-rock thing and creating original music that in some ways reached further back, and in other ways pointed the way forward, they were soundly based in the rock and roll form. As is also clear from the early 60s Hawks material on the “Musical History” box set.

Three discs to go!

Any new Robbie Robertson guitar solo is a joy and we never get sick of that squeaky thing he does on his Strat. Do you think he means it? Everyone lauds him for it, but maybe he can’t help it and it really annoys him! ;)

~ DC

 

15 albums in 15 minutes

THE RULES:  Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen albums you’ve heard that will always stick with you. List the first fifteen you can recall in no more than fifteen minutes. Tag fifteen friends, including me, because I’m interested in seeing what albums my friends choose. (To do this, go to your Notes tab on your profile page, paste rules in a new note, cast your fifteen picks, and tag people in the note).

Here goes – I tried to resist this latest question doing the rounds on Facebook, I really did! I think the last note I wrote was my top 20 albums. And I think I did my top 10 once as well. What will they think of next? Your Top 17?

This time I’m limiting it to “rock and roll” in the good old, 70s, wide sense of the term. And Hank Williams. Albums that really touched me, moved me, and each in their own way influenced me profoundly. I allowed compilations, but not multi-artist compilations. And one album per artist, with John and Paul cheating to get in by simply managing to make two of the greatest “solo albums” of all time. No Bob Dylan, which is really really really really silly, but I somehow forgot him until the 15 spaces were filled. And same goes for Bowie (David, not Lester or Zowie). And The Rolling Stones. No NZ representatives because Split Enz and Crowded House never quite managed to make a perfect album (for me – no flaming please – oh well – go ahead!) and, well, Mutton Birds and Dave Dobbyn did but I had to draw the line at 15 and the people in this list are all earlier formative influences. And nothing Australian or Irish. Oh crap, I forgot The Finn Brothers first solo album “Finn”, which IS perfect. And ABBA, although the perfect compilation only exists as a CD-R in my collection. And The Band! And Kate & Anna McGarrigle! And Richard & Linda Thompson! And Zep! Who said it had to be 15 albums?

Oh, and Hank Williams gets in just because he’s Hank.

01 – The Beatles – Revolver (of course)

02 - Hank Williams – 40 Greatest Hits (natch)

03 – Elvis Presley - The Sun Sessions (well like duh…)

04 – Al Green - The Belle Album

05 – Aretha Franklin - 30 Greatest Hits

06 – Neil Young – Zuma

07 – Larry Norman – Only Visiting This Planet

08 – Rezillos – Can’t Stand The Rezillos

09 - Buzzcocks – Love Bites

10 – The Alpha Band – The Statue Makers Of Hollywood

11 - Paul McCartney & Wings - Band On The Run

12 – John Lennon And The Plastic Ono Band – John Lennon And The Plastic Ono Band

13 – Stevie Wonder - The Original Musiquarium

14 – T-Bone Burnett - Truth Decay

15 – Sam Phillips – Cruel Inventions

For a more comprehensive (but by no means exhaustive) list of some of my fave artists, allow me to cut and paste from my fabulous MySpace page (which incidentally is at www.myspace.com/dccardwell)

Sam Phillips, The Beatles, Ringo Starr, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Martin, Neil Young, Al Green, T Bone Burnett, The Alpha Band, The Clark Sisters, The Rezillos, The Kinks, The Staple Singers, The Mutton Birds, Bob Dylan, Hank Williams, Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Crowded House, Neil Finn, Tim Finn, Phil Judd, Split Enz, Nick Lowe, Dave Edmunds, The Heptones, Jackie Mittoo, Wild Man Fischer, Toots & The Maytals, Johnny Cash, Iris Dement, Ann Peebles, The Band, The Beach Boys, Larry Norman, Lester Young, The Meters, Gillian Welch, Sloan, Buddy & Julie Miller, NRBQ, Andrae Crouch, The Fall, Thelonious Monk, Andy Pratt, Loudon Wainwright III, Ace Of Base, Stevie Wonder, Arcade Fire, Dave Dobbyn, Billie Holiday & Lester Young, The Drifters, Wreckless Eric, Rodney Cordner, Django Reinhardt, Mark Heard, Gil Askey, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, Led Zeppelin, Lefty Frizzell, The Rolling Stones, Rick Nelson, Ivor Cutler, Roy Harper, The Undertones, The Mighty Clouds Of Joy, Edwyn Collins, Vince Guaraldi, Blossom Dearie, George Jones, The Strokes, U2, Van Morrison, The Beach Boys, The Modern Jazz Quartet, The Pogues, Randy Stonehill, Nina Simone, Chuck Berry, Madeleine Peyroux, Al Bowlly, Ray Charles, James Brown, Jimmy Reed, The Everly Brothers, Gram Parsons, Elvis Costello, Velvet Underground, David Bowie, Bobby Womack, Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers, ABBA, Richard and Linda Thompson, Frank Black and, of course, his Fabulous Pixies, The Mills Brothers, Duke Ellington, The Byrds, The Rutles, Elmore James, Buzzcocks, Booker T & The MGs, Randy Newman, Ella Fitzgerald, Marc Bolan and T-Rex, Louis Armstrong, The Dixie Hummingbirds, Television. Let’s face it, there are too many great artists, writers and producers to list but I especially like to listen to a lot of soul music including music from the Stax and Atlantic labels, Motown, 70s soul, doo-wop, be-bop, early rock and roll, ska, reggae and New Orleans R&B.

Review of Neil Young at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne, Australia, 28 Jan 2009

The Sidney Myer Music Bowl is a rather wonderful outdoor venue in the
heart of Melbourne’s King’s Domain. A natural amphitheatre with a large
stage and a covered area for those who can afford the expensive seats!
For once, I paid the extra to get up close to one of my major musical
heroes. I was accompanied by my wife Marjie and my son Samuel, both
also Neil Young fans.

But it was just too hot for me to really enjoy this show. I’ve been in
Melbourne for twelve years now, but for a Northern Ireland kid these
40+ days are hard to take, especially when they drag on for too long a
period! And after a long hot day and a scorching walk to the venue,
you’re not exactly in the mood to rock and roll all night long, free
world or not.

I regret that we stayed in our seats under the dome as it was indeed
like baking in an oven, but the heat was also making us feel so tired
that we were reluctant to move back to watch and listen from out in the
open air. I now wish we had, judging from other people’s comments.

I’m a long-time Neil fan (ever since I heard a track from the new album
Zuma in 1975 while listening to the John Peel Show on a little
transistor radio underneath my pillow) and his playing has influenced
me more than any other guitarist’s. Anyone who knows me will attest
that I am a huge Neil enthusiast.

And I’ve only seen him twice before – the last two and a half songs
(don’t ask!) of a show in Vancouver back in the early 90s and his last
appearance here in Melbourne on the Greendale tour, which was really
great but not a typical performance.

I’d read very good things about this tour, with the British leg being
hailed as his best since the famous Crazy Horse shows of the mid-70s.

So I was primed for this to be the “gig of a lifetime”, but it was not
to be – which was probably more due to the scorching weather, my
fragile physical state (for various reasons), poor sound from where I
was sitting, a guy to my left who was not large but somehow took up way
more space (mine) than was justified, and a song selection which was
not to my taste. So I’m surprised to be writing a
less-than-enthusiastic review and I apologise for it, because I think
most people there enjoyed it more than I did.

The Greendale show had been at the same venue, and from our vantage
point then, much further from the stage, the sound was perfect.
Tonight, down near the front, it was rather boxy and unfortunately the
drums were mixed way too loud and reverberant like any crappy bar band,
which was annoying most of the time, but especially in the ballads,
when it was completely ridiculous. I guess the covered part of the
venue (50 years old next month) was acoustically designed for classical
music, but that’s not good for rock’n’roll! And from where I was,
Neil’s acoustic guitar sounded really bad and that spoiled songs that
should have been good, like “The Needle And The Damage Done”.

I thought the backing vocals were spot-on and beautiful, especially
Neil’s wife Pegi‘s, and the playing was generally sympathetic, but I
couldn’t really hear the piano at all from where I was. And as for the
bass, it was pretty much impossible to clearly identify any particular
note, so we just got a general boominess in the lower registers.

Anyway, Neil was full of energy, which amazed me given the extreme
heat. He was wearing a white open-necked shirt and Eric Morecambe style
khaki Bermuda shorts. His voice was sounding fairly strong despite the
acoustics, however at the Greendale show five years ago his voice was
astoundingly good, in fact I didn’t even know he *could* sing like that!

And despite regretting not moving back, it was good to be close enough
to really *see* Neil and observe what he was doing with his guitar.

It was also a treat to see Ben Keith – someone who’s played with Neil
since those far-off legendary days of the early 70s. The full line-up
was Ben Keith (pedal steel, guitar, piano, organ), Rick Rosas (bass),
Chad Cromwell (drums), Anthony Crawford and Pegi Young (backing vocals,
piano and guitars).

An early song was a fave of mine, “Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere”
with its delectable la-la-las. But for my particular taste there were
just too many songs that I find mediocre, with throwaway tunes and
sophomoric homespun cod-religious or philosophical lyrics which are
probably crowd-pleasing but lack the depth of which he is capable. Many
of them had failed to interest me on the original albums and these live
performances didn’t enhance them any. I noticed that Marjie and Samuel
laughed heartily at some of them, and not in a good way!

An exception was “One Of These Days” which I had never liked much but
which suddenly rung very true on this occasion, and I guess it’s
moments like that which make a show worthwhile!

“Four Strong Winds” came across quite well too. The harmonium on
“Mother Earth” was nice, but, well, the song is laughable, really! I
mean, you’d think you can’t go wrong with the tune of “O Waly Waly“,
but the words… This was one which really had Marjie and Samuel
cracking up and who could blame them? (Flame away – we all have our
likes and dislikes and I’ve already stated that Neil is one of my absolute
fave artists so I don’t feel guilty!)

As others have commented online, “Cortez The Killer” was, well, killer,
and the only song of the night where he really let his guitar do what
it does so well – sing. (But you know, even though that song is one of
the best tracks on my favourite Neil album, the sentiment still really
bugs me because he suggests that sacrificing children is OK if you
think you’re going to get some mystical benefit from it. It doesn’t
exactly support his case against Cortez. There – I’ve written a song
about that, but now I’ve said it openly for the first time!)

For me, another highlight of the evening was “Words”. That was the only
song in which Neil played his white Gretsch and I hate to say this,
but it sounded way better than his legendary Les Paul, “Old Black”. I
think the cleaner, bitier sound helped make up for the muddiness of the
PA. I had never really loved this song on Harvest, but tonight the 11/8
time signatures (or whatever they are) sounded perfectly natural and
even swinging. Marjie hated it though!

The finale of “A Day In The Life” was brilliant. It’s a great song that
the Beatles made kinda difficult to cover (although I have a 45rpm
record of Wes Montgomery doing it) but it was good to hear it being
done so well by Neil. He and his band are as capable of doing
cacophonous wig-outs as anyone, as we all know, but they somehow
managed to make the orchestral crescendos sound remarkably like the Sgt
Pepper version! I was sure I could hear the swirling strings but it was
coming out of bass, drums, piano, organ and guitars. For the second
crescendo he proceeded to break all the strings on “Old Black” and thrash the
pickups with them, at great length and to noisy effect. The middle bit
(woke up, fell out of bed) was perhaps a little off, and Nil seemed to
be forgetting the words or forgetting to go up to the microphone, but
the overall effect was unforgettable.

Pegi had utilised the illuminated vibraphone in a pleasantly Motownish
way earlier in the evening, but for the climax of “A Day In The Life”
Neil ran up to where it was located at the back of the stage and hit a
percussive version of the Beatles’ famous piano chord. Not quite as
cute as the Rutles’ “plonk”, but a good way to end.

Review by DC Cardwell (www.dccardwell.com)

FULL SET LIST (thanks to www.setlist.fm)

1. Love And Only Love
2. Sea Change
3. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
4. I’ve Been Waiting For You
5. Spirit Road
6. Cortez The Killer
7. Cinnamon Girl
8. Mother Earth
9. The Needle And The Damage Done
10. Light A Candle
11. Four Strong Winds
12. Unknown Legend
13. One Of These Days
14. Get Back To The Country
15. Words
16. Just Singing A Song
17. Rockin’ In The Free World
18. A Day In The Life

DC’s Top 20 Albums

[From Facebook – occasionally I give in and respond to these things…]

Here we go again… how did this happen to me!

THE RULES: Think of 20 albums that had such a profound effect on you they changed your life… dug into your soul. The ones that you know backwards, forwards, up, and down, and are now a part of you. Then when you finish, tag 20 others, including me. Make sure you copy and paste this part so they know the drill.
____________________________________

I thought this would be hard but I found it surprisingly easy to think of 20 that were pivotal in my life, at least as far as music goes. Only a few have affected me in non-musical ways.

And it was actually easier to put them in (roughly) chronological order of when I first fell in love with them, which I guess indicates how important they were to me. No modern music at all, because there is no good music any more. You kids don’t know squat.

I applied the usual rule of one-album-per-artist.

And as is often the case, black music and pre-rock music of all genres is woefully under-represented because there’s less of a focus on albums. My actual listening habits are very, very broad. I love all genres, and hate most music.

- DC

01. Larry Norman – Only Visting This Planet
02. Led Zeppelin – IV
03. Neil Young – Zuma
04. Bob Dylan – Bringing It All Back Home
05. Buzzcocks – Love Bites
06. The Beatles – Revolver
07. Al Green – The Belle Album
08. Hank Williams – 40 Greatest Hits
09. Alpha Band – The Statue Makers Of Hollywood
10. Aretha Franklin – 30 Greatest Hits
11. Elvis Presley – The Sun Sessions
12. Various Artists – 20 Reggae Greats
13. Stevie Wonder – The Original Musiquarium
14. Charlie Parker – some old “Giants Of Jazz” LP
15. Ella Fitzgerald – The Cole Porter Songbook Vol. 1
16. Sam Phillips – Cruel Inventions
17. Crowded House – Woodface
18. The Mutton Birds – Salty
19. Dave Dobbyn – The Islander
20. The Strokes – Room On Fire

SEE ALSO: Marjorie’s Top 20 Albums

Musical Coincidence #3

Yesterday Marjie, Samuel and I were practicing music for a party this weekend and one of the songs we played was “Halfway To Paradise” by Goffin & King, which we know from Nick Lowe‘s version.

(You can hear our version at http://www.myspace.com/marjiesothersongs)

Pretty much straight after finishing our rehearsal we sat down to watch our new DVD box set of “Whatever Happened To The Likely Lads”, the classic British TV series from the early 70s, and what song should Terry and Bob be quoting at length to each other?

“Halfway To Paradise” of course!