Archive for the ‘Old 97′s’ Category
Raise your hand if you’ll be joining 2013 Ambassador Jack White tomorrow to celebrate Record Store Day 2013! Yes, on Saturday, April 20, independent record stores everywhere will offer an eclectic roster of limited edition releases of all kinds – most on vinyl, but some on CD, too. As usual, the labels participating in RSD ’13 have a number of surprises on the way, previewing future releases, revisiting past titles and even curating completely new packages. As is our tradition here, we’re taking the occasion to count down the titles to which we’re most looking forward! I’ll take my turn first, and then after the jump, you’ll find Mike’s picks for some of the finest offerings you might find at your local independent retailer! Around these parts, of course, every day is Record Store Day – so, after you’ve picked up your share of the year’s collectible releases, don’t forget to browse the regular racks, too…you never know what you might find!
You’ll find more information and a link to a downloadable PDF of the complete Record Store Day list here, and please share your RSD 2013 experiences with us below. Happy Hunting!
1. Miles Davis, ‘Round About Midnight / Milestones / Someday My Prince Will Come (Columbia/Legacy)
Last year, the team at Legacy feted the famous trumpeter with Forever Miles, which collected rare sides recorded between 1956 and 1970. This year, Davis is the recipient of three 180-gram mono vinyl reissues from his classic early Columbia Records period. 1956’s ‘Round About Midnight, Davis’ label debut, showcases the artist at the epoch of his hard bop period. His Quintet includes John Coltrane on tenor sax, Red Garland on piano, Philly Joe Jones on drums and Paul Chambers on bass. Davis’ muted horn makes magic on Thelonious Monk’s “’Round Midnight,” which remained in his book for years, and breathes new life into “Bye Bye Blackbird.” For 1958’s Milestones, Davis foreshadowed the modal jazz breakthrough of the following year’s Kind of Blue with his title track as well as with another Monk composition, “Straight, No Chaser.” The sextet recording adds Cannonball Adderley to the lineup on alto saxophone. Milestones marked the final time Jones, Garland and Chambers would play on a Davis album. Lastly, 1961’s Someday My Prince Will Come blended Davis originals (tributes to producer Teo Macero, Columbia President Goddard Lieberson and wife Frances) with standards including a blazingly reworked title tune from Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Though credited to the Miles Davis Sextet, only “Someday” featured all six players – Davis, Chambers, Hank Mobley and John Coltrane on tenor sax, Wynton Kelly on piano, and Jimmy Cobb on drums. Coltrane made a cameo on tenor on “Teo” (dedicated to Macero) with Mobley playing the instrument on the album’s other songs.
These three LPs remain among Davis’ finest accomplishments. With crispness and clarity, they pack quite a punch in their original mono sound. Legacy has lovingly recreated the original artwork for each individually numbered release. There’s still quite a thrill in holding these objets d’art from a master at the top of his game, restlessly conquering each stylistic shift even as he planted the seeds for the next revolution in jazz. These small group records, which alternated with the big-band sessions teaming Davis with arranger Gil Evans, shouldn’t be missed.
2. Van Dyke Parks, Song Cycle (Reprise/Rhino)
Composer, arranger, producer, singer, musician, actor, author, historian, raconteur and bon vivant: Van Dyke Parks has carved out a niche in popular music truly unlike any other. The renaissance man comes to RSD 2013 both with a new release (Super Chief: Music for the Silver Screen) and a 180-gram mono vinyl reissue of his solo LP debut, 1968’s Song Cycle. As produced by the great record man Lenny Waronker, Song Cycle was a natural progression from the modular songwriting of Parks’ storied collaboration with Brian Wilson, SMiLE. Creative, offbeat, and altogether unencumbered by any notions of conventionality, Song Cycle took in Parks’ varied originals along with compositions from Randy Newman and Donovan. The cinematic, orchestral tour de force is played by a stellar cast of musicians including Wrecking Crew pros Hal Blaine, Tommy Tedesco, Lyle Ritz, Earl Palmer, Jim Gordon and Jay Migliori, plus Newman and The Beau Brummels’ Ron Elliott. A kaleidoscopic journey through California pop, Song Cycle retains its power to surprise and enchant, and those hearing it for the first time in mono will be in for a mind-expanding treat.
3. Paul McCartney and Wings, Maybe I’m Amazed (Hear Music)
Last year, Macca used the annual Record Store Day campaign to preview his deluxe Archive Collection release of 1971’s Ram with a vinyl replica single of “Another Day” b/w “Oh Woman, Oh Why.” This year, the RSD reissue of the 12” “Maybe I’m Amazed” live EP previews this year’s Archive presentation of Wings Over America. As on the original 12” release, Side One includes “Maybe” in full and edited versions in mono, and Side Two presents the full and edited versions in stereo. When “Maybe I’m Amazed” first appeared on 1970’s McCartney, a lush standout on a rather spare collection of homemade songs, it quickly gained popularity, but McCartney declined to officially release it as a single. It wasn’t until the 1976 live version from Wings Over America came along that McCartney relented. His ode to the lovely Linda then scaled the charts to No. 10 in the United States and No. 28 in the United Kingdom.
And Hear Music’s replica “Maybe I’m Amazed” isn’t the only offering this year to excite Beatlefans. Universal Music is collecting three vintage Ringo Starr singles in a lift-top box. Ringo’s Singles Collection includes 7-inch editions of “Photograph” b/w “Down and Out,” “It Don’t Come Easy” b/w “Early 1970,” and “(It’s All Down To) Goodnight Vienna” b/w “Oo-Wee.” All singles are packaged in replicas of their original artwork!
4. Old 97’s with Waylon Jennings (Omnivore)
Omnivore’s 2012 reissue of 1997’s Too Far To Care from Old 97’s added more than a disc’s worth of bonus tracks from the Rhett Miller-fronted alt-country band, and now the group returns to Omnivore with more previously unreleased goodies. And they’ve brought along a guest: the late, great Waylon Jennings. Way back in 1996, Jennings joined Ken Bethea, Murry Hammond, Rhett Miller and Philip Peeples in Nashville to cut two tracks. Yet “Iron Road” and “The Other Shoe,” the two songs completed by Jennings and the 97’s, never saw the light of day…until now. This RSD-exclusive release offers the Jennings/97’s collaborations plus the band’s demos of “Visiting Hours” (a live version of which appeared on 2011’s The Grand Theater Vol. 2) and “Fireflies” (re-recorded by Rhett Miller for his 2006 album The Believer). All four songs will be available as a double yellow vinyl 7-inch release, housed in a gatefold sleeve with art from Jon Langford and even liner notes from Rhett Miller! The package also includes a download card, offering digital files of the four tracks. For an opportunity to hear an iconic talent paired with some of his most authentic heirs, Old 97’s with Waylon Jennings is a rare pleasure, indeed.
5. Jimi Hendrix, Hey Joe b/w Stone Free (Experience Hendrix/Legacy)
Jimi Hendrix isn’t one to be left out – so he’s joined the “back to mono” revolution, as well, with Legacy’s individually numbered reissue of The Jimi Hendrix Experience’s debut U.K. single! This 45 features the explosive trio of Hendrix, Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell, backed by the trio of British songbirds The Breakaways. Originally released in December 1966, “Hey Joe” rose to No. 6 on the U.K. chart; the U.S. release failed to chart, replacing “Stone Free” with B-side “51st Anniversary.” This single represents the ground floor of Hendrix’s blazing, all-too-short career, and makes a fine companion to Legacy’s recent mono LP reissues of the U.S. and U.K. editions of the 1967 debut LP Are You Experienced.
Honorable Mentions: Frank Zappa’s “I’m the Slime/Montana” 7-inch (Zappa Records/Universal) is newly remastered from the original 1973 analog source. “I’m the Slime” is presented in a single edit, and “Montana” is a 2013 edit with 25 additional seconds. Grateful Dead’s Rare Cuts and Oddities 1966 compiles, well, rare cuts and oddities from that year in early Dead history! Originally released on CD in 2005, it’s making its vinyl debut on two 180-gram platters for RSD!
After the jump: Mike has another five titles for ya!
With Record Store Day just a little over three weeks away, Omnivore Recordings has unveiled an eclectic slate of three vinyl platters suiting the label’s deliciously omnivorous tastes. Two artists are familiar to fans of the label, while the third makes an Omnivore debut. All of the titles, of course, will be offered via your local brick-and-mortar independent music retailer on Saturday, April 20 to mark the sixth annual event.
Without further ado…hit the jump to dive into tasty treats from Big Star, The Old 97’s with special guest Waylon Jennings, and North Carolina’s own Three Hits! Read the rest of this entry »
Here at The Second Disc, the holiday season is the perfect time to do what we love to do best: share the gift of music. For the second year in a row, we have we reached out to some of our favorite reissue labels and we’ve teamed with them to play Santa Claus to our awesome and faithful readers. It’s called – what else? – Second Discmas, and it’s going on now through Christmas!
Today, we have a gift set from our friends at Omnivore Recordings which we think is pretty damn cool! Earlier this year, the label released a deluxe edition on 2 CDs of Old 97′s’ seminal album Too Far to Care. That fantastic release would make prize enough…but that’s far from all. We’re offering you the chance to win the Too Far to Care 2-CD set PLUS the 2-LP Limited Edition blue vinyl of the album, the 1- LP Limited Edition yellow vinyl of They Made a Monster: The TFTC Demos, AND a vintage, signed Too Far to Care tour poster! WOW!
This is truly the ultimate Old 97′s gift set. And winning has never been easier! Click on the graphic up top to head over to Contest Central for the complete rules! And there’s plenty more where that came from, so enter now and wait ’til you see what we’ve got for you!
Was it rock and roll? Was it country and western? By 1997, Rhett Miller and his Old 97’s were, well, Too Far to Care. As Miller recalls in his liner notes to Omnivore Recordings’ new 2-CD expanded edition of the band’s seminal third album (OVCD-45, 2012), his “little band from Texas…had only recently gotten folks to stop referring to their particular brand of music as ‘rockabilly.’” The Old 97’s were subject to a major label bidding war in which Elektra Records proved victorious, giving the quartet of musicians a chance for the “big time,” whatever their genre.
What the Old 97’s unquestionably were was antidote to the prevailing pop music of the day. The Top 5 singles of the year ranged from hip-hop to novelty pop and everything in between, courtesy Sean Combs, Elton John, Aqua, No Doubt and Hanson – everything except the Old 97’s brand of amped-up country rock. The original 13 tracks on Too Far to Care, all jointly credited to the band, touched on familiar country tropes: loneliness, troubled relationships, troubled women, imagery of bars, travelling and reckless youth. But the sound was akin to an outlaw on speed: fast and furious, taking no prisoners. This wasn’t country-rock in the sense of the late-period Byrds, or cosmic country like The Flying Burrito Brothers, or whatever pop-rock-country style in which you’d like to place Eagles. Miller bristled at the “rockabilly” label, and it certainly wasn’t pop-country like Shania Twain or today’s Taylor Swift, either.
But it’s so decreed in the music business that everything must have a name, The Old 97’s were considered to be at the vanguard of “alt-country.” Fifteen years on, their music sounds squarely in the rock tradition, with a C&W influence adding flavor. The ferocious rock and roll attack of Rhett Miller (guitar), Ken Bethea (guitar), Murry Hammond (bass) and Philip Peeples (drums) wasn’t beholden to conventions of either genre. The album, produced by Wally Gagel, sounds like a band record and a true collaboration in every way. The group even chose to revisit a couple of older songs with an eye to improving them. “Four Leaf Clover” was re-recorded from Hitchhike To Rhome, this time as a duet with Exene Cervenka of the band X. The raucous “Big Brown Eyes” also was remade, the original version having appeared on Wreck Your Life.
Emboldened by their youth, the group howls through the frenetic rave-up of the opening salvo “Timebomb,” the wry story song “Barrier Reef” (“My name’s Stewart Ransom Miller/I’m a serial lady killer/She said I’m already dead/That’s exactly what she said”) and the dark-hued ode to a woman “who broke every part of me,” “Salome.” The eponymous lady is ready to “wreck another man,” her tale enhanced by Jon Rauhouse’s pedal steel. Like many of the songs on Too Far to Care, “Salome” is crafted within a familiar pop framework, complete with a catchy chorus, but it stands apart for its slower tempo and the added color provided by Rauhouse.
There’s true twang on “W. Texas Teardrops,” which adds banjo to the mix as well as lead vocals by Murry Hammond. Subtle harmonies enliven “Curtain Calls,” with one of the many instrumental riffs that burrow into your consciousness while listening. The ample instrumental breaks show off the tight, taut interplay between the four players and the occasional guests such as producer Gagel, playing piano on “Niteclub.” Though each member is accomplished, Philip Peeples might be the unsung hero of the album, his drums and percussion instantly setting the tone (and keeping the beat like a freight train, natch!) for each song. Rhett Miller’s vocals, able to be both forceful and languid, convey a wealth of emotion. While the lyrics are technically ragged in many places, the turns of phrase are often memorable. On the Times Square-composed “Broadway,” Miller muses from “a hotel room that costs as much as my apartment” about the titular place, “enough to make a crooked man go straight.” On “Streets of Where I’m From,” he reasons, “Now I’m old…I’m well past 25!” Over a torrent of blazing guitars, he asks “Will you sober up and let me down?” in the potent “Melt Show.” Gagel’s production throughout is subtle but immediate.
What bonus material will you find? Hit the jump! Read the rest of this entry »
The summer gets a little more endless with a new compilation (in two formats) and remasters of nearly all of the band’s ’60s albums. (A full breakdown of those albums is here, and a full review is coming up from Joe today!)
Deep Purple, Machine Head: 40th Anniversary Edition (EMI)
A five-disc box set devoted to this classic rock LP, featuring various different mixes of the album (including quad and 5.1 mixes) and other goodies.
Barbra Streisand, Release Me (Columbia)
The incomparable Barbra’s newest album is actually an offering of entirely unreleased performances from the vaults. Lots of great discoveries herein!
The Supremes, I Hear a Symphony: Expanded Edition (Hip-O Select/Motown)
Another Supremes classic expanded to two discs, featuring the original album in mono and stereo and a host of live and studio treasures from the vault.
David Ruffin, David: The Unreleased LP and More (Hip-O Select/Motown)
Out of print for years, Hip-O Select reissues this compilation of the Temptation’s unissued 1971 album and a host of outtakes from the album sessions.
Various Artists, The Best of Bond…James Bond: 50 Years, 50 Tracks (Capitol/EMI)
It’s been 50 years since Dr. No hit theaters and it’s only a few weeks until Skyfall is released, so it’s time for a new 007 compilation that features all the classic title themes on one disc and a sampling of other tracks from the Bond films on the other.
Their latest at the time was The Who by Numbers, but this newly-restored show, on DVD in its first official release, is anything but.
Old 97′s, Too Far to Care: Deluxe Edition (Omnivore)
A demo-packed reissue of the 1997 country-rocker.
Various Artists, Athens, GA – Inside Out (Omnivore)
A nice deluxe set featuring both the classic documentary on the colorful Athens, GA music scene in the 1980s on DVD (with new special features) and the expanded soundtrack on CD.
Vince Guaraldi Trio, A Charlie Brown Christmas: Original Sound Track from the CBS Television Special (Fantasy)
The classic holiday album gets a brand new remaster with three bonus tracks. Full review coming later today!
Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb, In Session (Fantasy)
Two legends collaborate on this live performance from 1983, newly released as a CD/DVD set.
Adam Ant, Destiny’s Child, Shawn Colvin, Alan Jackson, Waylon Jennings & Willie Nelson, George Jones & Tammy Wynette, Carole King, Taj Mahal, Ricky Martin, Johnny Mathis, Meat Loaf, Laura Nyro, Collin Raye, Starship, Porter Wagoner & Dolly Parton, Playlist (Legacy)
A surprisingly strong batch of Playlist titles includes a few neat surprises, too, from brand-new compilations for Destiny’s Child and Ricky Martin to rare and unreleased tracks on the Meat Loaf, Starship and Laura Nyro sets.
The Chipmunks, Christmas Collection (Capitol)
Because it wouldn’t be the holidays without some squeaky-voiced renditions of holiday classics, plus the immortal “Christmas Don’t Be Late.”
Edie Adams, The Edie Adams Christmas Album (Omnivore)
Another Christmas treat, sourced from rare kinescopes of Adams on television in the ’50s.
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial: Anniversary Collector’s Edition (Universal Studios Home Video)
A timeless favorite at Second Disc HQ (in particular, Mike’s favorite movie!) comes home on Blu-Ray for the first time, featuring the restored original 1982 version of the film and a new retrospective consisting entirely of on-set footage shot by John Toll. Retail exclusives abound: Target’s offering a deluxe steelbook package (available internationally as a basic deluxe edition), Best Buy has a special book package with pages of full-color notes and artwork, Walmart throws in a free E.T. doll for the kids, and Amazon carried a limited deluxe package (now sold out) housed in a replica of E.T.’s spaceship.
Little Shop of Horrors: The Director’s Cut (Warner Home Video)
One of the most purely fun musicals of the past few decades, this loving musical adaptation of the Roger Corman cult classic features a killer, ’60s-flavored pop score from future Disney legends Alan Menken and Howard Ashman. For this special Blu-Ray release, the hilarious, 20-minute alternate ending (seen only on a quickly-recalled, highly-collectible DVD) has been fully restored and added to the end of the picture, and other great special features abound, too!
Though 1997’s Too Far to Care was actually the third album from Texan band Old 97’s, it was an album of firsts. The major label debut of Rhett Miller and his musical cohorts, Too Far to Care placed the band at the vanguard of alt-country. It combined the muscularity of rock and the songcraft of pop with the traditional country sound on which the band had earned an Elektra Records contract, and led to performances in front of Lollapalooza crowds. In celebration of the album’s 15th anniversary, Omnivore Recordings will reissue Too Far to Care as a 2-CD deluxe edition, and for the first time on vinyl as a double LP on October 9. (The first 1500 copies of the LPs will be pressed on limited-edition translucent aqua blue vinyl. Subsequent pressings will be standard black.)
The first disc of the 2-CD edition will feature the original Too Far to Care 13-track album in its entirety, plus a rare promo track and three previously unissued outtakes. The second disc of the deluxe set is a specially-curated collection that could stand on its own. They Made A Monster: The Too Far to Care Demos features 11 previously unissued demo recordings from the original album sessions. In keeping with Omnivore’s commitment to both the CD and vinyl formats, They Made A Monster: The Too Far To Care Demos will also be released as a stand-alone LP (with a download card included) and also as a stand-alone digital version at all major digital retailers. (The first 1500 LPs will be pressed on limited-edition translucent yellow vinyl; as usual, subsequent pressings will be black.)
This 15th anniversary project comes on the heels of the announcement that Old 97’s will launch the Too Far to Care tour in Texas (where else?) on August 23. The entirety of the original album will be performed during the live performances, plus a second set of additional hits and favorites, and even a solo set from frontman Rhett Miller in support of his solo album The Dreamer.
Hit the jump for more on Old 97’s and Too Far to Care, including the complete track listing! Read the rest of this entry »