26.8.09

The Art of Chris Farlowe

Rhythm and Blues was the music of
Sixties MODS, and the soulful
Farlowe got as close to the black heart of R&B
as any white-boy could.
The Art of Chris Farlowe was released December 1966.
on Andrew Loog Oldham's incestuous IMMEDIATE Records label.
When we weren't at our typing jobs in the Melbourne CBD, or
dancing in our Prue Acton mini-dresses at The Catcher* and The Thumpin' Tum*,
we were drinking cheap cider and playing that Farlowe vinyl into onion rings.
These are the tracks that epitomise 1967 for me:
Side 1
What Becomes of the Broken Hearted
We're Doing Fine
Life is But Nothing
Paint It, Black
Cuttin' In
Open the Door to Your Heart
Out of Time.
Side 2
North South East West
You're So Good For Me
It Was Easier to Hurt Her
(co-written by Jerry Ragavoy who also wrote Stay With Me Baby, one of The Great R&B songs of all time)
I'm Free
I've Been Loving You Too Long
(this track has great rock-cello backing)
Reach Out (I'll Be There)
Ride On, Baby

We LOVED this album (still do).
You can find YuToobs of Farlowe and be rewarded.
We knew nothing about him at all back then, beyond the liner notes, except that it seemed the most wonderful music and people who could ignore it, mystified us.

*The Catcher (In The Rye) 471 Flinders Lane Melbourne, uber-hip Mod hangout with Members, founded by photographer Ron Eden and Graham Geddes.
*The Thumpin' Tum 50 Lt.Latrobe St Melbourne, founded by Ken Moate and Ken Minogue and was ultra-hip while they ran it in the 1960's. There was no better place or time to be a teenage girl.

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22.8.09


Willie Nelson is God.
5 wives, 2000 songs, one hell of a legend.

I was saddened to read that his longtime stage manager died recently.
Poodie Locke led most of the audience and The Highwaymen on foot back to the Melbourne Hilton after their show at the Laver Arena and treated us like old friends.
A big guy.
This big: both of the Nelson crew buses had signs that said “Poodie’s on the other bus.”

If you laughed at 'Willie is God' above, you might benefit from
viewing a DVD of Edge Of Darkness -
and which featured his song
Time Of The Preacher sung drunkenly
by the 2 protagonists in a climactic scene.

The Edge Of Darkness was British excellence, so of course
it is now enduring a re-make Stateside - make sure you get the original.

Eric Clapton, who used to be God, did the music for the series and also performed it live (follow that final link for the story).

And here's a story from GodWillie:

A kid asks his mama, "How come you're white and I'm black?" And she says, "Honey, from what I can remember of the party, you're lucky you don't bark."

The link above to 'greatest show ever' quotes a reviewer -

"Edge of Darkness is a masterpiece.
It is one of those very rare television creations so rich in form and content that the spectator wishes there was some way of prolonging it indefinitely” ...

and that's how I feel also about Mr Willie Nelson, who is now 75 years on.

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7.8.09

Most Under-rated Band In Rock History?


A US Country-music blogger I fell over via a profile at Norm Geras
(Emeritus Professor, cricket tragic, and Country music-maven) is
Setting The Woods On Fire.

STWOF asks his: "highly intelligent readers: Tell me, in your opinion,
what rock band (not artist)
suffers the injustice of having the widest gap between
Factor A (Actual Quality & Influence)
and
Factor B (Level Of Recognition & Acclaim)? "

I think for this we have to separate the UK, USA and UStralia.
We immediately think of our favourite song that did not lead to a 50-album career.
Mine for the UK would be The Zombies, and for the US I would nominate Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels for the Under-dog.

The Americans at STWOF however, think in terms of their 'British Invasion', and I was thrilled to see them acknowledge the fabulous and legendary Ray Davies
(but who cannot qualify for this survey since he has been inducted into the RRHoF).
A STWOF commentor mentions our GOBetweens, but imho they are over-rated here,

The Dingoes are about to get into the ARIA HoF so that's them sorted, and
maybe a lot more of the acts on this list should have been rich and famous, and
I wish the brilliant DUFFO was a band so I could nominate him instead of settling on

TAMAM SHUD - a Sydney group which
included the brilliant Richard Lockwood.
Yes I saw them live - at
a Happening (with Ellis D Fogg strobe-lightshow for full atmosphere)
at Paddo Town Hall in 1969, and many many times after.

anybody wanna remind me of a another Aussie musical inju$tice?

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