Sunday, 31 October 2010

A Most Sunshiny Day

A truly magical and fascinating evening at Cecil Sharp House. Shirley Collins with Pip Barnes gave the multi-media presentation A Most Sunshiny Day. An exploration and survey of the folk movement from the end of the 19th Century to the present day. Photos of the old singers, the collectors, the classical composers who based works on traditional songs. Reflections on change and war and loss.

Poignant moments as Shirley sat in reverie listening to her younger voice and the accompaniment of her late sister Dolly on 'Gilderoy'. The beautiful The Banks Of Green Willows by George Butterworth, a great lost talent dead at 31 on the Somme.

Butterworth was a friend of Cecil Sharp and along with Maud and Karpeles sisters the four appear in this clip from 1912

Bookending the talk were performances from The Trembling Bells and Alasdair Roberts. The Bells on fine form played the so-far unreleased 'Just As The Rainbow' and 'Otley Rock Oracle' along with the still spine-chilling 'Adieu England' and an unaccompanied 'Seven Years A Teardrop' (just Alex and Lavinia). They were also joined by Mike Heron and his daughter for 'Feast Of Stephen'.

Alasdair Roberts was his usual marvellously lugubrious self. An intriguing new song, possibly called 'Song Composed In December' plus 'Golden Vanity', 'Waxwing', and 'Bonnie Susie Cleland. A fantastic performance of the last, though not a song designed to show the Scottish in a good light.

There's no discoverable version (by me) of 'Gilderay' by Shirley and Dolly Collins  (it's on 1978's For As Many As Will) but here's a version from Jim Moray.

Also present were The Belles Of London dancing the conclusion to Shirley's talk (seen below celebrating Shirley's birthday)

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Wanda Jackson's The Party Ain't Over - new album produced by Jack White, features Dylan cover


Wanda Jackson

Third Man and Nonesuch Records announce the release of the new album from Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Wanda Jackson. The Party Ain’t Over, produced by her friend Jack White, will be out January 25, 2011.

With a remarkable career that began in 1955, Jackson, credited with being the first woman to ever record a rock and roll song—“Let’s Have a Party” in 1958—was convinced by her friend Elvis Presley to cross over from country to rock and rockabilly music. Now known around the globe as 'The Queen Of Rock' and 'The First Lady of Rockabilly',  Jackson was honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2010 Americana Music Awards in Nashville, September 9. The award, in the category of Performance, was presented to her by Jack White. 

That these two musical luminaries would find one another is hardly surprising. Jackson is an icon to everyone who knows and loves the roots of rock and roll. White, some 30+ years her junior, is one of music’s most enigmatic visionaries. The two teamed up last year to record a 45rpm single for White’s Third Man Records. The vinyl and iTunes release, a cover of Amy Winehouse’s 'You Know I’m No Good' b/w 'Shakin All Over' was a big success and the pair hatched a plan to record a full-length album.

The Party Ain’t Over was recorded in Nashville at White’s studio, where he brought together a formidable band, including himself, Jack Lawrence (The Dead Weather/Raconteurs), Carl Broemel (My Morning Jacket), Patrick Keeler (Raconteurs), Ashley Monroe, Jackson Smith, and Karen Elson, to name a few, and hand picked the songs—11 tracks dating in origin from the early 1900s to 2007.  The result: a retro modern collection of music that showcases Wanda, now in her seventh decade and sounding as wickedly charismatic as ever. 

From the album opener, the classic Johnny Kidd and the Pirates hit 'Shakin All Over', to the final track from Jimmie Rodgers’ notable blues series, 'Blue Yodel #6', Wanda’s soulful, ripping voice barrels through from song to song, moving effortlessly from rockabilly, rock and roll, country and gospel—leaving a vibrant, distinctive stamp on a release that embraces the past just as much as it embraces the future. 

The Party Ain’t Over 

1. Shakin All Over
2. Rip It Up
3. Busted
4. Rum and Coca-Cola
5. Thunder on the Mountain
6. You Know I’m No Good
7. Like a Baby
8. Nervous Breakdown
9. Dust on the Bible
10. Teach Me Tonight
11. Blue Yodel #6

Sunday, 10 October 2010

In Memoriam: Solomon Burke

Marc Jeffrey with Paul Lush at The Betsey Trotwood

Here's some of the performance:




Emily Barker - new single 'Little Deaths'

Our friend Emily Barker has a new single 'Little Deaths' about to be released; it's a taster for her new album Almanac

Shows coming up:
Sun 10th Oct - Liverpool, Leaf Tea Shop
Mon 11th Oct - Bristol, Music Club
Wed 13th Oct - Leicester, Donkey Bar
Thu 14th Oct - London, Exmouth Market Church Hall
Fri 15th Oct - Nailsworth, Ruskin Mill
Wed 20th Oct - Petersfied, St. Peter's Church (Duo with Gill)

The first track to emerge from the new studio album Almanac (out 2011) from award winning Emily Barker & The Red Clay Halo is about fallen dreams and thwarted plans as well as a wish to lead a life filled with inspiration and creativity. A video directed by Poppy Jackson and filmed and edited by Patti Gaal-Holmes will accompany the release.

The band is currently recording at Cafe Studios in Bow, East London and for it, recently completed a session on the massive pipe organ in the Royal Festival Hall. Produced by Emily Barker and Ted Barnes, with contributions from drummer Nat Butler and bassist Ali Friend, fans can expect a raft of sublime acoustic vocal music, drawing you in to a world that celebrates the sheer pleasure of song writing and ensemble playing. Emily Barker (acoustic and electric guitar, lead vocals), Jo Silverston (cello, saw), Anna Jenkins (violin) and Gill Sandell (accordion, flute, piano, pipe organ) draw on English-folk roots and 70's singer/songwriter influences (Neil Young and Carol King) to create vintage alternative pop.

Emily Barker hails from a tiny rural backwater in the remote south west of Western Australia. At 19, she donned a backpack and headed out to travel the world. In 2002 she found herself in Cambridge where she met local guitar extraordinaire Rob Jackson (Boo Hewerdine/Broken Family Band/Eddie Reader.) and formed a band called The-Low-Country. (Albums - Welcome To The-Low-Country… and The Dark Road, both bastioned by the late John Peel)

In October 2005, Emily won both Country song of the year and Regional song of the year at the prestigious Annual West Australian Music Song writing Awards. Her debut solo album, Photos. Fires. Fables, received much acclaim in 2007..

'sharply observed, original songs …adventurously embellished by gypsy flourishes and haunting desert echoes that’d be at home on a Calexico album’ Uncut

Then came the birth of The Red Clay Halo, an all-female trio consisting of Anna Jenkins, Jo Silverston and Gill Sandell who play violin, cello, accordion and flute respectively and with Emily, create mesmerising 4-part harmonies. 'Despite The Snow', was recorded over a snowy Easter weekend of 2008, live, in a 16th century barn in Norfolk in 4 days. Out in November 2008, the album gained much praise…

“Stripped free of studio frippery and all the better for its carefree simplicity” **** Q
"The hills have yet to be emptied of gold if you know where to look.” The Times

It's opening track ‘Nostalgia’ was used as theme tune for Wallander, a BBC1 drama starring Kenneth Branagh. The first series attracted over 6 million viewers per episode, and won a slew of awards including a Bafta and a Royal Television Award for Emily's song.

In 2010 Emily launched a campaign on to raise funds to promote forthcoming releases. The Pledge reached 114% of its target within 5 weeks and continues to attract new fans to the band’s music. The album Almanac will be released early in 2011.

Friday, 1 October 2010

Marc Jeffrey - Band Of Outsiders - at Betsey Trotwood tomorrow

Marc Jeffrey from Band Of Outsiders is playing a set tomorrow (Sat 2nd Oct) at Clerkenville West at The Betsey in Farringdon Road. He'll be accompanied by Paul Lush from Alan Tyler's Lost Sons Of Littlefield. On Tuesday at the 12 Bar Marc and Jeremy Gluck played a super set with a mixture of songs from various sources. Here's the set list:

'One Life Is Not Enough'
'Dead Reckoning'
'Episode In A Town'
'Gone For Good'
'Gallery Wharf'
'Silver Street'
'Dutch Girl Concern'

Heartbreaker Walter Lure in the UK this month

Walter Lure of The Heartbreakers coming to the UK!

Best known as guitar and vocal sparring partner to ex-New York Doll Johnny Thunders in The Heartbreakers, Walter Lure will be coming to the U.K for three gigs later this month.

On The Heartbreakers’ much heralded 1977 L.A.M.F. album, Walter sang and co-wrote such classics as ‘One Track Mind’, ‘Get Off The Phone’, and ‘All By Myself’, as well as the otherwise released gems ‘London Boys’ and ‘Too Much Junkie Business’.

It will be the first time Walter, who was the band’s co-vocalist and songwriter, has set foot on these shores since The Heartbreakers briefly reformed in 1984. On the Heartbreakers video of that tour’s live Lyceum gig, Johnny memorably introduced Walter by saying "It’s hard to get a guy off Wall Street, I can tell you".

Since then Lure has fronted his own band in New York, The Waldos, as well as playing uncredited lead guitar for The Ramones on some of their later albums.

These first gigs in 26 years could be the last chance for UK audiences to catch a glimpse of a true New York punk legend!

October 14 – LONDON 100 Club, 100 Oxford St, London W1 1LL
October 15 – NORTHAMPTON Legendary Labour Club, 95 Charles St, NN1 3BG
October 16 – BIRMINGHAM Actress and Bishop, 35 Ludgate Hill, B3 1EH


New Chris Wilson album - Love Over Money

Chris Wilson's new CD has just been released on the French indie label Rock Paradise Records.

Chris and Anthony Clark have carried on their collaboration initiated with Second Life. Here the impressive guest list will trigger the interest of any Groovies fan: Robin Wills (Barracudas), Roy Loney, James Ferrell, George Alexander, Mike Wilhelm, Larry Lea and Matthew Fisher (Procol Harum). Close to a Flamin' Groovies reunion indeed. The production is immaculate and the songs come out really clear. 'Way Too Fast' starts the album as a perfect power pop song where Robin Wills and Anthony Clark are duelling on guitars. Next number 'Can't Let Go' reminds me of Moby Grape and George Alexander puts on a country rock touch playing the harmonica. Mike Wilhelm does a terrific job on 'Bad Dreams', the guy really knows his guitar licks. The real gem must be 'Gambling Man'. From the start one recognises the mighty guitar sound of James Ferrell, wow !, Roy and Larry are backing up Chris on vocals on what sounds like a rockin' lost song from the Teenage Head sessions, awesome! Matthew Fisher's Hammond organ intro on 'Fading Away' got me immediate goosebumps at first hearing and he managed to match incredibly well Chris' singing. There are many other great songs which I will leave to your curiosity.

Listening to the emotional lyrics of Bad Dreams', 'Cold Dark Night', 'Semaphore Signals' or 'Love Over Money' , one realizes that this album is all about that in those crisis times, Love Over Money, love wins over dough.

It is available on the Rock Paradise website