Van Morrison: 9 Great versions of “Listen To The Lion”

And all my love come down
All my love come tumblin’ down
All my love come tumblin’ down
All my love come tumblin’ down
Oh, listen listen
To the lion
Oh, listen listen listen
To the lion…
Inside of me
Oh, oh, oh


“And all my love come tumbling down….” An 11-minute journey into music as a distillation of spirit, as Morrison searches his “very soul” for the lion “inside of me”. The music is as delicate as breath on a window pane, looking out on a vision of hope and redemption. Van’s voice scats, breathes, roars, lilts and sways before finally dissolving in a rapturous journey into glossolalia. “And we sailed and we sailed….”
~The Telegraph

Listen To The Lion” is one of my favorite Van Morrison songs. Here are 9 different versions.

Wikipedia:

Listen to the Lion” is a song featured on Northern Irish singer-songwriter Van Morrison’s sixth album, Saint Dominic’s Preview (1972). Its poetic musings and “bass-led shuffle” lead back to Astral Weeks territory.

Released July 1972
Recorded Spring/Summer 1971, Columbia Studios, San Francisco
Genre Folk rock, R&B
Length 11:08
Label Warner Bros. Records
Writer Van Morrison
Composer Van Morrison
Producer Ted Templeman, Van Morrison

..but arguably the best due to Van’s most amazing vocal performance ever. The song is an 11:08 minute soul journey into finding and following your inner voice amid crashing piano, cascading acoustic guitar, and strumming mandolin. That alone makes it a good song, but what takes it to best of all time level is at about the five minute mark Van stops singing words and starts scatting non-stop for the next 3 minutes. He growls, wails, roars, and howls as if possessed and wrestling with the lion inside. After these vocal fireworks the exhausted Van finishes the song barely whispering about sailing on a journey to mystical Caledonia. A fascinating, one of a kind song.
~theframjak (hubpages.com)

Van-Morrison-Saint-Dominic-s-Preview-1972

Album version:

Continue reading “Van Morrison: 9 Great versions of “Listen To The Lion””

Van Morrison – 5 Wonderful Live Versions of “And The Healing Has Begun”

 

And we’ll walk down the avenue again
And we’ll sing all the songs from way back when
And we’ll walk down the avenue again and the healing has begun

And we’ll walk down the avenue in style
And we’ll walk down the avenue and we’ll smile
And we’ll say “baby, ain’t it all worthwhile?” when the healing has begun

“It starts just like ‘Cyprus Avenue’, no coincidence as the line about ‘songs from way back when’ hints, and with a walk down the avenue (of dreams), to the sound of a haunted violin. A song of full, blazing sex as well as revelation. The healing here is like that in Arthurian myth, the wounded King restored through the action of the Holy Grail, but it is also through as graphic a seduction, almost, as the original live version of “Gloria”
-Brian Hinton (Celtic Crossroads)

This beauty was recorded at the Record Plant Studios in Sausalito, California in spring 1979. He has performed it live 274 times according to the brilliant website ivan.vanomatic.de.

Here are 5 lovely versions..

Live At The Oasis Centre – Putting The Boot In – Swindon – 1999:

I want you to put on your pretty summer dress
You can wear your Easter bonnet and all the rest
And I want to make love to you yes, yes, yes, when the healing has begun

Louder, when the healing has begun
So good
Whoo
All right, whoo
Yeah
Aah
Whoo

Continue reading “Van Morrison – 5 Wonderful Live Versions of “And The Healing Has Begun””

Van Morrison – 5 Brilliant Live Performances from 1986

When I was a young boy
Back in Orangefield
I used to gaze out
My classroom window and dream
And then go home and listen to Ray sing
“I believe to my soul” after school,
Oh that love that was within me
You know it carried me through
Well it lifted me up and it filled me
Meditation contemplation too

Oh we’ve got to go back
Got to go back
Got to go back
Got to go back
For the healing, go on with the dreaming
-Van Morrison (Got To Go Back)

I´ll try a new series of posts on Van Morrison cherry picking some of my favourite performances sorted by year. Here are some awesome songs from 1986…

On the road with my sword
And my shield in my hand
Pressing on to the new day
This love will surely last forever
This love will surely last always

Here Comes the Knight – RDS Arena, Dublin, Ireland – May 17, 1986

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Listen: Van Morrison @ The Bottom Line, NYC – November 1, 1978

van morrison 1978_11_01_Bottom_Line_Front

Van Morrison was enjoying a commercial renaissance with both this tour and the album he was promoting at the time. Always a magnetic live performer, Morrison delivered a stunning set in New York’s intimate Bottom Line club – the venue that launched the careers of both Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel, among countless others. Opening with an introduction by J. Geils Band’s Peter Wolf and a jazzed up version of “Moondance,” the show provided a healthy mix of material from his then-new Wavelength LP and all the best-loved Morrison classics.
concertvault.com

Morrison, an artist of constant reinvention is revealed here as an musician willing to restructure, reorganize and retool previous glory’s while constantly creating new and exciting work. This 1978 live performance is a perfect representation of Morrison in another era of change and is worthy of official release and constant inspection.
the rock room (blog)

The Bottom Line
New York City, NY
November 1, 1978

  • Van Morrison – lead vocals, guitar, piano, saxophone
  • Bobby Tench – guitar, backing vocals
  • Herbie Armstrong – guitar
  • Mickey Feat – bass
  • Pete Bardens – keyboards
  • Peter Van Hooke – drums
  • Pee Wee Ellis – saxophones
  • Katie Kissoon – backing vocals
  • Anna Peacock – backing vocals

Continue reading “Listen: Van Morrison @ The Bottom Line, NYC – November 1, 1978”

Sep 15: Watch – Van Morrison & The Chieftains at Ulster Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland 1988

van morrison belfast 1988

The band kick into spirited versions of “Tore down A la Rimbaud”, “In The Garden” and “Rave On, John Donne”, before being joined by the might of the Chieftains for a full set. WONDERFUL is the only word.
– Brian Hinton (Celtic Crossroads)

Van Morrison with The Chieftains
Ulster Hall, Belfast
September 15, 1988

  • Artie McGlynn – Guitar
  • Dave Early – Drums
  • Clive Culbertson – Bass
  • Richie Buckley – Saxophone
  • Derek Bell – Keyboards
  • June Boyce – Backing Vocal
  • The Chieftains – Band

Continue reading “Sep 15: Watch – Van Morrison & The Chieftains at Ulster Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland 1988”

21 Songs Released in 1980 You Must Hear

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 1980, here are my 20 chosen songs.

  • Summertime in England – Van Morrison

    The longest & best song on Van Morrison’s 1980 album, Common One. Although the album on which the song appeared was not critically or commercially successful, the song would be performed by Morrison in concert for almost two and one-half decades, taking on new meaning when performed live. A truncated version of the song with an early fade-out was also released as the B-side of the 1983 single “Cry for Home”.

    Can you meet me in the country
    In the summertime in England
    Will you meet me?
    Will you meet me in the country
    In the summertime in England
    Will you meet me?
    We’ll go riding up to Kendal in the country
    In the summertime in England.
    Did you ever hear about
    Did you ever hear about
    Did you ever hear about
    Wordsworth and Coleridge, baby?
    Did you ever hear about Wordsworth and Coleridge?
    They were smokin’ up in Kendal
    By the lakeside


    Spotify:


    Live 1981:


    Continue reading “21 Songs Released in 1980 You Must Hear”