Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Spinning Vinyl

It's been a little while since I last took up the occasional Spinning Vinyl series. The other night I got to fire up some records, and I had a fine time. Maybe these will stir a memory or make you curious. I started the night clearly inspired, as I slapped I'm Bad, I'm Nationwide by ZZ Top from Deguello 1979 on the turntable. A great song, one of my favorites from ZZ Top. Next up was John Mayer with Something's Missing from Heavier Things 2003, another very different take on the blues. Then I had one of those ideas, and it was on to Cat Food by King Crimson from In The Wake Of Poseidon 1970. Feeling a little random play about things, I skipped ahead to You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb from Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga 2007 and The Mystery Zone from Transference 2010, both by Spoon.They are a very talented bunch.

Life On The Moon and To The Stars from We Will Become Like Birds 2005 by Erin McKeown followed, and there's another just fabulous record, McKeown firing all all cylinders, and a finely crafted rock production to boot. Another quick left turn brought Turn My Life Down From Volunteers 1969 by Jefferson Airplane. I was never a big Airplane fan, but Turn My Life Down struck a chord with me, and it has remained with me every since. Next up I took a break from jumping up and down and listened to all of Side One of Shame Shame by Dr. Dog: Stranger, Shadow People, Station, Unbearable Why, and Where'd All The Time Go? I remain enthralled with this record, and they have a new one due out soon.

From Side Four of The Beatles White Album 1968 I spun Savoy Truffle and Cry Baby Cry. Then it was Brian Auger and Julie Tippetts Encore from 1978, a very cool record that reunited one of the most creative jazz-rock duos ever, whose mid-sixties work was just crazy, and well ahead of its time.  Git Up, a cover of Steve Winwood's Freedom Highway, and Auger's Future Pilot all sounded good, and Julie's voice is a thrill. From there it was on to The Who, My Generation and The Kids Are Alright from My Generation 1965, The Moody Blues Go Now from Go Now The Moody Blues #1 1965, Allen Toussaint's Yes We Can from Holy Cow! The Best Of Lee Dorsey 1985, and Burning Spear's Live Good from Marcus Garvey 1975 (classic reggae-where'd that come from?)

Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me Boz Scaggs from Speak Low 2008 is a lovely reading of the classic by Boz, who has lost nothing as he has mellowed. Soul Kiss from Joe Jackson's Big World 1986 (one of Jackson's better outings by my take). As the night drew to a close, I dug a deep groove with the extended version of Funky Drummer, from James Brown's In The Jungle Groove 1986 (but recorded with the great Clyde Stubblefield in 1970). And finally, I listened to Alcohol and Complicated Life from Muswell Hillbillies by The Kinks 1971. "Gotta stand a face it, life is so complicated". Seems like anybody could write it, but Ray Davies is the one who made it work. Ray Davies was really writing back then. Between 1968-1971 he could do no wrong.

So that's how I spent my evening a few days ago. No rhyme no reason, just my mind on random play and a big stack of records.

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