Friday, May 30, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 316 SONG # 347

DAY  315: A Song that has been covered before its first release
"Theme for an Imaginary Western" - often falsely rendered as "Theme from an Imaginary Western" - is a song by Jack Bruce that had first been played before a public audience at the Woodstock Festival (I stay with that...) by Mountain, a few weeks before Jack Bruce's first solo-album "Songs for a Tailor" on which it is featured as track #2 was released. Roughly a year after the breakup of the "supergroup" Cream, Jack Bruce - to me still the one outstanding musician that was part of this band - released his first solo-album. Rumour has it, that "Theme" was originally offered by Bruce to Cream, but Eric Clapton did not have the right feeling, so Bruce gave the song to Leslie West, guitarist of Mountain. I could not find any evidence supporting that story, but I found rather nice words by Old Slowhand on that one in an interview with UNCUT:
"Jack has always had the most beautiful melodies. That man’s solo albums after Cream were amazing, too. Songs For A Tailor – what great writing that was, with stuff like 'Theme For An Imaginary Western'. Just fantastic."
For the whole interview, klick HERE; will give some impression of what Cream really was about. Back to the Leslie West story, I think that it must have been Felix Pappalardi (bass player with Mountain, producer  of Cream) who took the song with him to Woodstock. Be that as it may, the song's lyrics are by Pete Brown, who also wrote the lyrics for those hits by Cream that Jack Bruce wrote the music to, like "Sunshine of Your Love" or "White Room" (btw, "Strange Brew" was written by Clapton, Pappalardi and his wife GAIL COLLINS who allegedly shot him later on). The song has been covered by many an artist or band. There are 3 versions featured here: The original by Jack Bruce (with Jon Hiseman on drums), the studio-version from Mountain's  debut LP "Climbing" and a nice version done by Jack Bruce and Leslie West. Listen to the guitar on the rendering by Mountain (Leslie comes in at 2:48) and don't say, Clapton could have done it - at least he hasn't.  I also think, that Pappalardi does better vocals than Bruce.

When the wagons leave the city
For the forest and further on
Painted wagons of the morning
Dusty roads where they have gone
Sometimes travelling through the darkness
Met the summer coming home
Fallen faces by the wayside
Looked as if they might have known

O the sun was in their eyes
And the desert that dries
In the country town
Where the laughter sounds

O the dancing and the singing
O the music when they played
O the fires that they started
O the girls with no regret
Sometimes they found it
Sometimes they kept it
Often lost it on the way
Fought each other to possess it
Sometimes died in sight of day

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 315 SONG # 346

DAY 315: My Favourite Song from the Woodstock Album

Back then, in the olden days, when I was young,  I did delight a many good times in listening to those songs collected on the Woodstock concert album and many a great song has put the Lord Almighty on this fine compilation. And it came to pass, that there was one song, that did rightfully stick in mine ears more than any other. And it came to pass that hitherto this song is more apt to mine ears than any other song from that album whence it was taken. It is morning maniac music, and the repetitive basic structure of the rhythm guitar basically is what music is about to mine brains.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 314 Song # 345

Day 314: A Song from "The Denver Gentlemen" by The Denver Gentlemen

This here is a song from the 2005 album "The Denver Gentlemen" by The Denver Gentlemen. If you want to know some things about this band click HERE. The Denver Gentlemen have some relations to 16 Horspower and other dark "Denver-style-bands". Its idiosyncratic muscial style  has also been labelled as "Indie Rock" or "Gothic Country" a.t.l. Anyway, the song featured here is called "Dance and Make Babies", and to me, it is just music (like with religion, it is with music: no need for further labels). It is, indeed, very intersting kind of music:

Thursday, May 22, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 313 Song # 344

Day 313: Take a Look at Yourself

Today,  in the course "Introduction to the General History of Religion", which is a cooperation of two colleagues and me (nobody can give a course like that on his/her own), America was on the list (2nd part: Aztecs, Inkas, Christianity in US., African-American and Afro-American Religions), and therefore the Nation of Islam. 5 Percenters seem to be an offspring of NOI, and Keith Edward Elam, aka The Guru, member of Gang Starr, seems to have been a 5 percenter. Anyway, he is dead, and he was one of the best voices in Rap history, and besides of being a member of Gang Starr (already featured on this here blog), he did that cool hip-hop-jazz fusion thing, called Jazzmatazz. Here is "Take a Look at Yourself" from the first, and "Lifesaver" from the second Jazzmatazz-album.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 312 SONG # 343

Day 312:  A Working Man's Song, Once More

A working man is a working man, and there are so many songs about the working man, from "Sixteen Tons" to "Working in a Coal Mine". Among the working men, you find the slaves, those people ripped off of their individual human rights. By the use of metaphor, Afro-American and African-American (offspring of) slaves in the NEW world have called themselves "Israelites", just because in the story of sacred history "owned" by their suppressors, Israel was a slave in Egypt's land. Makes me think and wonder. Ska, not Reggae, Dekker, not Marley: The Israelites, 1969:

Get up in the morning, slaving for bread, sir, so that every mouth can be fed. Poor me, the Israelite. Aah. Get up in the morning, slaving for bread, sir, So that every mouth can be fed. Poor me, the Israelite. Aah. My wife and my kids, they are packed up and leave me. Darling, she said, I was yours to be seen. Poor me, the Israelite. Aah. Shirt them a-tear up, trousers are gone. I don't want to end up like Bonnie and Clyde. Poor me, the Israelite. Aah. After a storm there must be a calm. They catch me in the farm. You sound the alarm. Poor me, the Israelite. Aah. Poor me, the Israelite. I wonder who I'm working for. Poor me, Israelite, I look a-down and out, sir.