Archive for October, 2012


“I Hate The Capitalist System” is an excellent collection of political songs about the plight of the working man and woman originally issued on Barbara’s own Paredon label in 1973.

 
The songs range from the 30s to the 70s and songs from the repertoire of older singers like Sarah Ogan Gunning (the powerful title song) and Woody Guthrie (Plane Wreck At Los Gatos / Deportees / Ludlow Massacre) along with writers from the 60s and 70s like Malvina Reynolds, Jack Warshaw (the fierce Kent State Massacre) and Jane Felczer. There are also a couple of traditional songs, Barbara’s rewrite of the 1954 blues by J.B. Hutto Things Are So Slow and her reworking of a song from Vietnamese singer Xuan Hong.
 
The arrangements are as varied as the selection ranging from an acapella vocal to a small band. Although originally issued nearly 40 years ago much of what is sung about here is just as true today as it was then. 
Tracklist:
101 I Hate the Capitalist System  3:16
102 Lonesome Jailhouse Blues  4:12
103 Detroit Medley  2:38
104 Deportees (Plane Wreck at Los Gatos)  5:47
105 Goodbye to Cold Winter 0:52
106 A Single Girl  2:31
107 Ludlow Massacre 3:58
108 I Don’t Want Your Millions, Mister  3:33
201 Things are Slow 4:17
202 Song of My Hands 5:47
203 Bitter Rain 3:37
204 Song of the Coats 2:52
205 The Kent State Massacre 3:43
206 Working Class Woman 6:26
Barbara Dane – I Hate The Capitalist System
(320 kbps, cover art included, vinyl rip)
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“A Toast to Those Who Are Gone” was a 1986 compilation of recordings that Phil Ochs made in the early-to-mid 1960s, mostly between his contracts with Elektra Records and A&M Records. In line with recordings made on the former, Ochs espouses his left-leaning views on civil rights on songs like “Ballad of Oxford”, “Going Down To Mississippi” and “Colored Town”, his views on worker’s rights on “No Christmas in Kentucky”, his attack on the Ameri can Medical Association on “A.M.A. Song”, and the unwilling hero (perhaps Ochs himself) on the title track.

 

The family of Phil Ochs sanctioned this scavenger attack into his collection of early, unreleased demos. An unusual aspect of the mid-’80s vinyl release was liner notes by actor Sean Penn, who Ochs fans can hope and pray has abandoned his vision of playing the role of Ochs in a Hollywood film biopic. Perhaps playing a jazz guitarist in Woody Allen’s Sweet and Lowdown burned Penn out on musician roles. How much this collection will appeal to Ochs fans will depend on what camp they belong to, i.e., is his best material the early, strictly topical and journalistic-style stuff, or did he improve with age and the influence of competing spinners of “high art” such as Bob Dylan and the Beatles as they strove to create the most complex and pretentious lyrics this side of Ezra Pound? This set of concise and often hard-hitting songs would make a case for the former, and certainly there is no better “folk singer armed with guitar” than Ochs, his commitment to various social causes always seeming much more honest than the more famous Dylan, most likely because it was. “Christmas in Kentucky” is one of the few protest songs written about this part of the world that really holds its own with the repertoire of performers, such as Aunt Molly Jackson, who actually came from mining families. “Colored Town” and “Going Down to Mississippi” are solid reflections of the civil rights movement that hold their own with more well-known songs such as “Oxford Town.” Two pieces in some ways preview the more reflective, personal probing of the psyche Ochs would move his fans with later on, although both “A Toast to Those Who Are Gone” and “Song of My Returning” are simpler and more sentimental. Of course, there is plenty of evidence here that these recordings were made when the artist was still forming an identity and was far from the master of the songwriting craft that he would become. Yet the relative small size of his discography and collection of songs are factors that contribute to the warm welcome this set has received.

Phil Ochs – A Toast To Those Who Are Gone
(192 kbps, front cover included)

 

This is a soundtrack or audio companion to Greil Marcus’ book ‘Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the 20th Century’ (1989), originally published in the US by Harvard University Press, in the UK by Penguin Books, in Germany by Rogner & Bernhard (Zweitausendeins), in Italy (as ‘Tracce di Rossetto’) by Leonardo Editore, and in Spain (as ‘Rastros de Carmin’) by Anagrama – a book of comparative history by rock-music critic Greil Marcus that examines popular music and art as a social critique of Western culture.

From the liner notes:

“It happens. You feel alien. You are other. Nothing in your culture, in your experience gets near to what you feel. You want to be elsewhere. If you can’t be elsewhere, you want to see everything brought down. These thoughts explode in your head. You can’t sleep, you grind your teeth. You get migraines. You shake.

Then you walk into a room. You see or hear four people making a noise, playing the limits of electricity and the room’s ambient space: like a switch tripping, your life is changed forever. Out of nowhere, the terrain is cleared and the possibilities stretch before you.

This will only happen once, with that certainty. It may happen before and afterwards, in precognitions, aftershocks, conscious attempts to recapture that first shock of recognition: when you find the piper that calls your tune.

This collection exists for many reasons: for fun, to be played alongside a book with words and pictures, to rewrite Punk in terms of a still hidden female history. Most of all, it solves a perceptual problem: how to recapture that first hearing of the Sex Pistols’ ‘Anarchy in the UK’.

Nearly seventeen years after its first release, ‘Anarchy in the UK’ sounds, well, tired. If not quite a generally recognised ‘rock classic’, then its familiarity, and indeed supersession by generations of Punk and Rap groups, has meant that the song, and the time which it heralded, have lost their immediate potency. How to hear them in a new way?

In this particular example, to hear and see the Sex Pistols/the Clash/the Saints (among others) in 1978 was to feel this: ‘Everything that is normally taken for granted as the way God planned it, as the way human beings were meant to be, is suddenly refuted, loses its reality, loses its pull. And people glimpse two things: they glimpse that the world they’ve been raised to accept is a fraud and a sham, and that another world is possible.’

This is a sensation at once galvanising and terrifying: you will hear it on most of the selections here. Just jump into the tunnel with the Slits, like Alice after the rabbit: by the end of this sixty minute journey, you’ll have a composite picture that takes you right back to Punk’s original, primal alienation.

I’d love to hear this collection condensed into a six minute rap tune, or a twelve minute techno mantra, but in the meantime we begin, with a giggle…

1. The Slits A Boring Life”
A 1977 demo, recorded by Ari Up (vocals), Tessa Pollitt (bass), Viv Albertine (guitar), and Palmolive (drums). One of the few documents of that 1977 sound. (Originally released on ‘Once Upon a Time in a Living Room’, Y/Rough Trade, 1980, UK).

2. The Orioles “It’s Too Soon To Know”
A No. 1 R&B hit in the USA in 1948, and also a more spectral hit among whites, the sort the chart couldn’t fully register: ‘a meeting of cultures’ in a segregated society. Composed by a white Jewish songwriter named Deborah Chessler, performed by a black Baltimore group at first called the Vibra-Naires: Sonny Til (lead), George Nelson (second lead), Alexander Sharp (tenor), Johnny Reed (bass), and Tommy Gaither (guitar). (Originally released on It’s-a-Natural, 1948, US).

3. Trio Exvoco “L’amiral cherche une maison à louer” (Tristan Tzara, Marcel Janco, Richard Huelsenbeck)
Composed 1916, performed in the same year at the Cabaret Voltaire in Zürich, recreated here by Trio Exvoco (Hanna Aurbacher, Theophil Maier, and Ewald Liska). Written, sung, and chanted in German (Huelsenbeck), French (Tzara), and English (Janco): ‘proto rock ‘n’ roll’. (Recorded 1980; from ‘Dada For Now’, Ark, 1985, UK).

4. Jonathan Richman “Road Runner”
Accept no substitutes. (Originally released on Beserkley, 1975, US).

5. Guy Debord – Excerpt from soundtrack to ‘Hurlements en faveur de Sade’
A film first shown in Paris in 1952 at the Ciné-Club Avant-Garde. See Debord, ‘Society of the Spectacle and Other Films’ (London: Rebel Press, 1992), for a translation of the screenplay (“Howlings in favour of Sade”).

6. The Roxy, London – Ambience
From the two nights at the end of April 1977, recorded by Mike Thorne for the album ‘The Roxy London WC2 (Jan-Apr 77)’ (EMI, 1977, UK) – an accurate reflection of English Punk’s early gamut, with X-Ray Spex, Wire, Buzzcocks, Slaughter & The Dogs, Eater, Johnny Moped, and the Unwanted).

7. Jean-Louis Brau “Instrumentation Verbale (Face 2)”
A 1963 recording in the style of 1950 ultra-lettrist Paris sound poetry. (Originally released on Achèle, 1965, France).

8. Buzzcocks “Boredom”
Recorded by the late Martin Hannett in Manchester, 12/76. Mostly put down in one take by Howard Devoto (vocals), Pete Shelley (guitar), Steve Diggle (bass), and John Maher (drums). (Originally released on New Hormones, 1/77, UK).

9. The Adverts “One Chord Wonders”
Second version, recorded by T. V. Smith (vocals), Howard Pickup (guitar), Gaye Advert (bass), and Laurie Driver (drums) for ‘Crossing the Red Sea with the Adverts’. (Originally released on Bright Records, 1978, UK).

10. Raoul Hausmann “phonème bbbb”
Berlin dada sound poetry, composed 1918, performed 1956/57. (From ‘Poèmes phonetiques complètes’, S Press Tapes, 1978, W. Germany).

11. Gang of Four “At Home He’s a Tourist”
Recorded as the band’s second single by Jon King (vocals, melodica), Andy Gill (guitar, vocals), Dave Allen (bass), and Hugo Burnham (drums). (Originally released on EMI, 1979, UK, and on ‘Entertainment!’, EMI, 1979, UK / Warner Bros., 1980, US).

12. The Adverts “Gary Gilmore’s Eyes”
Personnel as on “One Chord Wonders.” (Originally released on Anchor, 1977, UK).

13. Kleenex “Ü (angry side)”
Recorded in London by by Regula Sing (vocals), Marlene Marder (guitar), Klaudia Schiff (bass), Lislot Ha (drums) from Switzerland. (Originally released on Rough Trade, 1979, UK). [liner notes erroneously states this to be recorded in Switzerland]

14. Guy Debord – Excerpt from the soundtrack to ‘Critique de la séparation’ (Dansk-Fransk Experimentalfilmskompagni, 1961)
Music: Bodin de Boismortier, ‘Allegro movement, Op. 37 – Concerto in E Minor in five parts’. Narration: (Debord): “The sectors of a city are, at a certain level, legible. But the meaning they have had for us, personally, is incommunicable. like the clandestinity of private life. of which we possess nothing but pitiful documents.” See Debord, ‘Society of the Spectacle and Other Films’, as above, for a translation of the screenplay (“Critique of Separation”).

15. The Clash – Stage talk, Roundhouse, London, September 23, 1976
Joe Strummer recorded while supporting Crazy Avan and the Rhythm Rockers. (From the Jon Savage Archive).

16. Mekons “Never Been in a Riot”
Recorded 1977 with Andy Corrigan and Mark White (vocals), Ken and Tong (guitars), Ros Allen (bass), Jon Langford (drums and vocals). (Originally released on Fast Product, 1978, UK).

17. LiLiPUT “Split”
Kleenex after a name change; as above, with Chrigel Freund replacing Regula Sing on vocals, plus Angie Barrack, saxophone. (Originally released on Rough Trade, 1980, UK).

18. Roman Bunka, Holger Czukay, Raymond Federman etc. “röhrenhose-rokoko-neger-rhythmus”
from ‘dr. huelsenbecks mentale heilmethode’ (“Dr. Huelsenbeck’s Psychological Salvation System”). Written and produced by Herbert Kapfer and Regina Moths as a radio play for Bayerischer Rundfunk, Munich, Germany, 1992 – an aural biography/autobiography of Huelsenbeck, but on this track the all-night argument over “Negro poetry,”, aesthetic dictatorship, and untrammelled desire that was Berlin dada. (Originally released on Rough Trade Rec., 1992, Germany).

19. Essential Logic “Wake Up”
Recorded by Lora Logic (alto/tenor saxes, vocals), David (tenor sax), Phil Lip (guitar), William Bennett (guitar), Mark Turner (bass), Rich Tea (drums). (Originally released on Virgin, 1979, UK).

20. Kleenex “You (friendly side)”
Details as on “angry side” above.

21. Gil J. Wolman “Megapneumies, 24 Mars 1963 (Face 1)”
In the invention of ultra-lettrist sound poetry, Wolman was Braque to Jean-Louis Brau’s Picasso, or vice versa. (Originally released on Achèle, 1965, France).

22. The Raincoats “In Love”
Recorded by Ana da Silva (vocals, guitar), Vicki Aspinall (vocals, violin), Gina Birch (vocals, bass), and Palmolive (drums). (Originally released on Rough Trade, 1979, UK).

23. Guy Debord – Excerpt from soundtrack to ‘Hurlements en faveur de Sade’
Details as above.

24. Marie Osmond “Karawane”
Dada sound poem composed and first performed by Hugo Ball in Zürich in 1916, performed by Osmond on the syndicated US television program “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not”, c. 1984. As host of a special show on sound poetry, Osmond was asked by the producer to recite only the first line of Ball’s work; incensed at being thought too dumb for art, she memorized the lot and delivered it whole in a rare ‘glimpse of freedom’.

25. Bascam Lamar Lunsford “I Wish I was a Mole in the Ground”
A traditional Appalachian ballad: ‘one little mole is enough to bring a whole mountain down.’ (Originally released on Brunswick, 1928, US – taken from ‘The Anthology of American Folk Music’, compiled by Harry Smith and released by Folkway Records, 1952).

26. Mekons “The Building”
Performed by Mark White (vocals, foot). (Originally released on ‘it falleth like the gentle rain from heaven – The Mekons Story, 1977-1982’, CNT, 1982, UK).

27. Benny Spellman “Lipstick Traces (On a Cigarette)”
Composed by Allen Toussaint. (Originally released on Minit, 1962, US).”

Thanks again to Mr. Lucky!

Lipstick Traces – A Secret History Of The 20th Century
(192 kbps, cover art included)

 

This is a soundtrack or audio companion to Greil Marcus’ book ‘Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the 20th Century’ (1989), originally published in the US by Harvard University Press, in the UK by Penguin Books, in Germany by Rogner & Bernhard (Zweitausendeins), in Italy (as ‘Tracce di Rossetto’) by Leonardo Editore, and in Spain (as ‘Rastros de Carmin’) by Anagrama – a book of comparative history by rock-music critic Greil Marcus that examines popular music and art as a social critique of Western culture.

From the liner notes:

“It happens. You feel alien. You are other. Nothing in your culture, in your experience gets near to what you feel. You want to be elsewhere. If you can’t be elsewhere, you want to see everything brought down. These thoughts explode in your head. You can’t sleep, you grind your teeth. You get migraines. You shake.

Then you walk into a room. You see or hear four people making a noise, playing the limits of electricity and the room’s ambient space: like a switch tripping, your life is changed forever. Out of nowhere, the terrain is cleared and the possibilities stretch before you.

This will only happen once, with that certainty. It may happen before and afterwards, in precognitions, aftershocks, conscious attempts to recapture that first shock of recognition: when you find the piper that calls your tune.

This collection exists for many reasons: for fun, to be played alongside a book with words and pictures, to rewrite Punk in terms of a still hidden female history. Most of all, it solves a perceptual problem: how to recapture that first hearing of the Sex Pistols’ ‘Anarchy in the UK’.

Nearly seventeen years after its first release, ‘Anarchy in the UK’ sounds, well, tired. If not quite a generally recognised ‘rock classic’, then its familiarity, and indeed supersession by generations of Punk and Rap groups, has meant that the song, and the time which it heralded, have lost their immediate potency. How to hear them in a new way?

In this particular example, to hear and see the Sex Pistols/the Clash/the Saints (among others) in 1978 was to feel this: ‘Everything that is normally taken for granted as the way God planned it, as the way human beings were meant to be, is suddenly refuted, loses its reality, loses its pull. And people glimpse two things: they glimpse that the world they’ve been raised to accept is a fraud and a sham, and that another world is possible.’

This is a sensation at once galvanising and terrifying: you will hear it on most of the selections here. Just jump into the tunnel with the Slits, like Alice after the rabbit: by the end of this sixty minute journey, you’ll have a composite picture that takes you right back to Punk’s original, primal alienation.

I’d love to hear this collection condensed into a six minute rap tune, or a twelve minute techno mantra, but in the meantime we begin, with a giggle…

1. The Slits A Boring Life”
A 1977 demo, recorded by Ari Up (vocals), Tessa Pollitt (bass), Viv Albertine (guitar), and Palmolive (drums). One of the few documents of that 1977 sound. (Originally released on ‘Once Upon a Time in a Living Room’, Y/Rough Trade, 1980, UK).

2. The Orioles “It’s Too Soon To Know”
A No. 1 R&B hit in the USA in 1948, and also a more spectral hit among whites, the sort the chart couldn’t fully register: ‘a meeting of cultures’ in a segregated society. Composed by a white Jewish songwriter named Deborah Chessler, performed by a black Baltimore group at first called the Vibra-Naires: Sonny Til (lead), George Nelson (second lead), Alexander Sharp (tenor), Johnny Reed (bass), and Tommy Gaither (guitar). (Originally released on It’s-a-Natural, 1948, US).

3. Trio Exvoco “L’amiral cherche une maison à louer” (Tristan Tzara, Marcel Janco, Richard Huelsenbeck)
Composed 1916, performed in the same year at the Cabaret Voltaire in Zürich, recreated here by Trio Exvoco (Hanna Aurbacher, Theophil Maier, and Ewald Liska). Written, sung, and chanted in German (Huelsenbeck), French (Tzara), and English (Janco): ‘proto rock ‘n’ roll’. (Recorded 1980; from ‘Dada For Now’, Ark, 1985, UK).

4. Jonathan Richman “Road Runner”
Accept no substitutes. (Originally released on Beserkley, 1975, US).

5. Guy Debord – Excerpt from soundtrack to ‘Hurlements en faveur de Sade’
A film first shown in Paris in 1952 at the Ciné-Club Avant-Garde. See Debord, ‘Society of the Spectacle and Other Films’ (London: Rebel Press, 1992), for a translation of the screenplay (“Howlings in favour of Sade”).

6. The Roxy, London – Ambience
From the two nights at the end of April 1977, recorded by Mike Thorne for the album ‘The Roxy London WC2 (Jan-Apr 77)’ (EMI, 1977, UK) – an accurate reflection of English Punk’s early gamut, with X-Ray Spex, Wire, Buzzcocks, Slaughter & The Dogs, Eater, Johnny Moped, and the Unwanted).

7. Jean-Louis Brau “Instrumentation Verbale (Face 2)”
A 1963 recording in the style of 1950 ultra-lettrist Paris sound poetry. (Originally released on Achèle, 1965, France).

8. Buzzcocks “Boredom”
Recorded by the late Martin Hannett in Manchester, 12/76. Mostly put down in one take by Howard Devoto (vocals), Pete Shelley (guitar), Steve Diggle (bass), and John Maher (drums). (Originally released on New Hormones, 1/77, UK).

9. The Adverts “One Chord Wonders”
Second version, recorded by T. V. Smith (vocals), Howard Pickup (guitar), Gaye Advert (bass), and Laurie Driver (drums) for ‘Crossing the Red Sea with the Adverts’. (Originally released on Bright Records, 1978, UK).

10. Raoul Hausmann “phonème bbbb”
Berlin dada sound poetry, composed 1918, performed 1956/57. (From ‘Poèmes phonetiques complètes’, S Press Tapes, 1978, W. Germany).

11. Gang of Four “At Home He’s a Tourist”
Recorded as the band’s second single by Jon King (vocals, melodica), Andy Gill (guitar, vocals), Dave Allen (bass), and Hugo Burnham (drums). (Originally released on EMI, 1979, UK, and on ‘Entertainment!’, EMI, 1979, UK / Warner Bros., 1980, US).

12. The Adverts “Gary Gilmore’s Eyes”
Personnel as on “One Chord Wonders.” (Originally released on Anchor, 1977, UK).

13. Kleenex “Ü (angry side)”
Recorded in London by by Regula Sing (vocals), Marlene Marder (guitar), Klaudia Schiff (bass), Lislot Ha (drums) from Switzerland. (Originally released on Rough Trade, 1979, UK). [liner notes erroneously states this to be recorded in Switzerland]

14. Guy Debord – Excerpt from the soundtrack to ‘Critique de la séparation’ (Dansk-Fransk Experimentalfilmskompagni, 1961)
Music: Bodin de Boismortier, ‘Allegro movement, Op. 37 – Concerto in E Minor in five parts’. Narration: (Debord): “The sectors of a city are, at a certain level, legible. But the meaning they have had for us, personally, is incommunicable. like the clandestinity of private life. of which we possess nothing but pitiful documents.” See Debord, ‘Society of the Spectacle and Other Films’, as above, for a translation of the screenplay (“Critique of Separation”).

15. The Clash – Stage talk, Roundhouse, London, September 23, 1976
Joe Strummer recorded while supporting Crazy Avan and the Rhythm Rockers. (From the Jon Savage Archive).

16. Mekons “Never Been in a Riot”
Recorded 1977 with Andy Corrigan and Mark White (vocals), Ken and Tong (guitars), Ros Allen (bass), Jon Langford (drums and vocals). (Originally released on Fast Product, 1978, UK).

17. LiLiPUT “Split”
Kleenex after a name change; as above, with Chrigel Freund replacing Regula Sing on vocals, plus Angie Barrack, saxophone. (Originally released on Rough Trade, 1980, UK).

18. Roman Bunka, Holger Czukay, Raymond Federman etc. “röhrenhose-rokoko-neger-rhythmus”
from ‘dr. huelsenbecks mentale heilmethode’ (“Dr. Huelsenbeck’s Psychological Salvation System”). Written and produced by Herbert Kapfer and Regina Moths as a radio play for Bayerischer Rundfunk, Munich, Germany, 1992 – an aural biography/autobiography of Huelsenbeck, but on this track the all-night argument over “Negro poetry,”, aesthetic dictatorship, and untrammelled desire that was Berlin dada. (Originally released on Rough Trade Rec., 1992, Germany).

19. Essential Logic “Wake Up”
Recorded by Lora Logic (alto/tenor saxes, vocals), David (tenor sax), Phil Lip (guitar), William Bennett (guitar), Mark Turner (bass), Rich Tea (drums). (Originally released on Virgin, 1979, UK).

20. Kleenex “You (friendly side)”
Details as on “angry side” above.

21. Gil J. Wolman “Megapneumies, 24 Mars 1963 (Face 1)”
In the invention of ultra-lettrist sound poetry, Wolman was Braque to Jean-Louis Brau’s Picasso, or vice versa. (Originally released on Achèle, 1965, France).

22. The Raincoats “In Love”
Recorded by Ana da Silva (vocals, guitar), Vicki Aspinall (vocals, violin), Gina Birch (vocals, bass), and Palmolive (drums). (Originally released on Rough Trade, 1979, UK).

23. Guy Debord – Excerpt from soundtrack to ‘Hurlements en faveur de Sade’
Details as above.

24. Marie Osmond “Karawane”
Dada sound poem composed and first performed by Hugo Ball in Zürich in 1916, performed by Osmond on the syndicated US television program “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not”, c. 1984. As host of a special show on sound poetry, Osmond was asked by the producer to recite only the first line of Ball’s work; incensed at being thought too dumb for art, she memorized the lot and delivered it whole in a rare ‘glimpse of freedom’.

25. Bascam Lamar Lunsford “I Wish I was a Mole in the Ground”
A traditional Appalachian ballad: ‘one little mole is enough to bring a whole mountain down.’ (Originally released on Brunswick, 1928, US – taken from ‘The Anthology of American Folk Music’, compiled by Harry Smith and released by Folkway Records, 1952).

26. Mekons “The Building”
Performed by Mark White (vocals, foot). (Originally released on ‘it falleth like the gentle rain from heaven – The Mekons Story, 1977-1982’, CNT, 1982, UK).

27. Benny Spellman “Lipstick Traces (On a Cigarette)”
Composed by Allen Toussaint. (Originally released on Minit, 1962, US).”

Thanks again to Mr. Lucky!

Lipstick Traces – A Secret History Of The 20th Century
(192 kbps, cover art included)

John Hartford remains best known for the country-pop standard “Gentle on My Mind,” a major hit for Glen Campbell and subsequently covered by vocalists ranging from Frank Sinatra to Aretha Franklin. The song remains among the most often recorded in the history of popular music, its copyright netting Hartford well over a hundred thousand dollars annually for many years. But there was more to Hartford than that curious mix of highly literary folk music and MOR romantic nostalgia, told from the perspective of a homeless man remembering days of perfect love. Hartford was a multi-talented old-time musician, a riverboat captain, a satirical songwriter, a one-man showman of exceptional talents, and one of the founders of both progressive country music and old-time string music revivalism.

“Morning Bugle” is one of Hartford’s finest records. Done mostly live in the studio with virtually no over-dubs, this is a fine collection of song covering a variety of subjects. Two of the most poignant are “Howard Hughes Blues” and “Nobody Eats at Linebaugh’s,” which addresses country music’s abandonment of the Ryman and downtown Nashville in favor of “the park.” The album features jazz double bassist Dave Holland, who performs with both Hartford and Norman Blake for the very first time. It was recorded at Bearsville Sound in Bearsville, New York and released in June, 1972. The music was all written by Hartford, except for two traditional tunes.

John Hartfield – Morning Bugle (1972)
(192 kbps, cover art included)

Blind Willie McTell (born William Samuel McTier May 5, 1898 – August 19, 1959), was an influential Piedmont and ragtime blues singer and guitarist. He played with a fluid, syncopated fingerstyle guitar technique, common among many exponents of Piedmont blues, although, unlike his contemporaries, he came to exclusively use twelve-string guitars. McTell was also an adept slide guitarist, unusual among ragtime bluesmen. His vocal style, a smooth and often laid-back tenor, differed greatly from many of the harsher voice types employed by Delta bluesmen, such as Charlie Patton. McTell embodied a variety of musical styles, including blues, ragtime, religious music, and hokum.

By the time Georgia native William Samuel “Blind Willie” McTell earned ten dollars by sitting down in a hotel room in Atlanta on November 5, 1940, to preserve his artistry on 15 transcription platters for the Library of Congress, he had achieved a degree of fame by having recorded some 85 sides for multiple labels during the years 1927-1936.

McTell was a skilled 12-string guitarist, an expressive vocalist, and a well-versed interpreter of ragtime, spirituals, blues, and a wide range of rural folk forms. He performed well for the Library of Congress, sometimes narrating and explaining the social background for his music while fielding John Lomax’s rather careless and insensitive questions. What you get here is an excellent spectrum of McTell’s stylistic range and repertoire. His slide maneuvers on “Amazing Grace” are strikingly reminiscent of Blind Willie Johnson’s technique. The overall content of this hotel room recital points directly to McTell’s Atlantic session of November 1949.

Blind Willie McTell – Library Of Congress 1940
(256 kbps, cover art included)

Blind Willie McTell (born William Samuel McTier May 5, 1898 – August 19, 1959), was an influential Piedmont and ragtime blues singer and guitarist. He played with a fluid, syncopated fingerstyle guitar technique, common among many exponents of Piedmont blues, although, unlike his contemporaries, he came to exclusively use twelve-string guitars. McTell was also an adept slide guitarist, unusual among ragtime bluesmen. His vocal style, a smooth and often laid-back tenor, differed greatly from many of the harsher voice types employed by Delta bluesmen, such as Charlie Patton. McTell embodied a variety of musical styles, including blues, ragtime, religious music, and hokum.

By the time Georgia native William Samuel “Blind Willie” McTell earned ten dollars by sitting down in a hotel room in Atlanta on November 5, 1940, to preserve his artistry on 15 transcription platters for the Library of Congress, he had achieved a degree of fame by having recorded some 85 sides for multiple labels during the years 1927-1936.

McTell was a skilled 12-string guitarist, an expressive vocalist, and a well-versed interpreter of ragtime, spirituals, blues, and a wide range of rural folk forms. He performed well for the Library of Congress, sometimes narrating and explaining the social background for his music while fielding John Lomax’s rather careless and insensitive questions. What you get here is an excellent spectrum of McTell’s stylistic range and repertoire. His slide maneuvers on “Amazing Grace” are strikingly reminiscent of Blind Willie Johnson’s technique. The overall content of this hotel room recital points directly to McTell’s Atlantic session of November 1949.

Blind Willie McTell – Library Of Congress 1940
(256 kbps, cover art included)

The American singer-actress Helen Schneider has performed even more frequently in Weill’s country of birth, Germany, than in the USA, and she is closely identified with Weill’s work. In fact, she headlined at the Dessau Festival in Weill’s home town during the centennial celebration in August 2000.

Most writers divide Weill’s career into two distinct halves – the German and the American. Lotte Lenya disagreed with that and said of her husband: “there’s only one Weill.” Andrea Marcovicci takes the other side, and points out how much his music changed after he came to America. Schneider emphatically aligns herself with the One Weill school.

“Of course his music evolved,” Schneider says, speaking from her home in Connecticut in mid-September. “He grew, his interests changed, he tried new ideas. But one thing that remained constant was his affinity for great collaborators. He found connections with some of the world’s greatest writers, from Brecht in Germany, through Paul Green when he first came to America, and then Maxwell Anderson, Ogden Nash, Moss Hart, Ira Gershwin, Alan Jay Lerner and Langston Hughes. They sought him out and Weill was attracted to their ideas. Weill changed the expectations for musical theater. He paved the way for Sondheim.” Because there’s such variety in his music, Schneider says she can do a full evening of Weill and not be redundant. She has done so in New York, Philadelphia and elsewhere. She is in conversation about an appearance at Manhattan’s Algonquin Hotel in February, 2001.

Schneider, like Weill, bears a German family name. Her grandfather on her father’s side came to the United States from Germany in 1919. But all of her other antecedents were Russian Jews, and Helen knew very little about German culture — and didn’t speak the language — when she first was invited to perform there in 1977. “I go where the work is,” she says, “so I accepted the invitation and received wonderful acceptance. Later, I learned the German language.” When she played Sally Bowles in a Berlin production of Cabaret in 1987 she studied the history of German cabaret and music halls “and that’s when I became enamored with Weill.”

Born in Brooklyn in 1953, Schneider moved to Pomona, NY, where she graduated high school. She studied classical piano and was a soloist in a youth choir which performed Berlioz’ Lelio at Carnegie Hall. She then began to sing rock music and ran away with a blues band at 17. Later she was an opening act for Flip Wilson, David Brenner, Bill Cosby, Robert Klein and David Steinberg on tour and in Las Vegas. When she played Sally Bowles, the German press praised her “grace, sex, sandpaper in her voice and cat-like movements.” Other highlights of Schneider’s career include an 18-month run as Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard in Germany and a musical about the life of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo. Schneider was featured in Ghetto on Broadway and starred in the world premiere of Frida at the American Music Theater Festival in Philadelphia in 1991, later in Boston and the Brooklyn Academy of Music, and will be appearing in productions of it in 2001 in Vienna, Berlin and Mexico City.

Her CD, A Walk on the Weill Side, shows her to be a distinctive interpreter. Schneider uses a variety of accents, including Cockney and French, to delineate the characters of the songs. Most of her interpretations are quiet and intimate, but she sometimes rises to exciting, dramatic climaxes. Then, too, she can give a straight-out romantic reading, as she does with “What Good Would the Moon Be” from Street Scene. One of the highlights of the CD is “I Wait For a Ship,” a yearning ballad from Weill’s almost-forgotten 1934 Parisian musical, Marie Galante. It shows a lushness that presages the work he was soon to do in the USA, but it was written before Weill ever visited America. The German-language album of Sunset Boulevard, starring Schneider, reveals the most gorgeously-sung of all the fine Norma Desmonds that I’ve heard.

(from: http://www.totaltheater.com/)

Helen Schneider – A Walk On The Weill Side (1989)
(192 kbps, front cover included)

 
This album sees Gisela May accompanied by Alfred Müller as an interpreter of lyrics of Heinrich Heine, Kurt Tucholsky, Otto Reutter, Johann Nestroy, Joachim Ringelnatz, Volker Braun and Jacques Brel. And there is a song written by Gisela Steineckert, the GDR politician and poet featured on some “Oktoberklub / Singebewegung” postings in the last weeks.
 
The album was recorded live at 22./23.02.1980 in the Maxim-Groki-Theater, East Berlin, accompanied by the Studio Band Berlin and Rolf Markert
Live at 22./23.02.1980 in Maxim-Gorki-Theater, Berlin.

Tracklist:
A1 Entree Composed By – Henry Krtschil Words By – Gisela May
A2 Willst Du Dein Herz Mir Schenken Composed By, Words By – Anna Magdalena Bach Words By – Anna Magdalena Bach
A3 Lyrisches Intermezzo Composed By – Manfred Schmitz Words By – Heinrich Heine
A4 Knopfballade Words By – Anonymous
A5 Heinrich Zille Composed By – Henry Krtschil Words By – Kurt Tucholsky
A6 Mit Der Uhr In Der Hand Composed By, Words By – Otto Reutter Words By – Otto Reutter
A7 Planschulden Composed By – Karl-Ernst Sasse Words By – Chris Hornbogen
A8 In Sachen Adam Und Eva Words By – Inge Ristock
A9 Liebe In Unseren Tagen Composed By – Wolfgang Pietsch Words By – Peter Ensikat

B1 So Muss Es Sein Composed By – Henry Krtschil Words By – Volker Braun
B2 Aphorismen Words By – Johann Nepomuk Nestroy
B3 Vorsorgezögling Composed By – Rolf Zimmermann Words By – Peter Ensikat
B4 Im Park Composed By – Peter Koch Words By – Joachim Ringelnatz
B5 Moderne Technik In Aktion Words By – Inge Ristock
B6 Aphorismen Words By – Kurt Tucholsky
B7 Man Ist So Dran Gewöhnt Composed By – Bernd Wefelmeyer Words By – Heinz Kahlow
B8 Franz Composed By – Gérard Jouannest Words By – Jacques Brel
B9 Hier Bin Ich Geboren Composed By – Günther Fischer Words By – Gisela Steineckert
B10 Verschenkt Den Traum Nicht Words By – Heinz Kahlau
B11 Ein Lied Geht In Die Weite Welt Composed By – Rolf Lukowsky Words By – Günter Kolb
B12 Freund, Salut Composed By – Michael Höft Words By – Gisela Steineckert

Gisela May & Alfred Müller – Im Ernst, wir meinen es heiter (Amiga, 1980)
(192 kbps, cover art included, vinyl rip)

 
This album sees Gisela May accompanied by Alfred Müller as an interpreter of lyrics of Heinrich Heine, Kurt Tucholsky, Otto Reutter, Johann Nestroy, Joachim Ringelnatz, Volker Braun and Jacques Brel. And there is a song written by Gisela Steineckert, the GDR politician and poet featured on some “Oktoberklub / Singebewegung” postings in the last weeks.
 
The album was recorded live at 22./23.02.1980 in the Maxim-Groki-Theater, East Berlin, accompanied by the Studio Band Berlin and Rolf Markert
Live at 22./23.02.1980 in Maxim-Gorki-Theater, Berlin.

Tracklist:
A1 Entree Composed By – Henry Krtschil Words By – Gisela May
A2 Willst Du Dein Herz Mir Schenken Composed By, Words By – Anna Magdalena Bach Words By – Anna Magdalena Bach
A3 Lyrisches Intermezzo Composed By – Manfred Schmitz Words By – Heinrich Heine
A4 Knopfballade Words By – Anonymous
A5 Heinrich Zille Composed By – Henry Krtschil Words By – Kurt Tucholsky
A6 Mit Der Uhr In Der Hand Composed By, Words By – Otto Reutter Words By – Otto Reutter
A7 Planschulden Composed By – Karl-Ernst Sasse Words By – Chris Hornbogen
A8 In Sachen Adam Und Eva Words By – Inge Ristock
A9 Liebe In Unseren Tagen Composed By – Wolfgang Pietsch Words By – Peter Ensikat

B1 So Muss Es Sein Composed By – Henry Krtschil Words By – Volker Braun
B2 Aphorismen Words By – Johann Nepomuk Nestroy
B3 Vorsorgezögling Composed By – Rolf Zimmermann Words By – Peter Ensikat
B4 Im Park Composed By – Peter Koch Words By – Joachim Ringelnatz
B5 Moderne Technik In Aktion Words By – Inge Ristock
B6 Aphorismen Words By – Kurt Tucholsky
B7 Man Ist So Dran Gewöhnt Composed By – Bernd Wefelmeyer Words By – Heinz Kahlow
B8 Franz Composed By – Gérard Jouannest Words By – Jacques Brel
B9 Hier Bin Ich Geboren Composed By – Günther Fischer Words By – Gisela Steineckert
B10 Verschenkt Den Traum Nicht Words By – Heinz Kahlau
B11 Ein Lied Geht In Die Weite Welt Composed By – Rolf Lukowsky Words By – Günter Kolb
B12 Freund, Salut Composed By – Michael Höft Words By – Gisela Steineckert

Gisela May & Alfred Müller – Im Ernst, wir meinen es heiter (Amiga, 1980)
(192 kbps, cover art included, vinyl rip)