31 March 2014

"Lost but not forgotten, from the dark heart of a dream"

Bruce Springsteen (1976)

You're born into this life paying,
for the sins of somebody else's past ...
You inherit the sins, you inherit the flames ...
Lost but not forgotten, from the dark heart of a dream,
Adam raised a Cain
Adam raised a Cain

26 March 2014

Steve Earle Covers His Mentor's Best: "Townes" : "Pancho and Lefty" (2009)

Backstage before going on at a gig with Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan explains why Townes Van Zandt's song Pancho and Lefty is a national treasure:
He's (Townes) is like a philosopher-poet. He gets to the heart of it in a quick way; gets it out. It's over, and just leaves the listener to -- think about it. 
Here Steve Earle covers this superb, truly American song.

25 March 2014

Stephen Stills' "Manassas": "Both of Us (Bound to Lose)" (1972)

In the spring of 1972 perspective, Stephen Stills' band Manassas, Crosby and Nash, and Neil Young shared the Top Ten Billboard LP charts with three separate releases. During this record dominance by former members of the shattered supergroup, Rolling Stone found it "reassuring to know that Stills has some good music still inside him". (RS (109). Manassas stands by far as the best of what those artists released in '72. And with this record Stills expands on his original song structures.

Suite: Judy Blue Eyes established Steven Stills as a composer who could take three shorts songs about his ex-girlfriend and form an exquisite suite. On Manassas, each of the double albums four sides consist of a multi-song suite. Below is the track Both of Us (Bound to Lose) that closes the side one -- Suite: The Raven. On this track Stills not only gets to show off his harmony vocal prowess with Chris Hillman, but the song also closes with a fine latin rock movement powered by Joe Lala's percussion. Stills' deft electric lead guitar is on display throughout.

Yep, it was 1972.

(Manassas percussionist and Tampa native Joe Lala passed away this month. This one's in memory of you, Joe.)

13 March 2014

Toots & The Maytals - "Pressure Drop" / The Slickers - "Johnny Too Bad"

Here's a couple of cuts from The Harder They Come soundtrack that turned me on, in the early 80s, to the real deal -- reggae straight from the source: the isle of Jamaica. When it comes to my favorite deep album cuts from this record, Pressure Drop blew my mind the first time I heard the track and still gets me out of my chair to this day, over three decades later. 5 stars with a bullet!

The second cut, from The Slickers, has, to my ear, a whole different feel. And it still get 5 stars from me. Enjoy!