Jackson Browne – Running On Empty (1977)

FrontCover1Running on Empty is the fifth album by American singer-songwriter Jackson Browne. Released in 1977, the album reached #3 on the Billboard Pop Albums chart in 1978 and stayed on the charts for 65 weeks. The single for the title track, “Running on Empty”, peaked at #11 and the follow-up single, “The Load-Out”/”Stay”, reached #20 on the Billboard Pop Singles chart.

The album received two Grammy Award nominations in 1979: one for Album of the Year and the other for Pop Male Vocal Performance for the song “Running on Empty”.

In addition to tracks recorded on-stage during concerts, it also contains songs recorded in hotel rooms, on the tour bus, and backstage. It is unusual among live albums in that none of the tracks had ever appeared on a previous studio album. Browne was the sole writer on only two songs, co-writing four others and covering another four. The theme of the album was life on the road. In a Rolling Stone interview about the tour during which the album was recorded, Browne expressed pleasure at finally being able to afford the session musicians he wanted to go out on the road with him.

The album was certified as a Gold record in 1977 and Platinum in 1978 by the RIAA. It reached Multi-platinum in 1997 and 2001. It reached 7X platinum and is Browne’s best-selling album to date. In popular culture, the album cover can be seen framed and hanging on the wall next to the front door in the apartment on the set of Mork & Mindy. (by wikipedia)

LPBooklet02

Having acknowledged a certain creative desperation on The Pretender, Jackson Browne lowered his sights (and raised his commercial appeal) considerably with Running on Empty, which was more a concept album about the road than an actual live album, even though its songs were sometimes recorded on-stage (and sometimes on the bus or in the hotel). Unlike most live albums, though, it consisted of previously unrecorded songs. Browne had less creative participation on this album than on any he ever made, solely composing only two songs, co-writing four others, and covering another four. And he had less to say — the title song and leadoff track neatly conjoined his artistic and escapist themes. Figuratively and creatively, he was out of gas, but like “the pretender,” he still had to make a living. The songs covered all aspects of touring, from Danny O’Keefe’s “The Road,” which detailed romantic encounters, and “Rosie” (co-written by Browne and his manager Donald Miller), in which a soundman pays tribute to auto-eroticism, to, well, “Cocaine,” to the travails of being a roadie (“The Load-Out”).

Singles

Audience noises, humorous asides, loose playing — they were all part of a rough-around-the-edges musical evocation of the rock & roll touring life. It was not what fans had come to expect from Browne, of course, but the disaffected were more than outnumbered by the newly converted. (It didn’t hurt that “Running on Empty” and “The Load-Out”/”Stay” both became Top 40 hits.) As a result, Browne’s least ambitious, but perhaps most accessible, album ironically became his biggest seller. But it is not characteristic of his other work: for many, it will be the only Browne album they will want to own, just as others always will regard it disdainfully as “Jackson Browne lite.” (by William Ruhlmann)

LPBookletBackCover

Personnel:
Jackson Browne (guitar, piano, vocals)
Craig Doerge (keyboards)
Danny Kortchmar (guitar, background vocals)
Russ Kunkel (drums, percussion)
David Lindley (lap steel guitar, fiddle, co-lead vocals on “Stay”
Leland Sklar (bass)
+
background vocals on
Joel Bernstein – Rosemary Butler  Doug Haywood

LPBooklet01

Tracklist:
01. Running On Empty (Browne) 5.31
02. The Road (O’Keefe) 4.46
03. Rosie (Miller/Browne) 3.41
04. You Love The Thunder (Browne) 3.55
05. Cocaine (Davis/Frey/Browne) 4.57
06. Shaky Town (Kortchmar) 3.41
07. Love Needs A Heart (Browne/George/Carter) 3.30
08. Nothing But Time (Burke/Browne) 3.37
09. The Load-Out (Garofalo/Browne) 5.36
10. Stay (Just A Little Bit Longer) (Williams) 3.22

LabelB1

*
**

Looking out at the road rushing under my wheels
Looking back at the years gone by like so many summer fields
In sixty-five I was seventeen and running up one-oh-one
I don’t know where I’m running now, I’m just running on
Running on, running on empty
Running on, running blind
Running on, running into the sun
But I’m running behind
Gotta do what you can just to keep your love alive
Trying not to confuse it with what you do to survive
In sixty-nine I was twenty-one and I called the road my own
I don’t know when that road turned, into the road I’m on
Running on, running on empty
Running on, running blind
Running on, running into the sun
But I’m running behind
Everyone I know, everywhere I go
People need some reason to believe
I don’t know about anyone but me
If it takes all night, that’ll be all right
If I can get you to smile before I leave
Looking out at the road rushing under my wheels
I don’t know how to tell you all just how crazy this life feels
Look around for the friends that I used to turn to to pull me through
Looking into their eyes I see them running too
Running on, running on empty
Running on, running blind
Running on, running into the sun
But I’m running behind
Honey you really tempt me
You know the way you look so kind
I’d love to stick around but I’m running behind
You know I don’t even know what I’m hoping to find
Running into the sun but I’m running behind

Advertisements

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – The Winterland Reunion (1973)

FrontCover1From the time they came together as a trio at the end of 1968, to the fall of 1973 when they turned in this impromptu set at Winterland, the three voices comprising Crosby, Stills and Nash had seen their share of changes: they triumphed with their 1969 self-titled debut, joined forces with Neil Young for the follow-up Déjà Vu in 1970, and took their show on the road; by the end of that run, they’d weathered the kind of wear and tear on their hearts and souls that could throw the average band off course for good. And yet, whether performing songs from those first two albums, Crosby’s If Only I Could Remember My Name, Nash’s Songs for Beginners, Crosby and Nash’s heralded duo album, or Stills’ solo albums and works with Manassas, when the original core CSN trio got together they still made sweet harmony, as they did on this night to remember.

In the Fall of 1973, Crosby, Stills and Nash were still slightly reeling from a busy period that followed recording in Hawaii with Young and the passing of CSN&Y roadie Bruce Berry (famously eulogized by Young on “Tonight’s the Night”). Stills had been on the road with Manassas, and Crosby and Nash were playing their own shows with an electric band. But when Manassas booked a couple of dates at Winterland on October 4 and 7 of 1973, it was family reunion time when Crosby and Nash pulled a walk-on and the trio appeared onstage together for the first time since 1970.

Informal, joking, and pleasingly loose, the three friends seemed to truly enjoy singing together, despite the occasional onstage bristling and ropy moments. Crosby sarcastically refers to “our usual slick Hollywood show,” explaining away the presentation’s unrehearsed nature as “more fun this way for us.” Stills answered his band mate’s quip drolly with, “Anything you say, David, anything you say.”

CSNY02

Between the banter and tuning up, the three manage to turn in some prime vocal shots, from a version of the Beatle’s “Blackbird” to a handful of their group’s and solo works. Nash takes the lead on “Southbound Train” and retreats to piano for “Prison Song,” his protest of tough marijuana laws on the poor population. Stills sings Young’s “Human Highway,” which Crosby characterizes as a song by “our skinny friend;” the live version isn’t quite worked out the way we’ve come to know it, but that’s part of the excitement of this off-the-cuff set. “Wooden Ships” is dedicated to Crosby and Stills’ co-writer, the Jefferson Airplane/Starship’s Paul Kantner, before the evening is crowned with the vocal trio tour de force “Helplessly Hoping.”

The two sets from these Winterland shows foreshadowed a proper reunion on the horizon: a couple of months later, Young would join Nash and Crosby at an appearance at the San Francisco Civic and, the following year, CSN&Y would be on the road again, playing to their largest audiences ever. Marking a tentative step toward their mid-’70s triumph, as well as a throwback to their early days when the vocal giants were just a trio, this Winterland night is a historic footprint on CSN’s trail of rock & roll. Long may they continue to run its course. (by concertvault.com)

CSNY01

Personnel:
David Crosby (guitar, vocals)
Graham Nash (guitar, vocals, piano)
Stephen Stills (guitar, vocals)
Neil Young (guitar, vocals, harmonica)

BackCover1

Tracklist:
01. Helplessly Hoping (Stills) 4.00
02. Wooden Ships (Crosby/Kantner/Stills) 6.00
03. Blackbird (Lennon/McCartney) 2.56
04. As I Come Of Age (Stills) 5.56
05. Roll Another Number (Young) 4.37
06. Human Highway (Young) 4.07
07. Dreamland (Mitchell) 4.06
08. So It Goes (Nash) 6.40
09. The Prison Song (Nash) 4.18
10. Long Time Gone (Crosby) 7.27
11. Change Partners (Stills) 5.16
+
12 Down By The River (ABC TV, 1969) (Young) 4.52

AlternateFron+BackCover

Alternate front+ back cover

 

*
**

The Byrds – Mr. Tambourine Man (1965)

LPFrontCover1Mr. Tambourine Man is the debut album by the American folk rock band the Byrds and was released in June 1965 on Columbia Records (see 1965 in music). The album, along with the single of the same name, established the band as an internationally successful rock act and was also influential in originating the musical style known as folk rock. The term “folk rock” was, in fact, first coined by the U.S. music press to describe the band’s sound in mid-1965, at around the same time that the “Mr. Tambourine Man” single reached the top of the Billboard chart The single and album also represented the first effective American challenge to the dominance of The Beatles and the British Invasion during the mid-1960s.

The album peaked at number 6 on the Billboard Top LPs chart and reached number 7 in the United Kingdom. The Bob Dylan penned “Mr. Tambourine Man” single was released ahead of the album in April 1965, reaching number 1 on both the Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart.[6][7] A second single from the album, “All I Really Want to Do”, also a Dylan cover, was moderately successful in the U.S., but fared better in the United Kingdom, where it reached the Top 10.

Singles

Prior to forming the Byrds in 1964, most of the members of the band had come from a folk and roots music background, rather than a rock and roll one. Lead guitarist Jim McGuinn had been a solo folk singer and sideman with various professional folk groups, as had singer and songwriter Gene Clark. Clark and McGuinn first met in early 1964 at The Troubadour folk club in Los Angeles and, after discovering a mutual love of the Beatles, formed a Peter and Gordon-style duo, playing Beatles’ covers, Beatlesque renditions of traditional folk songs, and some self-penned material. The duo soon added another folk singer, David Crosby, to the line-up and named themselves the Jet Set. Over the coming months, bass player Chris Hillman, whose musical background was more oriented towards bluegrass music than folk, and drummer Michael Clarke were both added to the group. The Jet Set were signed to Columbia Records on November 10, 1964 and changed their name to the Byrds over Thanksgiving that year.

On January 20, 1965, the band, along with a group of L.A. session musicians later known as the Wrecking Crew, entered Columbia Recording Studios in Hollywood to record the Bob Dylan song “Mr. Tambourine Man” as their debut single. Released in April 1965, with the Clark-penned song “I Knew I’d Want You” on its B-side, the single was an immediate hit, reaching number 1 on both the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart and the UK Singles Chart. In addition, the electric rock band treatment that the Byrds and producer Terry Melcher had given “Mr. Tambourine Man” effectively created the template for the musical subgenre of folk rock.

TheByrds01
For the most part, Mr. Tambourine Man consisted of two types of songs: band originals, primarily penned by Clark, who was the group’s main songwriter during its first eighteen months of existence, and covers of modern folk songs, composed primarily by Dylan. The album opens with its Dylan-penned title track, which had been a big international hit for the group, prior to the album’s release. Band biographer Johnny Rogan has noted that the two most distinctive features of the Byrds’ rendition of “Mr. Tambourine Man” are the vocal harmonies of Clark, McGuinn and Crosby, and McGuinn’s jangling twelve-string Rickenbacker guitar playing (which complemented the phrase “jingle jangle morning” found in the song’s lyric). This combination of 12-string guitar work and complex harmony singing became the band’s signature sound during their early period.[4] Music critic Richie Unterberger has also noted that the success of the Byrds version of “Mr. Tambourine Man” saw an explosion of Byrds imitators and emulators having hits on the American and British charts during 1965 and 1966.

TheByrds03

Another Dylan cover, “All I Really Want to Do”, was the first song to be recorded for the album, following the “Mr. Tambourine Man” and “I Knew I’d Want You” session. Melcher felt confident that the band’s then-unissued debut single would be, at the very least, a regional hit and so he brought the Byrds back into the studio on March 8, 1965 to record a follow-up.[18] This March 8 recording session yielded the version of “All I Really Want to Do” that appears on the album, but the song was re-recorded on April 14, and it was this later take that graced the A-side of the band’s second Columbia single release.

The abundance of Dylan material on the album—with three songs taken from the Another Side of Bob Dylan album alone—led to accusations of the band being too reliant on his material.[20] However, the Dylan covers, including “Chimes of Freedom”, “All I Really Want to Do”, and “Spanish Harlem Incident”, in addition to the title track, remain among the Byrds’ best-known recordings.

TheByrds05

Another cover which stressed the band’s folk music roots was Idris Davies and Pete Seeger’s “The Bells of Rhymney”. The song, which told the sorrowful tale of a coal mining disaster in Wales, was a relative newcomer to the band’s repertoire at the time of recording, having only been worked up in March 1965, during the Byrds’ residency at Ciro’s nightclub on the Sunset Strip. Although the song had a somewhat sombre theme, it became one of the band’s most popular numbers during their residency at Ciro’s. The band’s cover of “The Bells of Rhymney” was also influential on the Beatles, particularly George Harrison, who co-opted McGuinn’s guitar riff and incorporated it into his composition “If I Needed Someone” from the Rubber Soul album.
The album’s distinctive front cover fisheye lens photograph of the band was taken by Barry Feinstein and has, according to author Christopher Hjort, become an acknowledged classic since its release. The back cover featured liner notes, written in the form of an open letter to a friend, by Columbia Records’ publicist Billy James. In addition, the back cover also featured a black and white photograph, taken by the Byrds’ manager Jim Dickson, of the band on stage with Bob Dylan at Ciro’s nightclub in L.A. (by wikipedia)

TheByrds06

 

One of the greatest debuts in the history of rock, Mr. Tambourine Man was nothing less than a significant step in the evolution of rock & roll itself, demonstrating that intelligent lyrical content could be wedded to compelling electric guitar riffs and a solid backbeat. It was also the album that was most responsible for establishing folk-rock as a popular phenomenon, its most alluring traits being Roger McGuinn’s immediately distinctive 12-string Rickenbacker jangle and the band’s beautiful harmonies. The material was uniformly strong, whether they were interpreting Bob Dylan (on the title cut and three other songs, including the hit single “All I Really Want to Do”), Pete Seeger (“The Bells of Rhymney”), or Jackie DeShannon (“Don’t Doubt Yourself, Babe”). The originals were lyrically less challenging, but equally powerful musically, especially Gene Clark’s “I Knew I’d Want You,” “I’ll Feel a Whole Lot Better,” and “Here Without You”; “It’s No Use” showed a tougher, harder-rocking side and a guitar solo with hints of psychedelia. (by Richie Unterberger)

TheByrds02

Personnel:
Gene Clark (guitar, tambourine, vocals)
Michael Clarke (drums)
David Crosby (guitar, vocals)
Chris Hillman (bass)
Jim McGuinn (lead guitar, vocals)
+
on “Mr. Tambourine Man” + “I Knew I’d Want You “:
Jerry Cole (guitar)
Larry Knechtel (bass)
Leon Russell (piano)
Hal Blaine (drums)

LPBackCover1
Tracklist:
01. Mr. Tambourine Man (Dylan) 2.34
02. I’ll Feel A Whole Lot Better” (Gene Clark) 2.36
03. Spanish Harlem Incident (Dylan) 2.01
04. You Won’t Have To Cry (Clark/McGuinn) 2.12
05. Here Without You (Clark) 2.40
06. The Bells Of Rhymney (Davies/Seeger) 3.35
07. All I Really Want To Do (Dylan) 2.08
08. I Knew I’d Want You (Clark) 2.18
09. It’s No Use (Clark/McGuinn) 2.29
10. Don’t Doubt Yourself, Babe (DeShannon) 2.59
11. Chimes Of Freedom (Dylan) 3.55
12. We’ll Meet Again (Parker/Charles) 2.19
+
13. She Has A Way (Clark) 2.29
14. I’ll Feel A Whole Lot Better (alternate version) (Clark) 2.32
15. It’s No Use (alternate version) (Clark/McGuinn) 2.24
16. You Won’t Have To Cry” (alternate version) (Clark/McGuinn) 2.07
17. All I Really Want To Do (Single version) (Dylan) 2.02
18. You And Me (Instrumental) (Crosby/Clark/McGuinn) 2.11

LabelB1

*
**

TheByrds04

 

 

Jackson Browne – I´ m Alive (1993)

FrontCover1I’m Alive is the tenth album by American singer-songwriter Jackson Browne, released in 1993 (see 1993 in music). The title track, “I’m Alive”, reached No. 18 on the Album Rock Tracks chart and No. 28 on the Adult Contemporary chart. Other singles released from the album were “Everywhere I Go” (UK No. 67) and “Sky Blue and Black”.

After veering heavily towards songs of a political nature on his two previous albums, longtime fans of Browne welcomed the return on I’m Alive to his previous style of songwriting.

The song “Too Many Angels” includes backing vocals by Jennifer Warnes, Valerie Carter, Doug Haywood, Katia Cardinal and Ryan Browne while the song “All Good Things” includes backing vocals by David Crosby and Don Henley. The song “Sky Blue and Black” was also featured in the pilot episode of American situation comedy Friends.

I’m Alive was considered somewhat of a comeback for Browne. Stephen Holden writing for The New York Times wrote “I’m Alive is a striking return to the kind of romantic subject matter that the Los Angeles singer and songwriter seemed to have abandoned after 1980 in favor of political songwriting. His finest album in nearly two decades, it has much in common with his 1974 masterpiece, Late For The Sky, whose songs also described the disintegration of a relationship.”

Singles

Critic William Ruhlman agreed though did not consider the album as strong. “Longtime fans welcomed the album as a return in style… Browne eschewed the greater philosophical implications of romance and, falling back on stock imagery (angels, rain), failed to achieve an originality of expression. While it was good news that he wasn’t tilting at windmills anymore, Browne did not make a full comeback with the album, despite a couple of well-constructed songs.” The Rolling Stone Record Guide wrote Browne “returned to his forte: the personal joy and agony of day-to-day human interaction.”

In the original Rolling Stone review for the album from 1993, Kara Manning expressed the belief that “Browne has successfully managed to resurrect his persona of 20 years ago. I’m Alive shudders with the pain of someone who’s been soundly dumped. And Browne has even gained a sense of gallows humor. Between despondent cries for reconciliation, the singer indulges in refreshingly silly self-deprecation.” However, she wondered, “what does a younger, angrier generation – raging to Dr. Dre and Nirvana – make of all this? But ’70s nostalgia is on a roll…”

Labels

Jackson Browne abandoned politics for the war between the sexes on I’m Alive. “I have no problem with this crooked world,” he sang; “…My problem is you.” The album detailed the ups and downs of a relationship, starting with the defiant post-breakup title track and then doubling back to describe irritation (“My Problem Is You”), devotion (“Everywhere I Go,” “I’ll Do Anything”), increasing tension (“Miles Away,” “Too Many Angels”), separation (“Take This Rain,” “Two of Me, Two of You”), forgiveness (“Sky Blue and Black”), and finally acceptance (“All Good Things”).

Longtime fans welcomed the album as a return in style to the days of Late for the Sky, but a closer model might have been Hold Out, a complementary album concerned with the flowering of an affair rather than the withering of one, since Browne eschewed the greater philosophical implications of romance and, falling back on stock imagery (angels, rain), failed to achieve an originality of expression. Just as, in Hold Out, one wasn’t so much inspired as informed that Browne had found love, on I’m Alive, one wasn’t so much moved as told that he’d lost it. While it was good news that he wasn’t tilting at windmills anymore, Browne did not make a full comeback with the album, despite a couple of well-constructed songs. (by William Ruhlmann)

Jackson Browne

Personnel:
Jackson Browne (guitar, guitar, piano, vocals, background vocals)
Mike Campbell (guitar)
Lenny Castro (percussion)
Luis Conte (percussion)
Mark Goldenberg (guitar)
James “Hutch” Hutchinson (bass)
Jim Keltner (drums)
John Leventhal (guitar)
Mauricio-Fritz Lewak – drums
David Lindley (bouzouki, guitar, oud)
Kevin McCormick (bass)
Dean Parks (guitar)
Benmont Tench (organ)
Scott Thurston (guitar, keyboards, background vocals)
Waddy Wachtel (guitar)
Jai Winding (piano)
+
background vocals:
Sweet Pea Atkinson – Sir Harry Bowens – Ryan Browne – Katia Cardenal – Valerie Carter – David Crosby – William “Bill” Greene – Doug Haywood – Don Henley – Arnold McCuller – Jennifer Warnes – Steven Soles –

Booklet06

Tracklist:
01. I’m Alive 5.01
02. My Problem Is You 4.40
03. Everywhere I Go 4.36
04. I’ll Do Anything” – 4:31
05. Miles Away 3.52
06. Too Many Angels 6.04
07. Take This Rain 4.49
08. Two Of Me, Two Of You 2.56
09. Sky Blue And Black 6.06
10. All Good Things 4.28

All songs qwritten by Jackson Browne

CD1

*
**

In the calling out to one another
Of the lovers up and down the strand
In the sound of the waves and the cries
Of the seagulls circling the sand
In the fragments of the songs
Carried down the wind from some radio
In the murmuring of the city in the distance
Ominous and low
I hear the sound of the world where we played
And the far too simple beauty of the promises we made
If you ever need holding
Call my name, and I’ll be there
If you ever need holding
And no holding back, I’ll see you through
Sky blue and black
Where the touch of the lover ends
And the soul of the friend begins
There’s a need to be separate and a need to be one
And a struggle neither wins
But you gave me the world I was in
And a place I could make a stand
I could…
Yeah, and I was much younger then
And I must have thought that I would know
If things were going to end
And the heavens were rolling
Like a wheel on a track
And our sky was unfolding
And it’ll never fold back
Sky blue and black
And I’d have fought the world for you
(I’d have fought the world for you)
If I thought that you wanted me to
Or put aside what was true or untrue (true or untrue)
If I’d know that’s what you needed
What you needed me to do
But the moment has passed by me now
You have put away my pride
And just come through for you somehow
If you ever need holding
Call my name, I’ll be there
If you ever need holding
And no holding back, I’ll see you through
You’re the color of the sky
Reflected in each store-front window pane
You’re the whispering and the sighing of my tires in the rain
You’re the hidden cost and the thing that’s lost
In everything I do
Yeah and I’ll never stop looking for you
In the sunlight and the shadows
And the faces on the avenue
That’s the way love is
That’s the way love is
That’s the way love is
Sky, sky blue and black

Paul Brett´s Sage – Jubilation Foundry (1971)

OriginalFrontCover1Paul Brett (born 20 June 1947, Fulham, London) is an English classic rock guitarist. He played lead guitar with Strawbs (though he was never actually a member), The Overlanders, The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Elmer Gantry’s Velvet Opera, The Velvet Opera, Tintern Abbey, Fire, Roy Harper, Al Stewart, Lonnie Donegan, and switched to twelve-string guitar in the 1970s.

His first twelve-string guitar suite, Earth Birth, was released on his own label, Phoenix Future, and was produced by artist Ralph Steadman of Fear and Loathing fame. Critical acclaim led to Brett being signed on a four-album deal with RCA Records. His K-tel Romantic Guitar album went platinum in the UK, but Brett stopped recording soon afterwards. He started recording again in 2000, with long-time friend and fellow twelve-string guitarist, John Joyce.

Brett wrote for music magazines Melody Maker, Sound International and International Musician and continued working in the music industry in the later part of his career. He now writes a regular column for Acoustic, a magazine specializing in acoustic guitars. He is also the Associate Editor and Features Writer for Music Maker and Live in London magazines.

He has appeared on BBC Television’s Antiques Road Show and Flog It in the mid-2000s.

OriginalBackCover1

There are now a range of critically acclaimed acoustic guitars available that Paul Brett designed for Vintage in the UK that are distributed Worldwide. http://www.jhs.co.uk for information. They carry individual name such as The Viator 6 and 12 string travel guitars, The Gemini, alternative baritone and 6 strings, The Viaten , tenor guitar, paul Brett signature 6 and 12 string guitars and the most recent released in 2017 is the Statesboro’ 12 string which is a tribute to the blues legend Blind Willie McTell. (by wikipedia)

And here´s the second album by his frist own group called “Paul Brett´s Sage”:

PaulBrettsSageNicky Higginbottom departed Paul Brett’s Sage after the release of the band’s eponymous debut album, and with her went the haunting flute that gave much of the album such a rich, pastoral sound. But the band was already moving in a new direction, exploring rock’s roots and the genre’s many permutations. Jubilation Foundry welds Sage’s varied influences onto their sleeves, from “Cottage Made for Two,” an homage to the Everly Brothers, to the gospel fired “Help Me Jesus” and the Stax inspired “Hold My Hand Mother.” There are tributes to Southern blues and Southern rock, nods to singer/songwriters Cat Stevens and Harry Nilsson, and even a tip of the hat to the Beatles. With the group here sporting rich harmonies, the emphasis is on great songs in a variety of musical veins and moods, with singalong choruses, memorable melodies, and flashy musicianship evident throughout the album. (by Dave Thompson)

And yes, Paul Brett is one of the finest acoustic guiar players from UK and he´s criminally underrated !

Singles

Personnel:
Paul Brett (guitar, piano, vocals)
Stuart Cowell (guitar, vocals, piano)
Dick Dufall (bass, vocals)
Bob Voice (drums, percussion)
+
Paul King (harmonica on 06.)

Booklet1

Tracklist:
01. Cottage Made For Two (Dufall) 2.26
02. Hold My Hand Mother (Hutcheson) 2.48
03. Pasadena Days (Voice) 2.59
04. Keeper Of My Heart (Myers/Brett) 3.32
05. Goodbye Forever (Hutcheson) 2.53
06. Good Old-Fashioned Funky Kind Of Music (Hutcheson) 4.09
07. Bits (1) (Brett/Cowell) 0.27
08. I Fell So Far (Dufall) 2.57
09. Written In Winter (Brett) 2.44
10. Tuesday Evening (Brett) 2.15
11. Help Me Jesus (Hutcheson) 4.02
12. Jubilation Foundry (Brett) 4.35
13. Bits (2) (Brett/Cowell) 0.46

LabelB1
*
**

Bronco – Ace Of Sunlight (1971)

FrontCover1Bronco were an English rock/country band signed to Island & Polydor Records 1969-1973.

Formed August 1969 by Jess Roden following his split from The Alan Bown Set, Bronco were signed to Island Records by Guy Stevens and, after initially recording tracks at Olympic Studios with him, recorded their first album – Country Home – at Island’s own Basing Street Studios during 1970 with the final mix being overseen by Paul Samwell-Smith. The group similarly recorded their second album Ace of Sunlight at Basing Street (1971) which was produced by the band and Richard Digby Smith.

Following a serious motorway accident between Cheltenham and Bristol (in which the group’s crew – Dick Hayes and Alan Stone – and drummer Pete Robinson and bass-player John Pasternak were badly injured) and a later, ill-fated West Coast of America tour, Roden left the band after a final British tour with label-mates Mott The Hoople and John Martyn in the spring of 1972 to start a solo career. Guitarist Robbie Blunt soon followed and the remaining members drafted in Paul Lockey on vocals (who Kevyn Gammond knew from Band of Joy) and Dan Fone on guitar. This incarnation of Bronco signed to Polydor and released one album, Smoking Mixture.

Bronco’s bass player John Pasternak died of a heart attack in September 1986. Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant fronted a tribute event for Pasternak in December of that year that featured Plant and The Big Town Playboys, and concluded with an ensemble band featuring Plant, Jimmy Page on guitar and Jason Bonham on drums.

Bronco01

Two Bronco tracks are featured on Island records compilation albums: “Love” appears on Bumpers released in 1970 and “Sudden Street” appears on El Pea (1971).

“Time Slips Away” was included on the Island Records compilation Meet On The Ledge, released as part of Island’s 50th anniversary in 2009.

Singer-songwriter Clifford T. Ward guests on their début album Country Home. Trevor Lucas sings back-up vocals on Ace of Sunlight. Both Ian Hunter and Mick Ralphs from Mott The Hoople also guest on Ace of Sunlight. (by wikipedia)
I loved most of the Island acts that I heard in the early 70’s (Free, Traffic, Fairport Convention, Spooky Tooth, etc.). Many of them were on A&M here in the States. Since Bronco apparently wasn’t on any State-side label, I didn’t hear them then, although based on my “buying trends” in those days … Can’t stop playing this disc since I’ve gotten it. Marvelous stuff that’s very evocative of what I remember about being great with most of those Island/A&M artists I loved then (and still do). Very nice vibe throughout. Wonderfully sung and played. Excellent songs like Sudden Street, and New Day Avenue. How could I have lived so long without these tunes spinning in my head? What a great, soulful voice Jess had! (by John S.)

In other words: A classic Island recording from this period … a forgotten jewels of British folk-rock … Listen and enjoy !

Bronco02

Personnel:
Robbie Blunt (guitar)
Kevyn Gammond (guitar)
John Pasternak (bass)
Pete Robinson (drums, percussion)
Jess Roden (vocals, guitar, harmonica, piano)
+
Terry Allen (organ on 06.)
Paul Bennett (vocals on 02. + 07.)
Paul Davenport (piano on 03.)
Ian Hunter (piano on 01.)
Trevor Lucas (vocals on 02.)
Mik Ralphs (organ on 01.)

Booklet1

Tracklist:
01. Amber Moon (Roden/Worth) 3.57
02. Time Slips Away (Blunt) 6.06
03. Some Uncertainty (Ward/Gammond) 3.39
04. 4 Woman (Ward/Gammond) 4.10
05. New Day Avenue (Roden/Worth) 6.34
06. Discernible (Gammond/Worth) 3.44
07. Sudden Street (Roden) 6.21
08. Joys & Fears (Roden/Worth) 3.37

LabelB1

*
**

StevensDigby

Guy Stevens & Richard Digby Smith (two very important persons for Island Records)

Crosby, Stills & Nash – Same (1969)

FrontCover1Crosby, Stills & Nash is the first album by Crosby, Stills & Nash, released in 1969 on the Atlantic Records label. It spawned two Top 40 hit singles, “Marrakesh Express” and “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” which peaked respectively at #28 the week of August 23, 1969, and at #21 the week of December 6, 1969, on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. The album itself peaked at #6 on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart. It was certified four times platinum by the RIAA for sales of over 4,200,000.Crosby, Stills & Nash is the first album by Crosby, Stills & Nash, released in 1969 on the Atlantic Records label. It spawned two Top 40 hit singles, “Marrakesh Express” and “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” which peaked respectively at #28 the week of August 23, 1969, and at #21 the week of December 6, 1969, on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. The album itself peaked at #6 on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart. It was certified four times platinum by the RIAA for sales of over 4,200,000.

The album was a very strong debut for the band, instantly lifting them to stardom. Along with the Byrds’ Sweetheart of the Rodeo and The Band’s Music from Big Pink of the previous year, it helped initiate a sea change in popular music away from the ruling late sixties aesthetic of bands playing blues-based rock music on loud guitars. Crosby, Stills & Nash presented a new wrinkle in building upon rock’s roots, utilizing folk, blues, and even jazz without specifically sounding like mere duplication. Not only blending voices, the three meshed their differing strengths, David Crosby for social commentary and atmospheric mood pieces, Stephen Stills for his diverse musical skills and for folding folk and country elements subtly into complex rock structures, and Graham Nash for his radio-friendly pop melodies, to create an amalgam of broad appeal.

CSN3The album features some of their best known songs: “Helplessly Hoping”, “Long Time Gone” (a response to the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy), “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” (composed for Judy Collins) and “Wooden Ships” (co-written with Paul Kantner of Jefferson Airplane).
Stills dominated the recording of the album. Apart from drums, handled by Dallas Taylor, he played nearly all of the instruments on the album. Nash played acoustic guitar on two tracks and Crosby rhythm guitar on a few. Stills played all the bass, organ, and lead guitar parts, as well as acoustic guitar on his own songs. “The other guys won’t be offended when I say that one was my baby, and I kind of had the tracks in my head,” Stills said.

The singles:
Singles

David Crosby bristled over the plan for “Long Time Gone” as he thought he should at least play rhythm guitar on his own song. Stills convinced him to go home for a while and when he returned Crosby was won over by the music track that Stills and Taylor had recorded. In a more recent interview, Crosby contradicted his earlier statement, stating that he had played guitar on the track.

The group performed songs from the album at the Woodstock Festival in August 1969. In late 1969 the group appeared on the Tom Jones TV show and performed “Long Time Gone” with Tom Jones sharing vocals.
This album proved very influential on many levels to the dominant popular music scene in America for much of the 1970s. The success of the album generated gravitas for the group within the industry, and galvanized interest in signing like acts, many of whom came under management and representation by the CSN team of Elliot Roberts and David Geffen. Strong sales, combined with the group’s emphasis on personal confession in its writing, paved the way for the success of the singer-songwriter movement of the early seventies. Their utilization of personal events in their material without resorting to subterfuge, their talents in vocal harmony, their cultivation of painstaking studio craft, as well as the Laurel Canyon ethos that surrounded the group and their associates, established an aesthetic for a number of acts that came to define the “California” sound of the ensuing decade, including the Eagles, Jackson Browne, post-1974 Fleetwood Mac, and others.

CSN2

On the cover the members are, left to right, Nash, Stills, and Crosby, for no particular reason, the reverse of the order of the album title. The photo was taken by their friend and photographer Henry Diltz before they came up with a name for the group. They found an abandoned house with an old, battered sofa outside, located at 815 Palm Avenue, West Hollywood, across from the Santa Palm car wash that they thought would be a perfect fit for their image. A few days later they decided on the name “Crosby, Stills, and Nash”. To prevent confusion, they went back to the house a day or so later to re-shoot the cover in the correct order, but when they got there they found the house had been reduced to a pile of timber.

Dallas Taylor can be seen looking through the window of the door on the rear of the sleeve. In the expanded edition, however, he is absent. The original vinyl LP was released in a gatefold sleeve that depicted the band members in large fur parkas with a sunset in the background on the gatefold (shot in Big Bear, California), as well as the iconic cover art. A long folded page inside displayed the album credits, lyrics, track listing, as well as a quasi-psychedelic pencil drawing.

In a contemporary review, Rolling Stone critic Barry Franklin called Crosby, Stills & Nash “an eminently playable record” and “especially satisfying work”, finding the songwriting and vocal harmonies particularly exceptional. Robert Christgau was less enthusiastic in The Village Voice: “I have written elsewhere that this album is perfect, but that is not necessarily a compliment. Only Crosby’s vocal on ‘Long Time Gone’ saves it from a special castrati award.”

In 2003, Rolling Stone ranked Crosby, Stills & Nash number 262 on their list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. (by wikipedia)

Inlet1

The Crosby, Stills & Nash triumvirate shot to immediate superstardom with the release of its self-titled debut LP, a sparkling set immortalizing the group’s amazingly close, high harmonies. While elements of the record haven’t dated well — Nash’s Eastern-influenced musings on the hit “Marrakesh Express” now seem more than a little silly, while the antiwar sentiments of “Wooden Ships,” though well-intentioned, are rather hokey — the harmonies are absolutely timeless, and the best material remains rock-solid. Stills’ gorgeous opener, “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” in particular, is an epic love song remarkable in its musical and emotional intricacy, Nash’s “Pre-Road Downs” is buoyant folk-pop underpinned by light psychedelic textures, and Crosby’s “Long Time Gone” remains a potent indictment of the assassination of Robert Kennedy. A definitive document of its era. (by by Jason Ankeny)

CSN4

Personnel:
David Crosby (vocals, guitar)
Graham Nash (vocals, guitar)
Stephen Stills (vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards, percussion)
+
Cass Elliot (background vocals on 05.)
Jim Gordon – drums on 02.)
Dallas Taylor (drums)

Booklet1

Tracklist:
01. Suite: Judy Blue Eyes (Stills) 7:25
02. Marrakesh Express (Nash) 2:39
03. Guinevere (Crosby) with Nash 4:40
04. You Don’t Have To Cry (Stills) Stills with Crosby & Nash 2:45
05. Pre-Road Downs (Nash) 3:01
06. Wooden Ships (Crosby/Kantner/Stills) 5:29
07. Lady Of The Island (Nash) 2:39
08. Helplessly Hoping (Stills) 2:41
09. Long Time Gone (Crosby) 4:17
10. 49 Bye-Byes (Stills) 5:16

LabelB1

*
**

Front+BackCover1

 

The story behind the song “Marrakesh Express”:

With 60s pop music going psychedelic, The Hollies’ Graham Nash wrote a song about the hippie trail in Morocco. But it had to wait till he teamed up with David Crosby and Stephen Stills.

By the late 60s, Morocco was fast becoming an essential stop-off point on the new hippie trail. It was a place frequented by seekers of all stripes, from travellers and the more adventurous tourists through to artists, writers, fashionistas and rock stars. They were all drawn by the exotica of this storied corner of North Africa, whose heady promise of spiritual enlightenment and hashish served to melt away the conventions of the West.

In 1966, Graham Nash made a pilgrimage of his own, one that sparked off one of his most famous songs. On holiday from his day job as leader of The Hollies, Nash bought himself a ticket and hopped aboard a train from Casablanca to Marrakesh. “I was in first class and there were a lot of older, rich American ladies in there, who all had their hair dyed blue,” Nash recalls today. “And I quickly grew bored of that and went back to the third class of the train. That was where it was all happening. There were lots of people cooking strange little meals on small wooden stoves and the place was full of chickens, pigs and goats. It was fabulous; the whole thing was fascinating.”

So rich was the experience that Nash poured it into a vivid piece of psychedelic pop: Marrakesh Express. Mellifluous, carefree and irresistibly catchy, the lyrics made reference to ‘animal carpet wall-to-wall’, ‘coloured cottons’ in the air and ‘charming cobras in the square’. But they also hinted at a vague sense of dissatisfaction with life, as if Nash was on some indefinable quest for something better. Particularly the lines: ‘Sweeping cobwebs from the edges of my mind/Had to get away to see what we could find.’

The song itself was written during The Hollies’ Yugoslavian tour of June 1967. It was one of a number of new tunes that showcased Nash’s outward growth as a songwriter as he attempted to steer The Hollies away from the confines of the singles market into the more lysergic, experimental realm of peers like The Beatles and The Byrds – though the rest of the band didn’t all share his vision. Initially reluctant to record Marrakesh Express _at all, The Hollies only got as far as cutting a backing track at Abbey Road in April 1968. Nash, who remembers that “it wasn’t very good”, explains that he’d written a bunch of similar songs at that point – among them _Lady Of The Island and Right Between The Eyes – which The Hollies weren’t moved by either.

It wasn’t just the tunes. Nash’s burgeoning interest in the counterculture and its lifestyle meant he was the only band member to embrace LSD and marijuana. Allied to the fact that King Midas In Reverse, one of his finest compositions, had only been a moderate hit, Nash sought a move away. “Yeah, it was obvious that my career with The Hollies was coming to an end,” he says.

Not that Nash hadn’t planned for the immediate future. On his first trip to LA with The Hollies, in June 1966, he’d been introduced to the Mamas & The Papas’ Cass Elliot, one of California’s leading scenesters. She in turn had introduced him to David Crosby, ace harmony singer and songwriter in The Byrds. “I’d been in a showbiz environment with The Hollies,” says Nash, “but Crosby and The Byrds weren’t like that. So there may have been a cultural difference, but there weren’t any musical differences with us. I knew he was serious as a heart attack about his music, that The Byrds were a great band and that the modal stuff I was attracted to in their music was mainly down to David. When Cass introduced us, it was instant friendship.”

Crosby and Nash would bump into each other regularly over the next couple of years and, by the summer of 1968, both men found themselves at a critical juncture in their respective careers. Ever the egotist, Crosby had been ousted from The Byrds less than 12 months earlier. And while Nash had already decided to quit The Hollies, Stephen Stills’ tenure in dynamic LA rockers Buffalo Springfield had also come to a close. Stills and Crosby had been jamming informally for months before Nash was invited into the fold. The rapport was sensational. Grounded by Stills’ masterful guitar playing and achieving lift-off with their gorgeous three-way harmonies, Crosby, Stills & Nash were suddenly a serious concern.

In November 1968, Nash officially left The Hollies, heading out to California and taking up temporary residence at Crosby’s place. When it came to selecting songs for their self-titled debut album, Nash revived Marrakesh Express. Easily the most ‘pop’ song in the CSN canon, it was recorded at Wally Heider’s LA studio in February ’69. Stills’ guitar races along at a clip, echoing the literal rush of Nash’s Casablanca train and imbuing the song with a wondrous sense of buoyant optimism. There’s a smattering of nonsensical wordplay to begin, before Nash begins to sing in his warmest tones, exhorting everyone to climb aboard. You can almost feel the sunset through the windows.

Issued in May 1969, the album marked out Crosby, Stills & Nash as America’s first great supergroup and provided the counterculture with its definitive soundtrack. Marrakesh Express was released as the lead-off single and made the Billboard Top 30. Over here it reached No.17 and remains the only UK Top 20 hit of CSN’s entire career. It’s a song that continues to run on in its creator’s heart.

“I thought it was a funny song when I wrote it,” says Nash. “It’s not the greatest song in the world, but people still really like it whenever we sing it live. Whenever we need a little light-hearted, uptempo thing, that’s what we reach for.”

NASH, CASH, BASH

The late 60s found country titan Johnny Cash at the very peak of his commercial fame, hosting a hit show on TV and scoring high with his celebrated live albums Johnny Cash At San Quentin and Johnny Cash At Folsom Prison. He also hosted regular gatherings with his songwriting chums at his home in Tennessee.

One night in January 1969, he invited Bob Dylan, Shel Silverstein, Joni Mitchell and Kris Kristofferson. “We’d have a big circle with people passing a guitar around,” recalls Kristofferson. “I remember Graham Nash there with Joni Mitchell and nobody knew who he was. We thought he was just Joni’s boyfriend. Then he picked up the guitar and sang Marrakesh Express. Man, he knocked everybody out with that song.” (by teamrock.com)