Jerry Lee Lewis – Last Man Standing (2006)

FrontCover1Jerry Lee Lewis (September 29, 1935 – October 28, 2022) was an American pianist, singer and songwriter. Nicknamed “the Killer”, he was described as “Rock and roll’s first great wild man and one of the most influential pianists of the 20th century.” A pioneer of rock and roll and rockabilly music, Lewis made his first recordings in 1956 at Sun Records in Memphis, Tennessee. “Crazy Arms” sold 300,000 copies in the South, and his 1957 hit “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” shot Lewis to fame worldwide. He followed this with the major hits “Great Balls of Fire”, “Breathless”, and “High School Confidential”. His rock and roll career faltered in the wake of his marriage to Myra Gale Brown, his 13-year-old cousin once removed.

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His popularity quickly eroded following the scandal and with few exceptions such as a cover of Ray Charles’s “What’d I Say”, he did not have much chart success in the early 1960s. His live performances at this time were increasingly wild and energetic. His 1964 live album Live at the Star Club, Hamburg is regarded by many music journalists and fans in general as one of the wildest and greatest live rock albums ever. In 1968, Lewis made a transition into country music and had hits with songs such as “Another Place, Another Time”. This reignited his career, and throughout the late 1960s and 1970s he regularly topped the country-western charts; throughout his seven-decade career, Lewis had 30 songs reach the Top 10 on the Billboard Country and Western Chart. His No. 1 country hits included “To Make Love Sweeter for You”, “There Must Be More to Love Than This”, “Would You Take Another Chance on Me”, and “Me and Bobby McGee”.

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Lewis’s successes continued throughout the decades and he embraced his rock and roll past with songs such as a cover of The Big Bopper’s “Chantilly Lace” and Mack Vickery’s “Rockin’ My Life Away”. In the 21st century, Lewis continued to tour around the world and released new albums. His 2006 album Last Man Standing was his best selling release, with over a million copies worldwide. This was followed by Mean Old Man in 2010, another of his best-selling albums.

Lewis had a dozen gold records in rock and country. He won four Grammy awards, including a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and two Grammy Hall of Fame Awards. Lewis was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and his pioneering contribution to the genre was recognized by the Rockabilly Hall of Fame. He was also a member of the inaugural class inducted into the Memphis Music Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2022.

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In 1989, his life was chronicled in the movie Great Balls of Fire, starring Dennis Quaid. In 2003, Rolling Stone listed his box set All Killer, No Filler: The Anthology at number 242 on their list of “500 Greatest Albums of All Time”. In 2004, they ranked him No. 24 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. Lewis was the last surviving member of Sun Records’ Million Dollar Quartet and the album Class of ’55, which also included Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, and Elvis Presley.

Music critic Robert Christgau said of Lewis: “His drive, his timing, his offhand vocal power, his unmistakable boogie-plus piano, and his absolute confidence in the face of the void make Jerry Lee the quintessential rock and roller.” (wikipedia)

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Last Man Standing is the 39th studio album released by American recording artist, pianist, and rock and roll pioneer Jerry Lee Lewis in September 2006. The album consists of duets between Lewis and some of the biggest names in both rock and country music, past and present. The title derives from the generation of 1950s Sun Studios recording artists such as Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Charlie Rich, Carl Perkins, and Elvis Presley, all of whom have died, leaving Lewis the “last man standing”. Following the success of the album, a DVD Last Man Standing Live was released featuring similar duets with famous artists.

Last Man Standing received very positive reviews from critics. Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic called the recording, “a record that celebrates life, both in its joys and sorrows, and it’s hard not to see it as nothing short of inspiring” and the editorial team of the site gave it four out of five stars.[1] The same score was awarded by Gavin Edwards in Rolling Stone, praising the performance by writing, “his throat is in better shape than you might expect, most of his command now comes from the slamming, swinging passion of his barrelhouse piano”.[4] For PopMatters, Vladimir Wormwood gave the album seven out of 10, summing up his review by focusing on the Merle Haggard duet “Just Bummin’ Around”: “It is a portrait of the aging musician with the showmanship removed. Long live Jerry Lee Lewis”.(wikipedia)

L-r: Keith Allison, Nils Lofgren, Jimmy Rip, Ringo Starr, Jim Keltner, Jerry Lee Lewis, Hutch Hutchinson, Ivan Neville and Kenny Lovelace. From Last Man Standing sessions, The Record Plant, Los Angeles, CA, March 2005:Jerry Lee Lewis03

It often seems like there are only two ways for rock, country, and blues veterans to launch comebacks when they’re senior citizens: confront mortality head on or surround yourself with superstar guests to help carry you through a half-hearted stroll through your back catalog, scattering a few new tunes along the way. At first glance, Jerry Lee Lewis’ Last Man Standing seems to fall into both categories: the title suggests that Jerry Lee is in the mood to take a long look back, and certainly the very concept of the album — pairing Lewis with 21 other stars for a succession of duets, often on material that his guests either wrote or made famous — seems like a typical superstar duet record. But the Killer has never been predictable, and nowhere is that truer than it is here, where Jerry Lee treats Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, John Fogerty, Bruce Springsteen, Jimmy Page, and 16 other stars as he treated the Nashville Teens at the Star Club in 1964 — as game amateurs who have to sprint to keep up with the master.

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This is the only guest-studded superstar album where all the guests bend to the will of the main act, who dominates the proceedings in every conceivable way. Jerry Lee doesn’t just run the guests ragged; he turns their songs inside out, too — and nowhere is that clearer than on the opening “Rock and Roll,” the Led Zeppelin classic that is now stripped of its signature riff and sounds as if it were a lost gem dug out of the Sun vaults. Far from struggling with this, Jimmy Page embraces it, following the Killer as he runs off on his own course — he turns into support, and the rest of other 20 guests follow suit (with the possible exception of Kid Rock, who sounds like the party guest who won’t go home on an otherwise strong version of “Honky Tonk Woman”).

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The label might sell Last Man Standing on the backs of the duet partners — after all, it’s awful hard to drum up interest in a record by a 71-year-old man no matter how great he is, so you need a hook like superstars — but the album by no stretch of the imagination belongs to them. This is completely Jerry Lee’s show from the second that he calls out, “It’s been a long time since I rock & rolled,” at the beginning of the record — and those are true words, since he hasn’t rocked on record in a long, long time. Ten years ago he cut the Andy Paley-produced Young Blood, but that was a typically tasteful self-conscious comeback record; it was driven as much by the producer’s conception of the artist as it was the artist himself. The opposite is true here, where the production is simple and transparent, never interfering with the performances; it has the welcome effect of making it sound like there is simply no way to tame Jerry Lee, even though he’s now in his seventies. And that doesn’t mean that this is merely a hard-rocking record, although “Rock and Roll,” “Pink Cadillac,” and “Travelin’ Band” do indeed rock harder than anything he’s done since the ’70s — so hard that they stand proudly next to his classic Sun records, even if they don’t have the unbridled fire of those peerless sides.

Merle Haggard, Keith Richards, Willie Nelson, Jerry Lee Lewis & Kid Rock:
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No, this album touches on everything that Jerry Lee has done musically through his career, as the furious rock & roll is balanced by pure hardcore country, piledriving boogie-woogie, rambling blues, old-timey folk songs, and, especially, reinterpretations of familiar songs that are so thoroughly reimagined they seem like they were written specifically for Jerry Lee. And he does this the same way he’s always done it: by singing and playing the hell out of the songs. His phrasing remains original and unpredictable, twisting phrases in unexpected ways — and, yes, throwing his name into the mix frequently, too — and his piano is equally vigorous and vital. This is a record that stays true to his music, and in doing so, it’s not so much a comeback as it is a summation: a final testament from a true American original, one that explains exactly why he’s important. But that makes Last Man Standing sound too serious, as if it were one of those self-consciously morbid Johnny Cash records — no, this is a record that celebrates life, both in its joys and sorrows, and it’s hard not to see it as nothing short of inspiring. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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Personnel:
B.B. Cunningham (bass on 01., 06.. 11., 19.)
Robert Hall (drums on 01., 06., 19.)
Hutch Hutchinson (bass on 02.- 05., 07., – 10., 14. -17., 20. + 21.)
Jim Keltner (drums on 02. – 05.. 07. – 10.,13. – 17., 20. + 21. percussion on 06., 07.)
Jerry Lee Lewis (vocals, keyboards)
Ken Lovelace (guitar on 02., 03.. 04., 06., 08. – 11., 13. – 16.,19., 20. + 21., fiddle on 20.)
Jimmy Rip (guitar on 01. – 11, 13. – 21.)
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Keith Allison (guitar on 09.)
Delaney Bramlett (vocals on 18.)
Eric Clapton (lead guitar on 16.)
John Fogerty (vocals on 07.)
Buddy Guy (vocals on 19.)
Merle Haggard (vocals on 10.)
Don Henley (vocals on 20.)
Mick Jagger (vocals on 04.)
George Jones (vocals, bass on 13.)
B.B. King (lead guitar on 02.)
Jimmy Page (lead guitar on 01.)
Toby Keith (vocals on 15.)
Kris Kristofferson (vocals on 21.)
Greg Lieze (pedal steel-guitar on 08., 15. + 21.)
Nils Lofgren (pedal steel-guitar on 09.)
Paddy Maloney (pipe, whistle on 20.)
Willie Nelson (vocals on 14.)
Ivan Neville (organ on 05., 09.)
Mickey Raphael (harmonica on 12.)
Keith Richards (vocals, lead guitar on 08.)
Little Richard (vocals on 17.)
Robbie Robertson (lead guitar on 06.)
Kid Rock (vocals on 11.)
Bruce Springsteen 8vocals on 03.)
Ringo Starr (vocals on 09.)
Bill Strom (organ on 06. + 19.)
James Stroud (drums on 11.)
Ronnie Wood (pedal steel-guitar on 04.)
Dave Woodruff (saxophone on 03., 07.)
Neil Young (guitar, vocals on 05.)
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background vocals (on 06.):
Brandy Jones Bernard Fowler – Bambi Jones – Stacy Michelle

background  vocals (on 11.)
Jewel Jones – Phyllis Duncan – Stacy Michelle

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Tracklist:
01. w/Jimmy Page: Rock And Roll (Page/Baldwin/Bonham/Plant) 2.15
02. w/B.B. King: Before The Night Is Over (Peters) 3.39
03. w/Bruce Springsteen: Pink Cadillac (Springsteen) 3.52
04. w/Mick Jagger & Ron Wood: Evening Gown (Jagger) 3.57
05. w/Neil Young: You Don’t Have To Go (Reed) 3.59
06. w/Robbie Robertson: Twilight (Robertson) 2.48
07. w/John Fogerty: Travelin’ Band (Fogerty) 2.01
08. w/Keith Richards: That Kind Of Fool (Vickery) 4.15
09. w/Ringo Starr: Little Sixteen (Berry) 3.05
10. w/Merle Haggard: Just A Bummin’ Around (Graves) 2.43
11. w/Kid Rock: Honky Tonk Woman (Jagger/Richards) 2.22
12. w/Rod Stewart: What’s Made Milwaukee Famous (Sutton) 2.39
13. w/George Jones: Don’t Be Ashamed Of Your Age (Wills/Walker) 2.00
14. w/Willie Nelson: Couple More Years (Locorriere/Silverstein) 5.12
15. w/Toby Keith: Ol’ Glory (Lewis/Roberts/Darnell) 2.04
16. w/Eric Clapton: Trouble In Mind (Jones)
17. w/Little Richard: I Saw Her Standing There (Lennon/McCartney) 2.21
18. w/Delaney Bramlett: Lost Highway (Payne) 3.00
19. w/Buddy Guy: Hadacol Boogie (Nettles) 3.19
20. w/Don Henley: What Makes The Irish Heart Beat (Morrison) 4.10
21. w/Kris Kristofferson: The Pilgrim (Kristofferson) 3.00

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More from Jerry Lee Lewis:
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The official website:
Website

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But:

His third marriage was to 13-year-old Myra Gale Brown, his first cousin once removed, on December 12, 1957. His divorce from Jane Mitchum was not finalized before the ceremony took place, so he remarried Brown on June 4, 1958. In 1970, Brown filed for divorce on the grounds of adultery and abuse, charging that she had been “subject to every type of physical and mental abuse imaginable.” (wikipedia)

A man fucking a 13-year-old girl … is an asshole  … There is no excuse for that !

Jellybread – Rockin’ Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu + Readin’ The Meters (1970)

FrontCover1I have to reduce my singles collection:

Formed at England’s Sussex University by pianist Pete Wingfield, Jellybread was originally completed by Paul Butler (guitar/vocals), John Best (bass), and Chris Waters (drums). In 1969 the quartet secured a recording contract with the exemplary Blue Horizon Records label and although largely unadventurous, their albums offered a highly competent grasp of black music, including both blues and soul. They provided stellar accompaniment on Lightnin’ Slim’s London Gumbo and B.B. King in London, but the unit dissolved in 1971 with the departure of Wingfield and Waters. Newcomers Rick Birkett (guitar, ex-Accent) and Kenny Lamb (drums) joined for Back to Begin Again, but Jellybread broke up when the set failed to make commercial headway. However, Wingfield enjoyed success as a solo artist, session pianist, and member of Olympic Runners. (by allmusic)

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Amd here´s a very rare single from Jellybread with two non-LP tracks (as far as I now).

On side 1 we hear the great old Huey ‘Piano’ Smith hit (Deep Purple are also doing a version of this song in 2021) and on side 2 a short, but rally nice instrumental.

Jellybread was a criminally underrated band … listen and enjoy this rarity !

BackCover1Personnel:
John Best (bass)
Paul Butler (guitar, vocals)
Chris Waters (drums)
Pete Wingfield (keyboards, vocals)
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John Altman (saxophone on 01.)

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Tracklist:
01. Rockin’ Pneumonia And The Boogie Woogie Flu (Smith/Vincent) 2.44
02. Readin’ The Meters (Wingfield/Best/Butler/Waters) 2.22

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More from Jellybread:
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Elvis Presley – All The Best (1988)

FrontCover1Elvis Presley belongs on the short list of artists who changed the course of popular music in the 20th century. He may not have invented rock & roll, but he was indisputably its first rock star, a singer whose charisma intertwined tightly with his natural talent for a combination that seemed combustible, sexy, and dangerous when Presley seized the imagination of America in 1956 with four successive number one singles in 1956. Elvis spent the next two decades near the top of the charts, weathering changes in fashion, self-inflicted career missteps, and comebacks as his music expanded and evolved. Throughout his career, Presley never abandoned the rock & roll he pioneered on his early singles for Sun Records, but he developed an effective counterpoint to his primal rockabilly by honing a rich, resonant ballad style while also delving into blues, country, and soul, progressions that came into sharp relief with his celebrated “comeback” in the late 1960s.

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Some musical nuances were overshadowed by Presley’s phenomenal celebrity, a fame maintained by a long string of B-movies in the ’60s and extravagant Las Vegas shows in the ’70s, elements that were essential in creating a stardom that persisted long after his premature death in 1977. The myth of Elvis grew in his absence, aided by turning his Memphis home Graceland into a tourist attraction, which made him an enormous cultural icon only loosely tied to his rock & roll origins; fortunately, the passage of time helped clarify the depth and range of his musical achievements. He undeniably kick-started the rock & roll era, shaping the sound and attitudes of the last few decades of the 20th century in the process, but he also built a distinctive body of work that reflected the best of what American music has to offer. (by Richie Unterberger)

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And here´s another low budget with 41 (!) songs from “the one and only Elvis Presley … many of them are not so popular. taken from from a time when he was still known, but no longer so successful as in the Fifties.

Enjoy this sentimental trip, but I missed “One Night” !

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Personnel:
Elvis Presley (vocals)
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many, many studio musicians

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Tracklist:

CD 1:
01. Heartbreak Hotel (Axton/Durden/Presley) 2.09
02. Blue Suede Shoes (Perkins) 2.01
03. Hound Dog (Leiber/Stoller) 2.17
04. Don´t Be Cruel (Blackwell) 2.04
05. Love Me Tender Matson, Presley 2.47
06. Old Shep (Foley/Willis) 4.10
07. All Shook Up (Blackwell/Presley) 1.59
08. Loving You (Leiber/Stoller) 2.16
09. Teddy Bear (Mann/Lowe) 1.49
10. Jailhouse Rock (Leiber/Stoller) 2.26
11. Treat Me Nice (Leiber/Stoller) 2.14
12. Hard Headed Woman (De Metrius) 1.57
13. Ain’t That Lovin’ You Baby (Otis/Hunter) 2.35
14. A Fool Such As I (Trader) 2.40
15. Stuck On You (McFarland/Schroeder) 2.17
16. It´s Now Or Never (Gold/Schroeder/di Capua) 3.16
17. Such A Night (Chase) 3.01
18. Are You Lonesome Tonight? (Turk/Handman) 3.08
19. Wooden Heart (Wise/Weisman/Twomey/Kaempfert) 2.03
20. Flaming Star (Edwards/Wayne) 2.26
21. Surrender (Pomus/Shuman/de Curtis) 1.54
22. Crying In The Chapel (Glenn) 2.24

CD 2:
01. Can’t Help Falling In Love (Peretti/Creatore/Weiss) 3.02
02. (Marie’s The Name) His Latest Flame (Pomus/Shuman) 2.09
03. Little Sister (Pomus/Shuman) 2.31
04. Good Luck Charm (Schroeder) 2.24
05. Suspicion (Pomus/Shuman) 2.35
06. Return To Sender (Blackwell/Scott) 2.09
07. (You’re The) Devil In Disguise (Giant/Baum/Kaye) 2.21
08. Viva Las Vegas (Pomus/Shuman) 2.13
09. Edge Of Reality (Giant/Baum/Kaye) 3.13
10. Don’t Cry Daddy (Davis) 2.47
11. In The Ghetto (Davis) 2.48
12. Suspicious Minds (James) 4.20
13. Kentucky Rain (Rabbitt/Heard) 3.23
14. Seperate Ways (West/Mainegra) 2.32
15. Burning Love (Linde) 2.55
16. The Wonder Of You (Knight) 2.38
17. American Trilogy (Newbury) 4.24
18. My Way (François/Revaux/Anka) 3.58
19. Softly As I Leave You (de Vita/Shaper) 2.56

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More from Elvis Presley:
More

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Ronnie Hawkins – Rock And Roll Resurrection (1972)

FrontCover1Ronald Hawkins, OC (January 10, 1935 – May 29, 2022) was an American/Canadian rock and roll musician whose career spanned more than half a century. His career began in Arkansas, where he was born and raised. He found success in Ontario, Canada, and lived there for most of his life. He is considered highly influential in the establishment and evolution of rock music in Canada.

Also known as “Rompin’ Ronnie”, “Mr. Dynamo”, or simply “The Hawk”, he was one of the key players in the 1960s rock scene in Toronto. Throughout his career, Hawkins performed all across North America and recorded more than twenty-five albums. His hit songs included covers of Chuck Berry’s “Thirty Days” (entitled “Forty Days” by Hawkins) and Young Jessie’s “Mary Lou”, a song about a “gold-digging woman”. Other well-known recordings are a cover of Bo Diddley’s “Who Do You Love?” (Hawkins’ version was released without the question mark), “Hey Bo Diddley”, and “Susie Q”, which was written by his cousin, rockabilly artist Dale Hawkins.

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Hawkins was also notable for his role as a talent scout and mentor of musicians he recruited for his band the Hawks. Roy Buchanan was an early Hawks guitarist on the song “Who Do You Love”. The most successful example of this were the musicians who left him to form The Band. Other musicians Hawkins had recruited went on to form Robbie Lane and the Disciples, Janis Joplin’s Full Tilt Boogie Band, Crowbar, Bearfoot, and Skylark.

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Hawkins was born on January 10, 1935, in Huntsville, Arkansas, two days after the birth of Elvis Presley. When he was nine years old, his family moved to nearby Fayetteville, Arkansas. After graduating from high school, he studied physical education at the University of Arkansas, where he formed his first band, the Hawks. He toured with them throughout Arkansas, Oklahoma and Missouri. Hawkins also owned and operated the Rockwood Club in Fayetteville, where some of rock and roll’s earliest pioneers came to play including Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison and Conway Twitty.

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On advice from Twitty, Hawkins began touring Canada in 1958. His first gig there was at the Golden Rail Tavern in Hamilton, Ontario, where he became an overnight success. Hawkins decided to move to Canada, and in 1964 became a permanent resident, eventually making Peterborough, Ontario area, his home in 1970.[5] Hawkins moved from their Stoney Lake Manor in Douro-Dummer after selling in 2017 to live in Peterborough.

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After the move, the Hawks, with the exception of Hawkins and drummer Levon Helm, dropped out of the band. Their vacancies were filled by Canadians Robbie Robertson, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel and Garth Hudson, all hailing from Southwestern Ontario. Helm and the rest of those Hawks would leave Hawkins in 1964 to form an act of their own, which eventually came to be named The Band.

In December 1969, Hawkins hosted John Lennon and Yoko Ono for a stay at his home in Mississauga, Ontario, during the couple’s campaign to promote world peace. Lennon signed his erotic “Bag One” lithographs during his stay there. Lennon also did a radio promo for a Hawkins single, “Down in the Alley”.

In the early 1970s, Hawkins noticed guitarist Pat Travers performing in Ontario nightclubs and was so impressed with the young musician that he invited him to join his band. Travers later had a very successful recording career and became one of the most influential guitarists of the 1970s hard rock genre.

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In 1975, Dylan cast Hawkins to play the role of “Bob Dylan” in the movie, Renaldo and Clara. The following year he was a featured performer at the Band’s Thanksgiving Day farewell concert, which was documented in the 1978 film The Last Waltz.[8] His 1984 LP, Making It Again, garnered him a Juno Award as Canada’s best Country Male Vocalist. In addition to his music, he has also become an accomplished actor, hosting his own television show Honky Tonk in the early 1980s and appearing in such films as Heaven’s Gate with his friend Kris Kristofferson, Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II and Snake Eater.

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On January 10, 1995, Hawkins celebrated his 60th birthday by throwing a concert at Massey Hall in Toronto, which was documented on the album Let It Rock. The concert featured performances by Hawkins, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, the Band and Larry Gowan. Jeff Healey sat in on guitar for most, if not all, of the performances. Hawkins’s band, the Hawks, or permutations of it, backed most, if not all, of the acts. All of the musicians performing that night were collectively dubbed “the Rock ‘n’ Roll Orchestra”.[citation needed]
Ronnie Hawkins’s star on Canada’s Walk of Fame

In 2002, October 4 was declared “Ronnie Hawkins Day” by the city of Toronto as he was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame, in recognition of his lifetime contribution to music and his generous support of the Schizophrenia Society of Ontario and other charitable organizations. Hawkins was inducted into the Canadian Music Industry Hall of Fame at the Canadian Music Industry Awards on March 4, 2004. His pioneering contribution to the genre was also recognized by the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.

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In later years, Hawkins developed pancreatic cancer. His state of health, attributed to everything from psychic healers to native herbal medicine, was featured in the 2012 film Ronnie Hawkins: Still Alive and Kicking.

In 2005, he was awarded an honorary degree from Laurentian University. On May 2, 2013, Hawkins was made an Honorary Officer of the Order of Canada. He was invested on May 7, 2014. The citation read:

For his contributions to the development of the music industry in Canada, as a rock and roll musician, and for his support of charitable causes. For more than 50 years, musician Ronnie Hawkins has demonstrated a strong devotion to Canada’s music industry. Often referred to as the “father of Canadian rock n’ roll”, he was a key player in the 1960s rock scene, with his band The Hawks serving as a launching pad for a host of Canadian musicians. In addition to producing scores of singles and albums, he has performed in support of many charitable causes, notably the Peterborough Flood Relief and the Schizophrenia Society of Ontario.

Hawkins later reissued most of his albums on CD through Unidisc Music Inc.[citation needed]

Hawkins died on May 29, 2022, at age 87. (wikipedia)

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And here´s one of his real hot albums:

Recorded a couple of years after the premature end of his contract with Atlantic Records, and three years after he parted company with Roulette (where he’d spent the late 1950s and all of the ’60s), Ronnie Hawkins’ Rock & Roll Resurrection was the result of a chance meeting between Hawkins and Kris Kristofferson, who was signed to Fred Foster’s Monument Records at the time, and was persuaded that the oldies boom made it the right time to record Hawkins anew. Cut in Nashville in August of 1972, with a band that included Grady Martin, Pete Drake, Charlie McCoy, Stan Szelest, and Boots Randolph, Rock & Roll Resurrection captures captures Hawkins in amazingly good form, not quite a decade past his prime hit-making years.

Singles

Though the first day’s sessions reportedly degenerated into a drunken party — or perhaps because they did, and Foster was forced to seize the reins of what was going on — the ten songs that were issued are stripped down, highly energetic, and well-performed classics of the rock & roll genre, by Chuck Berry, Fats Domino, Larry Williams, Bo Diddley, et al, augmented by one great Hawkins original, “Cora Mae,” plus a Kristofferson original composed for the occasion, “The Same Old Song”.” The latter, released as a single, was, alas, the one miscalculation in the body of music cut for the album, a slow-tempo, much too serious and over-produced number that utterly failed to capture what the rest of the sessions had been about, the spirit of the album, or the imagination of either the country or the oldies audiences — it isn’t bad listening,, and to be fair, it is a good compositional effort by Kristofferson, but in the context of this album it stands outside of the rest of what’s here. The rest of Rock & Roll Resurrection has held up well, and certainly was to the credit of all involved, most especially Hawkins, who delivered his requisite energy and a good, raw performance. (Bruce Eder)

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Personnel:
David Briggs (organ)
Kenneth Buttrey (drums)
Jerry Carrigan (drums)
Fred Carter (guitar)
Pete Drake (pedal steel-guitar)
Tim Drummond (bass)
Dave Kirby (guitar)
Grady Martin (guiar)
Charlie McCoy  (organ, harmonica)
Farrell Morris (percussion)
William Puett (saxophone)
Boots Randolph (saxophone)
Norman Ray (saxophone)
Don Sheffield (trumpet)
Stan Szelest (piano)
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The Holiday Sisters (background vocals:
D. Bergen White – James Cason – Jeanie Greene – June Page

Tracklist:
01. Lawdy Miss Clawdy (Price) 2.42
02. When My Dreamboat Comes Home (Friend/Franklin) 2.26
03. Cora Mae (Hawkins) 2.12
04. Memphis, Tennessee (Berry) 2.46
05. Ain’t That A Shame (Domino/Bartholomew) 2.19
06. Bony Moronie (Williams) 2.27
07. Diddley Daddy (MacDaniel/Fuqua) 2.27
08. I’m In Love Again (Domino/Bartholomew) 2.11
09. Maybellene (Freed/Berry/Fratto) 2.33
10. The Same Old Song (Kristofferson) 3.01

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The official website:
Website

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Elvis Costello – Kojak Variety (1995)

FrontCover1Declan Patrick MacManus, OBE (born 25 August 1954), known professionally as Elvis Costello, is an English singer-songwriter.

He has won multiple awards in his career, including Grammy Awards in 1999 and 2020, and has twice been nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Male Artist.

In 2003, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked Costello number 80 on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

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Kojak Variety is a 1995 album by Elvis Costello, composed of cover songs written by others. Rhino Records reissued an expanded, double-CD in 2004 containing a bonus disc.

Costello said in the liner notes this was a “record of some of my favourite songs performed with some of my favourite musicians.”[13] but that he didn’t want to record songs that were too familiar. Costello had searched independent record shops: Potter’s Music in Richmond, Probe in Liverpool, Rock On in Camden Town, and many American thrift stores and pawn shops to discover albums that he previously had only known from singles or compilations. Costello said he made his best discoveries in what he called “the greatest record collecting store in the world”, Village Music in Mill Valley, California.

The first song recorded for the album was “Running Out of Fools”, while the last was a new rendering of “Days” by The Kinks, which he had previously recorded for the album soundtrack album Until the End of the World, for the Wim Wenders’ film of the same name. The title Kojak Variety refers to the name of a variety store in Barbados near where the album was recorded; Costello was amused by the seemingly random name of the enterprise, and in a similar spirit, decided to apply the name to his album.[14]

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With Almost Blue, Elvis Costello wanted to be a honky tonker. With Kojak Variety, he’s a crooner, picking forgotten tunes by both minor and major artists (anyone from Screamin’ Jay Hawkins to Bob Dylan). From his song selections to the pseudo-avant-rock/R&B band, Costello doesn’t make any obvious moves. Yet that doesn’t mean that the record is difficult — it just shows the depths of Costello’s affection for music and record collecting (which is also clear from his loving, detailed liner notes). Costello and his band (featuring guitarists James Burton and Marc Ribot, drummer Jim Keltner and Attraction Pete Thomas) play with gusto, tearing through the songs with the vigor of a bar band on a Friday night. Some of the rockers sound slightly forced, although there’s no denying the power of Costello’s passionate vocals, even if he stretches his range a little too much (Little Richard’s “Bama Lama Bama Loo”). What matters here are the performances, and the majority of Kojak Variety is filled with fine interpretations. Kojak Variety does what any good covers album should do — it makes you want to seek out the originals. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

BookletBackCover1

This album is as good as any of Costello’s best. Sure, it’s a cover album. But, it doesn’t cover any songs you’re likely to have ever heard before. And that’s what elevates it from you run of the mill, dialed in cover collection. Costello has a passion for these tunes. He had been touring with this band and this album was their last opportunity to play together. You can tell that they’re truly enjoying the collaboration—there’s an energy and enthusiasm here. This is a hard driving, nostalgic rock & roll/R&B album featuring musicians who are at the top of their game. It’s a joy to listen to, and over the years, I’ve found myself returning to it again and again. The All Music two star rating doesn’t give this set the attention it deserves. (Jeremy Feldman)

BackCover1

Personnel:
James Burton (guitar)
Elvis Costello (vocals, harmonica)
Jim Keltner (drums)
Larry Knechtel (keyboards)
Marc Ribot (banjo, guitar, horn)
Jerry Scheff (bass)
Pete Thomas (drums)

Booklet03A

Tracklist:
01. Strange (Hawkins) 2.42
02. Hidden Charms (Dixon) 3.33
03. Remove This Doubt (B.Holland/Dozier/E.Holland, Jr.) 3.54
04. I Threw It All Away (Dylan) 3.26
05. Leave My Kitten Alone (John/Turner) 3.13
06. Everybody’s Crying Mercy (Allison) 4.08
07. I’ve Been Wrong Before (Newman) 3.03
08. Bama Lama Bama Loo (Penniman) 2.47
09. Must You Throw Dirt In My Face? (Anderson) Louvin Brothers 3.51
10. Pouring Water On A Drowning Man (Baker/McCormick) James Carr 3.40
11. The Very Thought Of You (Noble) Nat King Cole 3.43
12. Payday (Winchester) Jesse Winchester 3.00
13. Please Stay (Bacharach/Hilliard) 4.50
14. Running Out Of Fools (Ahlert/Rogers) 3.04
15. Days (Davies) The Kinks 4.56

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The official website:
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Ricky Nelson – Hello Mary Lou + Travelin‘ Man (1961)

USFrontCover1Eric Hilliard Nelson (May 8, 1940 – December 31, 1985), known professionally as Ricky Nelson, was an American musician, songwriter and actor. From age eight he starred alongside his family in the radio and television series The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. In 1957, he began a long and successful career as a popular recording artist. The expression “teen idol” was first coined to describe Nelson, and his fame as both a recording artist and television star also led to a motion picture role co-starring alongside John Wayne, Dean Martin and Angie Dickinson in Howard Hawks’s western feature film Rio Bravo (1959). He placed 53 songs on the Billboard Hot 100, and its predecessors, between 1957 and 1973, including “Poor Little Fool” in 1958, which was the first number one song on Billboard magazine’s then-newly created Hot 100 chart. He recorded 19 additional top ten hits and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on January 21, 1987. In 1996 Nelson was ranked No. 49 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time.

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Nelson began his entertainment career in 1949, playing himself in the radio sitcom series, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet. In 1952, he appeared in his first feature film, Here Come the Nelsons. In 1957, he recorded his first single (“Im Walkin’ b/w “A Teenagers Romance”, Verve 10047X4S), debuted as a singer on the television version of the sitcom, and released the No. 1 album titled Ricky. In 1958, Nelson released his first #1 single, “Poor Little Fool”, and in 1959 received a Golden Globe nomination for “Most Promising Male Newcomer” after starring in Rio Bravo. A few films followed, and when the television series was cancelled in 1966, Nelson made occasional appearances as a guest star on various television programs. In his twenties, he moved away from the pop music of his youth, and began to perform in a more country rock style. After recording several albums with mostly session musicians, most of which flopped, he formed the Stone Canyon Band in 1969 and experienced a career resurgence, buoyed by the live album In Concert at the Troubadour, 1969 and had a surprise hit with 1972’s “Garden Party”, which peaked at number six on the Billboard Hot 100. His comeback was short-lived, however, as his record label was bought out and folded, and his followup albums were not well promoted by his new label. He continued to perform live and take small television roles through the 1970s, though his label dropped him by the end of the decade. He released two more albums, with unimpressive results, before his death in a plane crash on New Year’s Eve, 1985.

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Nelson was married once, to Sharon Kristin Harmon, from 1963 until their divorce in 1982. They had four children: actress Tracy Nelson, twin sons and musicians Gunnar and Matthew, and actor Sam.

Nelson died in a plane crash on New Year’s Eve 1985, flying from Guntersville, Alabama, to Dallas, Texas, for a concert. The plane he was on, a Douglas DC-3, had a history of mechanical problems. All seven passengers, including Blair, died. Only the two pilots survived.

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Nelson’s funeral took place at the Church of the Hills, Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery, on January 6, 1986, and he was privately buried in the Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills Cemetery, in Los Angeles. His estate was bequeathed to his children, and he did not provide for ex-wife Kris Nelson. (wikipedia)

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And here´s one of his greatest hits … a worldwide hit …

… enjoy this little trip in the early Sixties.

Alternate frontcovers:
AlternateFrontCovers

Personnel:
Ricky Nelson (vocals)
+
a bunch of unknown studio musicians

The German edition:
German Edition

Tracklist:
01. Hello Mary Lou (Pitney) 2.31
02. Travelin‘ Man (Fuller) 2.30

USLabelB1

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Ricky Nelson05

Elvis Presley – Pure Gold (1975)

FrontCover1Elvis Aaron Presley (January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977) was an American singer and actor. Dubbed the “King of Rock and Roll”, he is regarded as one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century. His energized interpretations of songs and sexually provocative performance style, combined with a singularly potent mix of influences across color lines during a transformative era in race relations, led him to both great success and initial controversy.

Presley was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, and relocated to Memphis, Tennessee, with his family when he was 13 years old. His music career began there in 1954, recording at Sun Records with producer Sam Phillips, who wanted to bring the sound of African-American music to a wider audience. Presley, on rhythm acoustic guitar, and accompanied by lead guitarist Scotty Moore and bassist Bill Black, was a pioneer of rockabilly, an uptempo, backbeat-driven fusion of country music and rhythm and blues.

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In 1955, drummer D. J. Fontana joined to complete the lineup of Presley’s classic quartet and RCA Victor acquired his contract in a deal arranged by Colonel Tom Parker, who would manage him for more than two decades. Presley’s first RCA Victor single, “Heartbreak Hotel”, was released in January 1956 and became a number-one hit in the United States. Within a year, RCA would sell ten million Presley singles. With a series of successful network television appearances and chart-topping records, Presley became the leading figure of the newly popular sound of rock and roll.

In November 1956, Presley made his film debut in Love Me Tender. Drafted into military service in 1958, Presley relaunched his recording career two years later with some of his most commercially successful work. He held few concerts, however, and guided by Parker, proceeded to devote much of the 1960s to making Hollywood films and soundtrack albums, most of them critically derided. In 1968, following a seven-year break from live performances, he returned to the stage in the acclaimed television comeback special Elvis, which led to an extended Las Vegas concert residency and a string of highly profitable tours.

Presley meets U.S. President Richard Nixon in the White House Oval Office,
December 21, 1970
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In 1973, Presley gave the first concert by a solo artist to be broadcast around the world, Aloha from Hawaii. Years of prescription drug abuse and unhealthy eating habits severely compromised his health, and he died suddenly in 1977 at his Graceland estate at the age of 42.

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Having sold over 500 million records worldwide, Presley is recognized as the best-selling solo music artist of all time by Guinness World Records. He was commercially successful in many genres, including pop, country, R&B, adult contemporary, and gospel. Presley won three Grammy Awards, received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award at age 36, and has been inducted into multiple music halls of fame. He holds several records, including the most RIAA certified gold and platinum albums, the most albums charted on the Billboard 200, the most number-one albums by a solo artist on the UK Albums Chart, and the most number-one singles by any act on the UK Singles Chart. In 2018, Presley was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Donald Trump. (wikipedia)

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Pure Gold is a compilation album by American singer and musician Elvis Presley, issued in 1975 by RCA Records with catalog number ANL1-0971(e) as part of the RCA budget Pure Gold series of albums. At the time of this release, Presley was at the final stage of his career; he was focused more on the country music market, where he had a string of chart-topping records in recent years. This short and rather haphazard collection focused more on his earlier Rock and Roll material than later hits. Although considered a mediocre compilation at best, Pure Gold became an extremely popular seller in the wake of Elvis’ unexpected death in August, 1977.

“Fever”, “It’s Impossible”, and “In The Ghetto” are heard in true stereo; “Kentucky Rain” utilized the mono single version, with mild rechanneled or “fake stereo” effect. The other six tracks on the album are original 1950s monophonic recordings with “stereo effect reprocessed from monophonic”, or “fake stereo”. When RCA reissued the album on compact disc in 1992, the “fake stereo” tracks were restored to their original mono sound. The album was certified Gold on September 12, 1977, Platinum on March 20, 1988 and 2x Platinum on March 27, 1992 by the RIAA.

The front cover photo features Elvis from his Aloha from Hawaii concert in January, 1973. The original back cover featured a list of other albums available in the RCA Pure Gold series. The album was reissued in the early 1980s with the catalog number AYL1-3732(e) as part of the RCA budget ‘Best Buy’ series. (wikipedia)

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The precise motivation behind the release of Pure Gold is difficult to fathom, based on its content: ten songs spanning 16 years of Elvis Presley’s recorded history, from “I Got a Woman” in January 1956 through “It’s Impossible,” cut in February 1972. What’s more, three of the songs are title tracks to films: “Love Me Tender,” “Jailhouse Rock,” and “Loving You.” As the extensive notes by Patrick Snyder fail to give any particular motivation for choosing these ten songs, let’s just go with what’s here — the songs, which do represent a decent cross section of some of his most familiar material from a few prime moments in his career. The mature, more finely nuanced Elvis of “Kentucky Rain,” “It’s Impossible,” and “In the Ghetto” makes an interesting contrast with the younger, more threatening Elvis of “Jailhouse Rock,” etc. One marvels at how underrated he was by his critics, and also how much more he had to offer than just a few years of rock & roll excitement. As a crude statement of the man’s range and talent, Pure Gold is just fine — but there are a dozen other collections that do the job better. (by Bruce Eder)

BackCover1

Personnel:
Elvis Presley (vocals)
+
many, many studio musicians

Booklet02A

Tracklist:
01.Kentucky Rain (Rabbitt/Heard) (1969) 3.25
02. Fever (from Elvis Is Back!) (Cooley/Blackwell) (1960) 3.34
03. It’s Impossible (from Elvis) (Manzanero/Wayne) (1972) 2.52
04. Jailhouse Rock (from Jailhouse Rock) (Leiber/Stoller) (1957) 2.28
05. Don’t Be Cruel (Blackwell/Presley) (1956) 2.05
06. I Got A Woman (from Elvis Presley) (Charles/Richard) (1956) 2.26
07. All Shook Up (Blackwell/Presley) (1957) 1.59
08. Loving You (from Loving You) (Leiber/Stoller) (1957) 2.14
09. In The Ghetto (from From Elvis in Memphis) (Davis) (1969) 2.49
10. Love Me Tender (from Love Me Tender) (Matson/Presley) (1956) 2.42

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Daddy Cool – Daddy’s Coolest – The 20 Greatest Hits Of Daddy Cool (1982)

FrontCover1Daddy Cool is an Australian rock band formed in Melbourne, Victoria in 1970 with the original line-up of Wayne Duncan (bass, vocals), Ross Hannaford (lead guitar, bass, vocals), Ross Wilson (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, harmonica) and Gary Young (drums, vocals) . Their debut single “Eagle Rock” was released in May 1971 and stayed at number 1 on the Australian singles chart for ten weeks. Their debut July 1971 LP Daddy Who? Daddy Cool also reached number 1 and became the first Australian album to sell more than 100,000 copies. The group’s name came from the 1957 song “Daddy Cool” by US rock group The Rays. Daddy Cool included their version of this song on Daddy Who? Daddy Cool.

Daddy Cool01

Daddy Cool’s music was originally largely 1950s Doo-wop style cover versions and originals mostly written by Wilson. On stage they provided a danceable sound which was accessible and fun. Their second album, Sex, Dope, Rock’n’Roll: Teenage Heaven from January 1972, also reached the Top Ten. Breaking up in August 1972, Daddy Cool briefly reformed during 1974–1975 before disbanding again, they reformed with the band’s original line-up in 2005. Their iconic status was confirmed when they were inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame on 16 August 2006. At the Music Victoria Awards of 2014, Daddy Cool was also inducted into the Music Victoria Hall of Fame.

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Daddy’s Coolest (also known as Daddy’s Coolest: Volume 1 or Daddy’s Coolest: The 20 Greatest Hits of Daddy Cool) is the sixth compilation album by Australian rock band Daddy Cool, released in 1982. The album peaked at number 5 on the Australian Kent Music Report and at number 29 on the Recorded Music NZ albums charts. It includes tracks from Daddy Cool’s two studio albums Daddy Who? Daddy Cool and Sex, Dope, Rock’n’Roll: Teenage Heaven. The album was re-released in 1992, which reached number 35 on the ARIA Charts. (wikipedia)

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Just about the time that Sha Na Na was starting to attract attention from the U.S. press as an oldies revival band, half a world away in Australia, Daddy Cool was going in a similar direction on a very different path.

The were highly theatrical and animated, but not in the broad, burlesque manner of Sha Na Na. Daddy Cool was closer to a real-life Ruben & the Jets, with touches of unique, down-under British looniness (weird headgear and propeller beanies) and a highly animated presentation that shook up the Australian concert scene. (by Bruce Eder)

BackCover1

Personnel:
Ross Hannaford (lead guitar, bass, vocals)
Wayne Duncan (bass, vocals)
Ross Wilson (vocals, guitar, harmonica)
Gary Young (drums, vocals)

Booklet1

Tracklist:
01. Eagle Rock (Wilson) 4-09
02. Daddy Cool (Sla/Crewe) 2.31
03. Come Back Again (Wilson) 3.31
04. Lollypop (Ross/Dixon) 1.41
05. Hi Honey Ho (Wilson) 3.36
06. Sixty Minute Man (Ward/Marks) 2.23
07. Bom Bom (Wilson/Hannaford) 2.34
08. At The Rockhouse (Wilson) 3.44
09. Rock ‘N’ Roll Lady (Young) 2.52
10. I’ll Never Smile Again (Lowe) 4.19
11. Good Golly, Miss Molly (Blackwell/Marascalco) 2.15
12. You Never Can Tell (Berry) 2.22
13. One Night (Bartholomew/King/Steiman) 2.42
14. Teenage Blues (Wilson) 3.38
15. Boogie Man (Wilson) 3.17
16. Cherry Pie (Bihari/Phillips) 3.19
17. Just As Long As We’re Together (Wilson) 2.31
18. Please, Please America (Wilson/Hannaford) 3.10
19. Baby Let Me Bang Your Box (McRae/Wyche) 3.24
20. Daddy Rocks Off (Wilson) 4.34

LabelB1

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The official website:
Website

Various Artists – Honeymoon In Vegas (OST) (1992)

FrontCover1Honeymoon in Vegas is a 1992 American romantic comedy film directed by Andrew Bergman and starring James Caan, Nicolas Cage, and Sarah Jessica Parker.

Private Detective (“Private eye”) Jack Singer (Nicolas Cage) swore to his mother on her deathbed that he would never marry. His girlfriend, Betsy (Sarah Jessica Parker) wants to get married and start a family, and he proposes a quick Las Vegas marriage. They check into the Bally’s Casino Resort.

Before the wedding, however, a wealthy professional gambler, Tommy Korman (James Caan), notices Betsy has a striking resemblance to his beloved late wife, Donna. He arranges a crooked poker game (with Jerry Tarkanian as one of the other players) that prompts Jack to borrow $65,000 after being dealt a straight flush (7-8-9-10-Jack of clubs), only to lose to the gambler’s higher straight flush (8-9-10-Jack-Queen of hearts); Tommy offers to erase the debt in exchange for spending the weekend with Betsy.

Honeymoon01

After Tommy agrees to no sex, the desperate couple consent. Jack discovers that Tommy has taken Betsy to his vacation home in Kauai. The gambler asks his taxi driver friend, Mahi Mahi (Pat Morita) to keep Jack as far as possible from him and Betsy. Jack discovers this, steals the taxi. He sees Betsy outside the Kauai Club where he is attacked by Tommy and arrested. Jack’s dentist friend, Sally Molars (John Capodice), bails Jack out of jail. Mahi Mahi meets Jack outside and admits that Tommy left for Las Vegas with Betsy and has convinced her to marry him. Mahi races Jack to the airport. Betsy decides she cannot go through with the wedding and escapes from Tommy.

MoviePoster

Meanwhile, after changing many planes and finding himself stuck in San Jose, Jack tries frantically to find a flight to Las Vegas. He joins a group about to depart for Las Vegas but discovers mid-flight that they are the Utah chapter of the “Flying Elvises” – a skydiving team of Elvis impersonators. Jack realizes he has to skydive from 3,000 feet to get to Betsy. Jack overcomes his fear. He lands and spots Betsy, ruining Tommy’s plans.

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Jack and Betsy are married in a small Las Vegas chapel with the Flying Elvises as guests. Jack is wearing a white illuminated jumpsuit and Betsy in a stolen showgirl outfit. (wikipedia)

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And here´s the soundtrack from the movie:

Country singers rule this soundtrack of Elvis Presley covers, which is every bit as flawed, frivolous and fun as the film from whence it came. While Billy Joel parodies “All Shook Up” and “Heartbreak Hotel,” John Mellencamp labors to avoid parodying “Jailhouse Rock,” and U2’s Bono transforms “Can’t Help Falling in Love” into an obsessive parable about hero worship, folks like Ricky Van Shelton and Trisha Yearwood just sit back and sing the things, which at least makes them pleasant after more than one plaing.

Booklet03A

Dwight Yoakam’s power-chord-country version of “Suspicious Minds” and Travis Tritt’s “Burning Love” rank with their best remakes. Breaking the trend are pop crooner Bryan Ferry, who sings a seductive British soul version of “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” and the usually trustworthy Vince Gill, whose Pat Boone-style rendition of Arthur Crudup’s classic blues “That’s All Right” cleans up the grammar. (by Brian Mansfield)

And if you are interested in rarities from musicians like Billy Joel, Bono, Jeff Beck, Willie Nelson. Bryan Ferry, Amy Grant or John Mellencamp …

… you should listen and enjoy !

BackCover1

Tracklist:
01. Billy Joel: All Shook Up (Blackwell/Presley) 2.10
02. Ricky van Shelton: Wear My Ring Around Your Neck (Carroll/Russell) 2.14
03. Amy Grant: Love Me Tender (Matson/Presley) 3.52
04. Travis Tritt: Burning Love (Linde) 3.35
05. Billy Joel: Heartbreak Hotel (Axton/Durden/Elvis Presley) 3.22
06. Bryan Ferry:  Are You Lonesome Tonight? (Handman/Turk) 5.00
07. Dwight Yoakam: Suspicious Minds (James) 3.52
08. Trisha Yearwood: (You’re The) Devil In Disguise (Baum/Kaye) 2.38
09. Jeff Beck &Jed Leiber: Hound Dog (Leiber/Stoller) 2.13
10. Vince Gill: That’s All Right (Crudup) 2.44
11. John Mellencamp: Jailhouse Rock (Leiber/Stoller) 3.36
12. Willie Nelson: Blue Hawaii (Rainger/Robin) 2.37
13. Bono: Can’t Help Falling in Love (Creatore/Peretti/Weiss) 2.04

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Chuck Berry – Christmas With Chuck Berry (2017)

FrontCover1Charles Edward Anderson Berry (October 18, 1926 – March 18, 2017) was an American singer, songwriter and guitarist who pioneered rock and roll. Nicknamed the “Father of Rock and Roll”, he refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive with songs such as “Maybellene” (1955), “Roll Over Beethoven” (1956), “Rock and Roll Music” (1957) and “Johnny B. Goode” (1958). Writing lyrics that focused on teen life and consumerism, and developing a music style that included guitar solos and showmanship, Berry was a major influence on subsequent rock music.

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Born into a middle-class African-American family in St. Louis, Berry had an interest in music from an early age and gave his first public performance at Sumner High School. While still a high school student he was convicted of armed robbery and was sent to a reformatory, where he was held from 1944 to 1947. After his release, Berry settled into married life and worked at an automobile assembly plant. By early 1953, influenced by the guitar riffs and showmanship techniques of the blues musician T-Bone Walker, Berry began performing with the Johnnie Johnson Trio.[3] His break came when he traveled to Chicago in May 1955 and met Muddy Waters, who suggested he contact Leonard Chess, of Chess Records. With Chess, he recorded “Maybellene”—Berry’s adaptation of the country song “Ida Red”—which sold over a million copies, reaching number one on Billboard magazine’s rhythm and blues chart.

Chuck Berry Portrait

By the end of the 1950s, Berry was an established star, with several hit records and film appearances and a lucrative touring career. He had also established his own St. Louis nightclub, Berry’s Club Bandstand. He was sentenced to three years in prison in January 1962 for offenses under the Mann Act—he had transported a 14-year-old girl across state lines. After his release in 1963, Berry had several more successful songs, including “No Particular Place to Go”, “You Never Can Tell”, and “Nadine”. However, these did not achieve the same success or lasting impact of his 1950s songs, and by the 1970s he was more in demand as a nostalgic performer, playing his past material with local backup bands of variable quality. In 1972 he reached a new level of achievement when a rendition of “My Ding-a-Ling” became his only record to top the charts. His insistence on being paid in cash led in 1979 to a four-month jail sentence and community service, for tax evasion.

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Berry was among the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on its opening in 1986; he was cited for having “laid the groundwork for not only a rock and roll sound but a rock and roll stance.” Berry is included in several of Rolling Stone magazine’s “greatest of all time” lists; he was ranked fifth on its 2004 and 2011 lists of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.[9] The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll includes three of Berry’s: “Johnny B. Goode”, “Maybellene”, and “Rock and Roll Music”.[10] Berry’s “Johnny B. Goode” is the only rock-and-roll song included on the Voyager Golden Record. (wikipedia)

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And here are 4 fine Christmas by Chuck Berry, most of them in a sentimental mood … bluesy…

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Personnel:
Chuck Berry (guitar, vocals)
+
a bunch of unknown studio musicians

Alternate frontcover:
AlternateFrontCover

Tracklist:
01. Run Rudolph Run (Single Version) (Marks/Brodel/Berry) 2.43
02. Christmas (unknown) 3.26
03. Merry Christmas Baby (Single Version) (Baxter/Moore) 3:12
04. Spending Christmas (Berry) 2:09

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Out of all the reindeers, you know you’re the mastermind
Run, run Rudolph, Randalph ain’t too far behind
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph cause I’m reeling like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a boy “Child, what have you been longing for?”
“All I want for Christmas is a Rock and Roll electric guitar”
And then away went Rudolph whizzing like a shooting star

Run, run Rudolph, Santa has to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, reeling like a merry-go-round

Single1

Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, I’m reeling like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a girl “Child, what would please you most to get?”
“A little baby doll that can cry, sleep, drink and wet”
And then away went Rudolph, whizzing like a Saber jet

More from Chuck Berry:
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