Chris Hinze, Lala Kovacev, Sigi Schwab + Eberhard Weber – Wide and Blue (1978)

FrontCover1Branislav Lala Kovačev (Serbian Cyrillic: Бранислав „Лала“ Ковачев; November 19, 1939 in Kikinda, Serbia – September 2, 2012 in Hvar, Croatia) was a Yugoslavian-Serbian jazz musician, drummer, bandleader and composer. Widely considered a key figure in the history of Balkan Ethno jazz. As a leader of European Jazz Consensus, International Jazz Consensus and Lala Kovacev Group, he developed a distinguished fusion style by integrating complex rhythmic structures from Balkan folk music into jazz.

He showed interest in music at a young age, playing trumpet first and soon turning to drums. Largely self-taught, Lala Kovačev began his professional career as a member of the Dixieland Ensemble Dinamo when he was 17, and within two years he became the youngest member of the Radio Belgrade Jazz Orchestra led by Vojislav Simić. He moved to Germany in the mid-1960s and spent six years performing with Horst Jankowski internationally. From 1974 to 1975 he played with Max Greger in Munich and with the North German Radio Orchestra in Hanover. During this period he was collaborating with Chick Corea, Hans Koller, Albert Mangelsdorff, Wolfgang Dauner, Alan Skidmore, Boško Petrović, Michal Urbaniak, Duško Gojković and Benny Bailey.

In the early-1970s Kovačev formed European Jazz Consensus with Alan Skidmore, Gerd Dudek and Adelhard Roidinger. This avant-garde jazz group released two albums: Four for Slavia (1977) and Morning Rise (1977). International Jazz Consensus came as continuation of the first quartet and released one album Beak To Beak (1981) featuring Allan Praskin, Adelhard Roidinger and John Thomas. Lala Kovacev Group was created following year and released three albums: Balkan Impressions (1982), Balkan Impressions Vol.2 (1983) and Izvorni Folklor i Jazz (1985) (by wikipedia)

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Is it possible to get tired of virtuoso flautist Chris Hinze? Not for me… here is an outing from 1976 featuring the amazing guitarist Sigi we have seen before, Eberhard Weber performing his customary ECM-style electric bass smooth melodiousness, and Lala Kovacev on percussion. Oddly enough most of the compositions are from Mladen Gunesha, with only the 5th track (sampled here below) by Hinze. The former is not a name familiar to me though I note he has a german wikipedia entry, he is clearly a european composer and arranger from former yugoslavia. (by an unknown person)

In other words: Another hightlight in this blog !

Recorded February 1976 at Studio Barbarossa Munich

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Personnel:
Chris Hinze (flute)
Lala Kovacev (drums, percussion)
Sigi Schwab (guitar)
Eberhard Weber (bass)

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Tracklist:

01. Danielle (Kovacev) 5.50
02. Fatima (Kovacev) 7.05
03. Wide And Blue (Kovacev) 6.25
04. Tales From Nowhere (Kovacev) 10.30
05. Thanks For Being Being (Hinze) 5.05
06. Do It Nice For Me (Kovacev) 5.35

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Lala Kovacev01Lala Kovačev
(November 19, 1939 in Kikinda, Serbia – September 2, 2012 in Hvar, Croatia)

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Dr. Feelgood – Down At The BBC In Concert 1977 – 78 (2002)

FrontCover1Dr. Feelgood was the ultimate working band. From their formation in 1971 to lead vocalist Lee Brilleaux’s untimely death in 1994, the band never left the road, playing hundreds of gigs every year. Throughout their entire career, Dr. Feelgood never left simple, hard-driving rock & roll behind, and their devotion to the blues and R&B earned them a devoted fan base. That following first emerged in the mid-’70s, when Dr. Feelgood became the leader of the second wave of pub rockers. Unlike Brinsley Schwarz, the laid-back leaders of the pub rock scene, Dr. Feelgood was devoted to edgy, Stonesy rock & roll, and their sweaty live shows — powered by Brilleaux’s intense singing and guitarist Wilko Johnson’s muscular leads — became legendary. While the group’s stripped-down, energetic sound paved the way for English punk rock in the late ’70s, their back-to-basics style was overshadowed by the dominance of punk and new wave, and the group had retreated to cult status by the early ’80s.

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Brilleaux (vocals, harmonica), Johnson (guitar), and John B. Sparks (bass) had all played in several blues-based bar bands around Canvey Island, England before forming Dr. Feelgood in 1971. Taking their name from a Johnny Kidd & the Pirates song, the group was dedicated to playing old-fashioned R&B and rock & roll, including both covers and originals by Johnson. John Martin (drums), a former member of Finian’s Rainbow, was added to the lineup, and the group began playing the pub rock circuit. By the end of 1973, Dr. Feelgood’s dynamic live act had made them the most popular group on the pub rock circuit, and several labels were interested in signing them. They settled for United Artists, and they released their debut album, Down by the Jetty, in 1974.

DrFeelgood02According to legend, Down by the Jetty was recorded in mono and consisted almost entirely of first takes. While it was in fact recorded in stereo, the rumor added significantly to Dr. Feelgood’s purist image, and the album became a cult hit. The following year, the group released Malpractice — also their first U.S. release — which climbed into the U.K. Top 20 on the strength of the band’s live performances and positive reviews. In 1976, the band released the live album Stupidity, which became a smash hit in Britain, topping the album charts. Despite its thriving British success, Dr. Feelgood was unable to find an audience in the States. One other American album, Sneakin’ Suspicion, followed in 1977 before the band gave up on the States; they never released another record in the U.S.

Sneakin’ Suspicion didn’t replicate the success of Stupidity, partially because of its slick production, but mainly because the flourishing punk rock movement overshadowed Dr. Feelgood’s edgy roots rock. Wilko Johnson left the band at the end of 1977 to form the Solid Senders; he later joined Ian Dury’s Blockheads. Henry McCullough played on Feelgood’s 1977 tour before John “Gypie” Mayo became the group’s full-time lead guitarist. Nick Lowe produced 1978’s Be Seeing You, Mayo’s full-length debut with Dr. Feelgood. The album generated the 1979 Top Ten hit “Milk and Alcohol,” as well as the Top 40 hit “As Long as the Price Is Right.” Two albums, As It Happens and Let It Roll, followed in 1979, and Mayo left the band in 1980. He was replaced by Johnny Guitar in 1980, who debuted on A Case of the Shakes, which was also produced by Nick Lowe.

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During their first decade together, Dr. Feelgood never left the road, which was part of the reason founding members John Martin and John Sparks left the band in 1982. Lee Brilleaux replaced them with Buzz Barwell and Pat McMullen, and continued touring. Throughout the ’80s, Brilleaux continued to lead various incarnations of Dr. Feelgood, settling on the rhythm section of bassist Phil Mitchell and drummer Kevin Morris in the mid-’80s. The band occasionally made records — including Brilleaux, one of the last albums on Stiff Records, in 1976 — but concentrated primarily on live performances. Dr. Feelgood continued to perform to large audiences into the early ’90s, when Brilleaux was struck by cancer. He died in April of 1994, three months after he recorded the band’s final album, Down at the Doctor’s. The remaining members of Dr. Feelgood hired vocalist Pete Gage and continued to tour under the band’s name. Former Feelgoods Gypie Mayo, John Sparks, and John Martin formed the Practice in the mid-’80s, and they occasionally performed under the name Dr. Feelgood’s Practice. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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With 20 years having elapsed since the firestorm of punk first set hippie beards a-blazing, the late 1990s saw history finally get around to some serious re-evaluation: the realization that the bands which started the whole ball rolling were not American proto-snots from some vast Midwestern garage; that theStooges and the Velvets were unknown to most of the kids who were forming bands (you can’t afford imports when you’re young and on the dole); and that Dr. Feelgood kicked harder ass than all those Yankee squealers put together. (Russ Garrett)

Wow, what a treat! I’ve recently started listening to the Feelgoods again as I enter middle age (don’t go there), and I invested in this. it’s NOT just another hodge podge dragged out of the vaults, but a couple of great gigs, well recorded, with fantastic atmosphere. I remember, when the official ive albums As it Happens and On the Job were released, thinking they were a bit muted-sounding. Not this one. These live recordings capture the energy of a Feelgood show as well as anything else I’ve heard. (by Angry bluesman)

Tracks 1 to 11 recorded at Queen Mary College, Mile End Road, London on 1.12.77.Broadcast on BBC TV and Radio 1’s
“Sight And Sound In Concert” programme on 10.12.77.

Tracks 12 to 22 recorded at The Paris Theatre, Lower Regent Street, London on 1.11.78.Broadcast on BBC TV and Radio 1’s “In Concert” programme on 18.11.78.

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Personnel:
Lee Brilleaux (vocals, guitar, harmonica)
Gypie Mayo (guitar)
John B. Sparks (bass, background vocals)
John “The Big Figure” Martin (drums, background vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Looking Back (Watson) 2.17
02. Stupidity (Burke) 2.23
03. You’ll Be Mine (Dixon) 2.57
04. You Upset Me Baby (King/Josea/Davis)  4.03
05. Homework (Perkins/Clark) 2.19
06. Baby Jane (Simmonds/Reed/Bishop/Wilson/Nesbitt) 2.56
07. The Blues Had A Baby, And They Named It Rock’N’Roll (#2) (Morganfield/McGhee) 2.21
08. That’s It I Quit (Lowe) 2.46
09. Lucky Seven (Lewis) 2.31
10. She’s A Windup (Brilleaux/Mayo/Sparks/Martin) 2.11
11. Lights Out (David/Rebennack) 2.33
12. Looking Back (Watson) 2.03
13. Sugar Shaker (Brilleaux/Mayo/Sparks) 3.58
14. I Thought I Had It Made (Brilleaux/Mayo) 2.34
15. Ninety-Nine And Half (Won’t Do) (Cropper/Pickett/Floyd) 2.52
16. Milk And Alcohol (Lowe/Mayo) 2.38
17. Night Time (Gottehrer/Fieldman/Goldstein) 3.59
18. Shotgun Blues (Brilleaux/Mayo/Sparks/Martin) 4.50
19. You Upset Me Baby (King/Josea/Davis) 3.39
20. Down At The Doctors (Jupp) 3.06
21. She’s A Windup (Brilleaux/Mayo/Sparks/Martin) 1.50
22. Lights Out (David/Rebennack) 2.23

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Cheers

Cheers !

Lee Brilleaux (born Lee John Collinson: 10 May 1952 – 7 April 1994

Gypie Mayo (born John Phillip Cawthra; 24 July 1951 − 23 October 2013)

France Gall – Live (Au Theatre des Champs Elysées) (1978)

FrontCover1France Gall (born Isabelle Geneviève Marie Anne Gall on 9 October, 1947 in Paris, France – died 7 January 2018) was an influential singer who performed for many decades. She notably represented Luxembourg in the 1965 Eurovision Song Contest with “Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son”; that winning song was just one of many that she performed which had been written by Serge Gainsbourg. Her career spanned roughly forty years, primarily in France, but she was best known over the world for the songs she that performed in the 60s, many of them a part of the ye-ye style. She sang in both French and English.

Besides the highly successful “Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son”, she also notably sung “Les Sucettes” and “Baby Pop”. In France, she was perhaps more known for the chanson songs she sang in the late-70s through the mid-80s, many of them written by her husband, Michel Berger, who died in 1992. In 1987, she had some additional international success with her Ella Fitzgerald tribute “Ella, elle l’a”. She still recorded music into the new millennium.

France Gall died on 7 january 2018 at age 70 in a hospital in Paris. (by www.last.fm)

PosterGall was seduced by Michel Berger’s music when she heard his song “Attends-moi” (“Wait for Me”) one day in 1973. During a later radio broadcast, she asked him for his opinion on songs which her then producer wanted her to record. Although he was disconcerted by the quality of the songs, there would be no question of collaboration.

Only six months later, in 1974, after she sang vocals on the song “Mon fils rira du rock’n’roll” on Berger’s new album, Gall’s publisher asked him, at her behest, to write for her. Gall had already made her mind up that “It will be him and nobody else”. In 1974, “La Déclaration d’amour” was to be the first in a long line of hits which marked a turning point in Gall’s career. Meanwhile, the two artists, whose affinities became more than musical, married on 22 June 1976. Since their marriage, Gall has only sung songs written by Berger.[15] They remained married until his death in 1992.

And here´s a good live-Album from 1978 with songs from Michel Berger … a typical Seventies production a perfect shwo with very good musisians and …  … what a beautiful voice !

Gall died of an infection complicated from cancer at the American Hospital of Paris, in Neuilly-sur-Seine, on 7 January 2018 at the age of 70

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Michel Berger & France Gall

Personnel:
Mary Lou Benoit (percussion)
France Gall (vocals)
Bonnie Johnson (drums)
Peggy Mitchell (bass)
Patti Quatro (guitar)
Colleen Stewart (piano)
Gail Thompson (saxophone)
Melissa Vardey (keyboards)
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Background vocals:

Florence Bertoux – Lisa Deluxe – Stella Vander
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strings:
Anne Etevenon – Béatrice Crenne – Marie-Rose Dumonteil – Sophie Cuvillier

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Tracklist:
01. Musique 4.55
02. Samba Mambo 3.24
03. Si Maman Si 3:05
04- Comment Lui Dire 3.20
05. Ce Soir Je Ne Dors Pas 3.02
06. La Déclaration 3.20
07. Ce Garçon Qui Danse 3.20
08. Je L’aimais 4.48
09. Chanson D’une Terrienne 6.20
10. Chanson Pour Consoler 2.20
11. La Chanson De Maggie 3.00
12. Ça Balance Pas Mal A Paris 2.30
13. Le Meilleur De Soi-même 3.55
14. Mais Aime-la 9.30
15. Présentation Des Musiciennes 5.40
16. Viens Je T’emmène 4.55
17. Quand On Est Enfant 1.47

All Songs written by MIchel Berger

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France Gall (9 October 1947 – 7 January 2018)

 

Flora Purim – Every Day, Every Nidht (1978)

FrontCover1Influenced by both traditional Brazilian singers and the improvisations of American jazz divas like Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan, Flora Purim was one of the most adventurous singers of the 1970s. After meeting and marrying her husband, percussionist Airto Moreira, in their native Brazil, Purim moved with him to the U.S. in the late ’60s. Though she worked with Stan Getz and pianist Duke Pearson before the decade ended, it wasn’t until joining Chick Corea, Joe Farrell, Stanley Clarke, and Moreira in the original Return to Forever in 1972 that she became well known in the States. Purim showed considerable promise on Forever classics like “500 Miles High” and “Light As a Feather” and lived up to it when she went solo with 1973’s Butterfly Dreams. Ranging from superb to passably decent, Purim’s Milestone dates of the mid- to late ’70s kept her quite visible in the jazz world. Purim’s work grew erratic and uneven in the 1980s, and she wasn’t recording as often (though she did provide one album for Virgin and three with Moreira for Concord’s Crossover label). Purim didn’t record very often in the early to mid-’90s either, but she continued to be highly regarded in Brazilian jazz circles. (by Alex Henderson)

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On this project, singer Flora Purim is backed by a large string orchestra and a countless number of top studio and jazz players, playing arrangements by Michel Colombier. Although some of the musicians are quite notable (including Michael Brecker, Randy Brecker, David Sanborn, Oscar Neves, Jaco Pastorius and even Herbie Hancock), the overall music is generally forgettable. Most of the playing sounds planned in advance, and not much spontaneity occurs, certainly not from the London Symphony Orchestra. Purim’s voice is fine, but none of the 11 songs (eight by Colombier) were destined to catch on. (by Scott Yanow)

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Personnel:
Michael Boddicker (Synthesizer, piano)
Michel Colombier (synthesizer)
Harvey Mason (drums)
Airto Moreira (drums, percussion)
Laudir de Oliveira (percussion)
Jaco Pastorius (bass)
Flora Purim (vocals)
Lee Ritenour (guitar)
David Sanborn (saxophone)
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Randy Brecker (trumpet on 01. + 05.)
Michael Brecker (saxophone on 01. + 05.)
Al Ciner (guitar on 07.)
George Duke (piano on 02. + 07., vocals on 07.)
David Foster (piano on 04.)
Jay Graydon (guitar on 02.)
Herbie Hancock (piano on 08., 09. + 11.)
Alphonso Johnson (bass on 01.)
Byron Miller (bass on 02. + 07.)
Oscar Neves (guitar on 02. + 07.)
George Sopuch (guitar on 07.)
Raul de Souza (trombone on 01. + 02.)
Chester Thompson (drums on 02. + 07.)

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Tracklist:
10 . Everyday, Everynight (Colombier/Moreira/Purim) 4.58
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2.  Samba Michel (Colombier/Moreira/Purim) 4.10
03. 
The Hope (Colombier/Moreira/Purim) 3.40
04.
Five-Four (Colombier) 3.34
05.
Walking Away (Colombier) 4.56
06. 
I Just Don’t Know (Colombier/Moreira/Purim)  3.59
07.
In Brasil (Sopuch) 3.52
08.
Las Olas (Pastorius) 4.22
09.
Blues Ballad (Colombier/Purim) 1.57
10.
Overture (Colombier/Neto) 2.58
11.
Why I’m Alone (Hancock) 4.39

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Dave Pike – On A Gentle Note (1978)

FrontCover1Dave Pike is a class act, unafraid to try any style, at least for an album, and usually succeeding wildly at it. His earliest LPs and session work are classics and mostly hard to find. Then as he “freaked out” in the late 1960s and early 1970s, he laid down some monster cuts of psychedelic soul jazz, James Brown covers, funky-sitar beats, and more that still enjoy new favor in the nightclubs of the subsequent century. There are not that many soul-jazz and funk vibraphonists of great note, but Dave Pike is the first name in hip vibe records.

Born in 1938 Detroit, he first played piano and drums, even joining the Detroit Junior Symphony Orchestra at age eleven. Having moved to Los Angeles, Pike in 1954 discovered the vibraphone at a drum shop. This became his chief instrument, seconded by the marimba, which he played early on with Mexican bands and later on his albums. He played rock and Latin in his early days, and later this experience lent his music great versatility as well as popular appeal. Playing always with great earnestness, humor, and even earthiness, he can be heard chanting along with the tunes on several LPs.

Pike began to gig with such jazz stars as Elmo Hope, Buddy DeFranco, and Paul Bley by 1956. By 1958 Pike had moved to San Francisco to be closer to New York musicians, and in 1960 he made the move to New York. Siz years of stints with globetrotting Herbie Mann exposed him to some of the world’s farther-flung music. In 1966 he moved to Germany, where the newly formed Dave Pike Set quickly became the leading jazz act. Pike’s usually thematic albums are recognized as seminal jazz and soul-jazz classics, and at least one cut has reached immortal status among disc jockeys.

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He returned to the United States in the mid 1970s and talked the owner of Hungry Joe’s, a tiny Huntington Beach hangout for bikers and surfers, to let him play there. With pianist Tom Ranier, guitarist Ron Eschete and bassist Luther Hughes, Pike and his group became regulars and turned the establishment into a lively jazz club.

And here´s one of his unique solo-albums … Another brilliant trip with his band and his vibraphone.

Noted jazz historian Leonard Feather wrote in 1973 that Pike played the amplified vibraphone with “ingenuity, dynamism and improvisational energy,” extracting from it “a resonance on top of resonance, to which at certain points he adds a grating but sometimes attractive fuzz tone.”

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Personnel:
Ron Eschete (guitar)
Ted Hawke (drums, percussion)
Luther Hughes (bass)
Rudolph Johnson (saxophone)
Dave Pike (vibraphone)
Tom Ranier (piano, saxophone)

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Tracklist:
01. Lazy Afternoon (Moross/Latouche) 9.30
02. Gigi (Lerner/Loewe) 2.58
03. Regards From Freddie Horowitz (Pike) 8.00
04. Secret Mystery Of Hensch (Pike/Kriegel) 9.30
05. Everytime We Say Goodbye (Porter) 2.22
06. Scrapple From The Apple (Parker) 5:23
07. Visions Of Spain (Pike) 1.58

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David Samuel Pike (March 23, 1938 – October 3, 2015)

 

Willie Nelson – Stardust (1978)

FrontCover1Stardust is the 23rd studio album by Willie Nelson that spans the genres of pop, jazz, and country music. Its ten songs consist entirely of pop standards that Nelson picked from among his favorites. Nelson asked Booker T. Jones, who was his neighbor in Malibu at the time, to arrange a version of “Moonlight in Vermont”. Impressed with Jones’s work, Nelson asked him to produce the entire album. Nelson’s decision to record such well-known tracks was controversial among Columbia executives because he had distinguished himself in the outlaw country genre. Recording of the album took only ten days.

Released in April, Stardust was met with high sales and near-universal positive reviews. It peaked at number one in Billboard’s Top Country Albums and number thirty in the Billboard 200. Meanwhile, it charted at number one in Canadian RPM’s Country Albums and number twenty-eight in RPM’s Top Albums. The singles “Blue Skies” and “All of Me” peaked respectively at numbers one and three in Billboard’s Hot Country Singles.

In 1979, Nelson won a Grammy Award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance for the song “Georgia on My Mind”. Stardust was on the Billboard’s Country Album charts for ten years—from its release until 1988. The album also reached number one in New WillieNelsonZealand and number five in Australia in 1980. In 2003, the album was ranked number 257 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. It was originally certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America in December 1978. In 1984, when it was certified triple platinum, Nelson was the highest-grossing concert act in the United States. In 2002, the album was certified quintuple platinum, and it was later inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame class of 2015. (by wikipedia)

At the height of outlaw country, Willie Nelson pulled off perhaps the riskiest move of the entire bunch. He set aside originals, country, and folk and recorded Stardust, a collection of pop standards produced by Booker T. Jones. Well, it’s not entirely accurate to say that he put away country and folk, since these are highly idiosyncratic interpretations of “Georgia on My Mind,” “All of Me,” “Moonlight in Vermont,” and “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore,” blending pop, country, jazz, and folk in equal measures. It’s not that Willie makes these songs his own, it’s that he reimagines these songs in a way that nobody else could, and with his trusty touring band, he makes these versions indelible.

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It may be strange to think that this album, containing no originals from one of America’s greatest songwriters, is what made him a star, and it continues to be one of his most beloved records, but it’s appropriate, actually. Stardust showcases Nelson’s skills as a musician and his entire aesthetic — where there is nothing separating classic American musical forms, it can all be played together — perhaps better than any other album, which is why it was a sensation upon its release and grows stronger with each passing year. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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Personnel:
Paul English (drums)
Chris Ethridge (bass)
Booker T. Jones (keyboards)
Rex Ludwick (drums)
Bobbie Nelson (piano)
Willie Nelson (vocals, guitar)
Jody Payne (guitar)
Mickey Raphael (harmonica)
Bee Spears (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. “Stardust (Carmichael/Parish) 3.53
02. Georgia On My Mind (Carmichael/Gorrell) 4.20
03. Blue Skies (Berlin) 3.34
04. All Of Me (Simons/Marks) 3.54
05. Unchained Melody (North/Zaret) 3.50
06. September Song (Weill/Anderson) 4-35
07. On The Sunny Side Of The Street (McHugh/Fields) 2.36
08. Moonlight In Vermont (Suessdorf/Blackburn) 3.25
09. Don’t Get Around Much Anymore (Ellington/Russell) 2.33
10. Someone To Watch Over Me (G.Gershwin/I.Gershwin) 4.03
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11. Scarlet Ribbons (Danzig/Segal) 4.30
12. I Can See Clearly Now (Nash)  4.18

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Flairck – Variaties op een Dame (Variations On A Lady) (1978)

OriginalFrontCover1Flairck are a Dutch ensemble formed by Erik Visser, an Indonesian-born acoustic instrumentalist with classical training and a strong interest in many forms of world music. The band released their first studio album ‘Variaties Op Een Dame’ (Variations on a Lady) in 1978, and has issued more than two dozen studio, live and compilation releases since then.

The band incorporates a number of world influences in their work, which has been described as chamber music but which actually features many styles including classical, folk, jazz and blues, as well as Eastern European and Celtic traditional music. The band primarily performs original compositions, and has worked with a number of renowned world music artists including Georges Moustaki, Nelleke Burg and Dimitri van Toren. The group has also recorded and performed with numerous symphony orchestras and has contributed scores for film, stage and ballet.

Flairck01Visser and the other band members have a strong interest in obscure and exotic acoustic instruments, and have amassed a collection of more than 150 wind, string and percussion instruments, many of which are used in their studio recordings and live performances.

The band celebrated their 25th anniversary in 2002 with the release of a multi-disciplined DVD dedicated to the Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch. The video features original scores by the band as well acrobatics, detailed views of Bosch’s work and interviews of various band members. Visser took advantage of a hiatus by the band in 2003 to release a solo work entitled ‘One Man Parade’.

Flairck are a classic example of a progressive musical collective with wide-ranging influences and a constantly evolving sound. (by progarchives.com)

Flairck’s first album. Aoife is a lullaby written for the birth of Mary Coughlan’s daughter. (‘Aoife’ is Gaelic for ‘Eve’.) Sofia’s Foreplay: a reflection of an amourous event in a big city in Eastern Europe. April 3rd: played for the first time on that date in 1977 in a church during the wedding of the piano-player/composer Jolyon Jackson and his bride Theresa. Odd Waltz: in which the three-fourth bar is used as the building stone in a rhythmically unusual construction. The piece Variations on a Lady nearly covers the whole B-side and is one of the eldest compositions of Flairck. It is written for a female violinist and exists of two parts that are separated by a violin solo. Doubles is a short guitar duet. (Flairck in their own words)

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Flairck are hardly known outside their home country Holland. They might have reached a few Belgian ears as well but they certainly haven’t dawned on the masses of PA yet. A shame really given how much potential their music might have amongst prog fans, especially amongst those to whom a mix of acoustic instrumentation and symphonic composition sounds alluring.

Flairck are a virtuoso acoustic instrumental quartet where each member plays a whole array of different mutations of his basic instrument. Erik Visser plays 6 and 12 string acoustic guitars. He also handles most of the song writing together with flutist Peter Weekers. Brother Hans Visser does acoustic bass guitars and the violin on this debut is caressed by Judy Schomper.

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The music takes inspiration from both classical and flok/world sources, and due to the influences of Celtic music, there’s some similarity to early Oldfield, be it in an entirely acoustic version, which is a plus as far as I’m concerned. Further similarities can be made with the softer side of Belgian chamber rock, with a band like Aranis for example. But it can’t be compared to the more avant-garde and harsher sounds of Univers Zero. Flairck keeps things very melodic and harmonious, delicate and gentle. Which doesn’t mean they don’t play at raging speeds!

Their debut album is an exceptional career start, there’s so much inspiration in the songwriting and arrangements that each of these tunes would become classic live staples for years to come. The execution and recording of the material is generally a bit better on the live albums but that might just be because I’ve only heard this album on my second-hand vinyl. I’m sure it sparkles and shines till today (by Bonnek)

In other words: That´s what I call timeless music on the highest level !

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US front + back cover

Personnel:
Judy Schomper (violin, viola)
Erik Visser (guitar, sitar, mandolin, mandola)
Hans Visser (bass, guitar)
Peter Weekers (flute, panpipe)
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Fred Krens (vibraphone,marimba, glockenspiel, gong, percussion on 05.)

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Tracklist:
01. Aoife (E.Visser) 6.14
02. Voorspel In Sofia (E.Visser/Weekers) 6.54
03. April 3rd (E.Visser) 5.27
04. Oneven Wals (Weekers) 7.04
05. Variaties op een Dame (E.Visser) 21.02
06. Dubbelspel (E.Visser) 1.22

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MC2A

This is another item from the great greygoose collection !
Thanks a lot !