musicology #411

Terry Callier #3

(Terry Callier – Look At Me Now)

Mr Callier’s first recording. Released as a 45 in 1963 !!

Now my people think that I just fake it,
I know I do things they don’t understand,
So I’ve got to show ’em I can take it yeah,
I’ve got to show ’em I can be a man,
Still there’s somethings that never have appealed to me,
Like standing out in front of a crowd,
Well people just you wait and see,
I’m gonna give you reason to be proud,

I’m gonna make it some day,
I’m gonna make it somehow,
Then I’ll be able to say hey,
Take a look at me know,
Yeah look at me know,

Well now my woman thinks I’m just a dreamer,
And she’s right about me I suppose,
But I could never, never, never be a schemer,
I don’t know the things a schemer knows,
But I do know there’s a better day coming up soon,
And baby just you wait and see,
I’ll find us a light in this darkness,
If you just have faith in me,

I’m gonna make it some day yeah,
Gonna make it somehow,
I’ll be able to say yeah, yeah, yeah
Baby look at me know,
Look at me know,
Look at me know,
Look at me know

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musicology #410

Terry Callier #2

(Terry Callier – Alley Wind Song (Original Demo)

A quote from the man himself:

“People everywhere are searching, searching for a spiritual base to stand on, reach out from and react to. The way I understand it, I’m supposed to put the message out there as clearly as I can. The rest has to take care of itself.”

“And hear some strange magic man work some ju-ju if you can,
Or do you know a spell that’s worth repeating,
Trace your pictures in the sand,
Tell me can you work a mojo hand,
Can you start the drums of Kuru beating,
Beware of the South wind,
The heart and mind and mouth wind
And search the sacred sands for a solution,

And tell me now..is it true if I put faith in you,
Will you lead me to the bridge of bright tomorrows,
And will your grace see me through,
Will incense and candles do,
Will prayer remove me from the reach of sorrow,
Oh beware of the North wind,
A king of worlds comes forth wind,
And blow apoun the land in retribution,

In the land of the free where the huddled masses flee,
From the cold and cruel worlds of wars dominion,
In a dusky mirror that I see,
Dont you know it got a hold back on my jubilee,
If freedom’s just a matter of opinion,
Ah beware of the West wind,
A bitter black suppressive wind,
That leads your children home for revolution,
That leads your children home for revolution,

Listening ones…if I sing,
Will that make you do your thing,
Will the chatting reach your high and lofty places,
And what is this strange gift you bring,
It’s sparkling like a diamond ring,
Will that bright light reveal the prince of faces,
Beware of the East wind,
A god of man and beast wind,
A famine and or feast wind,
And the last but not the least wind,
A threat of silver fleece wind,
A follow great release wind,
Blowin all across the land,
Blowin all across the land,
Where you stand,
Where will you stand,

musicology #348

AlternativeSoundtrack4 #15

(Etta James & Harvey Fuqua – My Heart Cries)

Today’s dialogue is especially poignant in as much as it offers an insight into not only the two characters, (Eddie & Sarah), but also a fundamental difference in the sexes. Don’t forget that this is 1961 and the dawn of a new era in the dialogue between man and woman. Sarah makes it as clear as crystal how she feels about Eddie leaving no ambiguity and he, (in time honoured fashion), tries to sidestep the issue but she reiterates her feelings and lets him know in no uncertain terms what she wants to hear him say.

The music is a beautiful piece of Soul from two great singers both of whom have already featured on themusicologist, Etta James and, (her husband at the time), Harvey Fuqua with yet another slice of the Chess records pie, (as influential as any label in the development of what is now known as ‘Urban’ music). Recorded and released in, yep you guessed it, 1961 and featured on Etta’s fantastic album ‘At Last’. Arranged by musicologist Riley Hampton.

musicology #207

12AngryMen #4 (alternativesoundtrack #3)

(Chuck Berry – Too Much Monkey Business)

today’s dialogue hears some of the jurors laying out the reasoning behind arriving at their guilty verdict and begins to give us an insight into them as people. One thing’s for sure, with the amount of top quality dialogue in this film it could turn into a long musical journey..not sure I have enough 1957 cuts in the vaults to cope so might have to throw a few from previous years.

the slice of musicology is from, some say, the King of Rock & Roll…none other than Charles Edward Anderson Berry. About whom John Lennon was quoted to have said

“If you tried to give rock and roll another name, you might call it ‘Chuck Berry’.”

Taken from his first LP ‘After School Sessions’, (a favourite down Circus Street), released in, yep you guessed it, 1957. The song has been covered by Elvis Presley, The Beatles, The Yardbirds and The Kinks such was Chuck’s stature among musicians. If you listen to Bob Dylan’s ‘Subterranean Homesick Blues’ it’s almost the same song but with different lyrics.

musicology #180

soulsearching #2

(Major Lance – Sweet Music)

day two finds us sliding out of the downbeat, (Yin), and countering with one from the upbeat, (Yang), selection. a fine piece of 1964 Soul from, as far as I’m concerned, the premier record label of the period, OKeh. big shout I know but one I’m sticking with.

part of my reasoning behind that shout is that OKeh was the label where the combined talents of Curtis Mayfield, Carl Davis, Johnny Pate and Gerald Sims came together to deliver a musical style that became the benchmark for a lot of the Soul that followed. of course there was Tamla, Chess and Atlantic, (as well as many smaller labels), and there are many fine cuts on these but of them, it can be debated, that only Tamla – Motown exerted as much influence as OKeh on the direction Soul was to take.

listen tune…

musicology #65

Ike Turner Tribute #5 (Rocket88 – Jackie Brenstons Delta Cats – Chess – 1951)

couldn’t lay down a tribute to Ike without including the classic Rocket88. hailed by many as the first ‘Rock&Roll’ record. Teenage DJ Isiah ‘Ike’ Turner orchestrates and smashes the piano on this his first recording. vocal by Clarksdale’s Jackie Brenston it also features a saxophone break by 17 year old Raymond Hill, (the father of Tina’s first child).

recorded in the spring of 1951 by Sam Phillips and sold to the brothers Chess. Phillips used the money to found Sun a year later and the rest is Rock & Roll history. ‘written’ by Ike the song is largely based on Jimmy Liggins 1947 cut ‘Cadillac Boogie’ as well as boogie woogie piano legend Pete Johnsons 1949 piece ‘Rocket88 boogie’ but it’s not the song itself that is ‘new’ .. more the elusive & mystical ‘vibes’ produced in complete harmony by these ‘hepcats’ that just goes to prove that pieces like this don’t grow on trees.

for themusicologist it’s always a treat and one that satisfies no matter how many times I’ve had the pleasure.