Sunday, 25 October 2009

In Praise of Captain Beefheart

Just browsing the web and came across Eddie Chilton's 'No Fighting In The War Room' blog and an entry from last year in praise of the good Captain - Don Van Vliet, and yes I'm inclined to agree that for those looking for an entry point to the work of Beefheart & The Magic Band then 'Safe As Milk' is a pretty good place to start.  

From the Muddy Waters/Howlin' Wolf inspired opener of "Sure 'Nuff 'N Yes I Do" through "Dropout Boogie" and then to the brace of tracks that kick off Side Two "Yellow Brick Road" (check the performance of this on the beach at Cannes on You Tube), "Abba Zabba" - and pretty much the rest of the album.  Plus Ry Cooder plays slide on this set.
The UK version was originally released on Pye International in 1967 as NPL 2810 and about then reissued about 6 months later on Pye's Marble Arch imprint (the copy I have) as MAL 1117 - which I'm guessing was after their UK/European tour, which includes their appearance of the beach at Cannes during the film festival - and with the following track listing:
Side 1: Sure 'Nuff 'N Yes I Do
Zig Zag Wanderer
Call On Me
Dropout Boogie
Side 2: Yellow Brick Road
Abba Zabba
Plastic Factory
Where's There's Woman
Autumn's Child
It was then reissued again in 1971 on Buddah as 'Dropout Boogie' 2349002, this time with 2 extra tracks the sublime "I'm Glad" on side 1 and "Grown So Ugly" on side 2.  And of course since then it's been released on CD with the alternate versions of tracks from 'Strictly Personal' LP that had previously been issued as a CD in their own right.

From here on it's onto the aforementioned 'Strictly Personal' and the Zappa produced wierd-feat that is 'Trout Mask Replica'.  Which is whole blog in it's own right!

Tuesday, 13 October 2009


Kraftwerk’s formative years between 1970 and 1973 is the formative period that Ralf and Florian would rather forget - and yet the kernels of the Kraftwerk that we’re familiar with from Autobahn, via The Model to Tour De France all stem from this point in time.  

From Organisation late 60’s free-form Pysche/Electonica/Jazz collective - Ralf Hutter and Florian Schneider-Esleben plus engineer/producer Conny Plank moved onto their next stage, took what was to hand, tweaked it, added wah-wah pedals to flutes and harmoniums, hung out with Can and Neu (who were in Kraftwerk during ‘71 - when Ralf Hutter actually quit for about 6 months), and produced 3 LPs of esoteric experimentation which has echoed down the years. And gained resonance as does so - listen now and you can hear where the likes of Stereolab drew their inspiration.

And listen closely and the adage is true that on each Kraftwerk album there’s the one track (or element on a track) that points the way forward to the next stage of Kraftwerk’s evolution/progress - and in this particular instance I’m thinking in terms of Kling-Klang from the 1971 LP Kraftwerk 2.  Which as any Kraftwerk fan will know (and tell you) is the name of both studio and label.  Plus a host of other wonderful esoterica from this their early formative Krautrock phase - Strom, Spule, and not forgetting Ruckzuk- Experience and Enjoy!

Saturday, 29 August 2009

The Record List: Fab Four's First Two Singles

Tying in with The Beatles Weekend on BBC Radio 2 - here's some Beatle related stuff for your perusal.

ARTIST: Tony Sheridan & The Beatles

A SIDE: “My Bonnie”

B SIDE: “The Saints (When The Saints Go Marching In)”


YEAR: 1962

Cat. No.: NH 66833

Produced: Bert Kaempfert

Comments/Info: This is where it all began for the Fab Four - when they were still a five piece and a couple of months before Ringo Starr joined as the drummer.  The single was recorded in Hamburg when The Beatles were learning their trade at the city’s somewhat notorious Star Club, and is the only recording to feature original bass player Stu Sutcliffe, as well as the pre Ringo drummer Pete Best.  It was released originally in Germany under the name of ‘Tony Sheridan & The Beat Brothers’, as producer Bert Kaempfert thought that the name Beatles would be meaningless to a German audience.  Incidentally it was somebody asking for this single in Brian Epstein’s record shop in Liverpool which lead to him becoming the band’s manager.  The A Side “My Bonnie” incidentally has the intro which is later chopped from all the subsequent (re)issues of this track, and after the traditional style intro you can hear the embryonic Fab Four letting rip. The B Side “The Saints...” has singer Tony Sheridan very much in Elvis mode.

ARTIST: The Beatles

A SIDE: “Love Me Do” (1st Version)

B SIDE: “P.S. I Love You”


YEAR: 1962

Cat. No.: 45-R 4949

Produced: George Martin

Comments/Info: 2nd single from The Beatles - and their debut for Parlophone - which had hitherto mainly been associated with the likes of Peter Sellers (although they were the original UK licencees for Nina Simone’s material from this period - plus that of James Brown too!).  The A Side “Love Me Do” is original version featuring Ringo on drums, which the band were persuaded to redo with a session drummer as producer George Martin didn’t think that Ringo was quite competent enough - having only recently joined, and it’s that second version the one was used in the main until the 20th anniversary of this single when both versions appeared on the 12”.  The B Side “P.S. I Love You” is like the A Side a great beat ballad - and set the template for the hits that would follow on from here.

Friday, 28 August 2009

The Record List - Debut Post

Welcome to the Record List. This is the first of what will be a regular post on this blog.  So here's today's 1st installment - enjoy!

THE JAM - SATURDAY'S KIDS.  7". LABEL: POLYDOR (US). Cat. No. : PD 2074.  Year: 1979

American release of the UK single that never was - ie everyone assumed that this was going to be the next single from The Jam here in the UK - but for whatever reason it never materialized. The A Side is the brilliant “Saturday’s Kids” from the ‘Setting Sons’ LP.  The B Side “...Heatwave”  is Weller & Co doing Motown, and is the closing track on the aforementioned ‘Setting Sons’ LP.

Friday, 21 August 2009

Just taken delivery of Bobby Bland's brilliant version of "Stormy Monday Blues", which I first came across the now mega-rare late 60's LP "These Kind Of Blues - Vol 1 (and as far as I'm aware there's never been a Vol 2) which cost me $5 on ebay, so even with the shipping costs to the UK it still works out at around the £8 mark.  Slightly battered, but brilliantly wonderful nonetheless - and a promo copy too.  And a very nice addition to my Bobby Bland collection!

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Quick update for I call a night, came across the website for a distant cousin of mine - singer/songwriter in Australia called Anna Weatherup.  There's a free download on her a site, a rather gorgeous version of "Over The Rainbow" which is no way similar to the somewhat overplayed Eva Cassidy version (good though that is - but now suffering somewhat from overexposure) - and well worth checking out!
Hello blogland!

This is the debut blog from me - Brian Weatherup.  Living here in the south Manchester area of the UK. Record collector and would be artist, with a bit of photography as well (which is what I trained in - but at the moment more of a sideline mainly taking pics of my friend's band Playhawk - check their MySpace site for further details),  plus also on the job hunt.  Which is being somewhat of a pain with the current ecomic climate - so anybody in the Environmental/Green non-voluntary sector who's looking to take on someone's who pretty adept on the database and data processing/data input front for the Manchester/North Chershire area then please feel more than free to get in touch.  A CV is available on request.