Jorma, the Syncopated Taint, Bruce and a Mule

It’s been a while since I posted a note about the music I’m stumbling across, so here’s a quick rundown of some stuff that’s worth checking out. Some of it’s new. Some of it’s just new to me. But it’s all stuff that I have on heavy rotation …

Jorma Kaukonen, “River of Time — Love this CD and it’s now in heavy rotation on my iPod. WNCW in North Carolina started playing it almost as soon as it was released, and I downloaded it as soon as I heard it. I’ve been a fan of Jorma for a long time and, as a member of Jefferson Airplane, he was a catalyst for the great False Class Consciousness debate of 1983 (ask Joanne for the gory details). Jorma’s fingerpickin’ is as fresh as ever, and there’s a nice cover of the Dead’s “Operator” on here. What are you waiting for? Snap it up.

Bruce Springsteen, “Working on a Dream — Generally speaking, I’m not a big Springsteen fan. I definitely appreciate his talent, but for some reason he never really resonated with me. I’m ashamed to admit I passed on several opportunities to see him live in the late ’70s. He just wasn’t metal enough for my taste at the time. But in watching the Steelers’ glorious sixth Super Bowl victory, I was blown away by Springsteen’s halftime performance. In fact, there were tears in my eyes. There was just something beautiful there. Something intrinsically American that roared through the TV in high-def splendor. I heard an interview with Springsteen on Fresh Air not too long ago where he talked about how Republicans had latched on to his songs to promote their causes, and Terry Gross seemed perplexed by it. But Springsteen explained it beautifully. While the choruses in his music are full of hope and optimism, the verses contain the darker, more turbulent ideas. It’s easy to latch on to “Born in the U.S.A.” as a great American anthem. But when you start to dissect the verses, it’s not really the flag waving, feel-good exercise the casual listener would think. Got in a little hometown jam/ So they put a rifle in my hand/ Sent me off to a foreign land/ To go and kill the yellow man/ Born in the USA … “Working on a

3 replies on “Jorma, the Syncopated Taint, Bruce and a Mule”

  1. The most recent thing I’ve bought and been listening to a lot is not that new. I downloaded a couple of tracks from “Hooker N Heat.”

    I don’t think I could handle the whole two-disc package, but I did get “Whiskey and Wimmen” and “Boogie Chillen No. 2,” together about 16 minutes of John Lee Hooker and Canned Heat. There was Canned Heat after Janis and this is among the best John Lee Hooker you’ll ever hear. I may have to DL some more.

    I like Jorma, too; I might have to check that out.

    Give this one a listen and see what you think. Don’t let Takata talk any of that Buddy Guy stuff; this is the real deal.

  2. Ummmm… Takata also likes John Lee Hooker! It should also be mentioned that in about 80% of the Buddy Guy shows I’ve seen (and that’s a LOT), Buddy Guy plays at least one John Lee Hooker song in tribute to him. Can’t they both be the real deal?

    Careful Jack, “I’m bad like Jesse James!” :]

    Buddy Guy, Tennessee Theater, Friday May 1, $45–I’m buying a group of tickets on Friday, Jack. Let me know by Thursday COB if you want to come with us to hear “The Real Deal” in person…

    I would also suggest Rory Gallagher, Roy Buchanan and Mike Bloomfield for some great 70s style blues/rock.

  3. Put me down for two on that Buddy Guy show. Can’t wait.

    And dude, Rory Gallagher is my hero. I have every CD he ever did. Irish Tour ’74 is a freakin’ masterpiece. Bloomfield and Buchanan also awesome. Did you see the re-issue of “Super Session” that came out a few years ago? Very cool. Several takes where the pulled the horn section, which had been dubbed after the fact. Fun to listen to the alternative takes.

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