Author Topic: 3 Favourite Songs From Each Album  (Read 29766 times)

Offline juha

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3 Favourite Songs From Each Album
« Reply #30 on: April 13, 2004, 07:31:01 AM »
"I really like Graham's version of 'once a Day', too. it always makes me smile"

Me too. And Gram Parsons' voice always reminds me of Graham's voice. Maybe that's because I heard Graham's singing before I was exposed to mr. Parsons' voice...  

glee

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« Reply #31 on: April 13, 2004, 12:39:10 PM »
Hey, you really know how to make me blush. If only....
The first album I bought when I left home to move to the big smoke was The Gilded Palace Of Sin by the Flying Burrito Brothers. At the time I was going to teachers college and I didn't have a record player. I can remember clearly sitting in the college library at a listening post, with headphones on, and being completely blown away by it. It was the perfect record, it seemed to me. I still have that copy, it's the one record I have always looked after as though it was a treasured family heirloom.
Gram Parsons is often quoted as an influence by today's alt country stars but I can't say that any of them have come anywhere near to matching his small body of work. But that's just me.      

Offline Urpal

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« Reply #32 on: April 14, 2004, 06:34:11 AM »
I've not really tried out Gram Parsons music, but saw a fascinating new TV documentary about his life and death recently on BBC Three which featured extensive interviews with his band mates, musicians, managers, friends and family who knew him (including the Burritos, Keith Richards, Emmylou Harris, Phil Kaufman etc). I suppose the fact that I watched the programme to the bitter end despite having little to no interest in the subject matter is testament to the quality (or maybe it was just an exceptionally dull evening in).

I'd not heard about his incredible final journey, but that is a rock'n'roll ending unlikely to be repeated.

I believe there is also a new film about Parsons, but haven't read any of the reviews.
We all have our croissants to bear

glee

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« Reply #33 on: April 14, 2004, 11:40:10 AM »
Quote
I've not really tried out Gram Parsons music, but saw a fascinating new TV documentary about his life and death recently on BBC Three which featured extensive interviews with his band mates, musicians, managers, friends and family who knew him (including the Burritos, Keith Richards, Emmylou Harris, Phil Kaufman etc). I suppose the fact that I watched the programme to the bitter end despite having little to no interest in the subject matter is testament to the quality (or maybe it was just an exceptionally dull evening in).

I'd not heard about his incredible final journey, but that is a rock'n'roll ending unlikely to be repeated.

I believe there is also a new film about Parsons, but haven't read any of the reviews.
Would love to see that programme. I'd suggest getting a copy of The Return Of The Grievous Angel. It's in my top five of all time, if not right on top. If the country tag turns you off, don't let it. If $1000 Wedding or the title song don't turn you into a fan send the CD to me, I'm on my 4th or 5th. Actually there's a CD containing both G.P. and The Return Of.... going cheap. While you're at it get Guy Clark's Old Number One as well.
I wonder who Gram could be referring to when he sang...with the news I could bring I met up with a king, on his head an amphetamine crown?
Makes me swell with pride that an Australian was with Phil Kaufman
as they torched Gram's body. Just joking. The aforementioned elsewhere Clarence White led the singing of Farther Along at Gram's funeral.    

Offline Urpal

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« Reply #34 on: April 14, 2004, 11:12:32 PM »
Graham,

Such a strong recommendation requires a follow through (and Grievous Angel is such a great title, it can't be a bad record) so I'll get the double CD bargain - and send it to you based on the "sale or return" offer if it disappoints:)

I'll keep an eye out for a repeat of the TV programme and try and do you a copy if it comes on again, but here's a web link which might help to partially satisfy your appetite until the programme gets an airing in Australia:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcfour/music/feature...m-parsons.shtml

http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcfour/music/feature...erviewees.shtml

Here's another link to the BBCi web page on Parsons:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/profiles/parsonsgram.shtml
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glee

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« Reply #35 on: April 15, 2004, 01:45:36 PM »
Quote
Quote from: Urpal,Apr 14 2004, 06:34 AM
I've not really tried out Gram Parsons music, but saw a fascinating new TV documentary about his life and death recently on BBC Three which featured extensive interviews with his band mates, musicians, managers, friends and family who knew him (including the Burritos, Keith Richards, Emmylou Harris, Phil Kaufman etc). I suppose the fact that I watched the programme to the bitter end despite having little to no interest in the subject matter is testament to the quality (or maybe it was just an exceptionally dull evening in)........

........ aforementioned elsewhere Clarence White led the singing of Farther Along at Gram's funeral.
I was completely wrong here. It was Gram who led the singing at Clarence's funeral. Scotty Stoneman died the same year and I've just discovered that he died from overuse of librium, a drug he'd been prescribed to help him give up alcohol because drinking was going to kill him. I've posted Scotty's version of Once A Day on the audio mpage. Still looking for Dave singing Ocean Of You.

Offline Urpal

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« Reply #36 on: April 16, 2004, 03:45:43 AM »
You're being modest, Graham - Once A Day clearly had its most significant outing In The Pines, although Stoneman's version is pretty good and I can see where it influenced your rendition (I prefer the lighter, more humorous tone The Triffids provided - which enhances the funny/sad impact of the lyric). It's interesting that the Stoneman version was recorded in 1965 cos it sounds older ('30s to '50s ish) when you consider that The Doors and Velvets were breaking through into new musical territories around the same time.

The Rent & Once mp3s are great. On checking my notes, it was the Red Ponies version of Passing Through that you intended to "put out there" but Dave's version of Oceans would probably please a wider audience.
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glee

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« Reply #37 on: April 16, 2004, 11:13:52 AM »
Quote
You're being modest, Graham - Once A Day clearly had its most significant outing In The Pines, although Stoneman's version is pretty good and I can see where it influenced your rendition (I prefer the lighter, more humorous tone The Triffids provided - which enhances the funny/sad impact of the lyric). It's interesting that the Stoneman version was recorded in 1965 cos it sounds older ('30s to '50s ish) when you consider that The Doors and Velvets were breaking through into new musical territories around the same time.

The Rent & Once mp3s are great. On checking my notes, it was the Red Ponies version of Passing Through that you intended to "put out there" but Dave's version of Oceans would probably please a wider audience.
Scotty would never have heard of the Doors or the Velvets. He moved in scary bluegrass circles and was most likely a walking disaster area, but he appeals to me in a way I have yet to analyse.
Clarence on the other hand was a country boy who ended up a rock star and invented a whole style of guitar playing, well two really. He was a sensational acoustic flat picker who revolutionised that style of playing and he also invented a string pull mechanism for his telecaster that enabled him to imitate a pedal steel. He became much more than an imitator on this contraption. You can hear him on Randy Newman's 12 Songs and many other records in the late 60s early 70s. Strange that so many connected people died very different deaths in '73.
I've got to find the good version of Passing Through. The one I was listening to last night from the Amsterdam show was ruined by a too loud mix of Warren's violin being strangled.
 I may have imagined Dave's version of Oceans as I'm having great difficulty locating it. Maybe I have a rehearsal tape of it or something, or maybe I was thinking of his original demo of This One Eats Souls, the Blackeyed Susans' song.
It's fun going through old cassettes though. Last night I was listening to an unlabled cassette that contained some incredible whale noises I eventually figured out came from the steel through some effects. I dimly remeber doing them for David Chesworth who was writing an opera called Cosmonaut and needed to hear what kind of noises the instrument could make. Turns out the opera has been commissioned finally and will play 5 performances in October. I'll be there, a true pioneer of operatic pedal steel whale noises.  

Offline geoffm

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« Reply #38 on: April 16, 2004, 05:29:37 PM »
Backtracking a few entries here... you can also get guy clarks old no 1 on a 2 for 1 release with his 2nd record,texas cookin.My recollection it was in the midprice bin.I agree with Graeme.Old no 1 is a great record that stands the test of time.Whale noises on a pedal steel,Im not so sure about?
Look George,partridges

Offline Urpal

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« Reply #39 on: April 17, 2004, 11:22:09 AM »
The whale noises sound promising to me. Something like natural feedback I would imagine.

The double Parsons landed this morning but has only had a cursory part listening so far. Initial impressions are favourable, though not bowled over - A Song For You was, perhaps appropriately, the most immediately appealing of the 4 or 5 tracks sampled.

The version of Love Hurts is respectably and respectfully delicate, though no-ones ever gonna match the Big O on that one - or most everything his extraordinary voice touched come to that.

I wondered if I knew "In My Hour Of Darkness", but the printed lyrics were unfamiliar. Still that title seemed familiar somehow - "In my hour of darkness, you may have to hold me..." kept running through my head, but nothing more was coming. Dave McComb's voice was forming the song in my head.....Must be a Triffids number, I thought, but a check through the lyrics pages on this site and CDDB yielded no "hour of darkness" results to assist.

Then I came across the title "Time Of Weakness" as the B-side of the Wide Open Road single and knew I was home - my mind had transposed some alternative wording from one song to another. Great song........Time Of Weakness I mean. Not so sure at the moment whether "In My Hour.." has a weightier title than the song's content.

Time will tell. Repeated listenings over the next few days may result in a full retraction down the line.

 
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Offline Urpal

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« Reply #40 on: April 17, 2004, 09:08:30 PM »
Not a full recantation (maybe it's the generational difference between being 40 rather than mid forties, but I have a minor aversion to those mid 70s Eagles hotel california type sounds that punk/new wave were partially a revolution against), but after a full listen to Gram Parsons double in a lighter, weekend kinda mood I'm feeling warmer towards the material. Give it time and I may become a convert.

"In my hour of darkness...
Oh, Lord grant me speed"

Premonitionary of his unceremonial send off? Or was Kaufman taking the lyric too literally?

Anyway, it's a worthy ending to the collection.
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glee

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« Reply #41 on: April 17, 2004, 10:30:14 PM »
Quote
Not a full recantation (maybe it's the generational difference between being 40 rather than mid forties, but I have a minor aversion to those mid 70s Eagles hotel california type sounds that punk/new wave were partially a revolution against), but after a full listen to Gram Parsons double in a lighter, weekend kinda mood I'm feeling warmer towards the material. Give it time and I may become a convert.

"In my hour of darkness...
Oh, Lord grant me speed"

Premonitionary of his unceremonial send off? Or was Kaufman taking the lyric too literally?

Anyway, it's a worthy ending to the collection.
It's actually most of Elvis Presley's band playing on Grievous Angel. To me the sound is classy, well arranged country and doesn't bear much resemblance to The Eagles Hotel California era, maybe closer the Eagles first two albums which were, at the risk of being lynched in certain circles, good records. Death is quite prevalent throughout the record. Grievous Angel was released posthumously.
Gram may have considered having his body stolen from the airport by a couple of drunk friends and set fire to in the desert quite ceremonial. The story goes (if I've got it right this time), that he and Kaufman made the pact at Clarence White's funeral, that whoever went first would cremate the other in the desert. Phil didn't have the breathing space to carry out the job with much finesse it must be admitted.
I was reading that Larry Hagman, whose liver transplant has been wilfully wrecked by taking up drinking again, has said he would refuse another as he doesn't deserve it, and he wants his body minced and ploughed into a field. The field is to be used to grow wheat and pot to make a batch of cookies to fuel a huge party a year after his death.
Dave and I sang In My Hour Of Darkness as an encore at maybe half a dozen Triffids shows. We also did Sin City.
   

Offline Urpal

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« Reply #42 on: April 17, 2004, 11:14:01 PM »
OK, so suggesting proximity to The Eagles was a little harsh. My tastes tend towards the rattle and hum, the extremes of light and dark, rush and still. One thing that leaves me unconvinced by Country music is it's tendency towards an almost plodding tonal consistency and, often, lyrical vacuousness.

Not that I'm unwilling to take onboard the quality stuff, and Gram is clearly on the right side of the tracks.

One of my favourite Leonard Cohen songs is "The Captain" off his comeback "Various Positions" album - and I'd suppose you'd descride that as a Country song. The dialogue between the two characters in the song is so great, the otherwise unexceptional backing takes on an emotional force it might not otherwise possess.

"I'm leaving , Captain, I must go
There's blood upon your hand
But tell me, Captain, if you know
Of a decent place to stand"

"There is no decent place to stand
In a massacre:
But if a woman takes your hand
Go and stand with her"

"I'm on the side that's always lost
Against the side of Heaven
I'm on the side of Snake-eyes tossed
Against the side of Seven
And I've read the Bill of Human Rights
And some of it was true
But there wasn't any burden left
So I'm laying it on you"

The holocaust and all the horrors of the 20th Century captured in an apparently simple ditty. Almost makes me cry every time and it's such a jolly tune. Now that's talent.

Point me in the direction of some country music with that sort of lyrical quality and I'm a fan.

Johnny Cash remains my sole conversion to date, although I suppose Orbison and quite a lot of other heroes could be placed in a semi country category.
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Offline Urpal

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« Reply #43 on: April 18, 2004, 10:30:06 AM »
Correction: Buddy Holly. Not country with a capital "c", but definitely a country boy. And one of the greatest of the greats.

I've got a five album box set of his complete recordings and the first side of album 1 consists of his earliest ones, which are mainly lo-fi bluegrass/country numbers. They're pretty good too. In fact, some of Parsons lighter stuff reminds me a bit of Buddy.

Mind you, when listening to the collection, I'm still more likely to cut to the chase and move quickly on to his Norman Petty produced r'n'r hits or later solo classics on most occasions. On reflection though, the country influence remained there in the background through most of Buddy's work. You can take the boy out of the country etc

Buddy was, of course, the original died young music hero. Now I'm older, it amazes me that people like Buddy Holly and Jim Morrison died in their 20s but left behind such significant bodies of work (and found such mature musical expression in such a compressed lifespan).

I love just about every song on that five album set. The boy could do no wrong. The final album consists largely of the demo recordings (just him singing and strumming a guitar) Buddy made in his New york flat shortly before his death and which were later posthumously provided with artificial backing tracks and manipulated to become hits in the 60s. They're intimate gems.

I can't understand why the "Complete" collection has never been polished and released on CD. As John and Paul would no doubt agree, it's fab.
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« Reply #44 on: April 19, 2004, 01:55:26 PM »
Big nod of agreement on Buddy Holly, though I've not heard the complete recordings, which sound like and essential buy. Unavailable of course.
Also agree on Leonard Cohen and Cash obviously.

On lyrical brilliance in country music - Guy Clark's Old Number One, any Terry Allen. John Prine. I'll think of some more. The lyrics are mostly narrative but there are exceptions.
The Guy Clark album is generally considered one of the truly great country records, certainly in my house.
Townes Van Zandt is maybe the best lyric writer of all of them, (was until he died a few years ago at least). The records are a bit patchy sound wise, he's not the greatest singer but the songs are sensational. Here begin some lyrics I like particularly from a few writers. It's a bit long I warn you.

Lungs (Townes Van Zandt)

Well, won't you lend your lungs to me?
Mine are collapsing
Plant my feet and bitterly breathe
Up the time that's passing.
Breath I'll take and breath I'll give
Pray the day ain't poison
Stand among the ones that live
In lonely indecision.

Fingers walk the darkness down
Mind is on the midnight
Gather up the gold you've found
You fool, it's only moonlight.
If you try to take it home
Your hands will turn to butter
You better leave this dream alone
Try to find another.

Salvation sat and crossed herself
Called the devil partner
Wisdom burned upon a shelf
Who'll kill the raging cancer
Seal the river at its mouth
Take the water prisoner
Fill the sky with screams and cries
Bathe in fiery answers

Jesus was an only son
And love his only concept
Strangers cry in foreign tongues
And dirty up the doorstep
And I for one, and you for two
Ai'nt got the time for outside
Just keep your injured looks to you
We'll tell the world we tried

Pancho And Lefty (Townes Van Zandt)

Living on the road my friend
Was gonna keep you free and clean
Now you wear your skin like iron
Your breath's as hard as kerosene
You weren't your mama's only boy
But her favorite one it seems
She began to cry when you said goodbye
And sank into your dreams

Pancho was a bandit boys
His horse was fast as polished steel
Wore his gun outside his pants
For all the honest world to feel
Pancho met his match you know
On the deserts down in Mexico
Nobody heard his dying words
That's the way it goes

All the federales say
They could have had him any day
They only let him hang around
Out of kindness I suppose

Lefty he can't sing the blues
All night long like he used to
The dust that Pancho bit down south
Ended up in Lefty's mouth
The day they laid poor Pancho low
Lefty split for Ohio
Where he got the bread to go
There ain't nobody knows

All the federales say
They could have had him any day
They only let him slip away
Out of kindness I suppose

The poets tell how Pancho fell
Lefty's livin' in a cheap hotel
The desert's quiet and Cleveland's cold
So the story ends we're told
Pancho needs your prayers it's true,
But save a few for Lefty too
He just did what he had to do
Now he's growing old

A few gray federales say
They could have had him any day
They only let him go so wrong
Out of kindness I suppose


Instant Coffee Blues (Guy Clark)
He washed all the road dirt from his face and from his neck
And sat down at her table and she picked up his check.
And she took him home for reasons that she did not understand.
And him, he had the answers but did not play his hand.
For him he knew the taste of this wine very well.
It all goes down so easily but the next day is hell.

Morning - "Man was I drunk," she whispered in the shower.
While he lay there and smoked his way there through the final hour.
And she felt wholly empty like she'd felt it every time.
And he was feelin' just the same, 'cept he was tryin' to make it rhyme.
Time was of the essence so they both did their best,
to meet up in the kitchen feelin fully dressed.
She just had to go to work, and he just had to go.
And she knew where and he knew how to blow it off and so.

They shot the breeze quite cavalier to the boilin' of the pot.
And sang the Instant Coffee Blues and never fired a shot.

And him he hit the driveway with his feelin's in a case.
And her she hit the stoplight and touched up her face.
So you tell them the difference between caring and not.
And that it's all done with mirrors, lest they forgot.

I said it's all done with mirrors, of which they have none.
To blend the instant coffee blues into the morning sun

I Just Left Myself (Terry Allen)

Well
I just left myself today
Hell
I couldn't wait to get away
There's still a smear
Across the mirror
That I have been
But it won't
Reflect on me
Again
'Cause
I just left myself today
Yeah
I just packed me up and went away
I didn't float
I didn't fly
I did not transcend
No I
Just walked out on me
Again
Again

Sam Stone (John Prine, written when he was 21)

Sam Stone came home,
To his wife and family
After serving in the conflict overseas.
And the time that he served,
Had shattered all his nerves,
And left a little shrapnel in his knee.
But the morphine eased the pain,
And the grass grew round his brain,
And gave him all the confidence he lacked,
With a Purple Heart and a monkey on his back.

Chorus:
There's a hole in daddy's arm where all the money goes,
Jesus Christ died for nothin' I suppose.
Little pitchers have big ears,
Don't stop to count the years,
Sweet songs never last too long on broken radios.
Mmm....

Sam Stone's welcome home
Didn't last too long.
He went to work when he'd spent his last dime
And Sammy took to stealing
When he got that empty feeling
For a hundred dollar habit without overtime.
And the gold rolled through his veins
Like a thousand railroad trains,
And eased his mind in the hours that he chose,
While the kids ran around wearin' other peoples' clothes...

Repeat Chorus:

Sam Stone was alone
When he popped his last balloon
Climbing walls while sitting in a chair
Well, he played his last request
While the room smelled just like death
With an overdose hovering in the air
But life had lost its fun
And there was nothing to be done
But trade his house that he bought on the G. I. Bill
For a flag draped casket on a local heroes' hill

Repeat Chorus