August 29: Warren Zevon released Sentimental Hygiene in 1987

warren_zevon-sentimental_hygiene(virgin)

“I read things I didn’t know I’d done,
It sounded like a lot of fun.”
– Warren Zevon

“I write each song individually and each one calls for individual musicians, You sit around and wonder who can we get to play a Neil Young solo, and then you realize there`s a good chance you can get Neil himself.”
– Warren Zevon

Warren Zevon fell off the wagon after the release of The Envoy, he waited five years before releasing an album, the pause seemed to have done him good, as Sentimental Hygiene (released 29. August 1987) was one of his strongest albums.

Sentimental Hygiene was my first Warren Zevon record, I have since gotten everything I could find by him and about him, official as well as “un-official” releases, vhs, dvds and books. Warren Zevon has been a favourite of mine since Sentimental Hygiene met my ears.

There are lots of guests on the album, Bob Dylan (harmonica on The Factory), David Lindley, Neil Young (lead guitar on the title track), Brian Setzer, Don Henley and George Clinton, but the main players here are Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and Bill Berry of R.E.M. (and Michael Stipe also guested on a song…I think). They provide Zevon with a very solid back-up band, he sounds fresh and invigorated through the whole record. Warren Zevon sounded more rock’n roll than in quite a while, and he was introduced to a new audience (me included).

Here Zevon describes how it was working with Bob Dylan (July 17, 1987 – Late Night with David Letterman and May 25, 2000 – BBC Radio 1):

As always he was funny as hell!

Sentimental Hygiene (official video):

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20 Songs Released in 1981 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

1981 was not a great year in music for me, but still some wonderful albums & singles were relesed. Here are my 20 chosen songs.

    • Every Grain of Sand – Bob Dylan

      Written by Bob Dylan, recorded in Los Angeles in the spring of 1981 and released in August of that year on Dylan’s album Shot of Love.

      The love in “Every Grain of Sand,” though firmly rooted in Dylan’s conversion experience and his Bible studies, immediately and obviously reaches beyond its context to communicate a deeply felt devotional spirit based on universal experiences: pain of self-awareness, and sense of wonder or awe at the beauty of the natural world.
      -Paul Williams (Bob Dylan, performing artist:The Middle Years )


      In the time of my confession, in the hour of my deepest need
      When the pool of tears beneath my feet floods every newborn seed
      There’s a dying voice within me reaching out somewhere
      Toiling in the danger and the morals of despair


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October 6: R.E.M. Released “Automatic For The People” in 1992

rem-automatic-for-the-people-album-cover-art

Automatic for the People is the eighth album by R.E.M., released in 1992 on Warner Bros. Records. Upon release, it reached number two on the U.S. album charts and yielded six singles. The album has sold 18 million copies worldwide and is widely considered one of the best records released in the 1990s. It was released 10 years after their debut in 1982.

Turning away from the sweet pop of Out of Time, R.E.M. created a haunting, melancholy masterpiece with Automatic for the People. At its core, the album is a collection of folk songs about aging, death, and loss, but the music has a grand, epic sweep provided by layers of lush strings, interweaving acoustic instruments, and shimmering keyboards. Automatic for the People captures the group at a crossroads, as they moved from cult heroes to elder statesmen, and the album is a graceful transition into their new status.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine (Allmusic)

R.E.M. – Find The River (live):

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Jan 4: Michael Stipe was born in 1960

And I don’t expect anyone can bring about a revolution in the way that Bob Dylan did – and really didn’t – in the 1960s.
~MichaelStipe

Super casual music listeners. That’s most of the people in the world. And you have to understand, that’s why Top 40 radio exists. It’s not there for people who seek out music and who love music.
~Michael Stipe

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