Thursday, December 29, 2016

On the Right Side of 2016

   I'd rather not focus on the non-musical events of 2016 for this post since, strictly judging the year based on the musical releases, 2016 was a pretty good year.  With the exceptions of the dearly departed Leonard Cohen and Sharon Jones, I only included acts who hadn't appeared on my best of 2014 and 2015 compilations.  This was kinda tough as I had to leave out Angel Olsen's My Woman, but one must abide by some rules.  In the spirit of honoring those who died during the year, I've also re-upped the Bowie tributes, the Leonard Cohen-Patsy Cline-Cat Power compilations, and the Sharon Jones-Detroit Cobras compilation.

   Update: So only 24 hours after posting this, I found out that Bap Kennedy died in early November.  I'll just say he was an underappreciated singer-songwriter from Dublin and let my post on him from five years ago provide a little more depth about him.  RIP Bap.

Disc One

You Want It Darker Leonard Cohen
Thousand Mile Night Jonah Tolchin
The Soul Of A Man Tom Waits
Fast Fuse Blues Paul Burch
Two Kids Laura Gibson
Snowflake Carl Broemel
Days Spent Floating (In The Halfbetween) Okkervil River
Dusty Trails (Demo) Lucius
Faint Mystery Trixie Whitley
Red Moon Whitney
Royalty Capes De La Soul
Trouble in Here The Frightnrs
Put Me Thru  Anderson .Paak
Chicken Picken Circuit Des Yeux
O Mistress Mine (Clown's Song From Twelfth Night) Paul Kelly
Stanley Park Aoife O'Donovan
Desperate and Depressed Margo Price
Fickle Sun (iii) I'm Set Free Brian Eno

Disc Two

22 Bon Iver
Dyin' Bed Maker Kacy & Clayton
Light in the House The Cave Singers
Temptation M. Ward
Okoroba Family Atlantica
Firmeza (feat. Rodrigo Campos) Elza Soares
I'm Still Here Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings
Roadside Memorial Allah-Las
My Darling, Blue Skies John Doe
Georgia Stars case/lang/veirs
Lullaby Dori Freeman
Number One with a Bullet Freakwater
Let Me Get There Hope Sandoval and The Warm Inventions
Squash Squash Blood Orange
Clementine Jam Orchestra Baobab
Good to Be Back Home Charles Bradley
One Way to Pray Sam Beam and Jesca Hoop
Tea, Milk & Honey Oh Pep!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

On the Right Side of Christmas 2016

          I might be a day or two early, but with the cold spell we've had the last 4 days in the Northeast, it definitely feels like the holiday season so here's my annual compilation of Christmas music.  I've also uploaded all the previous Xmas comps for any newcomers to the blog.

   Late update: I fixed the problem with Al Green's Silent Night.  You do have to download the whole thing to get the working version of the file.


Christmas Rappin' Kurtis Blow
Must Be Santa Bob Dylan
Christmas With Bazooka Joe Fleshtones
Carol Cleaners From Venus
On Chrismas Eve Field Report
Silent Night Al Green
Blue Snowfall Kelly Hogan
He's Stuck in the Chimney Again Rachel Flotard & Jon Rauhouse Orchestra
White Christmas Esquivel
Christmas Will be Just Another Day Brenda Lee
Honky Tonk Christmas Dale Watson
Christmas Date Boogie Big Joe Turner
Shouldn't Have Given Him A Gun For Christmas Wall Of Voodoo
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer The Ventures
Santa Looked A Lot Like Daddy Buck Owens & the Buckaroos
Christmas Eve With You Lindi Ortega
The Blizzard Camera Obscura
Christmas Eve Can Kill You The Everly Brothers
It's Christmas And You're Boring Me Slow Club
We Three Kings The Gaylads
Christmas Ain't Christmas The O'Jays
Skating Hot Club of Detroit
Presents For Christmas Solomon Burke
Auld Lang Syne Aretha Franklin & Billy Preston

Saturday, October 29, 2016

With His Hands: An Alejandro Escovedo Retrospective

Back in the early 90's, I was a bit confounded by all the rock critic love for Alejandro Escovedo.  The strength of his late 1990s releases - Bourbinitis Blues, the live More Miles Than Money, and especially, A Man Under the Influence (still my favorite) converted me.  Still, I hadn't really listened that much to him the past couple of years, so it was a real pleasure to go back and listen to his old stuff and dive into his last 2-3 releases.   Hope folks enjoy the career retrospective.

(Like last month's post on the Drive-By Truckers, I was completely unaware that Alejandro was coming out with a new album, Burn Something Beautiful til yesterday.  Haven't heard anything about it and haven't listened to it yet, but will definitely do so this weekend.) 


Broken Bottle Alejandro Escovedo
Slip Away Alejandro Escovedo
Notes On Air Alejandro Escovedo
With These Hands Alejandro Escovedo
The Rain Won't Help You When It's Over The True Believers
Bottom Of The World Alejandro Escovedo
1968 Alejandro Escovedo
The Best Alejandro Escovedo
About This Love Alejandro Escovedo
Amsterdam Alejandro Escovedo
Baby's Got New Plans Alejandro Escovedo
Sister Lost Soul Alejandro Escovedo
Country Honey Buick MacKane
Anchor Alejandro Escovedo
The End Alejandro Escovedo

Thursday, September 29, 2016

All in the Drive-By Truckers Family

           I only found out a couple of weeks ago that the Drive-By Truckers have a new cd coming out Sept 30 (i.e. in a few hours).  I'd pretty much finished making the two cd comp so let this serve as a little reminder to go out and get their new album and to go see them when they come to your town.  I presume most DBT fans have heard Jason Isbell's solo stuff, but  I would also encourage folks to get Shonna Tucker's (the former bassist) solo cd (I wasn't aware of it until a few months ago.)


Disc One

The Southern Thing Drive-By Truckers
Fifteen Days (Leaving Time Again) Patterson Hood
24 Frames Jason Isbell
Made Up English Oceans Drive-By Truckers
Daddy's Little Pumpkin Drive-By Truckers
Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love Drive-By Truckers
Pound It Out Booker T.
Heavy and Hanging Patterson Hood
Goddamn Lonely Love Drive-By Truckers
The Devil Is My Running Mate Jason Isbell
Everywhere with Helicopter Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit
Cottonseed Mike Cooley
Too Much Sex (Too Little Jesus) Drive-By Truckers
Burning Hell (Live) Patterson Hood
(It's Gonna Be) / I Told You So Drive-By Truckers

Disc Two

Alabama Pines Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit
Gravity's Gone Drive-By Truckers
My Sweet Annette Drive-By Truckers
People Who Died Drive-By Truckers
Hate This Town Patterson Hood & The Downtown Rumblers
The Home Front Drive-By Truckers
Lonely People Shonna Tucker & Eye Candy
Elephant Jason Isbell
Adam Raised A Cain Patterson Hood
Moonlight Mile Drive-By Truckers
Fire Patterson Hood
Sunstroke Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit
Cartoon Gold Drive-By Truckers
George Jones Talkin' Cell Phone Blues Drive-By Truckers
The Living Bubba Drive-By Truckers

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Saluting the 70's Singer Songwriters - Volume 3

     It's been a long day and I think I've kind of exhausted talking about the wonders of the music of the 1970's anyway.  But I will note that all of the "Sucking in the 1970s" comps have been re-upped along with the two previous "Saluting the 70's Singer Songwriters" comps.  Hope folks like this one as well.


Biloxi Jesse Winchester
Defying Gravity Jesse Winchester
Dedication Mary Perrin
Commencement Chuck and Mary Perrin
Running Away (London Version) Bob Marley
Waiting In Vain (Advert Mix) Bob Marley
Crying, Laughing, Loving, Lying Labi Siffre
A Little More Line Labi Siffre
Louisiana 1927 Randy Newman
God's Song (That's Why I Love Mankind) Randy Newman
Shadow Of Her Mind Kris Kristofferson
From The Bottle To The Bottom Kris Kristofferson
I Miss A Lot Of Trains Tom T. Hall
I Hope It Rains At My Funeral Tom T. Hall
Buckets Of Rain Bob Dylan
Oh Sister Bob Dylan
The Future's Not What it Used to Be Mickey Newbury
San Francisco Mabel Joy Mickey Newbury

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Those Irresistible Red Hots

    I confess to feeling a little bit ambivalent about posting a compilation of songs from the Red Hot collection since all the money from sales of the cds/mp3s/vinyl goes to fight AIDS.  I would, however, like to think that some folks will go and seek out some of the releases that the songs come from (I would especially recommend Dark Was the Night, Red Hot & Rio, and Red Hot & Riot.) Plus, I didn't include any cuts from the most recent Day of the Dead.  I'm not a deadhead so there's a fair amount of stuff which holds little appeal for me.  But there's a bunch of interesting stuff that I really like and I think most deadheads would appreciate the variety of ways that the Dead tunes are interpreted. So enjoy the comp below and then go buy one of the Red Hot releases that you don't already have.


The Hustle  De La Soul And Da Beatminerz
The Giant Of Illinois Andrew Bird
This Is How We Walk On The Moon Jose Gonzalez
Effigy Uncle Tupelo
Looking For The Jackalope Laika
Sem Você Arto Lindsay/Arnaldo Antunes/Davi Moraes
Baby Alice Smith
Jardim do Amor Mia Doi Todd
Love For Sale Fine Young Cannibals
Mainland China Juicy
When I Reach The Place I'm Going Patty Loveless
Lady tUnE-yArDs, ?uestlove, Angelique Kidjo +Akua Naru
Creole Love Call Art Baron
Pepe & Irene Los Lobos & Money Mark
Embraceable You Duncan Sheik
Dancing Milton Nascimento
Water No Get Enemy D'Angelo, Femi Kuti + Macy Gray
Time Is Moving On Donald Byrd With Guru And Ronny Jordon

Friday, July 1, 2016

Tributes to Bruce Springsteen and Fred Eaglesmith

         With July 4th soon upon us, I thought it appropriate to put together a compilation of Bruce Springsteen covers.  After all, for folks of a certain age, he embodies a certain kind of ragged, authentic Americana.  In the spirit of comity with our neighbors to the North, I thought it only fair to also put together a compilation of Fred Eaglesmith covers as he seems to embody a similar version of Canadiana, if you will.  In doing so, I owe a debt of gratitude to blog reader KevinPat who sent me a great bunch of Fred Eaglesmith covers that make up the majority of the compilation.

Some Boss Covers

Dancing In The Dark Tegan and Sara
Open All Night Son Volt
Highway Patrolman Johnny Cash
State Trooper Deanna Carter
Badlands Patterson Hood
Downbound Train Kurt Vile
Atlantic City Hank III
Tiger Rose Sonny Burgess
Pink Cadillac Graham Parker
The Price You Pay Emmylou Harris
Wreck On The Highway Nils Lofgren
Tougher Than The Rest Everything But The Girl
I'm On Fire Bat For Lashes
Brilliant Disguise Elvis Costello
Valentine's Day Hem

Wish I Was a Freight Train

He's a Good Dog Audrey Auld
White Rose Slaid Cleaves
Harold Wilson John D. Hale Band
Freight Train Heather Waters
Thirty Years of Farming James King
Bell Teddy Morgan
Pontiac Rod Picott
Carmelita Cowboy Junkies
A Pretty Good Guy Chris Knight
Time to Get a Gun Miranda Lambert
Gettin' to Me Rod Picott
Spookin' the Horses Tamara Williamson
Cigarette Machine Mary Gauthier
Carter Bill & Kasey Chambers
Flowers in the Dell Robbie Fulks

Thursday, May 26, 2016

We're All Fans of Uncle Walt's Band (and Walter Hyatt)

   It was 20 years ago this month (May 11, 1996) that Walter Hyatt died in a plane crash.  Hyatt was the founding member of Uncle Walt's Band in the 70s and 80s, then went on to a solo career in the 1990s. All three of his solo albums, including the posthumously released Some Unfinished Business, are still available, but both of his Uncle Walt's Band cd releases are out of print, so I thought I'd right that wrong and post them here tonight.  I should also mention just how sublime his first solo release King Tears is - still one of my top ten albums from the 90s.

An American in Texas Revisited

As The Crow Flies
Don't You Know, Can't You See
Walking Angel
Deeper Than Love
An America In Texas
Sad As It Seems
Too Far To Fall
The Last One To Know
Green Tree
Motor City Man
Love Has Laid Me Down
If I Don't Stop Crying
The More I See You
Outside Looking Out
Mock, Mock, Mockingbird

The Girl on the Sunny Shore

Seat Of Logic
Don't You Think I Feel It Too
High Hill
Dish Wiped Clean
Playing The Fool
So Long Baby
Stay With The One Who Loves You
Open Up Your Heart
For The First Time
Lean On Your Mind
At Least Two Ways
Shine On
You Keep Me Holding On
Hard To Bear
All I Need Is You
To Make You Believe

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Riding in My Car With NRBQ

        While I always winced a little bit at those who would call NRBQ the greatest bar band ever as it seemed like damning them with faint praise, there's no denying they were a great live band, especially when Al Anderson was playing guitar. For those who need documentation of this, look no further than their official 1987 live release God Bless Us All.  But, hopefully, this two disc set does also does justice to their songwriting chops.  (And if you need any further demonstration of this, look no further than their 1989 release Wild Weekend.)

Disc One

It's A Wild Weekend
Don't She Look Good
Get That Gasoline Blues
It Comes to Me Naturally
Mule in the Corn
Music, Music, Music 
It's A Sin To Tell A Lie
Next Stop Brattleboro
All That's Left To Say Is Goodbye
I Don't Think of...
Ain't It Alright
Ain't No Horse
She Got the House
Disc Two
Over Your Head
Don't Talk About My Music
Music Goes 'Round And Around
Deep In The Heart Of Texas
Rats in My Room
You Were The One
Ain't Nice to Talk Like That
Green Lights
Little Rootie Tootie
Whistle While You Work
Captain Lou
Ridin' In My Car

Thursday, March 31, 2016

My Heart Cries Oh: Volumes III and IV

         As promised, here's Volumes III and IV of rare 60s and 70s soul.  I would be remiss if I didn't mention that I used numerous selections from the great blog  I also used a bunch of tracks from the multi volume Numero Uno Eccentric Soul compilations - in particular, I recommend the Nickel and Penny and Way Out label compilations.

Volume III

We Have Love Arrows
Oh What I'd Give Tommy Collins
Forgive Then Forget Jay Wiggins
A Lifetime Brothers of Soul
Let Yourself Go Syl Johnson
Deep Inside of You (12" Version) Gloria Ann Taylor
Good Thing Sweet Breeze
Gangster Of Love (Pts. 1 & 2) Jimmy Norman
Lonely For You Baby Sam Dees
Lunar Invasion The Silhouettes
Really Really Love You Ronnie Walker
Lonely Girl Andrea Davis
There's Got To Be Rain In Your Life (To Appreciate The Sunshine) Dorothy Norwood
Play with Fire Rollers
Sad Shade Of Blue Geater Davis
It Must Be Love The Exceptions
Take This Hurt Off Me Big John Hamilton
Tell Her Fred Williams
Baby One More Time Jimmy Garland
Cheaters Never Win Tony Borders

Volume IV

I Wanna Know Who The Keynoters
I Am A Member of the club Titus Turner
I Got Everything I Need The Soul Notes
It Must Be Love Full Speed
Hard Times Baby Huey & The Babysitters
Why Must Our Eyes Always Be Turned Backwards Lou Bond
Go To Work (Alt.) Revolution Compared To What
Can You Dig It? Chico & Buddy
Strain On My Heart Roscoe Shelton
Baby Baby Please Timothy Wilson
You're My Everything Joe King
I'm Tired Of What People Say Or Do Bruce Griffith
Still My Life Through Billy Young
Back Road Into Town Willie Hightower
Fine Time Genie Brooks
Save My Love Billy Cee & The Freedom Express
This Heart Is Haunted Lee Jones &The Sounds Of Soul (The Masqueraders)
My Faith in You Eddie Billups & The Gigs
Powerful Love Chuck & Mac
A Soldier's Sad Story Tiny Watkins

Friday, February 26, 2016

My Heart Cries Oh: Rare Soul from the 60s and 70s

       In the liner notes to the cd (see my post from several years back)  that accompanied the publication of his sublime book Sweet Soul Music, Gurlanick talks about interviewing a dj named Skippy White who told Guralnick not to overlook all of the less well-know soul acts in his book, as they were an equally important part of the history of soul music.  Now, I realize there are a lot of folks who know are far more knowledgeable about soul music, especially the rare stuff.  But, that's never stopped me before and more importantly, there's so much great overlooked material from the 60s and 70s.   And even if some of the acts were just one hit (well non-hit), there's a lot more folks who were just victims of bad luck, bad deals, historical circumstances like Little Ben of Little Ben and the Cheers (pictured at the left) going to fight in Vietnam.   So here's the first two volumes of my four volume set.

Volume I

Beggar of Love Little Ben and the Cheers
Too Late to Cry The Commands
Love Don't Love Nobody Ella Brown
I Am Controlled By Your Love Helene Smith
Trying My Best To Find Her The Notations
Sweatin'  Alvin Cash & The Crawlers
Go Go Train  Eddy G. Giles
Bui Bui L. Hollis & the Mackadoos
Groove Me Mamma Eddie Steele
Gotta Find My Man Linda Mackey
Girls Girls Girls The Young Disciples Co.
One Heart The Emanons
A Woman's Love Joe Valentine
Have Fun Ann Cole
I've Lived The Life Marva W. Taylor
Love Game (From A To Z) The Royal Jokers
Can't See Myself Doing You Wrong Milt Matthews Inc
I've Got To Cry Chris Hamilton
Darling Please Do Not Take My Love Moody Scott
Self Preservation Bill Brandon

 Volume II

There's Gonna Be Some Crying Small Paul
Count to Ten Frankie & The Spindles
Smalltown Girl Jimmy Tig &The Rounders
My Heart Cries Oh Fred Hughes
A Lady's Man The Volcanos
I'm Gone Eddie Parker
Instrumental #1 Richard Terry & Company
The Funky Judge Bull & the Matadors
Wait Bobbie Smith
Caught Making Love Roger Hatcher
Sam Stone Swamp Dogg
I Paid For The Party The Enchanters
Meet Me In Church Don Varner
Wouldn't It Be A Pleasure Jay Rhythm
Down In the Country Tee Fletcher
Bold Soul Sister, Bold Soul Brother Black On White Affair
That Thing Is Green Bob Smith and the Boo-Koos
Say You Will Willie Small
When a Boy Loves a Girl The Vows
Dreamers Hall of Fame Jeb Stuart

Thursday, January 28, 2016

3 Parts Piss, 2 Parts Vinegar: The Mekons and The Pogues

        Seeing the Mekons (they were really awesome, btw) and watching The Wire again (and the several scenes where they play The Pogues' "The Body of an American" following the death of a police officer) last summer, I thought it only appropriate to make a compilation featuring the two legendary bands (and couldn't resist adding a solo track from Shane MacGowan.) 


Authority The Mekons
Mountain Dew The Pogues with The Dubliners
Machine Mekons
Rake At The Gates Of Hell Shane MacGowan & The Popes
Boys From The County Hell The Pogues
Wicked Midnight Mekons
Got A Lot Of Livin' To Do The Pogues
Memphis Egypt Mekons
Sayonara The Pogues
Space in Your Face Mekons
Country Mekons
I'm A Man You Don't Meet Every Day The Pogues
Born To Choose The Mekons
Down All The Days The Pogues
Spit The Mekons
The Body of an American The Pogues

Friday, January 1, 2016

On the Right Side of 2015

     I meant to put this up on Wed night, but my itunes was playing up (after I had to reinstall Windows on my computer). Anyway, I'm still working my way through some of the albums that I got this year, so I can't really name my definitive top ten albums of 2015 yet, but right now, I really like the Father John Misty and Rayland Baxter albums.  Here's to a great 2016, musically and otherwise.

Disc One

Seven Wonders Holly Golightly
Love Is Where It Is Robert Forster
The Last Pharaoh Dave Rawlings Machine
Boys Can Never Tell (feat. J. Roddy Walston) Shovels & Rope
Something Soon Car Seat Headrest
With Davey La Luz
Can't Keep Checking My Phone Unknown Mortal Orchestra
King Kunta Kendrick Lamar
Head Over Heels JD McPherson
Rio Grande Eilen Jewell
Old Lady Eleni Mandell
My Heart's Not In It Yo La Tengo
Don't Make It Easy Isobel Campbell
A Human Being Ryan Sambol
what's normal anyway Miguel
I Love You, Honeybear Father John Misty

Disc Two

Just Like Blood Sharon Van Etten
Grace Patrick Watson
Cheap Extensions Sonny and The Sunsets
Depreston Courtney Barnett
Nobody Knows My Trouble Ryan Bingham
Fond Farewell Seth Avett and Jessica Lea Mayfield
The High Road Ryley Walker
Lungs Jessie Baylin
An Incident Off St. Kitt's Mekons and Robbie Fulks
Malukayi (feat. Konono No. 1) Mbongwana Star
My Armour Kathryn Calder
Our Way Free Mac McCaughan
Shoegaze Alabama Shakes
Shine Leon Bridges
Your Love Rayland Baxter
Let Me Sleep (At The End Of A Dream) Daniel Romano