Mountain – Live At The Fillmore East (New York, NY) (1970)

FrontCover1.jpgMany years ago I got this pretty good and rare album by Mountain from another record collector from the USA.

He wrote me, that this is a Mountain gig, recorded live at the Fillmore East, New York in June 1970.

I´m not sure, if this information is correct … I guess this recording is a composite from various live recordings during 1970-71. Some of it definitely is from the closing night of the Fillmore East in June 1971. In 1970, they were not yet performing songs from the Nantucket Sleighride album (Nantucket Sleighride, Traveling in the Dark) as Mr. Leslie6042 wrote on youtube.

Anyway, we can hear Mountain at their peak … with rare live recordings from classic tracks like “For Yasgur’s Farm” and “Travelin’ In The Dark”.

Another highlight is of course and early version of their great “Nantucket Sleighride” and finally a fantastic version of the heavy jam of the incredible “Dreams Of Milk And Honey” … including a long and outstandig bass-solo by Felix Pappalardi.

It´s time to discover the very unique sound of Mountain … one of the greatest hard rock bands of all time … believe me !

Mountain02.jpg

Personnel:
Steve Knight (organ)
Corky Laing (drums)
Felix Pappalardi (bass, vocals)
Leslie West (guitar, vocals)

Mountain01.jpg

Tracklist:
01. Bill Graham introduction + Silver Paper (Laing/Pappalardi/Collins/ Gardos/West/Knight) 8.17
02. Nantucket Sleighride (Pappalardi/Collins) 6.08
03. For Yasgur’s Farm (Laing/Rea/Pappalardi/Collins/Ship/Gardos) 4.16
04. Travelin’ In The Dark (Laing/Pappalardi/Collins) 5.06
05. Blood Of The Sun (West/Pappalardi/Collins) 3.19
06. Dreams Of Milk And Honey ((Pappalardi/Ventura/West/Landsberg)) + Mississippi Queen ((West/Laing/Pappalardi/Rea) 29.33

Mountain03.jpg

*
**

Christine Perfect – Same (1970)

FrontCover1.jpgWith her naturally smoky low alto vocal style and a knack for writing simple, direct, and memorable songs about the joys and pitfalls of love, Christine McVie has had a long and productive musical career while seldom insisting on being center stage. Born Christine Anne Perfect on July 12, 1943, in the small village of Bouth, the daughter of a concert violinist and a faith healer, a combination that just begs for uniqueness, McVie began playing the piano at the age of four and then found herself seriously studying the instrument at the age of 11, continuing her classical training until she was 15. That’s when she discovered rock & roll. While studying sculpture at an arts college near Birmingham for the next five years, she immersed herself in the local music scene, joining the band Sounds of Blue as a bassist. By the time McVie graduated with a teaching degree, Sounds of Blue had broken up, and she moved to London. In 1968 she reunited with two of the band’s former members, Andy Silvester and Stan Webb, in the British blues band Chicken Shack, playing piano and contributing vocals. The band released two albums, 40 Blue Fingers, ChristinePerfect01.jpgFreshly Packed and Ready to Serve in 1968 and O.K. Ken? in 1969, and garnered a Top 20 hit in the U.K. with McVie’s impressive version of Etta James’ “I’d Rather Go Blind.” She left the band in 1969 after meeting Fleetwood Mac bassist John McVie, marrying him a year later, just after the release of her first solo album, the self-titled Christine Perfect. (by Steve Leggett)

Christine Perfect is the eponymous debut solo album of former Chicken Shack keyboardist/singer Christine Perfect (later known as Christine McVie).  The album was released just after Perfect had left Chicken Shack, but before she joined Fleetwood Mac. It contained the Etta James song, “I’d Rather Go Blind”, which had earlier been a hit single for Chicken Shack.

Released in 1970, the album was originally meant to be titled “I’m On My Way” as evidenced on copies of the single “I’m Too Far Gone (To Turn Around)”. It was re-released in 1976 as The Legendary Christine Perfect Album. (by wikipedia)

Shortly before joining Fleetwood Mac, Christine McVie, assuming the moniker Christine Perfect, recorded and released her first solo album. While its blues- and soul-tinged rock sound isn’t terribly unique, the songs are all quite well written and performed, and regardless, McVie’s melancholic, soulful vocals could elevate to greatness even the most tepid of songs. Highly recommended to any fans of the British Blues or 70s rock in general. (opiumhum.blogspot.com)

ChristinePerfect02John McVie & Christine Perfect

Released amidst a flood of blues-rock material, 1970’s “Christine Perfect” was actually a surprisingly impressive and enjoyable artifact, but did little commercially and was quickly forgotten. (badcatrecords.com)

So it´s time to discover this beautiful album again … Enjoy the early Christine Perfect !!!

Singles.jpg

Personnel:
Martin Dunsford (bass)
Chris Harding (drums)
Rick Hayward (guitar)
Christine Perfect (vocals, keyboards)
Top Topham (guitar)
+
Dave Bidwell (drums on 06.)
Danny Kirwan (guitar on 07.)
John McVie (bass on 07.)
Andy Silvester (bass on 05. + 06.)
Stan Webb (guitar on 06.)

BackCover1.jpg
Tracklist:
01. Crazy ‘Bout You Baby (Walter) 3.05
02. I’m On My Way (Malone) 3.12
03. Let Me Go (Leave Me Alone) (Perfect) 3.38
04. Wait And See (Perfect) 3.17
05. Close To Me (Perfect/Hayward) 2.43
06. I’d Rather Go Blind (Jordan/Foster) 3.18
07. When You Say (Kirwan) 3.18
08. And That’s Saying A Lot (Jackson/Godfrey) 3.01
09. No Road Is The Right Road (Perfect) 2.53
10. For You (Perfect) 2.49
+
11. I’m Too Far Gone (To Turn Around) (Single A side) (Handricks/Otis) 3.30
12. I Want You (White) 2.23

LabelB1.jpg

*
**

One of the saddest love songs ever written:

Something told me it was over
When I saw you and her talkin’
Something deep down in my soul said, ‘Cry, girl’
When I saw you and that girl walkin’ around

Whoo, I would rather, I would rather go blind, boy
Then to see you walk away from me, child, no

Whoo, so you see, I love you so much
That I don’t wanna watch you leave me, baby
Most of all, I just don’t, I just don’t wanna be free, no

Whoo, whoo, I was just, I was just, I was just
Sittin here thinkin’, of your kiss and your warm embrace, yeah
When the reflection in the glass that I held to my lips now, baby
Revealed the tears that was on my face, yeah

Whoo and baby, baby, I’d rather, I’d rather be blind, boy
Then to see you walk away, see you walk away from me, yeah
Whoo, baby, baby, baby, I’d rather be blind…

 

 

The Who – Live At Leeds (1970)

FrontCover1.JPGLive at Leeds is the first live album by the English rock band The Who. It was recorded at the University Refectory, University of Leeds on 14 February 1970, and is the only live album that was released while the group were still actively recording and performing with their best known line-up of Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend, John Entwistle and Keith Moon.

The Who were looking for a way to follow up their 1969 album Tommy, and had recorded several shows on tours supporting that album, but didn’t like the sound. Consequently, they booked the show at Leeds University, along with one at the University of Hull the following day, specifically to record a live album. Six songs were taken from the Leeds show, and the cover was pressed to look like a bootleg recording. The sound was significantly different from Tommy and featured hard rock arrangements that were typical of the band’s live shows.

The album was released in May 1970 by Decca and MCA in the United States by Track and Polydor in the United Kingdom. It has been reissued on several occasions and in several different formats. Since its release, Live at Leeds has been cited by several music critics as the best live rock recording of all time.

By the end of the 1960s, particularly after releasing Tommy in May 1969, The Who had become cited by many as one of the best live rock acts in the world. According to biographer Chris Charlesworth, “a sixth sense seemed to take over”, leading them to “a kind of rock nirvana that most bands can only dream about”.[6] The band were rehearsing and touring regularly, and Townshend had settled on using the Gibson SG Special as his main touring instrument; it allowed him to play faster than did other guitars. He began using Hiwatt amplifiers that allowed him to get a variety of tones simply by adjusting the guitar’s volume level.

Supplement03.jpg

The group were concerned that Tommy had been promoted as “high art” by manager Kit Lambert and thought their stage show stood in equal importance to that album’s rock-opera format. The group returned to England at the end of 1969 with a desire to release a live album from concerts recorded earlier in the US. However, Townshend balked at the prospect of listening to all the accumulated recordings to decide which would make the best album, and, according to Charlesworth, instructed sound engineer Bob Pridden to burn the tapes.

Two shows were consequently scheduled, one at the University of Leeds and the other in Hull, for the express purpose of recording and releasing a live album. The Leeds concert was booked and arranged by Simon Brogan, who later became an assistant manager on tour with Jethro Tull. The shows were performed on 14 February 1970 at Leeds and on 15 February at Hull, but technical problems with the recordings from the Hull gig — the bass guitar had not been recorded on some of the songs — made it all the more necessary for the show from the 14th to be released as the album. Townshend subsequently mixed the live tapes, intending to release a double album, but ultimately chose to release just a single LP with six tracks. The full show opened with Entwistle’s “Heaven And Hell” and included most of Tommy, but these were left off the album in place of earlier hits and more obscure material.

LiveAtLeeds01.jpg

The album opens with “Young Man Blues”, an R&B tune that was a standard part of the Who’s stage repertoire at the time. It was extended to include an instrumental jam with stop-start sections. “Substitute”, a 1966 single for the band, was played similarly to the studio version. “Summertime Blues” was rearranged to include power chords, a key change, and Entwistle singing the authority figure lines (e.g.: “Like to help you son, but you’re too young to vote”) in a deep-bass voice. “Shakin’ All Over” was arranged similar to the original, but the chorus line was slowed down for effect, and there was a jam session in the middle.

Side two began with a 15-minute rendition of “My Generation”, which was greatly extended to include a medley of other songs and various improvisations. These included a brief extract of “See Me, Feel Me” and the ending of “Sparks” from Tommy, and part of “Naked Eye” that was recorded for the follow-up album Lifehouse (that was ultimately abandoned in favour of Who’s Next). The album closed with “Magic Bus”, which included Daltrey playing harmonica and an extended ending to the song.

LiveAtLeeds02

The cover was designed by Beadrall Sutcliffe and resembled that of a bootleg LP of the era, parodying the Rolling Stones’ Live’r Than You’ll Ever Be. It contains plain brown cardboard with “The Who Live At Leeds” printed on it in plain blue or red block letters as if stamped on with ink (on the original first English pressing of 300, this stamp is black). The original cover opened out, gatefold-style, and had a pocket on either side of the interior, with the record in a paper sleeve on one side and 12 facsimiles of various memorabilia on the other, including a photo of the band from the My Generation photoshoot in March 1965, handwritten lyrics to the “Listening to You” chorus from Tommy, the typewritten lyrics to “My Generation”, with hand written notes, a receipt for smoke bombs, a rejection letter from EMI, and the early black “Maximum R&B” poster showing Pete Townshend wind-milling his Rickenbacker. The first 500 copies included a copy of the contract for The Who to play at the Woodstock Festival.
Supplement07.jpg

click to enlarge

The label was handwritten and included instructions to the engineers not to attempt to remove any crackling noise. This is probably a reference to the clicking and popping on the pre-remastered version (such as in “Shakin’ All Over”) which was from Entwistle’s bass cable. Modern digital remastering techniques allowed this to be removed, and also allowed some of the worst-affected tracks from the gig to be used; on CD releases, the label reads, “Crackling noises have been corrected!”

Live at Leeds has been cited as the best live rock recording of all time by The Daily Telegraph,[30] The Independent,[31] the BBC, Q magazine, and Rolling Stone. In 2003, it was ranked number 170 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. A commemorative blue plaque has been placed at the campus venue at which it was recorded, the University Refectory. On 17 June 2006, over 36 years after the original concert, The Who returned to perform at the Refectory, at a gig organised by Andy Kershaw. Kershaw stated the gig was “among the most magnificent I have ever seen”. A Rolling Stone readers’ poll in 2012 ranked it the best live album of all time. (by wikipedia)

JohnEntwistle

Rushed out in 1970 as a way to bide time as the Who toiled away on their follow-up to Tommy, Live at Leeds wasn’t intended to be the definitive Who live album, and many collectors maintain that the band had better shows available on bootlegs. But those shows weren’t easily available whereas Live at Leeds was, and even if this show may not have been the absolute best, it’s so damn close to it that it would be impossible for anybody but aficionados to argue. Here, the Who sound vicious — as heavy as Led Zeppelin but twice as volatile — as they careen through early classics with the confidence of a band that had finally achieved acclaim but had yet to become preoccupied with making art. In that regard, this recording — in its many different forms — may have been perfectly timed in terms of capturing the band at a pivotal moment in its history.

AD.jpg

There is certainly no better record of how this band was a volcano of violence on-stage, teetering on the edge of chaos but never blowing apart. This was most true on the original LP, which was a trim six tracks, three of them covers (“Young Man Blues,” “Summertime Blues,” “Shakin’ All Over”) and three originals from the mid-’60s, two of those (“Substitute,” “My Generation”) vintage parts of their repertory and only “Magic Bus” representing anything resembling a recent original, with none bearing a trace of their mod roots. This was pure, distilled power, all the better for its brevity; throughout the ’70s the album was seen as one of the gold standards in live rock & roll, and certainly it had a fury that no proper Who studio album achieved. It was also notable as one of the earliest legitimate albums to implicitly acknowledge — and go head to head with — the existence of bootleg LPs. Indeed, its very existence owed something to the efforts of Pete Townshend and company to stymie the bootleggers.

Booklet08A.jpg

The Who had made extensive recordings of performances along their 1969 tour, with the intention of preparing a live album from that material, but they recognized when it was over that none of them had the time or patience to go through the many dozens of hours of live performances in order to sort out what to use for the proposed album. According to one account, the band destroyed those tapes in a massive bonfire, so that none of the material would ever surface without permission. They then decided to go to the other extreme in preparing a live album, scheduling this concert at Leeds University and arranging the taping, determined to do enough that was worthwhile at the one show. As it turned out, even here they generated an embarrassment of riches — the band did all of Tommy, as audiences of the time would have expected (and, indeed, demanded), but as the opera was already starting to feel like an albatross hanging around the collective neck of the band (and especially Townshend), they opted to leave out any part of their most famous work apart from a few instrumental strains in one of the jams. Instead, the original LP was limited to the six tracks named, and that was more than fine as far as anyone cared.

Supplement05.jpgclick to enlarge

And fans who bought the LP got a package of extra treats for their money. The album’s plain brown sleeve was, itself, a nod and nudge to the bootleggers, resembling the packaging of such early underground LP classics as the Bob Dylan Great White Wonder set and the Rolling Stones concert bootleg Liver Than You’ll Ever Be, from the latter group’s 1969 tour — and it was a sign of just how far the Who had come in just two years that they could possibly (and correctly) equate interest in their work as being on a par with Dylan and the Stones. But Live at Leeds’ jacket was a fold-out sleeve with a pocket that contained a package of memorabilia associated with the band, including a really cool poster, copies of early contracts, etc. It was, along with Tommy, the first truly good job of packaging for this band ever to come from Decca Records; the label even chose to forgo the presence of its rainbow logo, carrying the bootleg pose to the plain label and handwritten song titles, and the note about not correcting the clicks and pops. At the time, you just bought this as a fan, but looking back 30 or 40 years on, those now seem to be quietly heady days for the band (and for fans who had supported them for years), finally seeing the music world and millions of listeners catch up. (by Bruce Eder)

In other words: a hell of a record, a monster … one of the finest live albums in the history of Rock !!! And I include all these crazy memorabilias.

And songs like “I Can’t Explain” were made to be played loud !!!

Booklet1

Personnel:
Roger Daltrey (vocals, harmonica)
John Entwistle (bass, vocals)
Keith Moon (drums, background vocals)
Pete Townshend (guitar, vocals)

Booklet09A.jpg

Tracklist (CD reissue, 1995):
01. Heaven And Hell (Entwistle) 4.50
02. I Can’t Explain (Townshend) 2.59
03. Fortune Teller (Neville) 2.35
04. Tattoo  (Townshend) 3:42
05. Young Man Blues (Allison) 5.52
06. Substitute (Townshend) 2.07
07. Happy Jack (Townshend) 2.13
08. I’m A Boy (Townshend) 4.42
09. A Quick One, While He’s Away (Townshend) 8.41
10. Amazing Journey/Sparks (Townshend) 7.55
11. Summertime Blues (Cochran/Capehart) 3.22
12. Shakin’ All Over (Kidd) 4.34
13. My Generation (incl. parts of Tommy) (Townshend) 15.46
14. Magic Bus (Townshend) 7.46

Labels

*
**

Blue plaque
Blue plaque at the University of Leeds commemorating the album

Joe Loss & His Orchestra – Joe Loss Plays The Big Band Greats (1970)

FrontCover1.jpgJoshua Alexander “Joe” Loss (22 June 1909 – 6 June 1990) was a British musician popular during the British dance band era, and was founder of the Joe Loss Orchestra.

Loss was born in Spitalfields, London, the youngest of four children. His parents, Israel and Ada Loss, were Russian Jews and first cousins. His father was a cabinet-maker who had an office furnishing business. Loss was educated at the Jews’ Free School, Trinity College of Music and the London College of Music (now part of the University of West London). He started violin lessons at the age of seven and later played violin at the Tower Ballroom, Blackpool and also with Oscar Rabin. Loss started band leading in the early 1930s, working at the Astoria Ballroom and soon breaking into variety at the Kit-Cat Club. In 1934 he topped the bill at the Holborn Empire but in the same year moved back to the Astoria Ballroom where he led a twelve piece band. In 1935, Vera Lynn appeared with the Joe Loss Orchestra in her first radio broadcast. With broadcasting, recording and annual tours in addition to the resident work the band became highly popular over the JoeLoss1next few years. In the 1950s and early 60s, Loss was resident band leader at the Hammersmith Palais and was remembered by a trainee nurse at Hammersmith Hospital as being as kind and gentlemanly when she attended him in hospital as he was in his public persona. His band’s signature tune “In the Mood” would often be requested three or more times a night.

He was the subject of This Is Your Life on two occasions: in May 1963 when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews, and in October 1980, when Andrews surprised him again at London’s Portman Hotel during a star-studded party to celebrate Joe’s 50 years in show business.

Loss’s daughter Jennifer was the wife of British coach-builder Robert Jankel.

Loss died on 6 June 1990 and is buried at Bushey Jewish Cemetery in Hertfordshire.[4]
Joe Loss Orchestra

The Joe Loss Orchestra was one of the most successful acts of the big band era in the 1940s, with hits including “In the Mood”. In 1961 they had a hit with “Wheels—Cha Cha”, a version of the String-A-Longs’ hit “Wheels”. Other hits included David Rose’s “The Stripper” in 1958 and “March of the Mods (The Finnjenka Dance)” of 1964.

In April 1951 Elizabeth Batey, vocalist with Joe Loss, fell and broke her jaw. Joe was badly in need of a replacement and remembered hearing Rose Brennan on radio during a visit to Ireland. Within days he had located her and, before a week was out, she was in Manchester rehearsing with the band. She stayed with Loss for fifteen years, before giving up show-business in the mid 1960s. She wrote many of the songs she recorded with Joe Loss under the name Marella, and co-wrote songs with John Harris. Her co-vocalists with the orchestra from 1955 was Ross MacManus (father of Elvis Costello) and Larry Gretton.

JoeLoss4

The Joe Loss Orchestra carries on under the musical direction of Todd Miller, who was a vocalist with the band for 19 years before Loss’s death. In 1989 Joe Loss became too ill to travel and in 1990 he entrusted the leadership to his longest serving band member, trombonist and player manager of many decades, Sam Watmough and to Todd. The orchestra has been in constant operation since 1930 and in 2015 it celebrated its 85th anniversary.

JoeLoss2.jpg

Specialist dance band radio stations continue to play his records. Joe Loss also features regularly on the Manx Radio programme Sweet & Swing, presented by Howard Caine. (by wikipedia)

And here´s a real wonderful album … recorded in the great tradition od the legendary era of the Big Band Jazz.

You known my words: Enjoy his sentimental journey in the past !

JoeLoss3

Personnel:
Bill Brown (saxophone)
Johnny Francis (saxophone)
Bob Gill (guitar)
Kenny Hollick (drums)
Dave Lowe (trumpet)
Syd Lucas (piano)
Vic Mustard (trumpet)
Stan Pickstock (trumpet)
Joe Quinlan (bass)
Sam Watmough (trombone)
+
Ted Barker (trombone)
Keith Bird (clarinet)
Ivan Dawson (saxophone)
Johnny Edwards (trombone)
Albert Hall (trumpet)
Don Lusher (trombone)
Freddy Staff (trumpet)
Roy Willox (saxophone)
Manny Winters (saxophone)

Conducted by Joe Loss

BackCover1.jpg

Tracklist:
01. At The Woodchopper’s Ball (Bishop/Herman) 3.17
02. I’m Getting Sentimental Over You (Bassman) 3.46
03. Stompin’ At The Savoy (Sampson/Goodman/Webb) 3.04
04. You Made Me Love You (McCarthy/Monaco) 3.21
05. One O’clock Jump (Basie) 3.54
06. Take The A Train (Strayhorn) 3.01
07. Skyliner (Barnet) 3.15
08. Solitude (Ellington/Mills) 4.01
09. Don’t Be That Way (Goodman/Sampson/Parish) 3.20
10. Song Of India (Rimsky-Korsakov) 3.05
11. Begin The Beguine (Porter) 2.56
12. Trumpet Blues And Cantabile (James/Mathias) 2.37

LabelB1.jpg

*
**

And this is the Joe Loss Orchestra today:

ToddMiller.jpg

Britains’ most popular music orchestra of the past 50 years is The Joe Loss Orchestra.

The orchestra perform world-wide, and during their 1978 world tour were invited to be the first western dance orchestra to perform in the Republic of China, returning there on three further occasions. The orchestra have performed at two Royal Weddings and two Command Performances and perform frequently at Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace. The Joe Loss Orchestra have played for many round the world cruises aboard the Cunard liner QE2.

The Joe Loss Orchestra have performed live on BBC, ITV, Channel4, Sky, Hong Kong TV etc..and have broadcasted on radio stations throughout Europe.

In 1990 Joe entrusted the leadership to his lead singer Todd Miller, ensuring that the great tradition that has brought the best in musical entertainment would continue.

Todd, the orchestra and singing stars are best appreciated when in direct contact with the audience. Dancing or in concert, their music brings together people of all musical tastes and age groups for a fantastic night out! A combination that doesn’t just play great music – IT ENTERTAINS

2011 Saw the Joe Loss Orchestra celebrating it’s 80th anniversary. The orchestra is now Britains’ longest running live entertainment company of any kind. Since 1930 the orchestra has never been disbanded and reformed, it has been in constant operation throughout the world, with Britains’ best musicians and singers performing totally live. -NOW THAT’S ENTERTAINMENT.

The Joe Loss Orchestra appears in three different formats. As a big band (17 piece +3 vocalists), touring band (10-piece + 3 vocalists) and show band (6-piece + 3 vocalists).

“Please can you pass on a huge Thank-you to Todd Miller and The Joe Loss Orchestra. the band were very much the highlight of the night and what a night it was!” (Laura Armitage)

(fantasiamusic.co.uk)

Wynder K. Frog – Into The Fire (1970)

FrontCover1.JPGAnd here´s a real intersting story about a great session musicians from UK:

Mick Weaver (born 16 June 1944, Bolton, Lancashire, England) is an English session musician, best known for his playing of the Hammond B3 organ, and as an exponent of the blues and funk.

Weaver’s band performed as Wynder K. Frog and became popular on the student union and club circuit of the mid sixties. A brief merging of this band with Herbie Goins and the Night-Timers took his work to a higher level. Wynder K. Frogg—they are billed under this spelling—appeared on the bill at The Savile Theatre, London on 24 September 1967 supporting Traffic on their first U.K. presentation. Also on the bill were Jackie Edwards and Nirvana. The compere was David Symonds.

When Steve Winwood left Traffic to form Blind Faith, Weaver was recruited to replace him and Traffic became Mason, Capaldi, Wood and Frog, soon shortened to Wooden Frog. They played a few gigs before dissolving three months later when Traffic reformed. After this he recorded with solo artists such as Buddy Guy, Dave Gilmour, Joe Cocker, Eric Burdon, Frankie Miller, Roger Chapman Steve Marriott and Gary Moore as well as Taj Mahal and The Blues Band, also playing keyboards with Steve Marriott’s Majik Mijits. (by wikipedia)

MickWeaver01A.jpgThis is his third and last solo album … which at the time was only issued in the USA. The material on ‘Into The Fire’ once again is organ dominated Swingin’ London music, but it also includes funky moods and moves. (by shinybeast.nl)

This album by Wynder K Frog – a groovy Brit organist who’s probably best known for his work with Traffic, but who’s really opening up here, laying down some wonderfully jazzy and funky instrumentals with a fuzzy Hammond sound that’s really great!

Although the set was recorded in the UK, the best cuts have a soulful crossover sound that feels like it should have been recorded during one of the Cadet Concept sessions in Chicago at the same time. One cut has vocals, but the best are the instrumentals – like “Into the Fire”, “Howl In Wolf’s Clothing”, “Hot Salt Beef”, “Cool Hand Stanley”, and “Why Am I Treated So Bad” (by dustygroove.com)

Oh yes … this album grooves …  !

LinerNotes.jpg

Personnel:
Kwasi “Rocky” Dzidzornu (percussion)
Neil Hubbard (guitar)
Chris Mercer (saxophone)
Shawn Phillips (guitar, vocals)
Bruce Rowland (drums)
Alan Spenner (bass)
Mick “Wynder K. Frog” Weaver (keyboards)

BackCover1.jpg

Tracklist:
01. Into The Fire (Mercer/Weaver) 4.11
02. Howl In Wolf’s Clothing (Weaver) 3.28
03. F In Blues (Mercer/Weaver) 5.43
04. Cool Hand Stanley (Mercer/Weaver/Hubbard) 5.40
05. Eddie’s Tune (Weaver/Hubbard/Phillips) 5.27
06. Why Am I Treated So Bad (Staples) 5.02
07. Hot Salt Beef (Mercer/Weaver/Hubbard) 4.54
08. Warm And Tender Love (Robinson) 4.12

LabelB1.jpg

*
**

Coming soon, the wonderful Wynder K. Frog Box “Shook, Shimmy And Shake”
with lots of rarities and a gret booklet:

FrogBox

Atomic Rooster – Death Walks Behind You (1970)

FrontCover1.jpg“Devil’s Answer” might be the record for which Atomic Rooster are remembered, but it was their second album that posted warning that they were on the verge of creating something dazzling — simply because the record itself is a thing of almost freakish beauty. With only organist Vincent Crane surviving from the original lineup, and John Du Cann coming in to relieve him of some of the songwriting duties, Death Walks Behind You opens at a gallop and closes with a sprint. The title track is effectively spooky enough for any Hammer horror aficionado, all descending pianos and Psycho-screaming guitars, while “Gershatzer,” a duet for organ and percussion, proves that new drummer Paul Hammond is more than a match for the departed Carl Palmer. It’s in between these dramatic bookends, however, that Rooster truly peak, with the stately “VUG,” the pensive “Nobody Else,” and the truly amazing “Tomorrow Night” (one of the scariest love songs ever let loose on the U.K. chart) all impressing. Crane’s liner notes, incidentally, remind us that the album packed a different version of the hit, with an extended ending that descends into unimagined chaos — a shocker for the pop kids, perhaps, but a fabulous bridge into the succeeding “7 Streets.” Possibly the best evidence for this being Atomic Rooster’s masterpiece, however, comes not simply from what’s on the album, but for what has been left off. An excellent repackaging and remastering job restores the original artwork in all its gatefold glory, but you’ll search in vain for bonus tracks — not because there were none to add, but because they simply wouldn’t fit. Sit through Death Walks Behind You, after all, and you really won’t need any more surprises. (by Dave Thompson)

AtomicRooster01

In the progressive rock community there is some controversy regarding the status of Atomic Rooster as a full-fledged prog band. Like many Seventies acts often placed under the ‘heavy prog’ umbrella (Captain Beyond and High Tide to name but two), in the eyes of purists they are little more than glorified hard rock combos with some hints of something more complex, yet more akin to Deep Purple and Black Sabbath than Genesis or Yes. In recent times I have happened to see Atomic Rooster labeled as a ‘dark’ band – a definition that made me think of the likes of The Cure or Siouxsie and the Banshees rather than any of the classic bands of the Seventies.

Vincent Crane1

On the other hand, as both the brilliant title and the iconic cover (depicting William Blake’s “Nebuchadnezzar” on a simple black background) suggest, Death Walks Behind You is a very dark album – a haunting, Hammond-drenched effort which sounds like a encounter between Black Sabbath and Deep Purple with ELP writing the soundtrack. In many ways, it can be seen as the blueprint for the heavier side of prog, a lavish feast for any self-respecting fan of the mighty Hammond organ, and a welcome respite from the pastoral soundscapes of Camel or Genesis, or the mind-boggling intricacy of Yes. Definitely hard-edged, occasionally oppressive, undeniably raw and unpolished, it possesses the kind of power that many more recent albums strive in vain to achieve.

AlternateFrontCovers

Alternate frontcovers

This is one of the rare albums that captured my attention right from the first listen. True, Death Walks Behind You is not perfect, but then very few albums are, even those normally hailed as masterpieces. Vincent Crane’s highly effective, aggressive playing style, perfectly complemented by the expressive voice and blistering guitar lines of John DuCann (formerly with proto-prog outfit Andromeda), is a real treat for the ears of every Hammond lover. The third band member, drummer Paul Hammond (who replaced co-founder Carl Palmer when the latter joined ELP), lays down a powerful backbeat, assisted by Crane’s skillful use of both keyboard and foot pedals to replace the missing bass lines. This idiosyncratic take on the classic power trio unleashes a massive volume of music that, while not as technically impeccable as what ELP or Deep Purple were producing at the time, is brimming with sheer intensity.

SingleFCs.jpg

Various single covers

A couple of tracks relieve the tension and overall dark mood of the album – namely the catchy, almost upbeat “Tomorrow Night” (originally released as a single), and the heavy rock-goes-commercial “I Can’t Take No More”. Neither are personal favourites: in my view, especially the latter could be scrapped from the album without doing a whole lot of damage. On the other hand, the slow, melancholy number “Nobody Else”, dominated by Crane’s piano, sees a remarkably emotional vocal performance by DuCann, providing a perfect foil for Crane’s despondent, foreboding lyrics (he suffered from mental problems and ended up committing suicide, as did Hammond).

AtomicRooster03

The real highlights of the album, however, are to be found elsewhere. The title-track is introduced by dissonant, menacing piano, then explodes into a memorably hypnotic organ riff punctuated by the obsessive repetition of the title, “Death Walks Behind You”. “7 Streets” is a more structured composition, based on the interplay between organ and guitar, while “Sleeping for Years” is in a similar vein, though with a slightly darker tone – both excellent examples of vintage heavy prog, somewhat influenced by Black Sabbath, but with better vocals and lashings of keyboards replacing Tony Iommi’s monstrous riffing. The two instrumentals, “VUG” and “Gershatzer”, are probably the most progressive offerings on the album, showcasing Crane’s skills as a Hammond player; the latter, which is almost 8 minutes long, has the slightly loose feel of a jam session, intensified by the presence of a short drum solo.

USBackCover.jpg

US backcover

Though not exactly flawless, Death Walks Behind You is an impressive offering that is almost a must-listen for Hammond fans and anyone who likes their prog with a harder edge (though not necessarily metal). A fascinating, almost addictive album by an underrated band, whose long but chequered career ended tragically with Vincent Crane’s death in 1989. (by Raffaella Berry)

One of the finest album from the early prog-rock years in UK !

LPBackCover1.JPG

Personnel:
John du Cann (guitar, vocals, bass)
Vincent Crane (keyboards, background vocals)
Paul Hammond (drums, percussion)
+
Carl Plamer (drums on 10.)

Booklet1.JPG

Tracklist:
01. Death Walks Behind You (Du Cann, Crane) 7.23
02. Vug (Crane) 5.00
03. Tomorrow Night (Crane) 4.00
04. 7 Streets (Du Cann) 6.44
05. Sleeping For Years (Du Cann) 5.27
06. I Can’t Take No More (Du Cann) 3.34
07. Nobody Else (Crane/Du Cann) 5.01
08. Gershatzer (Crane/Hammond) 7.58
+
09. Play The Game (“Tomorrow Night” B-side 1971) (Du Cann) 4.42
10. The Devil’s Answer (Demo version 1970) (Du Cann) 4.00
11. Devil’s Answer (Single version) (Du Cann) 3.28

OriginalLabels

*
**

Death walked behind them:

Vincent Crane: 
(1943 – 1989)

John Du Cann:
(1946 – 2011)

Paul Hammond:
(1952–1992)

Death walks behind you

Lock the door, switch the light
You’ll be so afraid tonight
Hide away from the bad
Count the nine lives that you had

Start to scream, shout for help
There is no one by your side
To forget what is done
Seems so hard to carry on

Luck is false, that it’s near
Bring yourself to understand
It’s your fate or what’s cast
Point a finger at yourself

Death walks behind you

Henry Townsend – Henry T. Music Man (Cairo Blues) (1973 – 1999)

LPFrontCover1Henry “Mule” Townsend (October 27, 1909 – September 24, 2006) was an American blues singer, guitarist and pianist.

Townsend was born Henry Jesse James Townsend, in Shelby, Mississippi, and grew up in Cairo, Illinois. He left home at the age of nine because of an abusive father and hoboed his way to St. Louis, Missouri. He learned guitar while in his early teens from a locally renowned blues guitarist known as Dudlow Joe.

By the late 1920s he had begun touring and recording with the pianist Walter Davis and had acquired the nickname Mule, because he was sturdy in both physique and character. In St. Louis, he worked with some of the early blues pioneers, including J. D. Short.

Townsend was one of the only artists known to have recorded in nine consecutive decades. He first recorded in 1929 and remained active up to 2006. By the mid-1990s, Townsend and his one-time collaborator Yank Rachell were the only active blues artists whose careers had started in the 1920s. He recorded on several different labels, including Columbia Records, Bluesville Records, and Folkways Records.

HenryTownsend01Articulate and self-aware, with an excellent memory, Townsend gave many invaluable interviews to blues enthusiasts and scholars. Paul Oliver recorded him in 1960 and quoted him extensively in his 1967 work Conversations with the Blues. Thirty years later, Bill Greensmith edited thirty hours of taped interviews with Henry to produce a full autobiography, giving a vivid history of the blues scene in St Louis and East St Louis in its prime.

In 1979, Bob West recorded Townsend in St. Louis. That recording was released on CD in 2002 on Arcola Records as “Henry Townsend the Real St. Louis Blues.”

In 1985 he received the National Heritage Fellowship in recognition of his status as a “master artist”. In 1995 he was inducted into the St. Louis Walk of Fame.

Townsend died on September 24, 2006, at the age of 96, at St. Mary’s Ozaukee Hospital, in Mequon, Wisconsin, just hours after having been the first person to be presented with a “key” in Grafton’s Paramount Plaza Walk of Fame.

HenryTownsend02A

On February 10, 2008, Townsend was posthumously awarded a Grammy, his first, at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards. The award, in the category Best Traditional Blues Album, was given for his performances on Last of the Great Mississippi Delta Bluesmen: Live In Dallas, released by the Blue Shoe Project. Townsend’s son, Alonzo Townsend, accepted the award on his behalf.

On December 4, 2009, a marker commemorating Townsend was added to the Mississippi Blues Trail (by wikipedia)

BluesTrail.jpg

The Mississippi Blues Trail was created by the Mississippi Blues Commission in 2006 to place interpretive markers at the most notable historical sites related to the birth, growth, and influence of the blues throughout (and in some cases beyond) the state of Mississippi. Within the state the trail extends from the Gulf Coast north along several highways to (among other points) Natchez, Vicksburg, Jackson, Leland, Greenwood, Clarksdale, Tunica, Grenada, Oxford, Columbus, and Meridian. The largest concentration of markers is in the Mississippi Delta but other regions of the state are also represented. Several out-of-state markers have also been erected where blues with Mississippi roots has had significance. (by wikipedia)

HenryTownsend05

And here is one of these hard to find albums by Henry Townsend:

Several related factors come together here to make this a particularly wonderful blues album, something in the nature of a sleeper that may become a listener’s favorite choice when it comes time for some blues. For one thing, there’s the surprise factor in that this is not one of the “star” names in blues, due to the fact that Henry Townsend mostly recorded as a sideman, or under a bogus name such as St. Louis Jimmy. His is a top-quality blues voice and he is a sharp and accurate blues picker on both the electric and acoustic model, in the Lightnin’ Hopkins and Skip James mode but with a harder edge. And he even throws in some decent blues piano, although the out-of-tune model he uses moves the whole thing into the rarified realm of microtonal blues.

HenryTownsend03

Over-familiarity can sometimes take the luster off a performance by a big-name artist, but that is guaranteed not to happen with Townsend because very few blues fans can say they have heard too much of him. Material was recorded over a five-year period, and the wandering and ever-changing sound quality also helps the album, as do the different instrumental combinations. The tandem guitar picking really sounds good, with that wooden back-porch quality that escaped most of the primitive recording machines in the old days, and couldn’t possibly be recreated in a modern studio. One track worthy of special mention — they are all really good — is the vocal duet performance with Vernell Townsend, a song entitled “Why Do We Love Each Other?” This has a sound that really sticks with you. (by Eugene Chadbourne)

And here I can offer the CD-version from 199 with two bonus tracks

CDFront+BackCover.jpg

Personnel:
Henry Townsend (vocals, guitar, piano on 04. + 10.)
+
Henry Brown (piano on 08.)
Andrew Cauthen (harmonica on 02.)
Mike Stewart (guitar on 03. – 06., 09. – 13. )
Vernell Townsend (vocals on 07.)

LPBackCover1

Tracklist:
01. Cairo Blues (*) 3.27
02. Tired Of Being Mistreated (*) 2.57
03. Biddle Street Blues 2.52
04. She Walked Away 3.32
05. Every Day Of My Life 3.22
06. Sloppy Drunk Again 3.47
07. Why Do We Love Each Other? 3.23
08. Deep Morgan Stomp 3.07
09. Buzz,Buzz,Buzz,… 2.45
10. Heart Trouble 3.40
11. Doing Better In Life 3.15
12. Don’t You Remember Me 4.04
13. Now Or Never 5.06

All ongs ritten by Henry Towshend

(*) CD bonus tracks)

Recorded St. Louis, Mo., September 1969 (tracks 1 to 5), and April 1974 (tracks 8, 10, 13).
Recorded at Potomac, Md., August 1970 (tracks 3, 6), August 1971(tracks 9, 11, 12).
Recorded at Silver Spring, Md., August 1971 (tracks 3, 7).

LabelB1

*
**

HenryTownsend04

While Henry Townsend did not scorn his old recordings, he had no taste for spending his later years simply recreating them.
Blues, for him, was a living medium, and he continued to express himself in it, most remarkably in his songwriting.
(Tony Russell, The Guardian)