Sunday, September 30, 2012

1000 SONGS - DAY 241 SONG #272

Day 241: Songs by the Guy that the Lord loves

Olufemi is the name given to the artist (better known as Keziah Jones) by his parents in Lagos, Nigeria. The Yoruba name Olufemi means "The Lord loves you". At least, the lord has given remarkable musical skills to the inventor of Blufunk (it is a fact). Ever since I heard (and immediately bought) his first album - Blufunk is a Fact - I have been a fan of Olufemi Sanyaolu. It is hard to make a choice among his great recordings on the one hand, but it is easy on the other: his live performance at Montreux is simply striking; it features "The Wisdom Behind the Smile" and "Where's Life?" in gorgeous versions (the second one even better...). Then, we have to add (one of) his version(s) of "All along the Watchtower" - I dug a short one; finally (last not least) a fine video featuring "The Rhythm is Love", one of the best songs of all time, to be watched at full screen and heard at full volume, and a live version of the same tune. Funky!!

1000 SONGS - DAY 240 SONG # 271

Day 240: Easy Listening & Feeling Fine 

Matt Johnson has written this song, originally released as a single and also featured on The The's first album Soul Mining. As Matt Johnson sometimes seems to have tended to write & perform songs that are not too relaxed in their mood, this song featuring the nice melody line on the accordeon strikes me as somewhat different. There is also a version by the Welsh "alternative rock" Band Manic Street Preachers that sounds like mainstream to my ears. Anyway, people who do not appreciate a song's quality simply for being mainstream do not understand anything about music. Be that as it may, I prefer the version by The The (although MSP did a good job, especially on the guitar part that takes up the melody played by the accordeon on the original version, I am not fully satisfied with the way they render the bridge and the chorus). Great song for starting the day by creating a good mood in the morning (in both versions).

Saturday, September 29, 2012

1000 SONGS - DAY 239 SONG # 270

DAY 239: A Song Featuring John Lurie

I would have liked to post the Punch and Judy Tango, but there is no chance to find a version of it on the internet. Nervous, although great, as the free-jazz inspired music of the Lounge Lizards might be, the P&JT seems to be (to my ears, at least) the most relaxed recording they ever did. Nevertheless, they are a great band of fine jazz (& anything)  musicians, and, f.e., BIG HEART is an apt  proof of their musicianship, albeit from times long ago. Here it is, two times in (nearly) the same rendering of it, the one featuring the clip directed by John Lurie, but with rather low sound quality, the other without the video but fitting better to our ears.

Friday, September 28, 2012

1000 SONGS - DAY 238 SONG # 269

DAY 238: A Rock'n Roll Heart

Rock & Roll Heart is one of the albums by Lou Reed I once owned and do not have in stock anymore (in contradistiction to Sally Can't Dance or Transformer and some others). I do remember exactly two tunes from that one, a reason to have them listed among my 1000 songs of importance to me. First one is the track that gave its name to the album, the lyrics being slightly remininscent of Sam Cooke's Wonderful World:

I don't like opera and I don't like ballet
And new wave french movies, they just drive me away
I guess I'm just dumb, 'cause I knows I ain't smart
But deep down inside, I got a rock 'n' roll heart
Yeah-yeah-yeah, deep down inside I got a rock 'n' roll heart

Oh, rock 'n' roll heart
Lookin' for a good time
Just a rock 'n' roll heart, roll heart, roll heart
Lookin' for a good time

I don't like messages or something meant to say
And I wish people like that would just go away
I guess I'm just dumb, 'cause I know I'm not smart
But deep down inside, I got a rock 'n' roll heart
Yeah-yeah-yeah, deep down inside I got a rock 'n' roll heart

Yeah, rock 'n' roll heart
Searchin' for a good time

Just a rock 'n' roll heart, roll heart, roll heart
Lookin' for a good time

The other one is Vicious Circle:

And for the sake of completeness, let's add Sam's Wonderful World to that one:

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

1000 SONGS - DAY 237 SONG # 268

A fine cover version of a Dylan Song

Queen Jane Approximately is one of my favourite Dylan songs. Here is a version that not too many people might know, by the Valentines from their 1994 live album recorded in Japan. The Valentines consisted of two former members of Grateful Dead, Bob Weir on guitar and Vince Welnick on keyboard, a part-time Dead, more widely known for having played the keyboards in the Tubes. They are accompanied by Prairie Prince on drums, Bobby Vega on bass and the great Henry Kaiser on guitar. Here it is, QJA, in a rather relaxed version. I especially do like the keyboards on that one: