Sunday, February 26, 2017

Celebrate Johnny Cash's Birthday with this Playlist of Cash Covers from Bloodshot Artists

Johnny Cash was born on February 26, 1932.

To help celebrate, the good rockin' folks at Bloodshot Records put together this Spotify playlist of Cash songs covered by Bloodshot artists, including Waco Brothers, Old 97's, Sally Timms and Kelly Hogan. Great stuff.

Any day is a great day to celebrate the life and music of Johnny Cash. And this playlist sure puts me in the mood.



365 Days of Dylan, Day 57: (Quinn the Eskimo) The Mighty Quinn

365 Days of Dylan, Day 57: Quinn the Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn).

Recorded by Dylan in 1967, The Mighty Quinn was first released by Manfred Mann who had a hit with the song in 1968. Dylan finally released the song on 1970's Self Portrait.

Kris Kristofferson, Lulu, The Grateful Dead, and The Hollies are among the artists who have sung about the legend of Quinn the Eskimo. Quinn the Eskimo lyrics.









Check out multiple versions of The Mighty Quinn on Amazon.

The 1989 Denzel Washington The Mighty Quinn took its name from Dylan's tune. Sheryl Lee Ralph perfromed a version of the song for the movie's soundtrack.




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Saturday, February 25, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 56: Went to See the Gypsy

365 Days of Dylan, Day 56: Went to See the Gypsy, originally released in 1970 on New Morning. Also appears on Another Self Portrait The Bootleg Series, Volumne 10 (2013).




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Friday, February 24, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 55: It Hurts Me Too

365 Days of Dylan, Day 55: "It Hurts Me Too." Here's Dylan, again with the blues and another cover from Self Portrait.

First recorded by Tampa Red in 1940, Elmore James had a 1957 hit with the song. Junior Wells recorded the song a few times, first in 1962. Here's his version from Essential Blues Masters. This song is also recorde as "(When Things Go Wrong) It Hurts Me Too."

Check out versions by Eric Clapton (solo and with Derek and Dominos) and Mike Bloomfield.

For a breathy, rhythmic take, Listen to First Aid Kit's cover.  And I'm extremely partial to Hound Dog Taylor's sizzling version.

I'm less than a poor guitar player, but I'm going to try to figure out this classic eight-bar blues on my beat-up six-string. Hopefully, if you ever hear me play, it won't hurt you too.

It Hurts Me To, chords and lyrics.


First Aid Kit has a unique way of making a song its own.
This version of "It Hurts Me Too" is no exception.



I like Dylan's cover, but Hound Dog Taylor's is probably my favorite. 
I love the cracking energy of his performance.


Buy "It Hurts Me Too" on Amazon. There's a version for just about every taste.

        


        

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Many YouTube videos featuring performances of "It Hurts Me Too." Here are a few:

Elmore James






The Grateful Dead, from Europe 1972



Foghat, yes, Foghat. Dayton, Ohio, 1997.


The Rolling Stones, 1969



Thursday, February 23, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 54: Let it Be Me

365 Days of Dylan, Day 54: Let it Be Me from 1970's Self Portrait.

Originally published in French in 1955 as "Je t'appartiens," the Everly Brothers had a hit with "Let it Be Me" in 1955. Dylan is one of dozens of other artists from Nancy Sinatra, Petula Clark and Elvis to Rod Stewert, Neil Diamond and Kenny Rogers who have covered the song. 










365 Days of Dylan, Day 53: Idiot Wind

365 Days of Dylan, Day 53: Idiot Wind from Blood on the Tracks.


Some of Dylan's most piercing lyrics about love and loss. 

"You’re an idiot, babe / It’s a wonder that you still know how to breathe."

Harsh, Bob, very harsh. Lyrics

A live version from Hard Rain






A spiffy cover of "Idiot Wind" by Phil Pritchett from Blueprint Garage, Volume 2.








Tuesday, February 21, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 52: It's All Over Now Baby Blue

365 Days of Dylan, Day 52: It's All Over Now Baby Blue from Bringing It All Back Home (1965) and ample covers by an amazing array of artists.







Van Morrison


The Grateful Dead



Bonnie Raitt performs "It's All Over Now Baby Blue" on David Letterman in 2000.



Joan Baez. 


The Byrds.


Eric Burdon and the Animals.



Monday, February 20, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 51: My One and Only Love

365 Days of Dylan, Day 51: My One and Only Love, from Triplicate, Bob Dylan's upcoming 30-song collection of American standards. Written by by Guy Wood. Lyrics by Robert Mellin. This 1952 song has been covered by dozens of jazz and popular artists and it's the latest stop on Dylan's tour of the Great American Songbook. 




Beautiful arrangement by John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman.



And this classic version by the Frank Sinatra.




Triplicate is scheduled for release on March 31. Preorder now on Amazon.

     

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Ben Caplan at Canadian Blast, SXSW 2015

Ben Caplan's set at Canadian Blast was one of the highlights of my SXSW 2015.  Incredible energy and stage presence. Outstanding songs. Left me wanting more.

Finally, I'll get my wish. Just purchased my tickets to see Caplan and the Casual Smokers, Wednesday, March 29 at SPACE in Evanston. Until then, I'm still grooving on the fumes of his 2015 SXSW performance.

Ben Caplan performs at SXSW
Ben Caplan at SXSW 2015, Canadian Blast (Mike Barzacchini Photo)


Ben Caplan and the Casual Smokers
Ben Caplan at SXSW 2015, Canadian Blast (Mike Barzacchini Photo)

Ben Caplan live at SXSW 2015
Ben Caplan at SXSW 2015, Canadian Blast (Mike Barzacchini Photo)
Ben Caplan and the Casual Smokers
Ben Caplan and the Casual Smokers, SXSW 2015

Sunday, February 19, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 50: Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine)

365 Days of Dylan, Day 50: Most Likely You Go Your Way (And I'll Go Mine).

Another great cut from Blonde on Blonde. True confession: Though I always knew this was a Dylan song, I first became obsessed with Todd Rundgren's version from Faithful.

If all went as planned today, I'm on jet plane flying back to Chicago. Most likely going my way.


From Todd Rundgren's Faithful


Yardbirds cover Most Likely You Go Your Way and I'll Go Mine


Saturday, February 18, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 49: I and I

365 Days of Dylan, Day 49: I and I from Infidels (1983). Well, with any luck, I'm in Dallas, helping our son move into his new home. It's a life passage. One that has me feeling my age and miles. Jonathan and I bonded, father and son, over Dylan's music from the time he was very young. In fact, he had this massive Dylan iTunes playlist he used to fall asleep to as far back as grade school. And I recall an eighth grade book report on Shelter from the Storm. I will miss him. Hoping that Dylan's music will keep us connected and help bridge the distance.


Friday, February 17, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 48: You're No Good

365 Days of Dylan, Day 48: You're No Good, the opening track from Dylan's self-titled 1962 debut.

I'm on the road today as this posts, somewhere between Chicago and Dallas. Dylan has always been among my favorite roadtrip artists. I'll have his music in my ear and my mind for much of this 16-hour drive. I ride with Bob.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 47: One of Us Must Know (Sooner or Later)

365 Days of Dylan, Day 47: One of Us Must Know (Sooner or Later) from Blonde on Blonde (1966).

Traveling for the next few days, so these Dylan posts will be even shorter than usual, but I want to keep on track with featuring a song a day and building out this playlist. Blonde on Blonde is an amazing album and this song packs a powerful, if subtle, punch:

When I saw you say “goodbye” to your friend and smile I thought that it was well understood That you’d be comin’ back in a little while I didn’t know that you were sayin’ “goodbye” for good

Lyrics

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 46: She's Your Lover Now

365 Days of Dylan, Day 46: She's Your Lover Now. Perhaps a post-Valentine's Day song?

But, I've already been kissed,
I'm not gonna get into this.
I couldn't make it, anyhow.
You do it for me,
You're her lover now.
She's Your Lover Now lyrics.

Bob Dylan and members of The Band recorded the song for Blonde on Blonde, but it wasn't released until 1991's The Booleg Series Vol. 1-3.


Another version was included on The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series Vol. 12.



Tuesday, February 14, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 45: Brownsville Girl

365 Days of Dylan, Day 45: Brownsville Girl from Knocked Out Loaded (1986). A love story from Bob Dylan:

Brownsville girl with your Brownsville curls

Teeth like pearls shining like the moon above

Brownsville girl, show me all around the world

Brownsville girl, you’re my honey love

Brownsville girl, show me all around the world
Brownsville girl, you’re my honey love

Brownsville Girl lyrics.

Happy Valentine's Day.




A sweet-sonic-synth cover of Brownsville Girl by Reggie Watts.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Bad MonkeyBad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Brisk, fun read. Hiassen introduces Yancy, a new lead protagonist, along with a host of other wild and crazy south Florida and Bahamian characters. Medicare fraud, arson, murder, vodoo, key deer and one bad monkey. Where else can you find all this?

View all my reviews



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365 Days of Dylan, Day 43: Romance in Durango

365 Days of Dylan, Day 43: Romance in Durango from Desire and The Bootleg Series Volume 5: Bob Dylan Live 1975


Friday, February 10, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 41: Emotionally Yours

365 Days of Dylan, Day 41: Emotionally Yours from Empire Burlesque (1985). Lyrics.





The O'Jays perform Emotionally Yours.






       


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Thursday, February 9, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 40: I Want You

365 Days of Dylan, Day 40: I Want You from Blonde on Blonde (1966).

A song of desire, infatuation, obsession, persistance. I want you. So bad.







Bruce Springsteen, "I want you."


The Tallest Man on Earth, "I want you." 



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365 Days of Dylan, Day 39: Queen Jane Approximately

365 Days of Dylan, Day 39: Queen Jane Approximately from Highway 61 Revisted (1965).


Take 5, alternate take from The Bootleg Series Vol 12, The Cutting Edge Sampler.



I hear echos of this song in Gillian Welch's Miss Ohio. Complicated women living defiantly against the grain of expectations. Possibly one won't walk to the alter and the other walked away (or should?).
"Had your arm around her shoulder, a regimental soldier  / An' mamma starts pushing that wedding gown / Yeah you want to do right but not right now"
-- Miss Ohio




"When your mother sends back all your invitations / And your father to your sister he explains / That you’re tired of yourself and all of your creations / Won’t you come see me, Queen Jane?"
-- Queen  Jane Approximately
To bring it full circle, here's Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings cover Queen Jane Approximately.



Queen Jane Approximately was widely covered by the Grateful Dead and also performed by Dylan and the Dead.






            

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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 38: It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)

365 Days of Dylan, Day 38: It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)

How do you like your Dylan? Angry Dylan? Poetic Dylan? Intense Dylan? Thoughtful Dylan? Political Dylan? Disruptive Dylan? Subversive Dylan? Rappin' Dylan?

On It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding), Dylan delivers all this and more.

But there's nothing I could write about this song any better than what Bob Lefsetz delivered on his blog this week.

It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding) is powerhouse Dylan both in the studio version from Bringing it All Back Home and live in 1964. There's also a smart, driving intensity to the Dylan's performance of the of the song on 1974's Before the Flood.

And just listen to what the Duhks do with this song.


The Duhks



Bringing It All Back Home


Dylan live in 1964.


And check the lyrics. Buckets full of quoatable lines.

During the darkest moments, I reflect on these words in particular:


"An’ though the rules of the road have been lodged

It’s only people’s games that you got to dodge
And it’s alright, Ma, I can make it"

That's right, Ma. There's always hope. It's only life, afterall. Temporary and bittersweet. 

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Monday, February 6, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 37: One Too Many Mornings

365 Days of Dylan, Day 37: One Too Many Mornings from Bob Dylan's third album The Times They Are a-Changin' released in 1964. 

Like many of Dylan's songs, One Too Many Mornings had multiple lives, with various live and outtake versions released by Dylan, not to mention a slew of covers from Johnny Cash, Joan Baez, Jerry Jeff Walker, Dion and even the Association.



The originally released version from The Times They are a-Changin'












Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash, One Too Many Mornings.


Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings.



Joan Baez from Baez Sings Dylan.




Love this version by Jerry Jeff Walker




The Association cover Dylan? Why not. Everyone else did.


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Sunday, February 5, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 36: Abandoned Love

365 Days of Dylan, Day 36: Abandoned Love. Recorded during the Desire sessions in 1975, Abandoned Love was not released until 1985 on the Biograph compilation.







The Everly Brothers sing "Abandoned Love."




Nils Lofgren and Paul Rodgers from Chimes of Freedom.



Chuck Prophet, "Abandoned Love"



     

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Saturday, February 4, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 35: I Could Have Told You

365 Days of Dylan, Day 35: I Could Have Told You, the first cut released from Triplicate, Bob Dylan's upcoming 30-song collection of standards due for a March 31 release.


Continuing his grand tour of the Great American Songbook, Dylan covers this classic tune that's also been performed by Frank Sinatra, Shirley Horn, Mel Tormé, Count Basie and Arthur Prysock, Dinah Washington and Della Reese.





         

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Friday, February 3, 2017

365 Days of Dylan, Day 34: Every Grain of Sand

365 Days of Dylan, Day 34: Every Grain of Sand from Shot of Love (1981). Shot of Love is the final cut on the last of Dylan's trilogy of Christian albums that also include Slow Train Coming (1979) and Saved (1980).

Writing in Rolling Stone, Paul Nelson only gave Shot of Love a two-star review on its release. He did single out praise for Every Grain of Sand Though, calling it "...something special: the 'Chimes of Freedom' and 'Mr. Tambourine Man' of Bob Dylan's Christian period.

Whatever happened to Bob Dylan's Born-Again Music Fans (Chicago Tribune).

Every Grain of Sand lyrics.



From the Bootleg Series, Volumes 1-3, a more stripped-down version of Shot of Love.




From a live performance in Toronto, 1998.


Bob Dylan and Mick Taylor.


Like many Dylan songs, Shot of Love inspired dozens of cover versions by the likes of Ann Wilson, Giant Sand, Emmylou Harris, Luka Bloom, Chuck Rogan, and The Blind Boys of Alabama. And that's just to name a few.







Emmylou Harris performs  "Every Grain of Sand"at the Ryman, May 23, 2016.








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