I have been rocking an old faded Brooks Bros take on the classic Harrington with added patch pockets every summer since ages ago, but I have a mind to get a replacement as we emerge, blinking, into the sunlight. I am thinking collarless, not waisted, slim lined…just started the search for that rare thing, me buying an item of clothing which isn’t a pair of Levi’s or a tee shirt. Anyways, what jacket will you be sporting this summer? A jaunty Seersucker? College blazer? Battered Wrangler? Give me some ideas.
It’s gloomy out and it’s been a long week so let’s have some up tempo tracks to get us to the weekend in a buoyant mood! This my current earwig.
Twang joins Tiggerlion, MosleyMoles, Leeds Boy and SteveT in the pod to discuss the lockdown. The team consider what cultural gems kept them sane in this difficult period, gratuitous spending, what they have planned for an unlocked summer as we stumble, blinking, into the light and pause for a moment to consider whether we might actually miss a time of low pollution, no traffic and working on the kitchen table.
Yes, apparently so. Get hep.
I just made a playlist of songs written by Gretchen (popular with some here). Some versions very like her but some quite different. Any other playlists of interesting covers out there beyond the usual suspects?
A few of us commented that Tig hadn’t been about much. I’ve been in touch with the great man and it’s just an over abundance of life getting in the way and he’ll be back amongst us soon. He’d like this…
What does it sound like?:
Tom Petty’s right hand man Mike Campbell was a perfect sidekick – capable of coming up with hit making riffs (“Refugee” for example), solos long on melody and short on widdle, solid in the recording department and no desire to distract the audience from Tom, who was, after all, the main act. He could also make other acts sound great too when not on Heartbreaker duty or knock up the odd hit for others (“Boys of summer” for Don Henley). With the tragic departure of Tom you might think he would disappear into special guest territory, sort of famous but unwanted (what else did Mitch Mitchell do, for example). But no, it seems he had a side band all the time, doing bar gigs and having fun. Their launch as a proper act was delayed by Mike disappearing on tour with Fleetwood Mac for a year, but finally in December the first album by The Dirty Knobs appeared. OK OK, it’s a terrible name. There is nothing surprising and experimental here, but equally Mike’s songwriting chops are in fine form. The material ranges from good time country rock (“Pistol Packin’ Mama”), heartfelt country (“Irish » Continue Reading.
Phew. Putain. Need a coup. What do we think? Probably spoilers within.
Bumper length doc about The Mighty Tull on Sky Arts tomorrow 5.30. This is a public service announcement.
Tony Rice, bluegrass guitar maestro, went to the great pickin’ festival in the sky today. He hadn’t been well for a while which had affected his playing and he’d refused to perform when he felt he was less than 100% i.e. about 1000 times better than almost anyone. He was also a languid and natural singer and took the genre way beyond where other great bluesgrass pickers go, rather like Clarence White, his great inspiration, did in the 60s. He leaves a great legacy of albums and live material, this being a good example of him in his natural environment, trading licks live with other monster players Mark O’Conner, Sam Bush and Jerry Douglas. His solos at the beginning and end would probably take the average moral about 30 years to learn and he knocks them off with ease – and you can be sure the following night he’d have done something completely different. There are many great shredders but few with such swing, poise and relaxed sense of fun and joy at playing.
Just sitting up with a peaty one and the end of the log in the wood burner and it’s past midnight so it’s Christmas Day. Have a good one all, however and whether you choose to mark the day. Your daily witterings always give me joy, especially appreciated in these difficult times.
I’m surprised no one has mentioned already that one of the greatest British novelists has passed through to the other side. I’ve read most of his books, all good, some brilliant. The core Smiley ones, Tinker Tailor, Honourable Schoolboy and Smiley’s people (aka The Karla Trilogy) are deservedly seen as highlights but The Spy Who Came In From The Cold is a classic and the others are all worth a look. I reread A Small Town in Germany numerous times decades ago on a kibbutz where the library was rather limited and it never failed to grip me.
It’s sad he’s gone but he had an excellent innings at 89 and what a legacy. RIP.
No, not some 14 quid ear buds to your phone via Bluething!
Big Stingray Phones jobs, plugged into the stereo! My exploration of the Porcupine Tree has led me to late night listening to long trippy tracks through my lovely AKG K702s. What a joy. I’ve gone mad listening to long forgotten treasures on, yes, “cans”. There’s no tool like an old tool. I just wish they had a curly lead like proper headphones but they’re hopelessly unreliable.
Twang finally finds the key to the pod and virtually gathers with Tiggerlion, Dave Amitri and special guest Hilary to discuss the 80s, a decade beloved and reviled by equal numbers of people. Perhaps, the team muse, a decade with plenty to feel down about in the world needed frothy, fun, happy and irreverent music to provide some respite. Unless, Twang sighs, you were a miserable git anyway.
I need an example of easy rocking, cajun tinged accordian. A swinging, sightly funky groove with some tasty driving accordian maybe. Any ideas? I have some running round my head but can’t think of the songs. Suggestions welcome!
What does it sound like?:
By all accounts the original recording was a victim of a fairly wasted organisational team at the gig meaning a fair amount of digital magic had to go into this reissue to get it up to scratch. Whilst I’ve heard better sounding live albums it’s not bad. Apparently the drums suffered from terrible wind noise in the mics so Mitch Mitchell recreated his performance in the studio afterwards which is going some. It’s fair to say it’s rather thin sounding, truth be told.
Anyone who is familiar with Jimi and especially live Jimi will know what’s in store here, sensational guitar playing with the odd side order of duff notes and out of tune riffage, such being the cost of breaking all the rules. I think it sounds bloody great actually. I especially like the fact that there are live versions of tracks which turned up on “The cry of love”, the much maligned album pieced together after Jimi’s death but which I’ve always liked a lot.
Jimi chats quite a bit and it’s always good to hear that stoned slurred sounding hippy stuff coming from him.
What does it all *mean*?
As it’s Friday, time for a handy natter abiut your favourite funny films. At Twang Towers we have (well, Jr and I) decided the top five are:
The Blues Brothers.
Opinion hasn’t settled on a ranking but I think it’s between House and Saddles with House possibly edging it.
I’ve just finished a delicious bottle of Scala – The Orcadian which Mrs. T gave me for my birthday which was about perfect – single malt with a touch of peat but didn’t leave residue on your tongue, its only problem was you always want a drop more. Anyway, I can’t have one as it’s all gone now. So, recommendations please. Quite interested in some of the new interesting ones if anyone has experience? I had a nice bottle of Welsh single malt my (Welsh) mum bought me. Norfolk whisky? But what’s your favourite tipple?
My mum is approaching being bed ridden so I want to get her a small TV for the bedroom – 22″ maybe. Also there’s no antenna in there but she has good WiFi. Any advice on models, solutions? I haven’t tried to run, say, Freeview over wi-fi. Is it even possible? Smart TV etc?
I do like a glossy TV series, especially politics, intrigue, lots of idealistic people doing clever things and against the odds coming out on top. Loved Designated Survivor, Madam Secretary and of course Borgen. But I never saw The West Wing. I’m sure I’d love it but is it too old now? I mean, I’m re-watching the Sopranos again but that’s the greatest show ever. Is it too late to watch The West Wing?
I’ve been listening to a lot of JJ Cale recently, who seems to suit my mood, and started writing songs which, if not like him (no one is like him) caught some of his mood. So I recorded them in a little EP I present here for your pleasure. There’s a cracking guitartastic track with old pal David called Brand New Blues where “licks” are “traded”, and elsewhere Twang Jr makes his recording debut on lead guitar and alto saxophone. It’s bluesy, tuneful, fun and a bit melancholy. My basic mood at the moment.
As the song goes…
“In these troubled times I wanna chose The gentle rocking sound of JJ playing the blues”
Link thingy here:
I love a bass singer. All that power. Here’s a great example by Jimmy Ricks. When he sings … “one fist of iron, the other of steel if the right don’t get you then the left one will”
,,,you’re glad he’s not talking to you. And those notes at the end!
Any other headlines you want to see?
What does it sound like?:
Surely redundant, isn’t this question? If you don’t already know you’re probably not interested in the first place. Richard and Linda at their superb peak, in demo, remastered and various guest roles over the duration of their career. Richard proves again that he is one of our finest singers and guitarists, Linda that she is surely the greatest female vocalist of that era – yes it’s touch and go vs. her friend Sandy Denny, but there’s something extra in Linda’s voice – she can infuse a mood above the pure tunefulness. At one minute cold, another bawdy, another soft and vulnerable, then rocking out. There’s a live version of “The Great Valerio” I played 5 times straight. Sensational. And a version of “I’m a dreamer” which out Sandy’s Sandy. It sounds fabulous, is what.
What does it all *mean*?
Hmm, this is a good question. Surely most people have all this stuff, and those who haven’t can probably make do with the various compilations already out there. Yes there are unreleased tracks on here, but, whisper it, they’re not really indispensable other than to the most incurable completist. Interesting nonetheless. All that said, if » Continue Reading.
Just realised “Sir Henry at Rawlinson End” is on Spotify. Cheers me up enormously.