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Tuesday, 29 January 2013

James Stevenson - The Shape of Things to Come EP


It's an absolute wonder that James Stevenson has had any time to record this little 3-track EP let alone an album due to his constantly being on the go playing guitar for this band and that band! But after much grafting this little taster for the album is finally available. I picked up a copy this past weekend in Wales, because, just in case you didn't know, James is the guitarist for The Alarm (among a number of bands at present).


Picture belongs to M.P.O.

So, what's the EP like then? Be prepared to be surprised because it's nothing like what you are thinking it's going to be like. It's not Punk so push that thought away, it's rock music of the highest order. Don't let that scare you though because James has gone out of his way to work alongside some tidy musicians for this project - Alarm pals Mark Taylor and Craig Adams, Glen Matlock, Chris Bell and one not so tidy in Steve Norman (well the girls think he is and the boys are just jealous!), on backing vocals he has the Sexpistilettoes consisting of Maggi Ronson, Tracie Hunter and Elizabeth Westwood (Sonic Boom Boy - D'you remember that?).

'Been a Long Time' is verging on the quieter side of rock whilst the first two tracks 'Suzi's Problem' and 'Naturally Wired' have some magnificent guitar work on them. I have to say that I was pretty impressed with James' vocals on all the tracks.

It's worth grabbing hold of for a listen and then I'm not sure how long we are going to have to wait for the album which has a title  - 'Everything's Getting Closer to Being Over'.

Keep your eye on James' website for further news and you can pick up the EP whilst you are over there.

The Alarm - Gathering 21 - 26th January 2013

I'll add more links when they become available. Enjoy.
45rpm
Alarm Calling
Superchannel
Drunk and Disorderly
Eye of the Hurricane (Never played live by The Alarm before)
Swansong
Breathe
Loaded
Down the Road
My Town
Without a Fight
Spirit of 76

Change to Vinyl Set
Free Rock and Roll
Nothing to do
Hear Me Out
Alarm Alarm
Standing on the Corner
Free Rock and Roll video shoot
 
Spirit reprise
Blaze of Glory
Breed Apart
1983-84-
Unsafe Building
Marching  On
The Stand
68 Guns
Where Were You Hiding
Absolute Reality
Walk Forever  By My Side
Rain in the Summertime
Rescue Me
Sold Me Down the River
New South Wales
Moments in Time
-1983-84
Declaration
After the Rock and Roll/One Guitar
 

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Adam Ant New Album 2013


'Adam Ant Is The Blueblack Hussar In Marrying The Gunner's Daughter'. (Jan 21st 2013)

First new album from the Ant man since 'Wonderful' in 1995. 

Cool Zombie Video.

Adam Ant has been creeping back into the public conciousness the past couple of years laying waste to audiences in many different venues. After a meltdown in 2010 people wondered if Ant would ever be fit enough resume his musical career but in 2011 he proved all the critics wrong when he launched out on a major UK tour selling out venues up and down the land. Backing him was the band 'The Good The Mad and The Lovely'. Many of those shows drew upon the great wealth of material from the early days of Adam and the Ants and his solo career. A band though can only survive so long on the days of old, there had to be new material and so what has been more than two years in the making is finally out. A 17 track album loaded with brand new tunes!

So, what is like? Here's what some of the critics have said so far: 

"What this album isn't is an attempt to recapture Ant's glory days: there's no Burundi double-drumming and no spaghetti-western guitar. The Ant album it reminds me of the most, in fact, is Dirk Wears White Sox: there's the same mid-fi production, and the same mix of perversion ... It's sprawling, overdue and not for everyone, but at least it's not a play-it-safe comeback with the hot producer of the day. And for that, the Hussar should be saluted." (Simon Price - The Independent)

"full of spit and vinaigrette. His ninth record is ramshackle and there’s a lot of it, but it’s always entertaining... everything is lively and bright-eyed, despite the demo-ish production." (David Quantick - Q Magazine)

"At 68 minutes, it’s a sprawling mess, a stream of consciousness featuring tributes to Malcolm McLaren, Vivienne Westwood and rocker Vince Taylor, and the percussive thrill of Antmusic on Bullshit. Elsewhere, there are digs at Britain’s mental health system on Shrink, self-appointed hardmen and the music industry that spat him out. A diligent editor and better production would have meant a wayward masterpiece, but this is an absorbing, troubling, sometimes brilliant album." (John Aizelwood - London Evening Standard)

 "In the early 1980s Adam Ant was the best pop star on the planet ... Some of that genius is in evidence on this comeback of sorts, but it comes as damaged goods, with a sense of frantic chaos rather than contained energy ... The problem is that all kind of good musical and lyrical themes come across as thrown together, rather than making coherent sense ... Still, there are some gems buried among the cartoonish, throwaway moments ... It’s a scrappy, unfocused album, and too long at 17 tracks, but it does reveal the life force beating away inside a fascinating, original, troubled man." (Will Hodgkinson - The Times)

"(This is) an album that gives the middle finger to brevity ... really long name and record, painfully so at times. There are flashes of the old brilliance on 'Shrink' but preceding number 'Hardmenhardblokes' (sic) is as baffling as it is weird ... experimentalism meanders into the bizarre and unlistenable. That said, it's sort of heartening to have him back." (Jeremy Allen - NME)

Here's what I say:
 
There's  points in all of their reviews that I agree with and disagree with. The first one is that it is a bit too long and a few songs could easily have been culled. I also agree that it is in places quite like 'Dirk Wears White Sox' and nothing like the overly produced CBS output in the 1980's (though he could do with Marco Pirroni being at his side again as writing partner).

It's not a play-safe album that's for sure and is quite uncomfortable to listen to at various moments and down right awful, but there are also moments of greatness which you will clearly hear when you get the album.

Let's just say there is enough on the album to warm the hearts of long term fans of Adam Ant but not really enough to appeal to a wider audience.

Notice that I've not really mentioned any specific songs, and that's because I want you to form your own opinion and not take on board mine. 

If I was asked to give marks out of ten for the album I would probably say a rather generous 6.

It's Getting Closer!


Only one more day before I'm off to Prestatyn, North Wales for the annual get together known as The Gathering. A nice weekend of fun and frolics and of course the music of The Alarm.

It's going to be a good one, I can feel it in my bones!

Here's a few links to some of the tunes they played last year:









Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Wilko Johnson Interview from The Times



Wilko interview in full from today's edition of The Times.

‘The doctor said, “You’ve got cancer”. I was absolutely calm. And then later I began to feel almost euphoric’

In the febrile world of showbusiness, farewell tours are common enough. They are undertaken by artists of a certain age planning to spend more time with their grandchildren, the golf course, or perhaps the contents of their wine cellar. Sometimes the warm rush of approbation, and consequent ticket sales, are so impressive that the performer will become mildly addicted. Kiss, the Eagles and Streisand have all been accused of never quite being able to say goodbye.
But there is nothing optional about the farewell gigs soon to be undertaken by Wilko Johnson, one of Britain’s greatest rhythm and blues guitarists, whose former group, Dr Feelgood, were, for a heady year or so in the mid-1970s, just about the biggest band in the land.

Johnson, 65, has terminal cancer of the pancreas and last week announced that he would not be undergoing chemotherapy. Tickets for four last shows in March to say thank you to the fans went on sale yesterday — three of which have already sold out and an extra London date has been added.

In the rock’n’roll business this is surely the first time that an artist has signalled so starkly that there can be no encores.
And yet the tall, thin gent in black T-shirt and jeans splayed on an armchair in his yellow, crenellated house in a suburb of Southend, Essex, has none of the air of a condemned man. He laughs: “Apart from a touch of cancer, I’m fine. Physically, none of the symptoms have started yet. The specialist told me I may have four or five months before they kick in.

“I had the analysis just before Christmas, and I don’t know if the guy was an expert in telling people bad news but he said those words, ‘You’ve got cancer,’ and I was absolutely calm.
I didn’t freak out at all. I mean, I’ve always been a miserable bugger but I felt OK and then later I began to feel almost euphoric, and the strange thing is that the feeling hasn’t worn off. I realise that all the things that I usually worry about don’t matter.” He says he has refused chemotherapy because, at most, it would offer only another three poor-quality months of life — “and that didn’t seem like a good deal”.

On the coffee table in front of us, next to the chess set and the Russian dolls, is a pile of letters from Japanese fans, where news of the illness emerged during recent dates. “It’s funny, I never realised I had touched people so personally. They’re very moving, the ones in broken English are the most heartbreaking.

“We’d finish the gigs with me singing Bye Bye Johnny and I was waving at the fans and they were waving and it should have been sad, but it was great.” He laughs: “Terminal cancer is in many ways a good thing for a show-off.”
It’s an illness, though, that has stalked his adult life: carrying off the lead singer of the Feelgoods, Lee Brilleaux; his chum and bandmate Ian Dury; and, eight years ago, his beloved wife Irene, whom he says he still thinks of every day. “Oh God, that was terrible. We’d been together for 40 years. She was so brave, she never once complained.”

But Johnson insists it’s been a good life. Growing up on Canvey Island in Essex, an odd blend of East End holiday resort and oil refinery grime, he found fame playing choppy lead and rhythm chords with Dr Feelgood. They wore thin-lapelled suits and played a lean, spare rhythm and blues that had a raw excitement that made the loon-panted denizens of prog rock suddenly look very old-fashioned indeed.
Future members of the Sex Pistols, the Jam and Madness all came and mentally took notes. In New York, Blondie wore out the grooves on an import copy of Down By the Jetty (click here to listen to the full album), the Feelgoods’ debut album.

And regularly stealing the show was the frenzied, bug-eyed Johnson and his red and black Fender Telecaster with tunes that transposed Chicago blues to the south Essex badlands.
Soon they were the band of the moment: at a residency at the Kensington pub in West London (he hates the term “pub rock”) a pre-Charles Lady Di and the author John Mortimer were regulars, though he remembers neither. When the Feelgood’s live album, Stupidity (click here to listen to full album), went to No 1 in the UK and they began to tour the States, a Stones-like future of stadium glory briefly seemed to beckon. But Johnson, sole songwriter, rowed violently with the other three (“I could be a moody so and so”). He says he was thrown out; the band put it about that he quit voluntarily.

“I’ve played ever since — either with my own band or with Ian Dury. I mean, what else could I do? But the career was always an accident, we were a little local band, we just happened to be very good.

“Originally I wanted to be a poet. In fact The Spectator published one of my old poems, from 1968, the other day — Get Your Kicks on the B1014 — I was delighted. So not only am I a published poet but I was talking to my son, who lives in the Philippines, and on the news there they described me as Game of Thrones actor Wilko Johnson. So I can add actor to my tally. I played an executioner in one or two shows — I had to look daggers at people then cut their heads off. And it was great because I was mute, so didn’t have to learn lines ... So actor, poet, musician. Not bad.”

There’s an erudite range of domestic interests too. On the flat roof of the house is a dome enclosing a large telescope. Johnson spends hours up there, gazing at the heavens and hopes to see the rings of Saturn “one last time this year”. He studied English at Newcastle University and took a course in old Icelandic and is one of the few English people who can read the ancient sagas in the original. He loves Shakespeare and Marlowe and can — rare for an electric guitarist — quote speeches from Tamburlaine. Julien Temple, who made a film about him and the Feelgoods in 2009 called Oil City Confidential, has called him one of the great English eccentrics.

But Johnson is stoical about leaving all this behind. And as an atheist he is certainly not expecting life ever after. “If you asked me how I feel about knowing it’s over, I would say that sometimes I’ve been feeling truly happy for the first time in my life.

“When we were in Japan we went to this temple in Kyoto and the scene with the mountains behind was sublime.
A light snow was falling and the scene was utterly beautiful. Normally I’d be trying to take this in as a memory. But I thought there’s no point, so I was just in that moment completely and I felt fantastic.”

It’s time to go and, as the photographer and I leave, we notice the graffiti that Johnson has scrawled on the inside of his garden wall — “Viva”, an anarchist symbol, then “Venceremos”.

“Yes, that’s my bourgeois rebellion,” laughs Johnson, “only I can see it ... Yeah, Venceremos, we will overcome. Well, maybe not this time.”

Wilko Johnson performs four farewell concerts: London Koko (March 6 and 10 (extra date), Bilston Robin 2 (March 7), Holmfirth Picturedrome (March 8), Glasgow O2 ABC (March 9). More gigs may be added if his health permits. Tickets: 0844 4780898, thegigcartel.com.

A few Classic Albums you might want to hear today






Thursday, 17 January 2013

Happy Birthday Susanna Hoffs


Happy Birthday to Susanna Hoffs

Watch a Set from Susanna Hoffs filmed at Eddie's Attic, Decatur on 29th October 2012. Click Here.


WATCH THE BANGLES LIVE IN PITTSBURGH IN 1986.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Willy DeVille - In New Orleans - 2012


Willy DeVille passed away in August 2009 of Pancreatic Cancer. He left behind a rather interesting and eclectic musical legacy.
Born in Stamford, Connecticut, he came to love the blues and often spoke of his afection for John Hammond and how Hammond's album 'So Many Roads' was a life changer for him. He played in many bands and traveled extensively in search of like-hearted musicians but it wasn't until he returned to New York in 1974 that he could seriously begin to shape that artist he became.
Between 1975-77 Mink DeVille would be one of the house bands at CBGB's and in 1976 they had three songs on a Live Compilation entitled 'Live at CBGB's' - this led them to getting a recording contract with Capitol Records. Their debut album, 'Carbreta' was a nice mix of Soul, Rock, R'n' B and of course The Blues and brought them some critical acclaim and the surprise Top Twenty hit in the UK of 'Spanish Stroll' (1977) highlighted that good things might just be around the corner for the band. But it was not to be. Further single releases: 'Little Girl' and 'Cadillac Walk' failed to chart anywhere.
A second album release, 'Return to Magneta' managed to get 60 places higher than the debut on the Billboard Chart reaching only 126. Even a great lead single 'Just Your Friends' couldn't bring any further success. Two years later 'Le Chat Bleu' didn't get the backing of the record company in the States and it was only released in Europe. DeVille reckons that Capitol just didn't understand what he was doing and couldn't comprehend exactly what Cajun music was.

After the debacle of the previous album he departed Capitol Records for Atlantic Records and in 1981 released Coup de Grรขce. But again it failed to chart, and that seemed like what was going to sum up the career of Mink DeVille (which up to this point was actually only Willy DeVille himself backed by session musicians). 'Where Angels Fear To Tread' would be the last album for Atlantic Records in 1983 before moving to Polydor and releasing the final album under the monicker Mink DeVille ('Sportin' Life').

In 1987 he teamed up with Mark Knopfler to record 'Miracle' and aside from 'Spanish Stroll' it probably contains his most well known song, 'Storybook Love' which ended up on the soundtrack to 'The Princess Bride' movie and even got nominated for an Academy Award!

Come 1988 Willy relocated to New Orleans where he would end up recording one of his finest albums to date, 'Victory Mixture' (released in 1990). He  gathered around him some of the finest musicians New Orleans could offer in Dr John, Alen Toussaint, and Eddie Bo to name but a few. The album sold well enough in Europe to gain Willy his first ever Gold Disc! Further albums would follow between 1992-2008 and whilst he would enjoy some live success in parts of Europe he wouldn't enjoy chart success in his homeland again (his last album to chart was in 1981!).

So, three years after his death the release of 'In New Orleans' came as a nice surprise and it's a nice collection of material from 'Victory Mixture' and 'Big Easy Fantasy' (1995). Nice and bluesy, and a typical New Orleans sound.


In 2009 DeVille was diagnosed with Hepatitis C and in May that year they found he also had Pancreatic Cancer whilst treating him for the Hep C. Willy passed away in New York City (where he had come back home to in 2003) on August 6th 2009.

For someone who did not really get to enjoy a lot of success whilst alive he was almost prophetic when he once said"I have a theory. I know that I'll sell much more records when I'm dead. It isn't very pleasant, but I have to get used to this idea."

Monday, 14 January 2013

Sex Pistols - Winterland Ballroom 14th Jan 1978


So it's the anniversary of the final Sex Pistols show today (well final until they got back together again in 1996). The Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco was the final date on their ill-fated American Tour. Malcom McLaren had purposedly book a whole bunch of "Red-Neck" venues in order to provoke a hostile reaction toward the band. And that's exatly what happenend with Vicious getting into serious trouble from the stage at various shows.

Lydon's actions on the night of the Winterland show demonstrated just how disillusioned he was with the whole thing. They performed The Stooges 'No Fun' as the set closer. At the end of the song, Rotten, kneeling on the stage, chanted an unambiguous declaration, "This is no fun. No fun. This is no fun—at all. No fun." As the final cymbal crash died away, Rotten addressed the audience directly—"Ah-ha-ha. Ever get the feeling you've been cheated? Good night"—before throwing down his microphone and walking offstage.

Four days after the show the band would officially split up with Jones and Cook continuing to make music under the Sex Pistols banner before launching out and forming The Professionals, Lydon would put together  Public Image Ltd and Vicious would end up in jail charged with the murder of his girlfriend Nancy before losing his own life on the 2nd February 1979 from a drugs overdose.


Setlist:

1. God Save The Queen

2. I Wanna Be Me

3. Seventeen

4. New York

5. E.M.I.

6. Belsen Was A Gas

7. Bodies

8. Holidays in the Sun

9. Liar

10. No Feelings

11. Problems

12. Pretty Vacant

13. Anarchy in the U.K.

14. No Fun 

Countdown to The Gathering


It's only ten days until I make the annual pilgrimage to North Wales to enjoy The 21st Gathering of Mike Peters and The Alarm.


It is one of the best weekends in the year in my book. I get to meet up with some of the finest people from across the globe, get to meet old and new friends, have a great laugh taking part in the annual Alarm Mastermind (I made the final last year only losing by a single point!). Oh, there's also lots and lots of music. Joe Silva is back for the second year, The Hummingbirds are playing support on Saturday Evening and then of course there will a Friday night performance from Mike Peters and a full set by The Alarm on Saturday evening.

On top of that a forum that I'm part of called The Wasting Land are celebrating their 10th Anniversary and Friday after the music in the main venue is over we are having a party.


You can read a little bit about the forum and the charity dip we are doing over on The Alarm's Facebook Page.


Friday, 11 January 2013

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Wilko Johnson


WILKO JOHNSON – IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT

I am very sad to announce that Wilko has recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer of the pancreas. He has chosen not to receive any chemotherapy.

He is currently in good spirits, is not yet suffering any physical effects and can expect to enjoy at least another few months of reasonable health and activity.

He has just set off on a trip to Japan; on his return we plan to complete a new CD, make a short tour of France, then give a series of farewell gigs in the UK. There is also a live DVD in the pipeline, filmed on the last UK tour.

Wilko wishes to offer his sincere thanks for all the support he has had over his long career, from those who have worked with him to, above all, those devoted fans and admirers who have attended
his live gigs, bought his recordings and generally made his life such an extraordinarily full and eventful experience.

Thank you.

Robert Hoy
(Manager)


Our thoughts and prayers are with Wilko and his family at this time. So sad to hear this news. Soundtrack4Life





 

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Welcome Back David Bowie...I think!


It's been a decade since David Bowie has released anything and on the occasion of his 66th Birthday he has released his first single 'Where Are We Now?' The album is due for  release on March 11th and is titled 'The Next Day'. It has 14 tracks and a Deluxe version will include a further three tracks.

Not really sure what to make of it. The song and video is a look back to the past and his days of running around Berlin. Have to say though that I'm not that overly impressed. It almost made me want to go and dig out Tin Machine II!

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Happy 40th Birthday to Greetings From Asbury Park N.J.


Released on 5th January 1973 and it wasn't a big seller, moved about 25,000 copies!

LISTEN TO THE ALBUM HERE!

On the Working on a Dream Tour in 2009, the final night in Buffalo saw the first ever performance of the whole album in sequence. It was also the first time ever that the band had played 'The Angel' live.



Saturday, 5 January 2013

Mercyland - Phil Madeira Interview


'Mercyland - Hymns For The Rest Of Us' came out last year but for some unknown reason it was only just reviewed in the latest edition of 'Uncut' here in the UK. My musical radar swings into action at any mention of Phil Madeira because he is one of those guys who just seems to be able to do everything - a songwriter, a musician, a producer and an artist in his own right. 


His CV reads like a Who's Who of the music business having had his own songs recorded by the likes of The Civil Wars, Buddy Miller, Alison Krauss, Bruce Hornsby to name a few. He has also worked alongside some true legends like Solomon Burke, Emmylou Harris, Elvis Costello and Buddy Miller and as a multi-instrumentalist he has contributed to many other acts from many diverse stylings - Sixpence None the Richer, Mavis Staples, Julie Miller and The Neville Brothers, again just to name a few. As a producer he was at the controls on one of my favourite albums, 'Floating' by Greg Trooper and many more besides and that includes this wonderful collection of songs by some of the finest folks in the business at the moment. A look at the list of artists on the album will give you a brief glimpse into what Phil Madeira's phone book might look like:



Here's a wee taster of some of the tracks on the album.


The Civil Wars - From This Valley


Shawn Mullins - Give God the Blues


Matt Kearney - Walking Over Water

Cindy Morgan and Phil Madeira talk about Leaning On You

This is an album that forces you to just stop whatever you are doing and just be still. There's not many albums that can do that in this day and age of hustle and bustle. It's also an album that makes you think outside of yourself and to reflect on themes that are other worldly and yet incredibly present. Beautifully crafted songs, sung with deep yearning and passion, gorgeous harmonies, magnificent musicianship (John Scofield's instrumental 'Peace in the Valley' that ends the album has to be one of the most soothing and soul refreshing pieces of music I've heard in a long long time).

So, if you are looking for something a little different and out of your comfort zone, you won't go too far wrong in getting a copy of 'Mercyland - Hymns for the Rest of Us'.

 Phil Madeira and friends, including Emmylou Harris, Shawn Mullins, the North Mississippi All Stars, Buddy Miller, Matraca Berg, and Amy Stroup, pause for a photo with the Americana Music Association’s Michelle Aquilato (far left, standing) and Jed Hilly (second to right, standing) at the Nashville Downtown Presbyterian Church during the Americana Music Festival. (Photo by Erika Goldring)

After listening to the album a few times yesterday I dropped Phil Madeira a line and asked if he would be kind enough to answer a few questions regarding the making of the album and how important the themes of this record are in our daily lives.

S4L: How did the idea of Mercyland come about?

PM: In the wake of the 2008 US Presidential election, I was bothered by the vitriol that came from many religious Americans, of course, nothing new. But being a person of faith, I decided to try and rescue Jesus back from his kidnappers, the fundamentalists. So I asked Emmylou Harris, with whom I play, if she'd be up for making that kind of music.
She said "Yes", and from that point on it was easy to get people involved.

S4L: The subtitle of the album, 'Hymns For The Rest Of Us' is quite interesting because people would normally associate a hymn as something sung in Church, was the subtitle a concious decision to show that Spirituality is something not to be confined to within the walls of the Church?

PM: I suppose you could say that, but really it was my way of saying that the songs were for anyone who feels dismissed, rejected, outcast, or unwelcome in religious circles (most of us, I'd wager).

S4L: How easy was it to get the artists involved in the project? You got some pretty quality folks on the album, some I know you have worked with in the past, did the songs present you with hard choices as to who would sing each one, or did you have it all clear in your mind who would perform the song they recorded?

PM: As I said, once Emmylou was involved, it was easy to invite people, and all but one or two said yes to the project. Most artists wanted to co-write, as I had hoped. Others asked what I had, hence Buddy Miller singing my very old song "I Believe In You", and Dan Tyminski singing "Light Of Your Love".

S4L: I've read a number of pieces that have said that the album is "A reaction to the heated religious posturing prevalent throughout the world today", how vital should spirituality be in the life of folks today?

PM: Whether it's vital to someone or not, in my view, spirituality simply "is". We're all spirit, whether we acknowledge the mystic world or not. For me, it's important to pay attention to my inner life.

S4L: I only have a download copy of the album at the moment (itunes) so I don't have the information to hand about the writers of the songs but I do recognise 'If I Was Jesus' as being one of yours (co-written with Chuck Cannon), are the songs collaborations or have you written them yourself?

PM: Of the 12 songs, I wrote one by myself ("I Believe In You"), 8 with co-writers, and recorded 2 traditional numbers, and one not written by me.

S4L: You have been around the business for many years Phil and have played with a lot of good people (I saw you in Glasgow when you were part of Emmylou's band a few years ago), does the theme of Mercyland help you stay centered and focused on what's really important in life?

PM: Well, now that I have a project called "Mercyland", it's somewhat inconvenient when I'm thinking selfishly. Then I have to remember that I have this idea of Love and Mercy out there in the world, and I need to live it.

S4L: Seeing that you have made an album of Modern Hymns I was wondering if you could mention what your favourite old time hymns would be?...Say top three if possible.

PM: Off the top of my head, how about "Of The Father's Love Begotten", a very old chant, and "In Christ There Is No East Or West", and something very bluesy- "Just A Closer Walk With Thee"… takes me to New Orleans every time!

S4L: Lastly, we like to ask those whom we interview what are the songs that have made up the Soundtrack of their lives. I know you played a lot of music and written a lot, but are there maybe five songs that you constantly go back to that you would say that they have a vital place in your life and journey?

 (Click on the links to listen to Phil's Choices)

PM:
Blind Willie Johnson- Soul Of A Man
Jimmy Martin- My Walkin' Shoes Don't Fit Me Anymore
John Scofield's "Hand Jive" CD
Bob Dylan- It Takes A Lot To Laugh, It Takes A Train To Cry
The Beatles- all of it.



Phil is already pursuing the recording of a new solo album. If you would like to support that click on the KICKSTARTER LINK for Phil Madeira.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Joe Brown - The Ukulele Album (2012)


I'm not quite sure how this album passed me by when it was released. Heard it for the first time before Christmas and was totally blown away! Now, I know some folks will be sitting reading this scratching their heads and thinking, "he's totally lost the plot, it's a Ukulele album!" But please, give it a listen. Joe's team have put together a playlist of tracks from the album and it's worth spending a bit of time being stunned at how Joe, a 71 year old, manages to bring a very sweet interpretation to some of Rock's most well known songs: 'Pinball Wizard', 'Mr Blue Sky' and even a very tidy rendition of Motorhead's classic 'Ace of Spades'.


Joe Brown MBE has been in the game for many many years. He started out in 1958 with his first band, inspired by the whole Skiffle sound of Lonnie Donegan and in 1960 that band became his backing band The Bruvvers who would go onto attain many hit singles. Since 1962 he has released over 30 albums. He seems to have gained a new army of fans since apearring at The Royal Albert Hall as part of the concert to celebrate the life and music of George Harrison. In 2010 he was even out touring with Status Quo!! In 2009 Mojo Magazine awarded him 'The Outstanding Contribution to Music Award'.

We tip our hat to a man who has survived in the business for so many years and continues to release albums of new music and tour. At 71 years old you'd think that he'd be happy to put his slippers on and put his feet up for a well earn rest!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Buzzcocks Reissued...Again?











I was interested to read a review in the latest editon of Uncut Magazine of the Reissue of the first three Buzzcocks albums. Surely this is wrong! The albums were only released in Special Editons back in 2010, so why on earth would they be releasing them again? Thus far I've been unable to track down any other information about them. If there is nothing forthcoming then I can only deduce that Uncut Magazine is seriously three years behind the times!

Whatever the case though, if you don't own the Special Editions of the albums they are well worth getting hold of. With lots of bonus tracks and an extra disc in each album that has b-sides, sessions and live material, they capture the band when they were first unleashing their creative flow upon the public. So many classic tunes spread over the three albums. What are you waiting for?


Happy New Year 2013


And we are back after a wee break to enjoy the Christmas Holidays, and wonder what lies ahead in 2013.
We trust that you had a good time of celebration.

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