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Sunday, 25 May 2014

Make Mine a Double # 2 - Born In The USA

I have been tempted to tackle a River1 lp or even harder Darkness as 2lp set.. ..not an easy task but I will give it a go at some point. Darkness in my view is an unbeatable single lp and it is amazing that "the boss" distilled down the wealth of superb material to form that one single document of those 2 year sessions...

So lets tackle the 83 - 84 recordings that formed the breakthrough. I think, but you need to check this out yourself, that Springsteen has officially released 32 tracks from the Born In The USA Sessions. Given that they numbered over 80 we should be expecting a deluxe re-issue sometime soon. Here is my take on the double lp that would have formed Born In The USA

Side 1
Born In The USA
Johnny Bye Bye
Shut Out The Light
My Hometown
Brothers Under The Bridges

Side 2
Murder Incorporated
Bobby Jean
Dancing In The Dark
Janey Don't You Lose Heart

Side 3
Man At The Top
Light Of Day
Follow That Dream*
I'm On Fire

Side 4
Dancing In The Dark
Cover Me
I'm Going Down
No Surrender
This Hard Land

Even as I type and excuse the indulgence of the * tracks which are of course yet to be released., what a double lp. Man at The Top and Sugarland share the same music (roughly) and this is deliberate on my part. I have excluded the Gary US Bonds sessions around this time although I have to say On The Line at the very least would be a strong contender. I have included that below, great track.


Jason Isbell Oran Mor Glasgow

For not the first time I have to thank my long time friend and erstwhile gig buddy Michael for an outstanding shout. If you have not heard of Jason Isbell and you are a follower of decent music - you will.

I have never come away from a gig for someone who I did not really know so enthused, and rarely for someone that I did know! Brilliant band, great sings and delivered with passion from someone who has clearly lived the life already.

The stops.... Neil Young to Ryan Adams with a whole dose of originality thrown in. Been buzzing on the quality of this performance for over a week now. enjoy these clips and see him soon..


Friday, 23 May 2014

Prince at the Hydro

Quite simply the was a stunning gig (following another equally superb gig Jason Isbell which I will post about later).

The set list was as follows and you can see he did not hang about.

Lets Go Crazy
Take Me With U
Raspberry Beret
U Got The Look (no Sheena!)
Feel Good
The Love We Make

When Doves Cry
Song O The Times
Hot thing
Forever In My Life
I Would Die 4 U

Little Red Corvette
Nothing Compares 2 U

Plectrum Electrum
Crimson and Clover
Sometimes It Snows In April

Diamonds and Pearls - piano solo
The Beautiful Ones - piano solo
Purple Rain - piano intro then full band

Play that funky music
Live It Up


A wee word of caution on the set list in that some of the songs were snippets/samples but that is not a complaint as it was very effective.

highlights? Too many to mention but the four song intro was hard to top. Purple rain just class with outstanding playing all night from the band - and Prince can really play the guitar.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Make Mine a Double #1 - The Clash Sandinista

Quite often, ok well every now and then, you hear the phrase "would have made a great single album.  I thought it would be interesting to look at some double albums, or indeed triple, and consider which tracks would have made the cut sticking to the 10 songs, Side A and Side B format.

So first up is Sandinista from the Clash. Sandinista was released it is fair to say to some mixed reviews in the press however many well respected critics gave the album a huge thumbs up. Certainly at 36 tracks and covering an amazing array of musical styles it was certainly ambitious.

Here is my take on what Sandisita may have loooked like as a single lp:

Side A

1. Somebody Got Murdered
2. The Magnificent 7
3. Hitsville UK
4. Washington Bullets
5. Broadway

Side B

1. The Call Up
2. Police On My Back
3. Up In Heaven (Not Only Here)
4. Lightning Strikes
5. Something About England

Here are the lead singles:


Monday, 5 May 2014

The Elvis Presley Show - Clyde Auditorium

This was a strange "concert", with Elvis projected onto a screen in front of an admittedly outstanding young band. I was reminded of Bowies Diamond Dogs Tour - just stay behind the screens!

Ultimately it did not really work for me and I left really just wishing I could have been at The International in Vegas 1970. That won't be happening any time soon!

Friday, 2 May 2014

Prince at the Hydro

Well after another frenetic round of ticket buying managed to secure single ticket for the mini purple man.

Will he back on form as they are saying - who knows but it is a big "must see live" box to tick.

No matter what check this amazing video and if Sheena Easton needs a lift to the gig she knows how to find me

Forgotten Album Friday #26 Jackson Browne - I'm Alive

This 1993 album is an absolute stunning piece of work by Jackson Browne but probably overlooked somewhat because of the classic albums Late For The Sky, For Everyman, The Pretender and Running On Empty. To my mind I'm Alive is the equal of that great body of work.

Lucky for us and pity for Jackson but it follows a down period in his personal life which always leads him to those wonderful songs of love, sorrow, regret and maybe a wee piece of redemption. It certainly came at the time as quite a departure from the political albums which immediately preceded it.

The opener and title track  "I'm Alive" sets the scene and tone of the album both musically and lyrically- "now I'm rolling down California 5/with your laughter in my head/gonna have to block it out somehow to survive/cos those dreams are dead, but I'm alive".

There are many great tracks on the album but the real high water mark is the stunning Sky Blue and Black.  In one track he pulls together love, longing, regret and hope for redemption. It is an absolute classic.

Key tracks

I'm Alive
My Problem Is You
Too Many Angels
Sky Blue and Black
Two of Me, Tow Of You

Sky Blue and Black

I'm Alive