Thin Lizzy – Live And Dangerous (1978)

FrontCover1.JPGLive and Dangerous is a live double album by the Irish rock band Thin Lizzy, released in June 1978. It was recorded in London in 1976, and Philadelphia and Toronto in 1977, with further production in Paris. It was also the last Thin Lizzy album to feature guitarist Brian Robertson,[a] who left the band shortly after its release.

The band decided to release a live album after their producer Tony Visconti did not have enough time to work on a full studio session. The group listened through various archive recordings from earlier tours and compiled the album from the best versions. Various studio overdubs were made to the live recordings during early 1978 in Paris; exactly how much of the album is overdubbed has been a contentious topic since its release. The album reached No. 2 in the UK album charts, ultimately selling over half a million copies. It has continued to attract critical acclaim and it has appeared in several lists of the greatest live albums of all time.

By the mid-1970s, Thin Lizzy had stabilised around founding members, lead singer and bassist Phil Lynott and drummer Brian Downey, alongside guitarists Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson. The band had found commercial success with several hit singles and developed a strong live following, including headlining the Reading Festival. Robertson had briefly left the band in 1977 but subsequently returned. The group had planned to ThinLizzy01make a new studio album at the start of 1978. Working with producer Tony Visconti, Thin Lizzy retained commercial success with the album Bad Reputation, and the group wanted to work with him again. However, Visconti had a very tight schedule and had committed to producing several albums for other artists, so Lynott suggested instead that they spend two weeks together compiling a live album from earlier recordings.

The band and Visconti listened to over 30 hours of archive recordings, looking for the best performances to release.[3] The album sleeve notes credit two concerts as the source of the album – Hammersmith Odeon, London, England on 14 November 1976 (as part of the tour for Johnny the Fox, released earlier that year), and Seneca College Fieldhouse, Don Mills, Toronto, Ontario, Canada on 28 October 1977 (as part of the tour for Bad Reputation).[1] Visconti later revealed that shows at the Tower Theater, Philadelphia on 20 and 21 October 1977, a week earlier than the Toronto gig, had also been recorded. The band had listened back to the Hammersmith tapes shortly after recording and agreed that the performances sounded better than the studio versions. Thin Lizzy biographer Mark Putterford believes the majority of recordings on the finished album are from the Hammersmith show. Visconti later said the performance of “Southbound” came from a soundcheck before one of the Philadelphia gigs, with the audience reaction dubbed in from another song.

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On this album, the band segues immediately from “Cowboy Song” into “The Boys Are Back in Town”, on the line “a cowboy’s life is the life for me” – the last chord of the former was the first of the latter, although their studio versions were recorded as separate songs.[8] This segue between the two tracks remained a staple of the band’s setlist for the rest of their career, and examples can be found on other live releases. The band had rearranged “Still in Love with You” to be slower and more emotional than the original studio version, and the version recorded on Live and Dangerous was considered by Putterford to be the highlight of Lynott’s musical career.

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To promote the album, the group filmed a gig at the Rainbow Theatre, London on 29 March 1978 for a television broadcast. However, this was cancelled and the footage went unaired.

The album was mixed and overdubbed at Studio Des Dames, Paris in January 1978. All sources agree that overdubbing took place on Live and Dangerous, although there is considerable disagreement about the extent of them. According to Visconti, the album was “75% recorded in the studio” with only the drums and audience noise remaining from the original live recordings. Visconti later said the overdubs and production were essential in order that the listener could hear a professional sounding band. He claims to have created some audience sounds from a keyboard-triggered tape loop in a similar manner to a Mellotron or sampling keyboard. Nevertheless, Visconti was happy with the production and believes the end result sounds authentic.

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However, manager Chris O’Donnell said the album was 75% live, with overdubs restricted to backing vocals and a few guitar solos to “clean the sound up”. Lynott said that there were a few necessary overdubs, but “anything else would have ruined the atmosphere on those recordings and made a mockery of putting out a live album”. Robertson has been particularly critical over Visconti’s view. He has said the album is almost all live, and the sound levels on stage would make overdubbing impossible due to the lack of acoustic separation between instruments. He claims a recording of “Still In Love With You”, featuring a guitar solo he felt was better than the one at the gig that was eventually released, could not be used due to phaser noise on the bass. From this, he concluded that if the bass could not be overdubbed, nothing else could either.

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O’Donnell hired Chalkie Davies, a photographer for New Musical Express for two weeks to photograph the band on a US tour in early 1978 in order to capture enough pictures suitable for the album artwork. The front cover, featuring Lynott in the foreground, was originally supposed to be the back cover as the group wanted equal coverage of all members. O’Donnell disagreed and reversed the front and back photographs at the last minute. The album had a working title of Thin Lizzy Live but Lynott decided that Live and Dangerous was better.

The record sleeve includes a montage photograph in the studio consisting of a mirror, straw, razor blade and a rolled up five pound note (as an overt reference to cocaine consumption). Lynott insisted on adding the picture over the rest of the band’s objections.

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Live and Dangerous was released as a double album on 2 June 1978. In the UK, it was released on Vertigo Records and reached a high of No. 2 in the UK album charts, held from the top spot by the Grease soundtrack album. It remained in the charts for 62 weeks[16] and eventually sold 600,000 copies. It was also the first album to be released by Warner Bros. Records in America after the band left Mercury Records in that area. A single from the album, “Rosalie / Cowgirl’s Song” was released in April and reached No. 20 in the UK single charts.

The band began touring to promote the album, but after a one-off gig in Ibiza, Lynott and Robertson had an acrimonious argument. Robertson subsequently quit Thin Lizzy permanently to form Wild Horses with former Rainbow bassist Jimmy Bain. He was replaced by a returning Gary Moore, who had already been a band member in 1974 and 1977.

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The album was reissued on CD in 1989. The March 1978 footage from the Rainbow Theater concert was released a first time in 1980 on VHS by VCL Video and as a 60-minute edit by Castle Communications in 1994 and titled Live & Dangerous.[21][22] The complete footage was released on DVD in 2007, with other group performances including a show from their farewell tour on 26 January 1983, and four Top of the Pops clips from the 1970s.

In 2009, the live album Still Dangerous was released, which features material from the 20 October 1977 gig at Philadelphia that was used for some of Live and Dangerous. There is some overlap of tracks between the two albums, though Still Dangerous is completely live with no overdubs.

Kerrang! magazine listed the album at No. 50 among the “100 Greatest Heavy Metal Albums of All Time”.

The album continues to attract critical praise. In 2010 Live and Dangerous was ranked number one in PlanetRock.com’s The Greatest Live Album Top 40. The following year, the British music magazine NME ranked Live and Dangerous at No. 1 in its 50 Greatest Live Albums of All Time. In 2015, Rolling Stone put the album at No. 46 in its list of the greatest live albums. The album is included in the 2011 revision of 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. (by wikipedia)

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Released in 1978, just as the hot streak starting with 1975’s Fighting and running through 1977’s Bad Reputation came to an end, Live and Dangerous was a glorious way to celebrate Thin Lizzy’s glory days and one of the best double live LPs of the 70s. Of course, this, like a lot of double-lives of that decade — Kiss’ Alive! immediately springs to mind — isn’t strictly live; it was overdubbed and colored in the studio (the very presence of studio whiz Tony Visconti as producer should have been an indication that some corrective steering may have been afoot). But even if there was some tweaking in the studio, Live and Dangerous feels live, containing more energy and power than the original LPs, which were already dynamic in their own right. It’s this energy, combined with the expert song selection, that makes Live and Dangerous a true live classic. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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I usually prefer to listen to studio albums than live albums, but this one, as Made in Japan to Deep Purple, is an exception: it is the best option to get into Thin Lizzy and start to know them. It works like a greatest hits, including the best themes of the band until this album, but offering the listener a high level performance. I’ve read somwehere that it is re-recorded so it isn’t “pure live”, but listening to the result I don’t care a lot, because it’s excellent.
I especially love, for example, the transition from “Dancing in the moonlight” to “Massacre”, the solo in “Emerald” and “Still in love with you”. Lynnot really put sentiment into his singing. (reymonmvc toledo)

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Personnel:
Brian Downey (drums, percussion)
Scott Gorham (guitar, background vocals)
Phil Lynott (vocals, bass)
Brian Robertson (guitar, background vocals)
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John Earle – saxophone on “Dancing in the Moonlight”
Huey Lewis (as “Bluesey Huey Lewis”) – harmonica on “Baby Drives Me Crazy”

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Tracklist:
01. Jailbreak (Lynott) 4.33.
02. Emerald (Downey/Gorham/Lynott/Robertson) 4.33
03. Southbound (Lynott) 4,41
04. Rosalie (Seger)/ Cowgirl’s Song (Downey/Lynott) 4.13
05. Dancing In The Moonlight (It’s Caught Me In Its Spotlight) (Lynott) / Massacre (Downey/Gorham/Lynott) 6.48
06. Still In Love With You (Lynott) 7.41
07. Johnny The Fox Meets Jimmy The Weed (Downey/Gorham/Lynott) 3.44
08. Cowboy Song (Downey/Lynott) /  The Boys Are Back In Town (Lynott) 9.43
09. Don’t Believe a Word” Lynott 2:05
10. Warriors (Gorham/Lynott) 3.56
11. Are You Ready (Downey/Gorham/Lynott/Robertson) 2.47
12. Suicide (Lynott) 5.13
13. Sha La La (Downey/Lynott) 5.33
14. Baby Drives Me Crazy (Downey/Gorham/Lynott/Robertson) 6.41
15. The Rocker (Bell/Downey/Lynott) 4.01
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16. Live And Dangerous (full album – uncut edition) 1.16.51

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Philip Parris Lynott (20 August 1949 – 4 January 1986)

 

When I passed you in the doorway
Well you took me with a glance
I should have took that last bus home
But I asked you for a dance

Now we go steady to the pictures
I always get chocolate stains on my pants
And my father he’s going crazy
He says I’m living in a trance

But I’m dancing in the moonlight
It’s caught me in its spotlight
It’s alright, alright
Dancing in the moonlight
On this long hot summer night

It’s three o’clock in the morning
And I’m on the streets again
I disobeyed another warning
I should have been in by ten

Now I won’t get out until Sunday
I’ll have to say I stayed with friends
But it’s a habit worth forming
If it means to justify the end

Dancing in the moonlight
It’s caught me in its spotlight
It’s alright, alright
Dancing in the moonlight
On this long hot summer night

And I’m walking home
The last bus has long gone
But I’m dancing in the moonlight

 

 

Mitch Ryder – How I Spent My Vacation (1978)

FrontCover1.JPGThis disc marked the end of Ryder’s five-year self-imposed exile from the music business. And right out of the gate, Ryder showed that he was pissed off — though at whom, it’s hard to tell. Take “Tough Kid,” the album’s opening track. Sample lyric: “Open your mouth you failure, shoot off a gun / Nobody’s gonna miss you anyway when your [sic] gone.” Musically, it’s a sound effort — but the sheer anger of this one leaves me confused, and it takes all the musical fire out of the track.

Nothing, however, prepares you for “Cherry Poppin'”. I listened to this track several times, each time asking myself, “Did he really say what I think he said?” Believe it, bucko. On one side, you could say that the, aah, creative imagery Ryder uses here is meant to express anger at how he was treated by the music industry early in his career. But on the other hand, one wonders if Ryder was asked to become the spokesman for NAMBLA after cutting this track. Mitch, c’mon, man to man… what the fuck were you thinking when you wrote this one, huh?

Yet there are times when How I Spent My Vacation shows the talents of Ryder and his fellow bandmates, and makes you wonder why Ryder wasn’t allowed to plow his own musical path earlier in his career. “Dance Ourselves To Death” is highlighted by the solid performance of his backing band, while “Passions Wheel” and “Freezin’ In Hell” allow Ryder to show a gentler side to himself.

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Still, How I Spent My Vacation is as difficult to listen to as sitting through five carousels of vacation shots when you go visit relatives you hate. “Nice & Easy” and “Poster” are very difficult tracks to get through, though there are occasional signs of hope in both songs. Even a song like “The Jon,” which is one of the better tracks, occasionally steeps itself into non sequitur babbling lyrically.

Was it a good idea for Ryder to come back into the musical scene with such raw nerves exposed? I don’t know the answer to that, but I do know that How I Spent My Vacation is an occasionally disturbing picture that might seem satisfying to some, scary to others, and I have difficulty recommending this one.  (Christopher Thelen)

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Ryder recorded this hidden gem in 1978. Like his other post-Detroit Wheels albums, it’s an angry album, full of the original songs that he had inside of him but wasn’t allowed to pursue back in the day. As such, the lyrics seem to come at times in a garbled rush, as if Ryder had these songs bursting inside of him. It starts to wear after a few tunes (too much angst), but those in for the long haul will be rewarded with the performances on “Tough Kid,” “Passions Wheel,” “The Jon,” “Falling Forming,” and the closer, “Poster.” Another closet classic here for those who want to investigate the other side of this Detroit rocker’s career. (by Cub Koda)

And “Passions Wheel ” is one of the finest ballads ever written !

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Personnel:
Billy Csernits (keyboards)
Wayne “Tex” Gabriel (guitar)
Mark Gougeon (bass)
Wilson Owens (drums)
Mitch Ryder (William S. Levise, Jr.) (vocals, percussion)
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John Badanjek (drums on 06.)
Bugs Beddow (trombone on 04. + 08.)
Dave Opatik (guitar on 03.)
Leonard Salano (harmonica on 01.)
Richard Schein (guitar on 01. + 02.)
Tony Suehy (bass on 06.)
John Vass (guitar on 03.)
Wayne Wayne (saxophone on 04., 07. + 08.)

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Tracklist:
01. Tough Kid (Ryder/Levise) 3.14
02. Dance Ourselves To Death (Ryder/Gabriel) 5.32
03. Passions Wheel (Ryder/Levise) 3.32
04. Cherry Poppin’ (Ryder/Levise) 4.18
05. Freezin’ In Hell (Ryder/Levise) 5.24
06. Nice ‘N Easy (Ryder/Gabriel) 4.22
07. The Jon (Ryder/Levise/Gabriel) 3.31
08. Falling Forming (Ryder/Levise) 4.54
09. Poster (Ryder/Levise) 8.30

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Rainbow – Long Live Rock ‘N’ Roll (1978)

FrontCover1.JPGLong Live Rock ‘n’ Roll is the third studio album released by the British hard rock band Rainbow, released in 1978, and the last to feature original lead vocalist Ronnie James Dio.

Recording of the album commenced in April 1977 at a studio in Château d’Hérouville, France, featuring Ritchie Blackmore, Ronnie James Dio and Cozy Powell. Keyboards were initially played on a session basis by former Rainbow member Tony Carey, while bass parts were started by Mark Clarke. Clarke was soon dismissed, however, and the bass parts were recorded by Blackmore himself. By July 1977 seven tracks that ended on the album were in demo form. Recording was suspended while the band recruited Bob Daisley and David Stone and thereafter commenced extensive touring of Europe in the summer and fall of 1977. A return to the Château d’Hérouville studio in December saw the band finish the album and also yielded a final track, “Gates of Babylon”.

Although Daisley and Stone are listed on the album credits for their contributions, they joined the band partway through the recording sessions and only appear on three and four songs, respectively. Stone wrote parts of “Gates of Babylon” but was never credited.

“Kill the King” was already a staple part of the tour setlists, opening Rainbow concerts since mid-1976. It first appeared on the live album On Stage in 1977. In the 1977–78 concerts the title track and “Kill the King” were the only songs performed, although “L.A. Connection” did get a few airings on the US tour before being dropped from the set. From 2004 to his death in 2010, Dio’s solo shows featured a live version of “Kill the King”, “Gates of Babylon”, and the title track.

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The original vinyl release was in a gatefold-sleeve, with a lyric-sheet insert. The crowd picture is actually from a Rush concert, with the wording on the banner the fans were actually holding replaced by the Rainbow album title and the visible Rush T-shirts airbrushed to black. (by wikipedia)

Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll may be singer Ronnie James Dio’s last album with Rainbow, but at least he went out on a high note. While the material is not quite as strong as on the previous studio effort, Rising, Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll maintains the momentum the band had built up. “Kill the King” had been previously heard on the live On Stage record, but here it sounds more fully realized. Also, the title track from the album stands as one of the best songs the band did, not to mention a noble sentiment. The chugging “L.A. Connection” is another highlight.

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As with all of their first four albums, this one was produced by Martin Birch (who produced everyone from Blue Öyster Cult to Wayne County), and he really knows how to get the best out of the band by this point. The result is that the songs couldn’t sound any better, so even if some of the material isn’t quite up to their best, the album is still very cohesive, steady, and, ultimately, satisfying. This would turn out to be the last great album Rainbow would ever make, although they did enjoy a great deal of chart success in the post-Dio era. (by Geoff Ginsberg)

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Personnel:
Ritchie Blackmore (guitar, bass)
Tony Carey (keyboards on 01., 02. + 08.)
Bob Daisley (bass on 04., 05. + 07.)
Ronnie James Dio (vocals)
Cozy Powell (drums, percussion)
David Stone – keyboards on 03. – 05.)
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Bavarian String Ensemble conducted by Rainer Pietsch on 04.
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Karl Heinz Feit (cello on 08.)
Ferenc Kiss (violin on 08.)
Ottmar Machan (viola on 08.)
Nico Nicolic (violin on 08.)
Rudi Risavy (flute on 08.)

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Tracklist:
01. Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll (Blackmore/Dio) 4.22
02. Lady Of The Lake (Blackmore/Dio) 3.39
03. L.A. Connection (Blackmore/Dio) 5.03
04. Gates Of Babylon (Blackmore/Dio/Stone) 6.50
05. Kill The King (Blackmore/Dio/Powell) 4.30
06. The Shed (Subtle) (Blackmore/Dio/Powell) 4.47
07. Sensitive To Light (Blackmore/Dio) 3.08
08. Rainbow Eyes (Blackmore/Dio) 7.13

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SignatureCozyPowellMy copy was signed by Cozy Powell

 

More Rainbow:

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The Rutles – Same (1978)

FrontCover1.jpgThe Rutles are a rock band known for their visual and aural pastiches and parodies of the Beatles. This originally fictional band, created by Eric Idle and Neil Innes for 1970s television programming, became an actual group – whilst remaining a parody of the Beatles – which toured and recorded, releasing many songs and albums that included two UK chart hits.

Originally created as a short sketch in Idle’s British television comedy series Rutland Weekend Television, the Rutles gained notice after being the focus of the mockumentary television film All You Need Is Cash (1978, aka The Rutles). Former Beatle George Harrison appeared in the film and assisted in its creation. Encouraged by the positive public reaction to the sketch, featuring Beatles’ music pastiches by Innes, the film was written by Idle, who co-directed it with Gary Weis. It had 20 songs written by Innes, which he performed with three musicians as the Rutles. A soundtrack album in 1978 was followed in 1996 by Archaeology, which spoofed the then recent Beatles Anthology series.

A second film, The Rutles 2: Can’t Buy Me Lunch – modelled on the 2000 TV special The Beatles Revolution – was made in 2002 and released in the US on DVD in 2003.

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George Harrison was involved in the project from the beginning. Producer Gary Weis said, “We were sitting around in Eric’s kitchen one day, planning a sequence that really ripped into the mythology and George looked up and said, ‘We were the Beatles, you know!’ Then he shook his head and said, ‘Aw, never mind.’ I think he was the only one of the Beatles who really could see the irony of it all.”

Harrison said, “The Rutles sort of liberated me from the Beatles in a way. It was the only thing I saw of those Beatles television shows they made. It was actually the best, funniest and most scathing. But at the same time, it was done with the most love.”

Ringo Starr liked the happier scenes in the film, but felt the scenes that mimicked sadder times hit too close.
John Lennon loved the film and refused to return the videotape and soundtrack he was given for approval. He told Innes, however, that “Get Up and Go” was too close to the Beatles’ “Get Back” and to be careful not to be sued by ATV Music, owners of the Beatles catalogue’s copyright at the time. The song was consequently omitted from the 1978 vinyl LP soundtrack.

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Paul McCartney, who had just released his own album, London Town, always answered, “No comment.” According to Innes: “He had a dinner at some awards thing at the same table as Eric one night and Eric said it was a little frosty.” Idle claimed McCartney changed his mind because his wife Linda thought it was funny.

The Rutles is a soundtrack album to the 1978 telemovie All You Need Is Cash. The album contains 14 of the tongue-in-cheek pastiches of Beatles songs that were featured in the film.

The primary creative force of the Rutles’ music was Neil Innes, the sole composer and arranger of the songs. Innes had been the “seventh” member of Monty Python, as well as one of the main artists behind the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band in the late 1960s, who had been featured in the real Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour film performing “Death Cab for Cutie”.

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Innes credits the three musicians he recruited to assist him on the project as having been important in helping him capture the feel of the Beatles. Guitarist/singer Ollie Halsall and drummer John Halsey had played together in the groups Timebox and Patto. Multi-instrumentalist Rikki Fataar had played with the Flames before joining the Beach Boys in the early 1970s.

Eric Idle, who devised the Rutles concept and co-wrote the film, did not play or sing on any of the recordings. He lip-synced “Dirk” vocals that were in fact sung by Halsall. Innes says that Idle, who had recently had an appendectomy, offered to help but was encouraged to recuperate. Having encouraged Idle and Innes to make a film that satirised the Beatles’ history, and lent them archival footage for inclusion in the film,[4][5] George Harrison facilitated the album’s release by introducing them to the chairman of Warner Bros. Records, Mo Ostin. (by wikipedia)

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Pop culture, comedic satire, and rock music have always made for strange bedfellows. With all due respect to the collective genius involved in the Spinal Tap saga, it is safe to say no other artists have been able to repeat or re-create the delicate balance exhibited in the Rutles’ multimedia parody. This venture included a made-for-television mockumentary titled All You Need Is Cash. On this 1990 CD release, the contents of the original 1978 soundtrack — which incidentally bore the same name as the show — are included, as are an additional half-dozen recordings made for the film, but ultimately became victims of the time limitations inherent in the vinyl medium. The Rutles began with Monty Python’s Flying Circus member Eric Idle. His initial flash on the concept was as a short-lived BBC series, titled Rutland Weekend Television. Joining Idle on a regular basis was former Bonzo Dog Band member Neil Innes — whose seemingly innate musical abilities would also adorn latter-era Monty Python performances. According to Idle, “His [Innes] contributions [to the program] were Beatley,” thus inspiring the concept of a full-blown Beatles spoof. After previewing a demo reel to Lorne Michaels — producer of Saturday Night Live — Idle was convinced to develop the idea for NBC TV. The Rutles are: Ron Nasty, who is played by Innes (guitar/keyboards/vocals) and is the John Lennon character; Barry Wom (aka Barrington Womble) is portrayed by John Halsey (percussion/vocals), who presents a dead-on caricature of the deadpan Ringo Starr; Stig O’ Hara is depicted by Rikki Fataar (guitar/bass/vocals/sitar/tabla), who flawlessly emulates George Harrison; and Idle — the only non-musician — who spoofs Paul McCartney as Dirk McQuickly. The soundtrack takes on a whole other existence as each and every composition is deeply and sincerely ingrained in the Beatles’ music. Because of the practically sacred nature Beatles music shares in almost every life it graces, Innes penned and produced spoofs that were so eerily similar in structure they could easily be mistaken for previously unearthed tracks from the real fab four.

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There are obvious put-ons such as “Ouch!” and “Help!” or “Doubleback Alley” and “Penny Lane.” However, the real beauty inherent in many of these tunes comes via the subtle innuendos. These ultimately involve multiple listenings in order to locate the origins of a particular guitar riff, vocal inflection, or possible lyrical spoof. The best of these include “Hold My Hand,” which references “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” in title, and “All My Lovin” in song structure. “Piggy in the Middle” is a sly reworking of “I Am the Walrus,” and “It’s Looking Good” could be considered a variation of the Rubber Soul cut “I’m Looking Through You” right down to the repeated lyrics at the song’s coda. The band reunited (minus Idle) in the mid-’90s for a few one-off gigs, and in 1996 Archaeology — a send-up of the Beatles’ six-disc Anthology — was released to critical acclaim. Additionally, a various-artist album titled Rutles Highway Revisited — which featured an all-star cast including: Syd Straw, Tuli Kupferberg, Bongwater, Shonen Knife, and Galaxie 500 — recorded their favorite Rutles tunes and the disc was issued on the ever-eclectic Shimmy Disc label in 1990. (by Lindsay Planer)

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Personnel:
Rikki Fataar (guitar, bass, sitar, tabla, vocals)
John Halsey (drums, percussion, vocals)
Ollie “Barry” Halsall (guitar, vocals, keyboards)
Neil “Basty” Innes (guitar, keyboards, vocals)
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Andy Brown (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. Hold My Hand 2.35
02. Number One 2.54
03. With A Girl Like You 1.53
04. I Must Be In Love 2.06
05. Ouch! 1.53
06. Living In Hope 2.39
07. Love Life 2.56
08. Nevertheless 1.31
09. Good Times Roll 3.07
10. Doubleback Alley 2.59
11. Cheese And Onions 2.43
12. Another Day 2.13
13. Piggy In The Middle 4.15
14. Let’s Be Natural 3.27

All songs written by Neil Innes

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I got this collector´s item from Mr. Sleeve — and I had to say thanks again !

And here are the one and only Rutles in their movie “All You Need Is Cash”

Jethro Tull – Heavy Horses (1978)

FrontCover1.jpgHeavy Horses is the eleventh studio album by British progressive rock band Jethro Tull, released on 10 April 1978. It is considered the second album in a trilogy of folk-rock albums by Jethro Tull, although folk music’s influence is evident on a great number of Jethro Tull releases. The album abandons much of the folk lyrical content typical of the previous studio album, Songs from the Wood (1977), in exchange for a more realist perspective on the changing world – the album is dedicated to the “indigenous working ponies and horses of Great Britain”. Likewise, the band sound is harder and tighter. The third album in the folk-rock trilogy is Stormwatch (1979).

Produced by Ian Anderson and recorded and engineered by Robin Black in London, Heavy Horses marks the last Jethro Tull studio album with full participation of bass player John Glascock. Anderson stated that the recording of the album came at a time when other artists were moving towards the new trends in music, and the band decided they did not want “to appear as if we were trying to slip into the post-punk coattails that were worn by The Stranglers or The Police […] They were bands that were seen as being part of the punk world, but they weren’t”.

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Heavy Horses bares more earthly and prosaic themes compared to its predecessor. Songs about the conformist view of daily life (“Journeyman”), or dedicated to Anderson’s dog (“Rover”) and cat (“…And the Mouse Police Never Sleeps”), or even another one for his new son, James (“No Lullaby”). However, an element already present in Songs from The Wood, Heavy Horses served as a discourse on transience and disappearing worlds. The title track – one of two complex suites on the record – is compared by Anderson to an “equestrian Aqualung “.

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Other tracks, such as “Acres Wild” and “Weathercock”, works as a plea for better days ahead. But, alongside the changes on themes, the music went much harder, too. The mini-epic of the title track flowing from a piano ballad to a fiddle-fest (of Curved Air’s Darryl Way) to full gallop, is a great example of the album’s style as a whole. “No Lullaby” rushes from a crushing Martin Barre riff as “Weathercock” starts full folk, to add progressive rock flavours. Barre declared that ” Songs From The Wood and Heavy Horses are two of the best albums from my time in Jethro Tull”.

Rolling Stone’s contemporary review was positive, calling the instrumental arrangements lavish and stating that Heavy Horses and the folk genre, as a follow up to Songs From the Wood, suited Jethro Tull perfectly.

The album reached No. 19 on the Billboard 200 album chart, and peaked at No. 20 on the UK Albums Chart.

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Personnel:
Ian Anderson (vocals, flute, guitar, mandolin)
Barriemore Barlow (drums, percussion)
Martin Barre (guitar)
John Evan (keyboards)
John Glascock (bass, background vocals)
Dee Palmer (keyboards, portative pipe organ)
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Darryl Way – violin (on “Acres Wild” and “Heavy Horses”)

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Tracklist:
01. …And the Mouse Police Never Sleeps 3.14
02. Acres Wild 3.25
03. Heavy Horses 8.59
04. Journeyman 3.58
05. Moths 3.27
06. No Lullaby 7.55
07. One Brown Mouse 3.23
08. Rover 4.16
09. Weathercock 4.03

All tracks written by Ian Anderson with additional material by Martin Barre and David Palmer.

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Jan Garbarek – Photo With Blue Sky (1978)

LPFrontCover1Photo with Blue Sky, White Cloud, Wires, Windows and a Red Roof is an album by Norwegian saxophonist Jan Garbarek, released in 1979 on the ECM label and performed by Garbarek, John Taylor, Bill Connors, Eberhard Weber and Jon Christensen.

Jan Garbarek’s icy and haunting tones on tenor and soprano are in the forefront during much of this set. He performs six originals (which have simple but picturesque titles such as “Blue Sky,” “Windows” and “The Red Roof”) with the assistance of guitarist Bill Connors, pianist John Taylor, bassist Eberhard Weber and drummer Jon Christensen. Nothing too exciting occurs, but this is high-quality background music. (by Scott Yanow)

From the flowing introductory licks to the final exhalation that snaps this sonic locket shut, one look at the track listing of this debut nominal album from the Jan Garbarek Group can’t help but remind us of William Carlos Williams. The full title—Photo With Blue Sky, White Cloud, Wires, Windows And A Red Roof—is a Williams verse in itself, each element drawn from the cover photo into a sonic description thereof. Together they form a concept album in the deepest sense, the anatomy of which is known before the music even graces our ears. Garbarek is as incisive as the words, each the tooth of a widening grin.

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Melody and circumstance cohabitate the sonorous waves that issue from every new turn that awaits us, and all in a language that is mellifluous, filled with open spaces, and drenched in Garbarek’s sunlit tone. The airy piano stylings of John Taylor and ever-moving bass of Eberhard Weber, not to mention outstanding contributions from guitarist Bill Connor and the omniscient Jon Christensen on drums, make for a most soluble palette. Even in such a pool of bases, Garbarek’s thematic bite loses none of its acidity. His is an ever-shifting kaleidoscope of worldly-wise meditations and humble commentary.

Each piece breaks a piece from the longer title and rolls it out into a photo in its own right. “White Cloud” works its way from the inside out, laying the tender kindling of a solo piano before being set aglow by Garbarek’s deep smolder. Slowly but surely, drums, bass, and electric guitar weave their way into this dreamlike fabric, cinched by soothing legato threads. We keep our eyes on the cover as its “Windows” are hung with lilting harmonies between Garbarek and Taylor. An acoustic guitar speculates through its translucent frame, enhancing Connors’s understated brilliance all the more. “Red Roof” finds Garbarek in a more pentatonic mode in his soaring reverberant passages, while “Wires” gives us a more animated, earthbound concept in which to contemplate the patterns of our psychic dentition.

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This track is composed not of melodies, but of wing beats tickling the edges of our brains with promises of light, and all the more soothing for its lack of vivid rhythmic separation. Every fragment falls into place in “The Picture,” which sprouts from the piano’s chromatic seeds into a small yet lush garden of life. Garbarek paints delicate images in the snatches of sky afforded to us while Weber’s bass navigates the soil below with the silent knowledge of an earthworm, closing in a gorgeous crepuscular fade.

Photo With… is far more than the “high-quality background music” it has been accused of being elsewhere. It was a finely polished stepping stone for the Norwegian saxophonist and composer, who with its ripples forged a distinct sonic shoreline that we continue to imprint every time we put our ears to its surface. (by Tyran Grillo)

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Personnel:
Jon Christensen (drums)
Bill Connors (guitar)
Jan Garbarek (saxophone)
John Taylor (piano)
Eberhard Weber (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. Blue Sky 6.42
02. White Cloud 9.03
03. Windows 6.42
04. Red Roof 7.46
05. Wires 5.20
06. The Picture 8.01

All compositions by Jan Garbarek

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The Osborne Brothers – Bluegrass Collection (1978)

FrontCover1.JPGThe Osborne Brothers were one of the most popular and innovative bluegrass groups of the post-war era, taking the music into new directions and gaining a large audience. Among their most notable achievements are their pioneering, inventive use of amplification, twin harmony banjos, steel guitars, and drums — they were the first bluegrass group to expand the genre’s sonic palette in such a fashion.

Bobby and Sonny Osborne were born in Hyden, KY, but raised in Dayton, OH. As children, their father instilled a love for traditional music. Bobby picked up the electric guitar as a teenager, playing in various local bands. A few years after his brother began playing the guitar, Sonny picked up the banjo. In 1949, Bobby formed a duo with banjoist Larry Richardson. The pair was hired by a West Virginian radio station and stayed in the state for a while, eventually hooking up with the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers. During their stay with the Fiddlers, they helped change the group’s sound to bluegrass and made four singles for Cozy Records. Bobby Osborne left the band in the summer of 1951, forming a band with Jimmy Martin that fell apart shortly after its inception. After making a one-shot single, “New Freedom Bell,” with his siblings Louise and Sonny, he joined the Stanley Brothers for a short while before being drafted into the Army.

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Sonny spent some time with Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys in the early ’50s, appearing on several sides on Decca Records. He also cut some covers of popular Monroe and Flatt & Scruggs songs for the budget label Gateway. After Bobby returned from the Army, he and Sonny formed a band. Initially, they supported Jimmy Martin on his RCA session while they had their own spot on a Knoxville radio station. In 1956, they joined the Wheeling Jamboree; they would stay with the radio program for four years. In March of that year, Red Allen joined the brothers — four months after his arrival, they recorded their first session for MGM Records. For the next year, they toured and recorded, steadily gaining a large audience. In the spring of 1958, “Once More” became a number 13 hit on the country charts. Its success helped push the band into the mainstream.

Shortly after the success of “Once More,” Allen left the band, and the Osbornes filled his vacancy with a string of musicians and vocalists, including Johnny Dacus and Benny Birchfield. The duo stayed with the Wheeling Jamboree and MGM Records into the early ’60s. The Osbornes became the first bluegrass act to play a college campus in 1960, when they played Antioch College in Yellow Springs, OH. That appearance ushered in a new era for bluegrass, creating a new, younger audience for the music.

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The Osbornes left MGM in 1963, signing with Decca Records. On their mid-’60s records for Decca, the duo began experimenting more with their music, adding piano, steel guitar, and electric instruments to their music. Their adventurousness made them more accessible to a mass audience, as their string of late-’60s and early-’70s hit singles proves. Although their experimentation angered many bluegrass traditionalists, the Osbornes were the only bluegrass group to consistently have country hits during this time, even if all their singles were only minor hits.

In 1975, the Osbornes left Decca but continued to play the Grand Ole Opry and bluegrass festivals across America. Later in the ’70s, the duo returned to a more traditional sound. Throughout the ’80s and ’90s they stuck to this sound, playing concerts and festivals frequently and recording albums for CMH, RCA, Sugar Hill, and Pinecastle. Forty years after their formation, the Osborne Brothers remained an active act in the mid-’90s. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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Recorded in 1978, Bluegrass Collection is the Osborne Brothers’ tribute to the fathers of bluegrass — Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, and the Stanley Brothers. The duo throws in nice, but unremarkable, remakes of their older hits as well, making the album a pleasant exercise in nostalgia. (by Thom Owens)

And if you would like to hear, how this good old and sweet Blue Grass sounds: here is a nearly perfect Blues Grass album by one of the greatest groups of thise genre.

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Personnel:
Kenny Baker (fiddle)
Benny Birchfield (guitar, vocals)
Ray Edenton (guitar)
Bob Moore (bass)
Bobby Osborne (drums, mandolin, vocals)
Sonny Osborne (banjo, vocals)
Blaine Sprouse (fiddle)

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Tracklist:
01. Kentucky Waltz (Monroe) 2.39
02. Pain In My Heart (Osborne/Richardson) 2.26
03. Blue Ridge Cabin Home (Stacey/Certain) 3.09
04. When You Are Lonely (Monroe/Flatt) 2.49
05. Some Old Day (Stacey/Certain) 2.04
06. I Hear A Sweet Voice Calling (Monroe) 3.37
07. My Cabin In Caroline (Flatt/Scruggs) 2.43
08. It’s A Long, Long Way To The Top Of The World (Wayne) 3.00
09. Sunny Side Of The Mountain (Gregory/McAulliffe) 2.23
10. Head Over Heels (Flatt) 2-31
11. Don’t That Road Look Rough And Rocky (Christian) 3.32
12. I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky (Monroe) 2.26
13. Your Love Is Like A Flower (Lilly/Flatt/Scruggs) 2.36
14. Sweethearts Again (Gallion) 2.57
15. Little Cabin Home On The Hill (Monroe)
16. No Mother Or Dad (Seckler/Flatt) 3.03
17. Toy Heart (Monroe) 2.53
18. Rank Strangers (Brumley) 3.13
19. A Vision Of Mother (R. Stanley/C. Stanley) 3.48
20. Lonesome Day (B. Osborne/S. Osborne) 2.50
21. My Rose Of Old Kentucky (Monroe) 3.03
22. This Heart Of Mine Can Never Say Goodbye (B. Osborne/Goble) 3.00
23. Thinking About You (Flatt/Scruggs) 2.40
24. White Dove (Stanley) 4.06

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