February 5: Happy 73rd Birthday Al Kooper

Al_Kooper

 

Al Kooper, by rights, should be regarded as one of the giants of ’60s rock, not far behind the likes of Bob Dylan and Paul Simon in importance. …. he was a very audible sessionman on some of the most important records of mid-decade, including Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone.” Kooper also joined and led, and then lost two major groups, the Blues Project and Blood, Sweat & Tears. He played on two classic blues-rock albums in conjunction with his friend Mike Bloomfield. As a producer at Columbia, he signed the British invasion act the Zombies just in time for them to complete the best LP in their entire history; and still later, Kooper discovered Lynyrd Skynyrd and produced their best work.
~Bruce Eder (allmusic.com)

Al Kooper Tribute:

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Classic song: Key to the Highway by Chas Segar and Big Bill Broonzy

“When I was about 14, I saw Big Bill Broonzy on TV and that was an incredible thing. Because maybe if I’d just heard it, it might not have had the same effect. But to see footage of Broonzy playing ‘Hey Hey,’ this was a real blues artist and I felt like I was looking into heaven. That was it for me and then, when I went to explore his music, the song that always came back to me was an incredible version of ‘Key To The Highway.’ That was the one that I thought somehow would, like Crossroads, capture the whole journey of being a musician and a traveling journeyman.””
– Eric Clapton (2003)

“Key to the Highway” is a blues standard that has been performed and recorded by several blues and other artists. Blues pianist Charlie Segar first recorded the song in 1940. Jazz Gillum and Big Bill Broonzy followed with recordings during 1940–41, using an arrangement that has become the standard. When Little Walter updated the song in 1958 in an electric Chicago blues style, it became a success on the R&B record chart. Continue reading “Classic song: Key to the Highway by Chas Segar and Big Bill Broonzy”

33 Songs released in 1971 you MUST hear

Photo – Iain Macmillian
Photo – Iain Macmillian

 

Rules:

  • Only one song per artist/group
  • The song must be released in 1971
  • Songs from live albums not allowed (that’s another & more complicated list)

Please feel free to publish your own favorite songs from 1971 in the comments section…

AND lists like this are supposed to be fun! Don’t take it too seriously.

My favorite (studio) albums from 1971 include:

Bob Dylan’s Greatest Hits Vol. 2, If Only I Could Remember My Name (David Crosby),  There’s a Riot Goin’ On (Sly & the Family Stone), What’s Going On (Marvin Gaye), Who’s Next (The Who), Tapestry (Carole King),  Shaft: Music from the Soundtrack (Isaac Hayes),  Sticky Fingers (The Rolling Stones), Imagine (John Lennon),  Surf’s Up (Beach Boys),  LA Woman (The Doors),  Coat of Many Colors (Dolly Parton), IV (Led Zeppelin), Every Picture Tells a Story (Rod Stewart), Songs of Love & Hate (Leonard Cohen), Blue (Joni Mitchell), Pearl (Janis Joplin), White Light (Gene Clark), John Prine (John Prine), Nilsson Schmilsson (Harry Nilsson), Hunky Dory (David Bowie), Tupelo Honey (Van Morrison), Jack Johnson (Miles Davis), The Cry of Love (Jimi Hendrix), In Search Of A Song (Tom T. Hall), Crazy Horse (Crazy Horse) & Just as I Am (Bill Withers).

Here we go…

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November 25: The Last Waltz was recorded in 1976 (full 4h20m concert)

Last-Waltz

This film should be played loud!

This is a message on a title card at the beginning of the film. The greatest concert movie ever made. This post concerns the movie, the audio releases have to wait for it’s own post.

Wikipedia:

The Last Waltz was a concert by the rock group The Band, held on American Thanksgiving Day, November 25, 1976, at Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco. The Last Waltz was advertised as the end of The Band’s illustrious touring career, and the concert saw The Band joined by more than a dozen special guests, including Paul Butterfield, Eric Clapton, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris, Ronnie Hawkins, Dr. John, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, Ringo Starr, Muddy Waters, Ronnie Wood, Bobby Charles and Neil Young.

The event was filmed by director Martin Scorsese and made into a documentary of the same name, released in 1978. The film features concert performances, scenes shot on a studio soundstage and interviews by Scorsese with members of The Band. A triple-LP soundtrack recording, produced by Rob Fraboni, was issued in 1978. The film was released on DVD in 2002 as was a four-CD box set of the concert and related studio recordings.

Trailer:

I have several versions of the film, and I’ve seen many versions of it. I’ve seen it at the cinema, I’ve played it to death on video casette, I have two DVD releases , a blu-ray release and I’ve seen/heard quite a bit of bootlegs of the show.

This is a film that I’m really passionate about, and I have often wondered if there’s footage, filmed sequences, that is not in the official version. Whatever condition such film would be in was irrelevant, I wanted to see as much as possible of the legendary concert.

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20 songs released in 1965 you must hear

bob-dylan-like-a-rolling-stone


The Year 1965 summary

  • The first US combat troops arrive in Vietnam. By the end of the year, 190,000 American soldiers are in Vietnam.
  • Rhodesia unilaterally declares its independence from Britain
  • Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and more than 2,600 others arrested in Selma, Ala., during demonstrations against voter-registration rules
  • Malcolm X, black-nationalist leader, shot to death at Harlem rally
  • Blacks riot for six days in Watts section of Los Angeles: 34 dead, over 1,000 injured, nearly 4,000 arrested
  • Movies: Dr. Zhivago, The Sound of Music
    Deaths: Winston Churchill, Nat King Cole & T.S. Eliot

My rules:

  • Only one song per artist/group
  • The song must be released that specific year
  • Songs from live albums not allowed
  • Restricted to only 20 songs

20 songs you must hear from 1965

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20 songs released in 1974 you must hear

bob-dylan-forever-young

The Year 1974 summary

  • OPEC ends the oil embargo begun in 1973 during the Yom Kippur War (Mar. 18).
  • Nixon and Brezhnev meet in Moscow to discuss arms limitation agreements. Background: nuclear disarmament
  • Leftist revolution ends almost 50 years of dictatorial rule in Portugal (launched Apr. 25).
  • India successfully tests an atomic device, becoming the world’s sixth nuclear power (May 18).
  • Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia is deposed. A collective military dictatorship assumes power (Sept. 12).
  • House Judiciary Committee adopts three articles of impeachment charging President Nixon with obstruction of justice, failure to uphold laws, and refusal to produce material subpoenaed by the committee (July 30).
  • Richard M. Nixon announces he will resign the next day, the first President to do so (Aug. 8).
  • Movies: Chinatown, The Godfather Part II, Day for Night, Blazing Saddles, The Towering Inferno
  • Deaths: Bud Abbott, Dizzy Dean, Duke Ellington, Charles Lindbergh, Ed Sullivan

My rules:

  • Only one song per artist/group
  • The song must be released that specific year
  • Songs from live albums not allowed
  • Restricted to only 20 songs

A lot of wonderful music was released in 1974, very hard to pick only 20.

  • Forever Young – Bob Dylan

    Written in Arizona in 1972 and recorded in California in November 1973. The song first appeared (in two different versions, a slow and a fast) on Dylan’s 1974 album Planet Waves.
    A demo version of the song, recorded in New York City in June 1973, was included on Dylan’s 1985 compilation Biograph.

    May God bless and keep you always
    May your wishes all come true
    May you always do for others
    And let others do for you
    May you build a ladder to the stars
    And climb on every rung
    May you stay forever young
    Forever young, forever young
    May you stay forever young.



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