June 5: Van Morrison released “Days Like This” in 1995

“Days Like This” was a delight, Van´s best album in years. Perhaps reflecting his romantic hook-up with Irish beauty-queen Michelle Rocca (his companion walking the dogs in the cover photo). Van sounded happier here than he´d been for decade..
-Andy Gill (The Ultimate Music Guide – Van Morrison)

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June 4: Bruce Springsteen released “Born in the U.S.A.” in 1984

Bruce Springsteen 1984

Imperceptible though the movement has been to many sensitive young people, Springsteen has evolved. In fact, this apparent retrenchment is his most rhythmically propulsive, vocally incisive, lyrically balanced, and commercially undeniable album. Even his compulsive studio habits work for him: the aural vibrancy of the thing reminds me like nothing in years that what teenagers loved about rock and roll wasn’t that it was catchy or even vibrant but that it just plain sounded good.
-Robert Christgau (robertchristgau.com)

But more than anything else, Born in the U.S.A. marked the first time that Springsteen’s characters really seemed to relish the fight and to have something to fight for. They were not defeated (“No Surrender”), and they had friendship (“Bobby Jean”) and family (“My Hometown”) to defend. The restless hero of “Dancing in the Dark” even pledged himself in the face of futility, and for Springsteen, that was a step. The “romantic young boys” of his first two albums, chastened by “the working life” encountered on his third, fourth, and fifth albums and having faced the despair of his sixth, were still alive on this, his seventh, with their sense of humor and their determination intact. Born in the U.S.A.was their apotheosis, the place where they renewed their commitment and where Springsteen remembered that he was a rock & roll star, which is how a vastly increased public was happy to treat him.
-William Ruhlmann (allmusic.com)

Born down in a dead mans town
The first kick I took was when I hit the ground
End up like a dog that’s been beat too much
Till you spend half your life just covering up

Born in the U.S.A., I was born in the U.S.A.
I was born in the U.S.A., born in the U.S.A.

Born in the USA – Live 1985:

Continue reading “June 4: Bruce Springsteen released “Born in the U.S.A.” in 1984″

10 Best Rolling Stones Songs from 1963/64 (videos & spotify playlist)

Here is my top 10 list of songs from this early period.

  1. Route 66
  2. Not Fade Away
  3. Little Red Rooster
  4. Time is On My Side
  5. Carol
  6. I Just Want To Make Love To You
  7. It´s All Over Now
  8. Around and Around
  9. I Wanna Be Your Man
  10. Tell Me

1. Route 66 (Bobby Troup)

Route 66, written by the late Bobby Troup, gets the album [their first album] off to a rousing start, Keith Richards playing an excellent guitar with a tight clap-back track rhythm by Bill Wyman & Charlie Watts. It soon became a popular stage number.
-Martin Elliott (The Rolling Stones: Complete Recording Sessions 1962–2012)

Recorded January 3, 1964 @ Regent Sound Studio, London, England.

Well if you ever plan to motor west
Just take my way that’s the highway that’s the best
Get your kicks on Route 66


2. Not Fade Away (Buddy Holly)

From the all-important opening bars the atmosphere was right and, within a breath-taking two minutes, the basis of the track was complete. ..The harp playing of Brian Jones is full of energy and Phil Spector´s “manic maracas” create an exciting rhythm  track.
-Martin Elliott (The Rolling Stones: Complete Recording Sessions 1962–2012)

The Stones made this Buddy Holly standard sound demanding and desperate. “[We] put the Bo Diddley beat up front,” Wyman said. Andrew Loog Oldham went so far as to say it was “the first song Mick and Keith wrote. The way they arranged it was the beginning of their shaping of them as songwriters.”
Rollingstone.com

“Not Fade Away”, with a strong Bo Diddley beat, was a major hit in Britain. It was the A-side of the band’s first US single.

Recorded 10, 28 January, 4 February 1964 Regent Sounds Studios, London, England.

I’m gonna tell you how it’s gonna be
You’re gonna give your love to me
I’m gonna love you night and day
Well love is love and not fade away
Well love is love and not fade away


TV Studio – June 1964:


3. Little Red Rooster (Willie Dixon)

One of Jagger’s most potent early sex-god moments was manifest on this Howlin’ Wolf cover, which the band released as a U.K. single in November ’64 against all advice. “We wanted to make a statement,” said Richards, with a challenge to the label: “See if you can get that to the top of the charts, motherfucker.” Sure enough, it hit Number One. Foreshadowing events to come, it was cut without inviting Jones, who laid down his slithering slide part after the fact.
-rollingstone.com (top 100 Rolling Stones songs)

Recorded 2-3 September 1964 Regent Sounds Studios, London, England.
(The track was recorded without him Brian Jones who later added his brilliant slide guitar & harmonica)

“it is his [Jones’] playing that makes the record via both the cawing bottleneck that is its most prominent feature and his closing harmonica”
-Sean Egan (Rough Guide to The Rolling stones)

“It was his [Jones’] masterpiece, his inspired guitar howling like a hound, barking like a dog, crowing like a rooster”
Stephen Davis (Old Gods Almost Dead: The 40-Year Odyssey of the Rolling Stones)

“I believe ‘Rooster’ provided Brian Jones with one of his finest hours.
-Bill Wyman

TV 1964:


4. Time is On My Side (Jerry Ragovoy)

..sounds like a raw, drunken demo, but it is a sexy sort of sloppy.. [it] sidles up behind you at closing time, in an open-collard shirt, breathing nicotine and booze in your ear.
– Bill Janovitz (Rocks Off: 50 Tracks That Tell the Story of the Rolling Stones )

The Rolling Stones recorded two versions of the song in 1964. The first version (a looser arrangement featuring a briefer, organ-only intro), recorded in London in June 1964, was released in the US in 1964, as a single from their album 12 X 5. The second version (more tightly arranged and featuring guitar in the intro), recorded in Chicago on November 8, 1964, was released in the UK on January 15, 1965 on The Rolling Stones No. 2.

Recorded November 8, 1964 Chess Studios, Chicago, USA.

Time is on my side, yes it is.
Time is on my side, yes it is.
Now you all were saying that you want to be free
But you’ll come runnin’ back (I said you would baby),
You’ll come runnin’ back (like I told you so many times before),
You’ll come runnin’ back to me.


Ed Sullivan Show – October, 1964:


5. Carol (Chuck Berry)

..it was fantastic when they started doing the Chuck Berry stuff. They did Carol and it sounds as raw as fuck, they where really spitting it out. The whole vibe of it was just great. Carol was the sort of thing we´d been listening to for a number of years, and all of a sudden there´s a band of guys doing it in your living room. Amazing.
– Jimmy Page (MOJO – Top 50 Rolling Stones songs)

Recorded @ Regent Sounds Studios, London, England – 3 January 1964.

 Oh, Carol
Don’t let him steal your heart away
I’m gonna learn to dance
If it takes me all night and day

TV Show 1964:


6. I Just Want To Make Love To You (Willie Dixon)

..”I Just Want to Make Love to You,” a highlight of their 1964 debut album. The group takes the song at a breakneck pace, built around repeated crackling downward guitar licks and wailing, chugging harmonica. Whereas Muddy Waters sang the song as if he was worming his way into his woman’s favors with sly, cocky charm, Jagger had a take-no-prisoners assault, halting only briefly for breath near the end of the verses, when the band briefly crashed through stop-starts as the title phrase was delivered. The tempo accelerated yet more for the bridge, where the band seemed like a train threatening to derail from sheer speed, again coming to a climax on a couple of brief stop-starts before launching back into the verse. The sense of untamed wildness became overwhelming again on the instrumental break, where the harmonica built up to a frenzy before those stop-starts served as the lynchpin of a devastatingly authoritative blues-rock guitar lick.
-Richie Unterberger (allmusic.com)

Recorded 28 January, 24-25 February 1964 Regent Sounds Studios, London, England.

I don’t want you be no slave
I don’t want you work all day
I don’t want ’cause I’m sad and blue
I just want to make love to you, baby


7. It´s All Over Now (Bobby Womack and Shirley Womack)

The Beatles´ stuff was easy vocal harmonies, neat and precise. That wasn´t too difficult, but to try and get that dirty sound we were after, it was just the most obvious place in the world to record it at Chess.
-Keith Richards (about going to Chess)

“It´s All Over Now” is a landmark in the Stones´ recording history and is typical of the creative influence of the Chess Studios.
-Martin Elliott (The Rolling Stones: Complete Recording Sessions 1962–2012)

Written by Bobby Womack and Shirley Womack. It was first released by The Valentinos featuring Bobby Womack. The Valentinos version entered the Billboard Hot 100 on June 27, 1964, where it stayed on the chart for two weeks, peaking at number 94. The Rolling Stones had their first number-one hit with this song in July 1964.

Recorded 10 June 1964, Chess Studio, Chicago

Well, baby used to stay out all night long
She made me cry, she done me wrong
She hurt my eyes open, that’s no lie
Tables turn and now her turn to cry
Because I used to love her, but it’s all over now
Because I used to love her, but it’s all over now


T A M I Show, 1964:


8. Around And Around (Chuck Berry)

..this version is nothing short of immaculate. Keith Richards, whose guitar playing is excellent, leads the song, rocking and rolling in a manner that would inspire “greased duck´s quiff” and helps create an EP whose achievements hva long since been copied but not emulated.
-Martin Elliott (The Rolling Stones: Complete Recording Sessions 1962–2012)

Recorded 11 June 1964 Chess Studios, Chicago, USA.

I said the joint was rocking
Going round and round
Yeah, reeling and a rocking
What a crazy sound



9. I Wanna Be Your Man (Lennon–McCartney)

..What hit home was not as much the drawling defiance of Jagger´s lead vocal, as the cutting blade of a guitar solo that might have been lifted from a Howlin´Wolf session at Chess. Deliberately sloppy and murky, their production sounded untutored and spontaneous, an impression belied only by the painstakingly multi-dubbed vocals of Jagger and Richards. In just 100 seconds, The Rolling Stones established themselves as the gang-leaders of British blues, teenage hoodlums to The Beatles´ moptop choirboys.
-Pete Doggett (MOJO Magazine – 50 Greatest Stones Tracks)

Recorded 7 October 1963 De Lane Lea Studios, Kingsway, London, England.

I wanna be your lover, baby,
I wanna be your man
I wanna be your lover, baby
I wanna be your man


10. Tell Me (Jagger/Richards)

Rather, they produced this sort of dark, acoustic-based folk/pop. Oldham attempted to influence the band more toward the fashionable pop styles of the day, while the band did their best to keep true to their self-image as an R&B band, with Brian in particular remaining a blues purist. With “Tell Me,” Oldham´s influence won out.
– Bill Janovitz (Rocks Off: 50 Tracks That Tell the Story of the Rolling Stones)

Featured on their 1964 self-titled album (later referred to as England’s Newest Hit Makers in the US). It was later released as single A-side in the US only, becoming the first Jagger/Richards song that the band released as a single A-side, and their first record to enter the US Top 40. The single reached #24 in the US and #1 in Sweden. It was not released as a single in the UK.

Recorded 28 January, 24-25 February 1964 Regent Sounds Studios, London, England.

I want you back again
I want your love again
I know you find it hard to reason with me
But this time it’s different, darling you’ll see
You gotta tell me you’re coming back to me
You gotta tell me you’re coming back to me
You gotta tell me you’re coming back to me
You gotta tell me you’re coming back to me


Spotify Playlist

Sources:

-Egil

10 Great old acoustic blues songs

“I’m a bluesman moving through a blues-soaked America, a blues-soaked world, a planet where catastrophe and celebration- joy and pain sit side by side. The blues started off in some field, some plantation, in some mind, in some imagination, in some heart. The blues blew over to the next plantation, and then the next state. The blues went south to north, got electrified and even sanctified. The blues got mixed up with jazz and gospel and rock and roll.”
― Cornel West, Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud, A Memoir

If you don’t know the blues… there’s no point in picking up the guitar and playing rock and roll or any other form of popular music.
-Keith Richards

The blues are the roots and the other musics are the fruits. It’s better keeping the roots alive, because it means better fruits from now on. The blues are the roots of all American music. As long as American music survives, so will the blues.
-Willie Dixon

Here´s a list with 10 GREAT old acoustic blues songs. I´ve added youtube “videos” & a spotify playlist.

 

Blind Willie Johnson – Dark was the night, cold was the ground (1927/29)

Check out: 

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Great Spotify Playlist by Gorm Gullo

steve-earle3

When my favorite Norwegian music magazine – BEAT – died for the 5th time back in 1997, the journalists were asked to create a playlist (or rather a C60 tape back then) containing the best music ever.. in their opinion. The time limit was 60min (C60 tape).

Some of the lists are really great and I will share them in a series of posts.

Previous posts:

Here is Gorm Gullo‘s list.

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