Breakfast in Bed/Simple Song

Breakfast in Bed/Simple Song

The first of my Record Store Day 2017 selections is a single released by Single Lock Records, John Paul White sings Donnie Fritts, Donnie Fritts sings John Paul White. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I first came across John Paul White, as part of The Civil Wars, with Joy Williams. Have I ever told you I saw them live? Yes, we saw them at Leeds Metropolitan University on March 18th 2012.

After they disbanded I didn’t hear much about John Paul White until last year. He contributed Simple Song to the Southern Family album, which I have as a download, then he released his own album Beulah, which I bought on vinyl.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also noticed that one of my favorite albums of last year, Cautionary Tale by Dylan LaBlanc, had been produced by John Paul White and Ben Tanner, co-founders of Single Lock Records.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I came across a tweet by John Paul White saying that he was appearing on a Pig and Vine Radio podcast. The podcast was hosted by a lady called Amy Collins, and is primarily about wine, but with “life insights and humor”.

So I checked out said podcast and it was most entertaining, and sure enough contained some “life insights and humor”.

Now I can’t remember whether he mentioned the Record Store Day release in the podcast, or whether I found out about it by checking out his website, but I had no idea who Donnie Fritts was!

Well it turns out he co-wrote Breakfast in Bed, the UB40 hit from 1988, featuring Chrissie Hynde on vocals. But this wasn’t the original version, the original was by Dusty Springfield, released twenty years earlier as the B-side to Son of a Preacher Man. This was recorded as part of the Dusty in Memphis album, which is near the top of my wish list of albums I need to add to my collection.

His co-writer on Breakfast in Bed was Eddie Hinton. Now I do know who Eddie Hinton is! I have four record collection called Dangerous Highway – A Tribute to the Songs of Eddie Hinton, which was released by Shake It Records, based in Cincinnati, Ohio.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So on this single, we have John Paul White singing Breakfast in Bed and Donnie Fritts performing Simple Song. To give you an idea of how much I enjoyed it, I’ve just bought Oh My Goodness the latest album by Donnie Fritts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And here’s a playlist based on this post, enjoy…

 

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The Gloaming – 2

I know it’s been a while since my lost post, but I’ve a good excuse, I’ve been on my holidays, or vacation, as they call it this side of the Atlantic. I spent the second week of my holiday in Ireland and while I was there I paid a visit to a cool record store in Cork, called Plugd, the cafe in the same building was called Gulpd which I thought was pretty neat.

One of the albums I bought was The Gloaming’s second album, 2. Not the most original title, but it’s a cracking album.

The Gloaming - 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Gloaming have two major factors in their favor as far as I’m concerned, firstly their albums are released by Real World Records, one of my favorite labels and secondly, their vocalist, Iarla O Lionaird, used to be a member of Afro-Celt Sound System, who I love! Have I ever told you I’ve seen them live? It was at a Fleadh in Finsbury Park, back in 2001, if memory serves me right.

As for the album itself, one word, beautiful. I’ve just read a review from the Guardian, who call it “an exquisite album from a virtuoso band”. I can’t argue with that!

I’ve just found another reason to love this band, here in America, they’re signed to Brassland Records, a record label started by the Dessner Brothers of The National, another of my favorite bands. Have I ever told you….

The Brassland Records website has a page devoted to notes on the album’s songs by Iarla O Lionaird. One of the notes which particularly appealed to me was about the song  Fainleog (Wanderer), which is about a “superhero of the ancient gaelic world Fionn Ma Cumhail, who apparently coined the phrase, that the most valuable thing in all of creation was The Music of What happens. Now I’ve never heard that phrase before, but again I can’t argue with that!

 

 

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Jason Isbell – Taft Theater – 15th June 2016

Every now and again you go to a gig where everything is just perfect, the venue is great for the event, the support act kick up a storm and the main act turn out to be even better than you’d hoped for. Wednesday night at the Taft Theater in Cincinnati was one of those nights!

Being a Brit, I was looking forward to seeing Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls. To my shame I never saw him perform live in the UK, only seeing him on TV, most notably at the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony in London. He kicked off his set at the Taft with I Still Believe from his England Keep My Bones album, starting off the song on his own, with the Sleeping Souls joining him on stage one by one. The audience enthusiastically took up his offer to join in the chorus. He followed this with The Next Storm from his most recent album, Positive Songs for Negative People, another barn storming anthem. Apart from this great opening, the highlights for me were Peggy Sang the Blues, a song, he told us, about his grandmother giving him his first taste of whisky at the age of ten, and Dan’s Song, which he’d written for a recently departed friend. The one low point, for me anyway, was the audience participation slot with a guy being brought on from the crowd to play (badly) a harmonica solo! Other than that, it was a superb energetic set, which more than got the crowd warmed up for the main event.

I’ve seen Jason Isbell a couple of times prior to the Taft, firstly back in the UK, at the London Palladium in April 2012, supporting Ryan Adams. That night he performed a brilliant, but short, solo set. I then saw him a couple of years ago at the Shaky Knees Festival in Atlanta, that time with a full band. With it being a festival, again his set was far too short, so to say I was looking forward to seeing him perform a full set was a bit of an understatement!

And he didn’t disappoint!

The concert covered all eras of his career, with three songs from his time with the Drive-By Truckers. The best of these for me being Decoration Day. I saw the Drive-By Truckers a few weeks ago at Bogarts, and I have to say when Jason Isbell and his band rocked out, they were more than a match for the DBTs. The bulk of the set-list was taken from his two most recent albums, Southeastern and Something More Than Free, and that was fine by me. Southeastern for me is just a classic and one of my favorite albums and it was great to hear some of these songs performed live. Different Days and Stockholm were standouts for me, but Cover Me Up, just blew me away. The new songs sounded even better live, Hudson Commodore and Speed Trap Town being highlights for me. He also threw in Alabama Pines, a song I love.

For the encore, he performed Elephant and Flying Over Water from Southeastern, sandwiched between these two was Sing Me Back Home, a beautiful Merle Haggard song.

It was a great set, with a great band, including his wife Amanda Shires, and the show was enhanced by a brilliant set design and spectacular lighting.

Now the evening could have ended there and I would have left for home feeling more than satisfied, but I was lucky enough to meet Frank Turner after the show.

And what a great guy he is. He had time for everyone and was more than obliging, posing for photos and signing autographs. I found out he’d just been touring with Gogol Bordello, somewhat different to Jason Isbell!  Apart from talking about previous gigs he’s performed in my old town, he mentioned that he was returning to Cincinnati for the Midpoint Music Festival, how good is that?

So all in all, one superb night!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mississippi Fred McDowell

A few weeks ago I purchased a Seasick Steve single from Third Man Records, on which he covers two tracks by Mississippi Fred McDowell. I’m no expert by the way, I only knew that after reading the Third Man Records blurb about the single. Anyway the other night I was flicking through my Instagram account and saw a video from my local record store, Plaid Room Records, showing their most recent restocks and lo and behold there was a Mississippi Fred McDowell album.

So I called in Plaid Room Records the next day and snagged this beauty,Mississippi Fred McDowell, a self titled album released by Everest Records, Archive of Folk & Jazz Music.

Fred McDowell

 

 

 

 

 

And get this, it only has one of the tracks that Seasick Steve covered on his Third Man Records single, that track being Levee Camp Blues, how neat is that?

Mississippi Fred McDowell - Side1

Mississippi Fred McDowell Side2

 

 

 

 

 

There’s a great piece about Mississippi Fred McDowell on the Mississippi Blues Trail website. Apparently You Got To Move, which is also on this album, was covered by the Rolling Stones on their Sticky Fingers album.

One of the best pieces in the article refers to his friend and neighbor, a certain Eli Green, who, and I quote “was said to possess magical powers”! Eli Green wrote a song called Write Me A Few Lines, which became one of Mississippi Fred McDowell’s signature tunes and was also covered by none other than Bonnie Raitt! Have I ever told you…

Just reading the sleeve notes and he was discovered by folklorist Alan Lomax, who described him as  “a bluesman quite the equal of Son House and Muddy Waters, but, musically speaking, their granddaddy.”

Check this out…

 

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Yet More From Third Man Records

So following my visit to Third Man Records in Nashville and having listened to the five Tamla singles I’d bought, I had to complete the set, so I ordered the remaining four singles.

Well they came yesterday, five days after I ordered them, and they sound great!

They’re part of a series of reissues, by Third Man Records, of the classic early Motown singles.

Barrett Strong – Money (That’s What I Want)/Oh I Apologize

Barrett Strong - Money

Barrett Strong - Oh I Apologize

 

 

 

 

 

This is the original version of the song that The Beatles covered on their With The Beatles album, which I have in my record collection. I know it’s been covered by loads of artists, but The Beatles version is the one I’m most familiar with.

I’ve just been reading about this single on the Motown Junkies website and amongst the comments, there’s mention of a “white teenage” kid who played the guitar solo, who had never been tracked down. Then a few months later a guy called Eugene Grey replied to the comment saying he was that “White Guy”! Don’t you just love the internet? He also played on tracks by The Supremes, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles and Mary Wells, as well as Please Mr Postman by The Marvelettes, another song covered by The Beatles. How cool is that?

Wikipedia mentions that “according to George Harrison, the group discovered Strong’s version in Brian Epstein’s NEMS record store”

Nick and the Jaguars – Ich-i-bon #1/Cool and Crazy

Nick and the Jaguars - Ich-I-Bon #1

Nick and the Jaguars - Cool and Crazy

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve just been reading about this group on the Motown Junkies website and apparently they were Motown’s first white act.

Chico Leverett – Solid Sender/I’ll Never Love Again

Chico Leverett - Solid Sender

Chico Leverett - I'll Never Love Again

 

 

 

 

 

Barrett Strong – Let’s Rock/Do The Very Best You Can  

Barrett Strong - Let's Rock

Barrett Strong - Do The Very Best You Can

 

 

 

 

 

So that completes the set of the first reissues by Third Man Records of those classic early Motown singles. I’m so glad I bought these, not only to listen to these early recordings, but also to delve a bit deeper into their history. I’m not sure whether there are any more in the pipeline, but I sure hope so!

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S Carey – Supermoon

Supermoon by S Carey is the latest addition to my collection. I noticed this EP a few weeks ago when I was on the Jagjaguwar site ordering the latest releases by The Besnard Lakes. Then earlier this week I came across the album at my local record store, Plaid Room Records, and decided to take the plunge.

S Carey - Supermoon

 

 

 

 

 

And I’m so glad I did, it’s simply beautiful.

I shouldn’t be surprised, I’ve already got the first release by S Carey, All We Grow, which I love. In fact, Supermoon, features stripped down version of three of the songs from All We Grow. There’s also a great version of Radiohead’s Bullet Proof..I Wish I Was.

But my favorite track is Neverending Fountain, just check this out….

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Track of the Day – Dreams and Consequences by Nicholas and the Pessimists

My Track of the Day today is Dreams and Consequences by Nicholas and the Pessimists. I came across this bands last week after they started following me on Twitter. I checked their album out last night on their website and have just downloaded it.

nicholas and the pessimistics - nicholas and the pessimistics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dreams and Consequences is the taken from their self titled debut album. I could have picked any of the tracks off the album for my Track of the Day because they’re all great songs.

And best of all, they’re a local band from the Ohio Valley!

Check out this video of Nicholas and the Pessimists performing Dreams and Consequences

 

How good is that!?

And that’s why Dreams and Consequences by Nicholas and the Pessimists is today’s Track of the Day

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Track of the Day – Crybaby by Happenstance

It’s been a while since  I posted a Track of the Day, so thought it was about time for a new Track of the Day. So my Track of the Day is Crybaby by Happenstance.

Happenstance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happenstance have just started following me on Twitter, so I thought I’d check them out. I visited their Bandcamp site and the first track I came across was Crybaby. It’s taken from their third album, Everything Changes.

Happenstance - Everything Changes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check it out here..

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Third Man Records – My first visit

I was in Nashville a couple of weeks ago, so I decided to pay Third Man Records a visit.

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One hour later and one hundred bucks lighter I left with these gems.

I got three singles from their Sun Records reissues collection:

Elvis Presley – My Happiness

Elvis Presley - My Happiness

 

 

 

 

 

This is “the 7” Sun Records Reissue version of the Grammy Nominated Record Store Day Exclusive 10-inch facsimile of Elvis Presley’s first ever recording from 1953″. Later that day I toured the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, where I saw the original acetate record on display. Apparently Jack White paid $300,000 at an auction for this.

Elvis Presley - My Happiness - Original Record

 

 

 

 

 

Johnny Cash – Got Rhythm/I Walk the Line

Johnny Cash - Get Rhythm

Johnny Cash - I Walk the Line

 

 

 

 

 

I didn’t realize until checking out the notes on the Third Man Records website, that I Walk the Line was a B-side.

Jerry Lee Lewis – Great Balls of Fire

Jerry Lee Lewis - Great Balls of Fire

 

 

 

 

 

Great Balls of Fire, need I say more?

These next five are part of their Tamla Records reissues collection.

The Supremes – Buttered Popcorn/Who’s Loving You

Supremes - Buttered Popcorn Supremes - Who's Loving You

 

 

 

 

 

Apparently this is the only Supremes track to feature Florence Ballard as the sole lead singer. Being a Stephen King fan I have to mention that Florence Ballard is one of the deceased artists who perform in the town Rock and Roll Heaven in his short story, You Know They Got a Hell of a Band.

The Miracles – Way Over There/(You Can) Depend on Me

The Miracles - Depend on Me The Miracles - Way Over There

 

 

 

 

 

Way Over There is the first record on which William (Bill) Robinson was solely credited with the songwriting credits. Who is William Robinson, well you may know him better as Smokey Robinson!

Marvin Gaye – Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide/Never Let You Go

Marvin Gaye - Never Let You Go

Marvin Gaye - Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide

 

 

 

 

 

This was Marvin Gaye‘s first single.

The Swinging Tigers – Snake Walk (Part One)/Snake Walk (Part Two)

The Swinging Tigers - Snake Walk - Part One The Swinging Tigers - Snake Walk - Part Two

 

 

 

 

 

Ever heard of these?, no me neither!

The Satintones – Going to the Hop/Motor City

The Satintones - Going to the Hop

The Satintones - Motor City

 

 

 

 

 

Apparently the Satintones were the first group to be signed to the Motown label.

These singles were amongst the first nine released on the Tamla Record label, guess who’s going to be buying the other four pretty soon!? Before I move on, I’ve got to mention this wicked website I’ve just come across called Motown Junkies on which the author is reviewing every single Motown release, both A and B sides.

As well as these reissues, I got a few records from Third Man Records Blue Series collection. These singles are by singers and bands who have been invited to record tracks the the Third Man Studio and to be produced by Jack White.

The songs are then, as soon as possible, made available on 7” vinyl . The cover photos are taken in Third Man Records “blue room” photo studio/live venue.Some acts that play the performance space, the Blue Room, record directly to vinyl through a 1950’s lathe. And get this, that 1950’s lathe once belonged to King Records, the Cincinnati label that was home to James Brown.

Here are the Blue Series records I purchased:

Brittany Howard and Ruby Amanfu – I Wonder/When My Man Comes Home

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Being an Alabama Shakes fan, as soon as I saw the name Brittany Howard, this was a must buy. I have to admit to having never heard of Ruby Amanfu, but having listened to the single, I’ll be finding some more of her releases. The B-side, When My Man Comes Home, was originally recorded by Memphis Minnie, who composed When the Levee Breaks, which was covered by Led Zeppelin on their classic fourth album.

Beck – I Just Started Hating Someone Today/Blue Randy

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I picked this up as I’ve been hearing quite a lot of Beck‘s latest stuff on my local radio station, WNKU, here in Cincinnati, plus I’ve got no Beck releases in my collection at all. This record’s pretty cool, as it’s got Jack White on backing vocals on I Just Started Hating Someone Today.

Seasick Steve – Write Me a Few Lines\Levee Camp Blues 

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Big Seasick Steve fan here, so this was a must! The Third Man Records write up on this single describes Seasick Steve as a ‘”proper festival headliner in the UK/Europe”. Having seen him a couple of times at Glastonbury Festival, I can certainly vouch for that! Both of these are from the “legendary” Mississippi Fred McDowell catalog. Now I’ have to admit I’ve never heard of him, so I think some research is required, on both him and Memphis Minnie. I mentioned Ruby Amanfu earlier, well she provides some fine backing vocals on Write Me a Few Lines.

Pokey LaFarge – Chittlin’ Cookin’ Time in Cheatham County/Pack It Up

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I’m a huge Pokey LaFarge fan, having seen him half a dozen times now both here in the USA and back in England, so this was another “must buy” selection.

Smoke Fairies – Gastown/River Song

Smoke Fairies - Gas Town

Smoke Fairies - River Song

 

 

 

 

 

I picked this single for no other reason than they were British! Plus, the B-side, River Song, is a character from Doctor Who!

I got one single from the Third Man Live collection

Alabama Shakes – Be Mine/You Ain’t Alone

Alabama Shakes - Be Mine

Alabama Shakes - You Ain't Alone

 

 

 

 

 

Again, another in the “must buy” category. And talking of seeing bands live, Alabama Shakes are one amazing live band. I saw them in Atlanta, at the Shaky Knees festival in 2014, and they were incredible.

My final selection is one of Third Man Records latest signings and it’s

Margo Price – Hurtin’ on the Bottle/Desperate and Depressed

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I saw Margo and the Price Tags supporting Pokey LaFarge last December, just over the river at the Southgate House Revival in Newport, Kentucky, now that was one amazing night!

As you can probably gather, I enjoyed my visit to Third Man Records! So much so that I’ve now subscribed to their Vault series, watch this space….

 

 

 

 

 

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Have Gun, Will Travel – Goodnight, Sweet Chariot

Goodnight, Sweet Chariot by Have Gun, Will Travel is today’s song of the day.

I must confess to knowing almost nothing about this group, they came up on my Facebook feed a few weeks ago, as they are followed by my brother-in-law. That particular post made reference to their latest album, Science From An Easy Chair, which is based on British explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton’s ill-fated 1914-16 Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition.

Have Gun Will Travel - Science from an Easy Chair

 

 

 

 

 

Being a Brit the subject matter instantly appealed as I remember reading about Ernest Shackleton in my History lessons, way back in the mists of time!

Goodnight, Sweet Chariot is taken from the latest album by Have Gun, Will TravelScience From an Easy Chair and to quote from Have Gun, Will Travel, “It’s a folk ballad about the sinking of the polar exploration ship Endurance, which met its demise in 1915 in the Antarctic”.

Check out Goodnight, Sweet Chariot and an amazing video showing how the Endurance met it’s end in the Antarctic.

The album’s named after a book by Ray Lankester, which apparently the crew would read aloud during their voyage.

And I have to say I love the band’s name, Have Gun, Will Travel. I know there was an American TV series of the same name that ran in the late 50’s,early 60’s, of which I’ve never seen an episode, but being a Stephen King fan, I know the theme song! It appears in my all time favorite film, Stand By Me. I’ve just read on Wikipedia that apparently the film’s producer’s were sued by songwriter Johnny Western for using the song without his permission.

Johnny Western, is that his real name?

Anyway, at the risk of being sued, check out this video…

Meanwhile, back to the subject at hand, Goodnight, Sweet Chariot by Have Gun, Will Travel is today’s song of the day and is the latest addition to my imaginatively titled Spotify playlist, Track of the Day 2016

 

If any of the stuff on here piques your interest, you can find it on Amazon, by clicking the links below:

Science From An Easy Chair by Have Gun, Will Travel

Have Gun, Will Travel by Johnny Western

Stand By Me (Special Edition) by Stephen King

From an easy chair by Ray Lankester

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