Tuesday, July 29, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 327 SONG #358

DAY 327: Northern Soul's Inspiration

Northern Soul is either a musical style in Northern England or a life-style in Northern England heavily influenced by Motown RnB and Soul, especially by those "rare soul" tracks released on the many small labels by those gifted soul artists of the early 60ies. Here are three songs that would fit into these categories, the first one by Charles Sheffield, more a RnB thing in the great New Orleans tradition. And in that tradition, it is only natural, that Voodoo is mentioned. If you want to know more about "Voodoo", click here: http://cultrelhgh.blogspot.co.at/2009/08/zombies-leopards-and-genre-theory.html, if you want to know more about Charles Sheffield, click here: http://soulstrutter.blogspot.co.at/2009/09/ns596-charles-sheffield-its-your-voodoo.html.

We go on with Sherri Taylor and her wonderfully ringing bell - very straight to the point -  to end up with Ted Taylor and his complaints about all those other guys trying to ring the bell he alone is in charge of or so...

Monday, July 21, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 326 SONG # 357

DAY 326: A Song transposed from Major tio  Minor Key

Gustav Mahler (1860-1911) was a great Austrian composer, opera director and so on. His symphonies are among my favourites. His first symphony (named after a book by Jean Paul that I have read in its entirety [each and every one of the "Jobelperioden"]: Titan), features - as the 3rd movement - a treatment of one of the most popular French folk songs (along with "Sur le pont d'Avignon"), Frere Jacques, transposed from the major key of the original to the minor key in which the song might have been rendered in the Austrian empire. Some commentators also hear influences of Kletzmer in this one. Be that as it may, it is simply great. Here is a version of it, as performed by The Chicago Symphony Orchestra conducted by Pierre Boulez.

Friday, July 11, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 325 SONG # 356

DAY 325: Bring It On, Mr. Bassman! Remembering Charlie Haden

Charlie Haden (1937-2014), born in the Midwest (Missouri), died in the Far West (California) yesterday. One important Jazzman, he played the double bass in bands and orchestras with likes of Ornette Coleman,  Keith Jarrett, Archie Shepp or Carla Bley, to name but a few. Here is a swinging tune called "Ginger Blues" recorded in 1995, with Ginger Baker on drums and Bill Frisell on guitar; this is very "elastic" due to the great bass-lines of Mr. Haden. There is also a solo done by him on that one. May he rest in peace!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 324 SONG # 355

DAY 324: 2 Road Songs by Lucinda Williams

Going back to what has been labelled "Alternative Country" but also as "Roots Rock", "Americana" and the like: Lucinda Williams, Country singer who had her breakthrough in the music business with her fifth album, "Car Wheels on a Gravel Road". In 2002, Time Magazine named her "America's best songwriter". Although she wrote some really beautiful songs, methinks that no one could be called America's best songwriter in earnest, and, even if so, there are some other candidates (at least) on my list for that honour. Nevertheless, I do like the songs of Lucinda, and here are two: "Car Wheels on a Gravel Road" in an excellent version done in 2009, and, in a version done 20 years earlier, a song from her third album "Lucinda Williams", "Side of the Road" (and this is indeed a very beautiful song).

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

1000 SONGS - DAY 323 SONG # 354

DAY 323: None of Us Are Free

This is a song from the 2002 album of the great Rhythm and Blues & Soul Singer Solomon Burke (1940-2010), Don´'t Give Up On Me. It is written by Barry Mann, his wife Cynthia Weil and Brenda Russell. There are also versions by Ray Charles and Lynyrd Skynyrd. They are not bad (especially the one by Ray, but maybe one could make a claim that it bears some traces of "overproduction"), nevertheless, the Solomon Burke version is the one with the most appeal to me. Here it is, followed by the lyrics:

Well you better listen my sisters and brothers
'Cause if you do you can hear
There are voices still calling across the years.
And they're all crying across the ocean
And they're cryin' across the land
And they will till we all come to understand.

None of us are free
None of us are free
None of us are free, one of us are chained
None of us are free.

And there are people still in darkness,
And they just can't see the light.
If you don't say it's wrong then that says it right
We got try to feel for each other
Let our brother's know that we care.
Got to get the message, send it out loud and clear.

It's a simple truth we all need just to hear and to see.
None of us are free, if one of us is chained
None of us are free.
Now I swear your salvation isn't too hard to find
None of us can find it on our own.
We've got to join together in spirit, heart and mind.
So that every soul who's suffering will know that they're not alone.