Monday, June 17, 2019

Dylan Cover #380 Jimi Hendrix Experience "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a live cover by Jimi Hendrix Experience performing "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?" 

Thoughts on Original:
A rambling transitional tune from Dylan as he moved from folk to his rock phase backed by The Hawks as they push that wild thin mercury sound which Dylan was just starting to dabble with. Perhaps because of it's rarity, not appearing on any official album it is always a joy to listen to when it pops up, but there are better tracks in this vein such as the unfinished "She's Your Lover Now" but that is a whole separate for "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?" itself it is a fun jaunt through Dylan's playful, flirtatious and poetic mind.


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We are celebrating Jimi Hendrix all month in our Masters series. He is one of RtBE's all-time favorites.

Thoughts on Cover:
The bootleg style recording doesn't do this one justice, taken off of Live from the Fillmore Jimi is totally engaged with the lyrics and riffs combining for a powerful funky rhythm throughout. There is a better version captured on the BBC Sessions album but that's not currently on youtube. For this version if he had done a solo at the end instead of the Clapton/Girlfriend bit I would have dug it more. Fun to hear Hendrix and crew tackling it live no matter how rough the form.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Full Show Friday: Jimi Hendrix Live at the Newport Festival June 1969

We search the murky back waters of youtube to find full concerts and post them to the site weekly, come back every seven days to help us celebrate Full Show Friday's. These shows are of varying quality and may not be here for long so enjoy them while you can...As always, please support the artist every which way, but especially by seeing them live (if they are still playing)...This week...Jimi Hendrix!

For March, The Masters Focuses on Jimi Hendrix

Jimi was a whirlwind of sight and sound when he took to the stage in the second half of the 1960's. There was literally no one like him before and many imitators since. Today we go to Newport June 22nd 1969. 

Hendrix had just been arrested for drug possession by Canadian Police right before the weekend so things started off poorly and got worse when The Experience headlined he fest Friday night. Mitch Mitchell thought it was one of the worst shows the band ever played, even insinuating Hendrix was drugged:
“I think someone spiked Jimi,” said Experience drummer Mitch Mitchell in Johnny Black’s Eyewitness Hendrix book. “Or maybe he’d taken something of his own and then someone had spiked him on top of that. It was a disaster. I kept thinking, ‘This is weird, all this money…’ One of the worst gigs we ever played.”
This lead to Hendrix coming back to jam on Sunday to close the festival and that is the video below as he plays with Buddy Miles on drums. This is rare footage of an impromptu outing, very cool. Enjoy:

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Album Review: Justin Townes Earle - The Saint of Lost Causes

Justin Townes Earle
The Saint of Lost Causes
***and1/2 out of *****

On Justin Townes Earle newest album he and his fellow musical travelers dig into Americana with confidence as The Saint of Lost Causes rolls into the ears with polish and charm. The folk singer uses a stout cast of supporters to craft his effecting songs with professional grit and a humanistic vibe. 

His ninth studio album finds JTE crafting a rich tapestry crisscrossing the country quite literally. There are styles and structures from the shuffling "Pacific Northwestern Blues" to the steel guitar tinged love song to "Mornings In Memphis" before heading north to deal with two songs about Flint, Michigan, "Don't Drink The Water" and "Flint City Shake It" a duel set of tunes that deal with that troubled towns exploitative history. 

The geographic patchwork quilt finds different sounds to paint their stories as Adam Bednarik - Upright Bass, Electric Bass Joe V. McMahan - Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Slide Guitar, Baritone Guitar, Celeste Paul Niehaus - Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Pedal Steel Jon Radford - Drums, Percussion Cory Younts - Harmonica, Wurlitzer, Piano, Fender Rhodes, Background Vocals all back up Earle. The true MVP's are the producers Earle and Bednarik who craft warm sounds throughout with vibrant production.

Where things shift is in the harrowing tale of drugs, cop killers and hopelessness contained in the haunting "Appalachian Nightmare" as the music pairs with the sad junkie/criminal tale using strings lightly distorted bass and big bass drums; a stunning track. Another album highlight is "Frightened By The Sound" which takes a slightly less final approach but still paints a gorgeous sonic picture.

The blues get spun for a whirl as the stripped down "Say Baby" goes for a direct approach while "Ain't Got No Money" pushes up the road house tempo and both infuse harmonica with damn fine results getting an earthy grim on the record that feels sprung from the soil as is.

Earle has produced a neat trick, making an album that speaks to current troubles, yet feels timeless in construction; The Saint of Lost Causes is the strongest album Earle has crafted in some time.
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below: 

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Album Review: Mavis Staples - We Get By

Mavis Staples
We Get By
**** out of *****

Mavis Staples late career has been filled with excellent albums full of gospel soul and splashes of funky rock and roll. Having teamed with successful artists for her last two fantastic releases, 2016's Livin' On A High Note produced by M. Ward and 2017's If All I Was Was Black produced by Jeff Tweedy she continues the trend for We Get By as Ben Harper has written and produced the album; if the style ain't broke, don't fix it.  

What is broken is our current state of affairs in society and Staples is one of the few artists who was at the forefront of the civil rights movement and is still fighting for civil rights during these trying times. All of the lyrics on the record are rooted in fixing what is wrong today in general terms, calling for action to be taken. Even before the record spins the album art of Gordon Parks' photograph "Outside Looking In," show six black children look through a fence at a playground they can't enter where white children and families play; powerful.

"Change" sets the tone from the beginning as the fuzz rocked up guitar pairs with Staples soulful singing (and backing vocals from C. C. White Laura Mace) with direct lyrics and passion about our need to change the way we are living. Staples and crew are not afraid to get funky while she sings for change on "Anytime" or get slinky when directly addressing "Brothers and Sisters". The title track is a duet where Harper joins Staples and sounds like "Pops" Staples returning to vocalize with his daughter, eerie and affecting. 

While Harper and Staples are at the forefront, guitarist and band leader Rick Holmstrom should get immense credit as well. His guitar works wonders on the minimalist "Heavy On My Mind" as just Holmstrom and Staples powerful voice carry the day. The ringing lead lines he tosses out for tracks like the grooving "Stronger" and soulful closing pair "Hard To Leave" and "One More Change" find his unique riffs supporting staples vocals gloriously. 

The full band (Bass-Jeff Turmes, Drums-Stephen Hodges, Vocals-Donny Gerrard) get in gear for the gospel throwback "Sometime" complete with hand claps and bubbling bass line Mid album weeper/torch song "Never Needed Anyone" is a fine tune, but feels out of place in this collection, but that is really only one of the few negatives on We Get By

Staples, her band and any producer she seems to choose continue to make top notch music album after album. We Get By is just another solid brick in her career wall as she continues to try to break down other walls with her singing, her sound and her positive message.
Support the artist, buy the album and peep some video below:

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

RIP Paul "Lil Buck" Sinegal

It has been a rough week for New Orleans legends and their friends/family as Leah Chase, Dr. John and now Lil Buck Sinegal have all passed on.

While Dr. John and Ms. Chase are nationally known legends, RtBE wanted to take a second to also remember Mr. Sinegal who might never have ever struck it large, but was certainly a vital part of NOLA music and a great guitarist in his own right.

The Advertiser gathered friends to reminisce on Sinegal in a solid piece, but for those who never heard of him, Lil Buck started touring with Zydeco heavyweights Clifton Chenier and later Buckwheat Zydecowho RtBE saw him first play with back in the mid 90's.

After seeing him on various Jazzfest stages over the last eleven years our favorite musical memory with Lil Buck is from 2017. RtBE were lucky enough to catch him backing the great blues man Lazy Lester in the inmate venue of Three Keys down in New Orleans. Lil Buck and his Buckaroos were the house band that night performing their own set while also supporting Spyder Turner as Buck proved he was a rocker/bluesman/soul stirrer all in one.

So to honor the man, raise a glass and put on some of his tunes this Tuesday night. Enjoy Every Sandwich.

Album Review: The Jackets - Queen of the Pill

The Jackets 
Queen of the Pill
**** out of *****

The three piece Bern based band The Jackets newest release Queen of the Pill on Voodoo Rhythm Records is a rollicking collection of fuzzed up garage rock with splashes of psych, punk and 50's pop, making for a confident statement of the bands rock and roll intent. 

Coming from Switzerland the trio (Jack Torera, Chris Rosales and Samuel "Schmidi" Schmidiger) are locked in from the beginning as their leather jacket clad rock blasts out. Front woman Torera's vocals warble and soar through distortion on the tempo shifting opener "Dreamer" which bangs and rattles, stopping and starting with glee.

There are layers of sound and shimmering throughout the record as Nene Baratto and King Khan helped out with production, but the core of the band is the killer low end of Rosales and Schmidiger as they lay the ground work for Torera to shine. A perfect example of their strength is album highlight "What About You" which slams heavy with rhythmic power while a layered guitar solo adds a Nuggets feel to the number as it closes. The title tack also uses a pumping bass and drum lead while a spacey guitars swirl with more distortion and a exploratory jam feeling.

"Steam Queen" uses a crunchy riff and some 50's pop semblance to mix things up before the Jefferson Airplane sounding "Floating Alice" injects Eastern tinges and laid back psychedelia to the garage rock party. Both are fine tracks, but the band works best when it picks up the tempo."Losers Lullaby" does just that and is a dose of punk energy while Torera's six strings sound as if they are destroying speakers on "Don't Leave Me Alone" which comes complete with shaking tambourines and backing vocals.

Queen of the Pill wraps up with two tracks cut from the same sonic cloth as "Deeper Way" and "Be Myself" are parts one and two of a roaring hip shaking groove machine which motors along getting the late night mod dance shindig started. There is not a weak link among the ten retro rocking tracks presented here as The Jackets dark star is clearly on the rise.
Support the band, buy the record, stream it on bandcamp or below and peep some video:

Monday, June 10, 2019

Dylan Cover #379 Jimi Hendrix "All Along The Watchtower"

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a cover by Jimi Hendrix performing "All Along The Watchtower" 

Thoughts on Original:
From our first take on a cover of this:
There are certain songs we are surprised we missed cover versions of in the Bard's back catalog...but "All Along The Watchtower" isn't one of them.  There is a reason we haven't covered a cover version (confusing). As Wilson mentioned in his post back in cover #44 there is only one true version of this song...and that is Mr. Jimi's.

Thoughts on Cover Artist:
We will be chatting about Jimi all month here at RtBE. He is simply put one of our favorites of all-time.

Thoughts on Cover:
Cutting to the chase: Best Dylan Cover Ever.