Waltzing Above Ground

Here is the promised upload of Waltzing Above Ground by Guy Klucevsek.

It is a little adapted to the existing moving pictures we had for it and also to today's a bit shorter attention spans. But still lovely from start to end.

plink, nix,    praise or blame!
 

Mimi and Joan Sing a Duet

Just by accident me and a friend detected that sometimes the same song performance has the power to comfort us when the mind is on the brink of despair.

This one has two sister's voices and an absurd South American patriotism song. The location is Sing Sing Prison and the year is 1973. We were 16 and 15 years or so then. And honestly, it's less so the more famous and accomplished Joan but of course the harmony and especially the magic of Mimi Farina's sweet soprano that does most of the consolation work.

 

plink, nix,    praise or blame!
 

Dixie Chicken

Long before the Dixie Chicks there was the Dixie Chicken (and the Tennessee lamb of course). For people with a sometimes more down to earth musical taste like us here in Jamaica, the song was one of the highlights in any Little Feat concert. Lowell George († June 29, 1979) played and sang it in a way that one could only love. And thanks to YTBS we can also not just write about it but simply show it to you, the p.t. audience.

This version also has the then still young but now surviving and still going strong Emmylou Harris and the fabulous Bonnie Lynn Raitt who had already provided backing vocals in the studio, two ladies that we adore, in it. The third Little Feat studio album took its title from that signature song and was also the first one we really perceived and then bought, we must admit. If you like white New Orleans style Rythm and Blues, that record could be called a must. So here's the beef:

Lowell George was born in Hollywood, California and had his first appearance on Ted Mack's Original Amateur Hour at the tender age of six. He joined Frank Zappa's The Mothers of Invention at age 23 and at 24, upon being either fired or leaving by mutual agreement, formed his own band Little Feat.

Mr. George seems to have led an indulgent lifestyle of binge eating, alcoholism, and throwing speedballs (if you know what that is). He died from a heart attack at Arlington, Virginia and age 34 and was cremated in Washington D.C.. His ashes were then flown back to Los Angeles, where they were scattered from his fishing boat into the Pacific Ocean.

From Chicken to Chicks and 30 years back to the future

Speaking of Dixie Chicken, it is a shame that there are no articles on the Dixie Chicks yet in this magazine. We were sure we had praised them in 2003 when they harshly spoke out against the Bush jr. administration and the President o' th' UnitedStates himself.

During the run-up to the invasion of Iraq, the band performed a concert in March of that year at the Shepherd's Bush Empire Theatre in London. During the introduction to their song "Travelin' Soldier", Natalie Maines, a native of Texas, said: "Just so you know, we're on the good side with y'all. We do not want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas."

Not Ready To Make Nice

What followed was everything from death threats to radio bans. And although their royalties slimmed down quite a bit and the venues they sold out were reduced in numbers and size the Dixie Chicks did not give in. The good country girl sisters Martie Erwin Maguire and Emily Erwin Robison stood by their outspoken singer. It took Neil Young and other great protesters in rock and country some years and many news programs to come out against the most foolish war since Emperor Augustus in 9 B.C sent his legions into Germany and lost them while 3 girls from Texas publicly denounced it even before it had begun to ruin every bit of stability in the middle east and more than half of America including nearly all of the press and TV stations had nothing to say but "hurray for America and democracy export".

The Dixie Chicks responded in their own style with a song and published Not Ready To Make Nice which we deem a more than adequate answer. But here we will show you a different song that we like a lot, for it touches so nicely on when we left the province that is not quite but definitely was our Texas equivalent back there in Austria:

And us, us, we've been a long time gone an' will be gone even more, soon.

Said she could hear me singin' in the choir,
me, I heard another song.
I caught wind and hit the road runnin',
and Lord, I've been a long time gone.

Now they sound tired but they don't sound Haggard.
They've got money but they don't have Cash.
They've got junior but they don't have Hank.
I think, I think, I think,
the rest is a long time gone.

Post Scriptum: It will be about Bonnie Raitt soon, a guitar playing and singing redhead who looked the same in the 90ies and early 2000s as she did in the 70ies. Marvelous. And Emmylou of course, our darling of all times. Both deserve a post anytime but we have missed out on it so far. Here's a glimpse of Bonnie performing "one of her favorites from Luck of the Draw" with Allison Krauss on the fiddle and harmony.

plink, nix,    praise or blame!
 

The Wind Screams Mary and the Doves Cry at Themselves

50 odd years ago, a nice gentleman from Seattle, King County, Washington wrote a nice song for me. Had to think of it and him yesterday while sobering up from yesteryear's 2nd most funny day and this year's holiday thereafter. Even had to cry a little bit remembering him. He's been dead for 47 years now.

A broom is drearily sweeping
up the broken pieces of yesterday's life.
Somewhere a queen is weeping,
somewhere a king has no wife.
And the wind, it cries Mary.

Will the wind ever remember
the names it has blown in the past?
And with its crutch, its old age and its wisdom
it whispers "no, this will be the last".
And the wind cries Mary.

Come thinking of lazy brooms another poem and song comes to mind written by the late great Itzik Manger, Chava Alberstein and the Klezmatics at very different points in time:

Shtiler ovnt, tunkl-gold,
an alter groer yid
davnt frum avek dem shtoyb
fun dem yor-yarid.
Zol khotsh a murml fun dem yid
arayn tsu mir in lid...

Another guy lived a bit longer than Jimi did and had reached the ripe age of 56 when he was taken away. Did not write songs for me but only for himself and maybe 5 or 6 people around him. Many of them were real marvels though and got worldwide publication and airplay. Rightfully so. Videocraft had advanced quite a bit in the 20 years from the mid 60ties to the mid 80ies (though now in the mean time the fx look quite ridiculous), but when the guitar takes over from keyboard controlled electrosounds the guys'n'gals were still using the same old technology from the fifties.

Had a band called The Revolution that I digged especially because Wendy Melvoin played a mean rythm stick that f.e. inspired Macy Gray to become a guitarist. It also featured an always sunglass bespectacled doctor named Fink in it. That guy was cool. Altogether, in the early eighties a band with 2 niggers, 2 bitches and 2 jews in it was quite a feat.

How can you just leave me standing
alone in a world that's so cold, so cold?
Maybe I'm just too demanding,
maybe I'm just like my father too bold.
Maybe you're just like my mother,
she's never satisfied, she's never satisfied.
Why do we scream at each other?
This is what it sounds like
when the doves cry.

plink, nix,    praise or blame!
 

A Great Cultural Debate of the Early Eighties

Even before the great Cynthia Ann Lauper vs. Madonna Louise Ciccone debate there were lots of heated discussions in our circles about who was the coolest girl in rock'n'roll.

Top candidates where these 3 ladies:

Deborah Ann Harry (born Angela Tremble), in 1981, singer for band Blondie, performed "Rapture", the first No. 1 song in the U.S. to feature rap vocals and the first rap music video on MTV ever. Does not speak for MTV and the so called audiences but for band Blondie and Debbie Harry, nevertheless.

Christine Ellen Hynde of The Pretenders sang "Back On the Chain Gang" in concert and on MTV and rightfully claimed the title of coolest music journalist playing it out herself after having had enough of judging other people. She has published a really good book on music life and biz quite recently.

And while LaDonna Adrian Gaines (Donna Summer), a Vienna Volksoper member for a short time, had already excited us to new levels with "Hot Stuff" in '79, when she did "State of Independence" in 1983 we really were what we call "hin und weg" in the little country we came from.

Already in the 60ies & 70ies lady rockers and queens of soul and disco had impressed but from the mid 80ies the number of cool and well known women in rock'n'roll went up steeply with the above mentioned Cyndi and Madonna but also Chaka Khan, the "reborn" Diana Ross, Vicki Peterson and Michael Steele of the Bangles, Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman of the Revolution, Sheila E. and Boni Boyer of the post Revolution Prince band, Queen Latifah, Sandra and Samantha Lawrence of the Wee Papa Girl Rappers and many more. Not to forget.

But for the late 70ies come early 80ies it was these 3 ladies mostly that impressed us and paved the way for more to come. Donna Summer sadly has already left us but Debbie and Chrissie have survived it all and are still performing, amazingly too, sometimes.

Chrissie Hynde has published a really "must read" book in her life in rock'n'roll titled "Reckless, My Life as a Pretender". If you are even a bit interested in rock music and the cultural changes of the last 50 years, go buy and make sure to read it.

plink, nix,    praise or blame!
 

 
last updated: 23.04.19 23:21
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