A song permanently in my cranial jukebox, Stella Blue is one of the most accomplished Garcia/Hunter songs. It’s a lament for something lost: most likely one’s youth and the blues music played on a Stella guitar (by the likes of Leadbelly). This performance from June 1974 doesn’t have the pedal steel or the backing vocals of the studio version but there is a great fluency and sensitivity in the playing.(Imagine this sung by the likes of Nina Simone, steen…)
This is a song that more than an earworm perhaps should be called a semi-constant companion. It drops in and out of my playlists and recently has made it back big time. Romantic, beautifully crafted and sheer quality. I could not live without it.
I don’t usually go for young teen girls, but there is something compelling – like the innocent wisdom in a child’s drawing – about Stephanie Cottingham’s lyrics and personality. Unlike some (Mylie), she writes and acts her age.
I haven’t seen the last Califone mentioned in the Spill (apols to whoever might have, if I’m mistaken) and it is, again, excellent. In true earworm fashion not a lot seems to be going on at first listen, but it really grows on you, until you start singing its nonexistent chorus at the office, at most inappropriate times (or maybe that’s just me). Beautiful imagery in the lyrics as well. A winner.
Bought this album for my dad last year, burning myself a copy before handing it over (shhhh, etc). Glad I did – it’s stunning. Proof (as if proof were needed) that you don’t need to understand the words being sung to feel touched by the singer and his story.
I spent a long time debating whether or not to buy this album, the current project of one of my favourite jazz pianists with the Polar Bear and Acoustic Ladyland drummer Seb Roachford and some bloke on trombone, as I hated the gig I attended last year with a fiery passion. However, it’s far better than feared, mainly because less noisy and chaotic, and this is the catchiest number.
GREAT EARWORMS SENT IN FOR NEXT WEEK!
For the following week, let’s hear from people who’ve not sent one in yet: Know a forgotten ‘classic’ or overlooked gem…. punk, the new wave, blues, soul, funk, doo wop, hard rock, show tunes…..Just send to email@example.com.