Saturday, March 28, 2009

Ry Cooder- GET RHYTHM (1987)

Ry Cooder is a manic virtuoso of sorts. I've suspected that he has that genius aptitude for music that drives some musicians over to the dark side but Ry's worked tirelessly exploring a gazillion genre's of almost forgotten music and performed his unique brand of CPR on them, a Midas touch to say the very least. He got me listening to The Pahinui Brothers and Ali Farka Toure and The musicians of the Buena Vista Social club would have faded off into nothing had Ry not stepped in and made them a force to be reckoned with, not to mention he restored the dignity to the mostly aging members that they surely deserve. Anyhoo, before all that, Ry put out some pretty righteous records and my fave of them all is GET RHYTHM. This is a sexy, fun, drive to nowhere kind of CD that I reserve for those days when I'm feeling particularly kick-ass. Right out of the Gate, Johnny Cash's Get Rhythm is  HOT and one can't help but admire Ry's unique guitar stylings. Elvis's All Shook Up is a different song in Ry's hands. Chuck Berry's  13 Question Method is funky sexy. My Five star pick on this record in Across The Borderline, performed with Harry Dean Stanton- who was eighty at the time (and he's still eighty, go figure, I suspect a pact with the devil)  This one will pull at your heart strings and make you long for a witness relocation program that takes you to the undiscovered West, if there were still an undiscovered West, that is. Check it out, it's a helluva record.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

JOHN PRINE- Bruised Orange

This, John Prine's fifth record, produced by the late Steve Goodman, was given to me by a guy who claimed to have stolen a box of them off the back of an idling truck. He didn't know who John Prine was and thought I might. Hell yes, I know. John Prine wrote what I consider to be one of the best songs ever written "Hello In There." A song that will literally rip your heart out and show it to you, still beating. Bruised Orange though, song for song, is my favorite album. Fish and Whistle, If You Don't Want My Love, and Bruised Orange (Chain Of Sorrow), respectively #1,#3, and #5 are lyrically the kind of songs that make you weak in the knees and have you dialing ex-boyfriends in the wee hours (been there, done that, don't do it). But seriously, This album is jam-packed with moments, riffs, and the deeply poetic stuff we've come to expect from the iconic singer-songwriter Prine has become since he stopped delivering mail in Chicago. Oh, and I'd be amiss if I didn't mention "Crooked Piece Of Time"  just when you thought it was okay to leave the house. This album is easy to find on Vinyl for a few bucks so try not to steal it or even borrow it cause you'll never give it back.