Monday, May 16, 2022

Love That Album Podcast Episode 157 - Interview with Prescott Niles of The Knack

 


It's the tail end of the 70s, and top 40 music is heavily leaning to disco and AOR. Sure there's plenty of other things out there, but the charts point not only to disco artists, but pop singers jumping on board the disco train (Barbara Streisand, Kiss, Paul McCartney and Wings).


Then 4 guys based in Los Angeles recorded and mixed a powerful rock and roll album in a little over 10 days, and for a brief time, the world couldn't get enough of them.


Welcome to episode 157 of Love That Album.


It seemed that you couldn't turn on the radio without hearing that flammed drum beat that held together a song as lustful as anything in rock music, My Sharona. Doug Fieger, Berton Averre, Prescott Niles and Bruce Gary released their debut album Get The Knack and music fans went crazy. Of course, things turned sour with fickle fans and the media who had to take these guys down a peg or two. That's not the story (in the main) that this episode is about.


I am hugely privileged to have Knack bassist Prescott Niles join me to talk about the 6 albums the band released over their career, putting paid to the lie that My Sharona is all they accomplished....but this episode is about more than just The Knack. Prescott talks about his music life starting in Brooklyn, and his time working with musicians like Velvet Turner, Arthur Lee, and George Harrison. He also talks about Fillmore East and Woodstock, and tells some interesting tales about Jimi Hendrix, and a few others.


This is a mammoth conversation we recorded over two sessions (one wasn't enough to get all these stories out). I am hugely grateful to Prescott for taking the time to join me on the show – something 15 year old me who played Get The Knack to death on original release could never have imagined. I'd also liked to thank Randy Haecker who hooked me up with Prescott.


So put on your skinny ties and download the show.


Download this episode of LTA from your podcast app of choice.The wider back catalogue of episodes can also be found at http://lovethatalbumpodcast.blogspot.com


Love That Album is proudly part of the Pantheon Podcast network. Go to http://pantheonpodcasts.com to check out all their great shows.


You can send me feedback at rrrkitchen@yahoo.com.au (written or mp3 voicemail) or join the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/lovethatalbum


If you’d consider writing an iTunes review I’d be immensely grateful. However, it’d be even better if you told a friend about the podcast and Pantheon – at a barbecue, over coffee, on social media….whatever way you choose, consider me grateful.


Proudly Pantheon.


Download episode 157 from here.

Monday, April 25, 2022

Love That Album Podcast Episode 156 - The Tom Robinson Band "Power In The Darkness"

 


In the past, Love That Album has avoided getting political. The albums being focused on for the most part didn't require the conversations to get embroiled in the very furnace that keeps people blathering on talk-back radio and social media – mostly in uncivilised fashion.

That all changes for this episode. If you don't like talk about what a pack of knobheads (I use less polite terminology on the show) fascists really are and the political masters who enable them....you might wanna skip this show.

Otherwise......welcome to episode 156 of Love That Album.

It seems like we're still in a dark era for humanity with wars and bigotry continuously being part of every day life across this broken planet. In England back in the 70s, the National Front were gaining supporters from both ends of the class system. There was a very real chance that their racist ideology was going to be allowed into mainstream government – not just staying in the fringes of society. The Rock Against Racism movement was born to fight this ideology – particularly after the likes of Eric Clapton and David Bowie started saying things in public that would have been frightening to immigrants and Holocaust survivors.

It was into this environment that songwriter and activist Tom Robinson brought his music into the public arena. He and his band (aptly named The Tom Robinson Band) brought a tough combination of pub and punk rock mixed with unambiguous lyrics explaining that if people didn't confront the fascists, then life as they knew it was over.

I am privileged to be joined by podcaster and punk historian Tom Austin-Morgan to discuss the debut album by the TRB, Power In The Darkness. The album is confronting lyrically, but Robinson is smart enough to know that if you back up your messages with catchy hooks and singalong choruses, you'll have a better chance of getting your message across. Tom and I discuss Tom's music in a broader sense, but the necessity is that we have to discuss the political environment of England in the 70s to give the album context. We really couldn't have done the album justice without providing the history.

I'm super grateful to Tom for providing his time and expertise. I highly recommend his excellent show “Banned Biographies”. The show focuses on the history of the original era of British punk – both by documentary style episodes and interviews with those who were there. Trust me – you need this show in your life. You can find it at all the usual places you get podcasts, or you can find it at https://www.bannedbiographies.com/ You can check the show's socials out at:

Twitter: @BannedBiogs

Facebook: @BannedBiographies

Instagram: @bannedbiographies

Download this episode of LTA from your podcast app of choice.The wider back catalogue of episodes can also be found at http://lovethatalbumpodcast.blogspot.com

Love That Album is proudly part of the Pantheon Podcast network. Go to http://pantheonpodcasts.com to check out all their great shows.

You can send me feedback at rrrkitchen@yahoo.com.au (written or mp3 voicemail) or join the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/lovethatalbum

If you’d consider writing an iTunes review I’d be immensely grateful. However, it’d be even better if you told a friend about the podcast and Pantheon – at a barbecue, over coffee, on social media….whatever way you choose, consider me grateful.

Proudly Pantheon.

Download episode 156 from here.




Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Love That Album Podcast Episode 155 - Small Faces' "Ogden's Nut Gone Flake"

 


Are you all seated comfortable, too square on your botty? Then Love That Album can begin.


Welcome to episode 155 of Love That Album podcast.


As the 1960s rolled on, popular music evolved....and yet some of it looked back for inspiration. In the late 60s, the pop songs that had propelled the early British Invasion bands had moved on to make way for heavier sounds of psychedelia and blues based rock. The mod bands that had started out as purely “maximum R&B” were exploring different avenues while still maintaining some connections to their roots.


In 1968, The Small Faces had been through their share of grief with crooked management, contracts that did not favour them, and money woes. (Sadly, Steve Marriott's own future was set for a lot more grief). They wrote and recorded what many believe was their masterpiece, “Ogden's Nut Gone Flake”. Side 1 was a collection of hard rock, psychedelia, and old world British music-hall inspired tunes. Side 2 was a concept piece – a story about Happiness Stan who searches for the “missing” half of the moon. The story is narrated by Professor of Gobbledegook, Stanley Unwin. Oh yes, oh yes.....


I'm joined by songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Ian Kitney (Overnight Jones, Tim Rogers and the Temperance Union) to contemplate the moon, lavatories, raising one's “oars”, the drumming of Kenny Jones, whether Marriott was mocking the state of contemporary British music, putting holes in one's snare drum, and what happens when George Formby is cleaning “winders”. It was a thrill to have Ian on the show – not only as a musician I've long admired, but also as a wonderful conversation partner about music we love.


I also want to give a shout out to author Alan Pattinson who has written a series of wonderful books about so many musicians and bands from the “classic” rock era. I bought his book on The Small Faces to get a feel for their history, and I'd recommend anything he'd write.


You can get Ian's albums from his Bandcamp site at https://iankitney.bandcamp.com/ including his latest called BGM – a wonderful collection of songs crossing over a number of styles over the history of pop.


You can read Alan's writings at http://alansalbumarchives.blogspot.com/ which features links to his multiple e-books about the histories and discographies of many bands you love.


Download this episode of LTA from wherever you prefer getting your podcasts.


Love That Album is proudly part of the Pantheon Podcast network. Go to http://pantheonpodcasts.com to check out all their great shows.


You can send me feedback at rrrkitchen@yahoo.com.au (written or mp3 voicemail) or join the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/lovethatalbum


If you’d consider writing an iTunes review I’d be immensely grateful. However, it’d be even better if you told a friend about the podcast and Pantheon – at a barbecue, over coffee, on social media….whatever way you choose, consider me grateful.


Proudly Pantheon.


Download episode 155 from here.

Monday, February 14, 2022

Love That Album Podcast Episode 154 - Joni Mitchell's Hejira

 


The late 60s to early 70s saw a popular run of troubadours, aka singer / songwriters who were usually known for performing acoustic songs, often of a confessional nature or trying to make sense of the world through their work. The best ones sought out new musical territory as they progressed through their work.

Welcome to episode 154 of Love That Album podcast.

Joni Mitchell’s run of albums from the late 60s onwards were beloved of fans of songwriters. She had a way with unusual chord progressions and very personal storytelling. Very much a part of the Laurel Canyon scene, albums like Ladies of the Canyon and Clouds were well received acoustic guitar and piano based records. She evolved stylistically from folk based pop to pop with jazz leanings over a run of albums in the 70s.

In 1976, Joni released Hejira, a collection of songs related to travel – flight, hotel rooms, the musician’s life versus domesticity, affairs had on tour. Many people consider her earlier album Blue with its songs of love and its failings to be her masterpiece. As great as that is, I’m on team Hejira. It was written while Joni was on the road, and it sounds like the wide open plains and deserts it was probably written in. The compositions are incredibly dense, but the real secret weapon to the success of the album is Weather Report bassist, Jaco Pastorius.

Once again, I am thrilled to be joined by film writer, Kerry Gately Fristoe and guitarist, Shane Pacey. We look into Joni’s history, the themes behind Hejira, compare the differences between that album and Blue, and we also find time to diss each other’s musical tastes in other areas…..as you do. These two fellow music enthusiasts always bring something great to the conversation....looking forward already to their next appearance.

Have a read of Kerry’s excellent essays at https://prowlerneedsajump.wordpress.com/author/echidnabot/ and https://www.brattleblog.brattlefilm.org/author/kerry-fristoe/

 Shane has just released a wonderful album with his new band Pacey, King, and Doley. You can order a copy of Better Together from their Bandcamp site, https://paceykingdoley.bandcamp.com/album/better-together

Download this episode of LTA from wherever you prefer getting your podcasts.

Love That Album is proudly part of the Pantheon Podcast network. Go to http://pantheonpodcasts.com to check out all their great shows.

You can send me feedback at rrrkitchen@yahoo.com.au (written or mp3 voicemail) or join the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/lovethatalbum

If you’d consider writing an iTunes review I’d be immensely grateful. However, it’d be even better if you told a friend about the podcast and Pantheon – at a barbecue, over coffee, on social media….whatever way you choose, consider me grateful.

Proudly Pantheon.

Download episode 154 from here.


Saturday, January 15, 2022

Love That Album Podcast Episode 153 - Interviews with Tristan Fry, Steve Gray and John Williams of Sky (recorded 1984)

 


As a kid, I was always told to “reach for the sky”.....I think what they meant was “reach out to Sky”....or something like that.


Welcome to episode 153 of Love That Album.


First of all, thanks for your patience. I didn't get to put out the planned Joni Mitchell episode in December 2021, so that was deferred to January 2022. That then got deferred due to the bastard bug hitting one of my co hosts.


I still really wanted to put something out this month, so a chance encounter with a couple of old tapes from 1984 ended up being my solution. At that time, I was attending RMIT in Melbourne, and spending valuable study time doing campus radio programs. Whenever I heard Australian / British supergroup Sky was touring Australia, I would get the station management to arrange for me to get to speak to the band. The fact that a band as hugely popular in Australia and Europe such as Sky would speak to a young shmuck like me speaks volumes as to how lovely they were.


In March 1984, Sky toured Australia for the first time without founding member and classical guitar maestro John Williams. He'd left a few weeks earlier to get back to other projects he felt he'd neglected over the course of playing in a band.


On this episode of LTA, I'm presenting two interviews. The first is the interview I did with drummer Tristan Fry and pianist Steve Gray on that tour. The second was recorded either later that year or sometime the next (I can't be 100% sure) with John Williams on his first tour after leaving the band. Bear in mind that both of these interviews were recorded when I was pretty young and had no real experience in writing interview questions. Regardless of what I asked, Tristan, Steve and John always answered with great detail and professionalism.


My thanks go out to David Green, my manager at 3ST for arranging these interviews (you can hear him on the one with Tristan and Steve). I also want to thank my long time friend Pete Anzo for loaning me his cassette deck to rip these interviews from tape to my laptop.


If you want to hear an early episode of the podcast where Michael Pursche (of Sitting In a Bar In Adelaide fame) and I speak in depth about Sky, and I speak with Tristan Fry for the first time in a little under 30 years, go to https://lovethatalbumpodcast.blogspot.com/2012/11/love-that-album-episode-33-music-of-sky.html


Download this episode of LTA from Spotify, Stitcher or iTunes (search for “Love That Album podcast”)....or wherever you prefer getting your podcasts.


Love That Album is proudly part of the Pantheon Podcast network. Go to http://pantheonpodcasts.com to check out all their great shows.


You can send me feedback at rrrkitchen@yahoo.com.au (written or mp3 voicemail) or join the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/lovethatalbum


If you’d consider writing an iTunes review I’d be immensely grateful. However, it’d be even better if you told a friend about the podcast and Pantheon – at a barbecue, over coffee, on social media….whatever way you choose, consider me grateful. 


Proudly Pantheon.


Download episode 153 from here.


Sunday, December 26, 2021

Ten favourite albums Maurice discovered in 2021 - new or otherwise.

 


It has been years since I've written a blog post that was not a blurb serving as an enticement to listen to an episode of Love That Album podcast (or See Hear). I put so much time into assembling the spoken words, I never thought about putting the written word out into the ether.


That's going to change now – at least for this one post....for a couple of reasons.


Normally, the end of year podcast episode features me asking many of my regular co hosts to come up with their favourite discoveries of the year (released at any time, but the album had to be new to them). In 2021, as a podcast, Love That Album turned 10 years old. I asked those same people to talk about a favourite record released over the lifetime of the show....I didn't want to repeat that format for the end of year, so decided to record a “regular” episode....


….and then I received some personal news that made me lack any sort of motivation to record a show this month.


So, here I am still with thoughts in my head about music I've heard this year and want to put them out there – the written form seems ideal. I can type as much or as little as I want, and you can read whatever amount that interests you. There will be many more year-end lists out there – mine is just another put out into the overcrowded space vying for your attention.....doesn't mean I'm not going to submit it.


So, in no particular order, here are 10 favourite releases I heard for the first time this year – some new, some not.


1) Various - Pyramid Pieces Volume 1  (Modal & Eco-Jazz From Australia 1969-79) and Volume 2 (Modern Jazz Australia 1969-1980) (2020 / 2021)


Anyone who knows me realises I'm a sucker for a great anthology, and in particular, I really love discovering Australian anthologies - I love local music history. It was late in the year that I came across this pair of albums which will be an ongoing series from The Roundtable Records.


I'm a fan of the local jazz scene, but my knowledge of Australian seventies jazz is very limited (it could rightly be argued my music knowledge overall is limited). There are so many comps of the local rock scene of every era, and even some great contemporary jazz comps (The Pulse, Jazz In Melbourne). However, I was not aware of anything that attempted to look back. Pyramid Pieces attempts to rectify that.

Some of these names were known to me (Galapgos Duck, John Sangster, Allan Zavod) and others were not (Bruce Cale, Charlie Munro). All the music here is wondrous – maybe not taking jazz into new directions, but definitely providing compositions and performances worthy of any jazz lovers' attention.


Sydney's JazzCo/Op are showcased with a piece called A La Coltrane dedicated to the giant of music. It's more Atlantic era Coltrane inspired, than the free jazz period Strangely enough, the structure of the piece reminds me of a Dexter Gordon tune called Tanya, but certainly Howie Smith's tone reflects that of Coltrane's approach over Dex's.


Another Sydney group, Out To Lunch, as their name implies also dedicate their work to a jazz great, this time Eric Dolphy. Their piece “What The Thunder Said” seems to combine both the free jazz of Dolphy and some compositional elements.


Probably my favourite piece overall is a composition by Allan Zavod called “Circles”. Many people will remember him as a pianist for Frank Zappa, but he was already an important jazz figure in Australia before Zappa came calling. Apparently, he was offered a scholarship to Berklee after being observed by Duke Ellington on an Australian tour. How life changing was THAT moment!!!


I look forward to future volumes in this series.

2) Various - The Daptone Super Soul Revue Live! At The Apollo (2021)


One of my big regrets was never going to see Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings. She was here a number of times, so it's not like I never had the opportunity. I know two people that were invited from the audience to dance on stage with her and the band.


I've been a huge fan of the retro soul sound of the last couple of decades. Melbourne in particular has a great scene (let's see what happens post Covid). I will speak a little further about that down the list.


Daptone was a sound unto itself...so many great artists on its label – Naomi Shelton, Charles Bradley, The Budos Band...but Sharon Jones was the label's queen. Back in 2014, Daptone held a 3 night soul revue at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem (which was no stranger to live albums). I don't know why it took 7 years for the recordings to see the light of day, but thank goodness they did.


The studio albums of these artists are mighty fine, but there's an energy and excitement from the live performances of all the acts that makes this collection astounding. Most acts get two or three songs each, but the label's king and queen, Bradley and Jones get lengthier sets. Jones was in the midst of cancer treatment, but that didn't stop her giving the performance her everything.



Get this collection – play it loud.

3) The Seven Ups - The Old World (2021)

As long as I'm looking at the soul revival, I need to include the latest effort from Melbourne band The Seven Ups.


As I mentioned, the Melbourne soul revival over the last decade or two has been incredibly strong with bands like The Bamboos and Emma Donovan & The Putbacks amongst many others. I've been a fan of The Seven Ups for a few years with their heavy groove oriented soul (a big asset to many of the local bands).


The Old World puts the soul sound into a blender with the style of Ennio Morricone writing a sci/fi soundtrack. “Abode of the Clouds” belongs in a 70s Blaxploitation film and the title track is like a mini symphony mixing cool noirish jazz and some elements of melancholy.



4) The Hard Ons - I’m Sorry Sir, That Riff’s Been Taken (2021)

I'm sure this latest Hard-Ons release is on a lot of local favourites lists this year. Tim Rogers also released an excellent album with You Am I earlier in the year, so the news that he had become the new lead singer of The Hard-Ons AND they were releasing an album was a surprise – to me anyway.

I think there was concern in some camps that Rogers was not the right man for the job – I hope that feeling has been dismissed. He's was a bona fide fan of the band and he wasn't trying to fit them into the You Am I image. This is a great selection of punk pop tunes – something the Hard-Ons have always excelled in - and I hope that long time fans are as happy with this as they are with, say, Yummy. Favourite songs – Shove It Down, Home Sweet Home, and the great lead off single Hold Tight.



5) Harmonium – Harmonium (1974)

Earlier on this year, I was asked by head honcho at Pantheon Podcasts, Christian Swain, if I was interested in interviewing the leader and songwriter of 70s folk / prog group Harmonium for LTA. I had no idea who Harmonium was but gave them a listen – within 20 minutes, I knew I needed Serge Fiori on the show. Harmonium released 3 studio albums and a live record in the 70s before calling it quits. The music became more progressive as they went along.

Late in 2020 saw the release of an orchestrated reworking of all the band's material into a symphony. This sort of reinterpretation can be a dangerous – the results aren't always great. However, given that Harmonium's folk roots developed into more complex arrangements as they went on (including use of orchestra on their final studio album), Harmonium Symphonique seemed not only inevitable but a must-do project.

As part of my research for the interview, I listened not only to the original Harmonium albums but recordings from their contemporaries in the Montreal prog scene – all very different, but all part of the same story. The debut self titled album from 1974 was full of gorgeous melodies and harmonies that were dreamlike. I speak no French, but it doesn't matter – the music tells the stories and the vocals are like another instrument. It seems that the most popular of their albums is the second one, Les Cinq Saisons. Make no mistake, it's a magnificent album. But my pick for this list is the debut with what I term complex simplicity – the songs are hummable and sound simple, but underneath is a beauty in the composition and arrangements that probably took a lot of time to get right.


6) Jane Weaver – Flock (2021)

Jane Weaver was another musician I'd never heard of until this year. Pat Monaghan at Rocksteady Records had put up a post about her latest album Flock being in the store. I like to check out Pat's recommendations – some are in my wheelhouse, some are not, but he's someone whose opinion I take note of.

Turns out she's been recording for years and this was her 11th album. It turns out that this was probably an ideal album for me to get introduced to her work. An interview in The Guardian cited that her tastes and previous work leaned towards “Lebanese torch songs, 80s Russian aerobics records and Australian punk”. I will search some of her earlier music out, but Flock still has enough of a mixture of pop, psych, Krautrock and dreampop to keep her versatility cred running.

The opening cut on the album “Heartlow” is a dreamy piece of pop that centres around a keyboard motif played over and over again while the rest of the melody works its way around it – Jane's voice is ethereal. Another tune that shows something of a psych feel to me is Modern Reputation. It reminds me of a tune performed by Elephant's Memory in the film Midnight Cowboy, Old Man Willow.



There's also electronica included on this album, but the bottom line is there are wonderful pop melodies that kept me hypnotised and returning to this album a lot over the year.

7) Charm of Finches – Your Company (2019)

You know how you go down YouTube wormholes that you regret because your time has been wasted? Occasionally, you discover something wonderful.....such was the case earlier this year where I was led to a film clip of a Melbourne folk duo, Charm of Finches.

The duo are sisters Mabel & Ivy Windred-Wornes. The song that came to my attention was a tune called Treading Water. It's a heartbreaking song about a relationship where both partners know it's reached a point where it's going no further. Mabel and Ivy's gentle harmonies just haunted me in the way that beautiful sibling harmonies seem to do. My first thought of association was with the Unthanks sisters, Becky and Rachel. Some of their songs, however, are more tragic than anything, so maybe it wasn't a great comparison.

Based on the album I sought out, Your Company, Charm of Finches songs tended more to wistfulness than full blown sadness. Her Quiet Footsteps is a favourite from the album which appears to recall memories of better times following the death of a loved one. The album is full of songs of introspection and memories. Another lovely tune (really, they all are) is Where Do All The Ducks Go, a song of childlike innocence and inquisitiveness.


This is an album I recommend to be listened to without distraction....it really is a thing of beauty.

At the time of me writing this, they've just released a new album called Wonderful Oblivion, so I may have to search that out as well.

8) Various – The Trojan Story 50th anniversary edition (2021)

I'm far from what anyone would call an expert on reggae, but over the years I have developed a love of classic era ska music and through that, reggae. I've collected a few great Trojan comps over the years (X-Rated, Beatles Reggae, This Is Trojan) as well as some stuff from the big name artists like Desmond Dekker and Lee Perry, I have plenty more to explore, I acknowledge.

This year saw the re-release of a beautiful set from 1971 called The Trojan Story. The attention to detail is magnificent, and it's sort of like the reggae equivalent of Nuggets (albeit limited to the Trojan and associated series of labels).

There's songs here that everyone will know like Rudy, A Message to You, Housewives Choice, Pressure Drop and Rude Boy, but there's a ton of things here I had no knowledge of and am rapt I discovered like Syncopate by The Astronauts (if reggae was tackling surf music....), Them A Laugh And a Kiki by The Soulmates and King Without a Throne by Sugar Simone (which could have easily been released by a Motown act of the era).

I can't speak for the experts, but I think this is a brilliant primer for the first decade of reggae music.



9) Terje Rypdal – Odyssey (1975)

As I've often said on the LTA Facebook group, I'm a big fan of ECM Records. There's something about the sound of many of the artists who have recorded for them that just gets me right....much of it quite moody. It's only hit me in recent times that my very favourite artists on the label are guitarists – John Abercrombie, Ralph Towner, Bill Frisell, and of course, Pat Metheny. Now I add Norwegian guitarist Terje Rypdal to that list.

Rypdal is one of those artists I always meant to listen to more than I had. This year, I found a couple of his records going second hand at prices that weren't obscene (as much of the current market for vinyl seems to get). One of those albums was his 1975 double platter, Odyssey. This is definitely an album for playing late at night with a strong whiskey (at least that's my take on it).

Like many of my age, my gateway to jazz was via jazz fusion – Al Dimeola, John Mclaughlin (those damn guitarists again....) Moreso than any of the other ECM jazz guitarists, Terje Rypdal fits into the fusion sound description, though with more of a slow tempo feel. There's none of the uptempo latin feel you can hear on a Dimeola cut, for instance. In fact, much of Odyssey seems (to my ears) to be a kindred spirit to Diamond Dust or Cause We've Ended as Lovers from Jeff Beck's Blow By Blow album. There's that slow intensity, and the searing guitar tone is in a similar vein. Over Birkerot is an uptempo rocky piece, but the meandering pace of Better Off Without You and Midnite are better examples of what this album is all about. It's musically very dark...and that's a good thing by my taste.

10) Gillian Welch - Boots No.2: The Lost Songs (2020)

There's been a common trend over the last couple of decades. Legacy acts have been releasing songs “from the vault”. These are usually live recordings (Bob Dylan, Neil Young Bruce Springsteen etc) or previously unheard studio cuts (Bob Dylan, Neil Young Bruce Springsteen etc). They possibly figure that if they get the cash rather than having them released as bootlegs, they don't care that they're often songs left off projects for good reason.

Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings have also decided to walk down that avenue. A few years ago, they released an album of Revival outtakes – I didn't get myself a copy of that. In 2020, a mail order box set of recordings called The Lost Songs was released featuring songs Welch wrote to fulfil a publishing requirement sometime after Time The Revelator. One would think these songs would be second rate (of course, I imagine second rate Welch / Rawlings recordings would still be essential listening).There was nothing to fear – this was all top shelf stuff. Given how infrequently Welch and Rawlings release new material, 2020 was a gift with All The Good Times, an album of covers, as well as this box set – 4 CDs of new material.

If you're a fan of their other albums, you don't need me to sell you the idea of how great this collection is – all the darkness, harmonies, and that Appalachian sound should be enough to convince you this is essential listening.


*******************************************

If you've read this far, thank you for indulging me. I hope to put out a new podcast episode for your earholes in January 2022. Stay safe, stay sane, listen to lots of music (my suggestions or your own favourites – it doesn't matter)....and be kind to others.

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Love That Album Podcast Episode 152 - Nick Drake "Five Leaves Left"

 


Think of any number of singers of the 20th century to take to a stage: Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Bon Scott, Nina Simone.....”shyness” would not be any sort of adjective you'd use to describe these people.

We're not focusing on any of them this time around.

Welcome to episode 152 of Love That Album Podcast.

To say that Nick Drake suffered from shyness could be the greatest understatement you could make about him. He only performed live a few times in his short life, and from all documented accounts, those performances were memorable for the wrong reasons – not acknowledging his audiences, looking down, walking off stage mid song....the same can be said for his interactions with people off the stage.

However, it would also be fair to say that Drake knew his way around a song – both as composer and musician.

I am joined by fellow Nick-Head, Antony Rotunno. Antony is the host of three excellent podcasts: Life & Life Only, Film Gold, and Glass Onion: On John Lennon. It is the third of these shows that got my attention. On every show he tackles Lennon related subjects (with occasional forays into The Beatles) to work out what made Lennon tick. I am sure that he relished the opportunity to talk about a musician with no Beatles connection whatsoever for a change. The focus of the show is Drake's debut album, Five Leaves Left. However, we speak in detail about all three of his albums as well as events in his life, his string arranger Robert Kirby, similar musicians, and speaking in a posh accent.

In addition, there are two real treats for you this time around. We hear from Antony's friends, Kester Jones and Melanie Lawrence who pre-recorded their take on a beloved Nick Drake tune, and Antony himself armed with his guitar tackles another tune. These performances are wonderful and a great part of the show.

My gratitude to Antony for bringing his time and thoughts to the show. A really exciting development is that going forward, Glass Onion: On John Lennon will be part of the Pantheon Network.

You can find much Antony related shenanigans (blog posts, albums, podcasts) at https://www.antonyrotunno.com/

Kester's music can be heard at https://soundcloud.com/kesterjones. Mealnie's music can be heard at https://open.spotify.com/album/34j3oNlQyl2olqyo4bQHM7?si=cNb5DhoxRBeENssyjk7oLQ&fbclid=IwAR3ztpO_vSx31pkqoxn7yBet3qymVpI5d_y43u48Gxu9L7rANoqig48E690&nd=1

Download this and any other episode of LTA from wherever you prefer getting your podcasts.

Love That Album is proudly part of the Pantheon Podcast network. Go to http://pantheonpodcasts.com to check out all their great shows.

You can send me feedback at rrrkitchen@yahoo.com.au (written or mp3 voicemail) or join the Facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/lovethatalbum

If you’d consider writing an iTunes review I’d be immensely grateful. However, it’d be even better if you told a friend about the podcast and Pantheon – at a barbecue, over coffee, on social media….whatever way you choose, consider me grateful. 

Proudly Pantheon

Download episode 152 from here.