The Spring is sprung, the grass is ris, I wonder where the music is? Well, it’s here of course, extracted from our heads alive and kicking. Happy Monday, and thanks to all contributors. Please keep the worms coming in to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Songhoy Blues – Soubour – AliM: I heard this on BBC Radio 6 and it’s firmly stuck in my head. The Songhoy is an ethnic group from Mali, you can read more about this band and their music here: http://www.transgressiverecords.com/artists/detail/songhoy-blues
James Reyne – The Rainbow’s Dead End – deanofromoz: James Reyne is one of my favourite artists. He was the lead singer of late 70’s/80’s rock band Australian Crawl, and was known as a bit of a hearthrob. But it is in his solo career that he has really forged out a strong body of work, and I have probably seen him live more than any other musician. This song I would describe as a quintessential James Reyne song – ie. if you don’t like this, there is probably not much point in you exploring any more of his work.
Jeff Beck – Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers – and – Roy Buchanan – My Friend Jeff – tincanman: Beck recorded his Stevie Wonder cover on Blow By Blow in tribute to the man who’d schooled him on the Telecaster; a year later Buchanan said thanks on A Street Called Straight.
Rufus Wainwright – One Man Guy – goneforeign: This is a genuine ear worm of the classical variety, can’t get the bloody thing out of my head. I’m not a huge fan of Rufus W, I much prefer his old man who I regard as a totally honest artist. Loudon wrote this song and he really means it, Rufus just sings it; perhaps it’s the presence of his sister doing vocal harmony that makes me like it.
Scott Matthew featuring Ian Matthew – Help Me Make It Through The Night – bishbosh: Up there with “Something Stupid” in the ‘inappropriate songs for a parent-child duet’ stakes, the tenderness of this rendition nevertheless gets me every time.
The language Yaruba has only been mentioned twice ever on The ‘Spill and both times by GoneForeign, so this one’s for you (if you don’t know them already of course). Ibeyi sing in English and break into Yaruba at various points, when I heard this on the radio I felt the need to find out more about it, which usually means cross-referencing with The ‘Spill. I like the modern jazz/electronic styling and the lack of warbling in the singing. Further research (hi Wikipedia!) shows they’re the twin offspring of a Beuna Vista Social Club member and indeed Ibeyi means ‘twins’.
I fear that Mark Ronson’s recent mega hit may have opened a door to five following years of awful funk funking up the place like a bad funk. A door that cannot be shut easily. What point am I trying to make? Maybe that it’s that I don’t really like funk, or that the majority of funk in the world hasn’t been the best. Maybe I don’t think about funk very often. I suppose everything’s like that anyway, we just need to find the 5% that’s good, or 1% even. Maybe bad things have been done to funk, similar to the horrific abuse of the poor saxophone in the ’80s. Who’s got the funk? Not me.
Lonelady, on the other hand, has cowbell and spanking bass mixed with a taut post-punk edge and ridiculously catchy 80sesque (bunker) pop melodies. Half of her LP “Hinterland” is full of massive bangers that Prince would have been proud of. Love it. Maybe I do have the funk.
**Edit** GF asked about Spotify working embedded in posts, so I’m testing it here, with the Lonelady album.
A guy who was significant for me in my youth died last week, his name was Samuel Charters, he was a blues and jazz historian. There’s an interesting daily interview program on the radio here, it’s ‘Fresh Air'; a couple of days ago they played an interview with him from the archives.
He, along with Alan Lomax, was researching southern country blues in the ’40’s, recording totally unknown blues artists on primitive tape recorders long before Eric Clapton, Keith Richards and John Mayall et. al. were out of short pants. One memorable album was ‘Blues in the Mississippi Night’ by Lomax, used copies are now going for close to $100 at Amazon, it was my first blues album and it went the way of all the others come the divorce. I hope my ex wife is still computer illiterate.
During the interview he mentioned getting a contract with Folkways records, one of my early favorites, this prompted me to pull several early blues from my collection to see if his name was on any of them. One of them was ‘Big Bill Broonzy sings Country Blues’ on Folkways from 1957, he’s also interviewed on the record by Studs Terkel.
I’ve mentioned meeting Big Bill hereabouts and this LP relates directly to that.
Happy Spring everyone – on the plus side I’ve been out all day; on the down side I’m sitting here in a warm scarf, hugging a hot drink. I’m sure it will warm up soon, in the meantime here are some songs to get us up and dancing with ghe (Panthersan, get off the roof first) .Thanks all, and please keep the worms coming to email@example.com.
Wool – Love, Love, Love, Love, Love: panthersan: I was up on the roof getting ready to do some serious waterproofing when what I thought was this song came on my iPod. It turned out to be something completely different, but it got this one stuck in my head for the rest of the afternoon. Late sixties freak folk funk rock – oh yes!
The Pointer Sisters – Pinball number count (Dj Food Reedit) – AlBahooky: I’ve been listening to a lot of early (Blue Thumb) Pointer Sisters recently and came across this genuine earworm (the rest I send in are predominately pretentious abstractions) from Sesame Street as re-edited by Ninja Tune’s DJ Food. There was a belief that it was by Herbie Hancock which is dispelled HERE
Custard – Girls Like that (Don’t Go for Guys Like Us) – deanofromoz: Custard were a bit of a silly indie band in Australia around the late 90’s/early 00’s, and this track probably virtually served as my theme song in my single days. Nothing to be taken too seriously, but a fun track.
The Decemberists – Better Not Wake The Baby – tincanman: Brand new earwormy goodness from Colin Meloy. Faux-flippancy that anyone with young children will get right away.
The Count & Sinden – After Dark (Feat. Mystery Jets) – glassarfemptee: Sometimes you just need a floor-filler. This had me up and dancing in my headphones, throwing dad dance shapes. And the hook goes deep.
Monty Alexander – The Heathen – goneforeign: Monty Alexander is a Jamaican jazz pianist who lives in NY. I’ve posted his 2011 album The Harlem/Kingston Express live, hereabouts. This cut is from a 1999 album, ‘Stir it Up’, another with lots of Bob references. He’s the most prolific artist I know of, he seems to produce a couple of albums a year.
Noise fans rejoice! After a long hiatus, Lightning Bolt are back with a new album. Personally I’m super excited about this – apparently it’s the first time in their 20-year history that they recorded at a proper studio.
As you can hear, this has resulted in a crystal clear, delicate sound!
I never know what to expect from Earworms, and today is no exception. Goneforeign’s contribution seemed an apt choice this week as the Sharpeville Massacre occurred on 21 March 1960, so we’re nearly at the 55th anniversary. Ian Dury kinda fits. The Precinct of Sound and Blacks/Radio are tenuously related as are The Furs’ A-bomb hairdo and the Cure’s Grinding Halt. And Neil Finn is just class. Enjoy! And keep the worms coming to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.
The Cure – Grinding Halt – severin: I was reminiscing on Facebook recently about how obsessed I was with The Cure in 1979. I think I saw them four of five times that year before their first album was even out. Bought it on release, played the thing to death, then didn’t buy any of their subsequent recordings (apart from Love Cats) until around 2010 when I started the long process of catching up. Loads of great music since those days, of course, but this still sounds as startling to me as it did 36 years ago.
Ian Dury – Blackmail Man – tincanman: Ridiculing racists (how timely is this for British politics?) by assuming the role of a black male, man. Chocked full of rhyming slang that would make a fishwife blush.
The Psychedelic Furs – Blacks/Radio – AlBahooky: A band I’d forgotten about for many years, probably ’cause they were a kind of VU/Bowie-lite, BUT I am still partial to the 1st eponymous LP which this tune is taken from and was strangely omitted from the US version.
Dub Syndicate and Andy Farley – The Precinct of Sound – shoegazer: Another from the Dubtronica series.
The Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra – Sharpeville – goneforeign: In 1988 I wandered into a huge record store at the foot of Regent street and therein I came across an album by the Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra: I’d never heard of ’em but it was a wonderful surprise; classical reggae. The group were all young classical musicians who loved jazz and they decided to write and record an album, this is from it. If you’re not clear on the title, google it.
Neil Finn – Billie Jean – deanofromoz: Another unlikely cover (but from a different radio station compilation this time) with Crowded House lead singer Neil Finn giving a breathtaking acoustic take on the Michael Jackson track.