Another interesting album cover. Very Psychedelic and perfect for the music within. In fact, this iconic album cover was designed by an artist name Martin Sharpe. Martin also helped write some of the lyrics for Tales Of Brave Ulysses. This was Cream's second album, done in New York City in only 3 and a half days. The rush was because the work permits for Eric, Jack and Ginger was to expire in that time. Producing was Felix Pappalardi, the founder of Mountain. Legendary engineer Tom Dowd was working the sound and Label president Ahmet Ertegen was also present.. The album cover was a perfect visual for the trippy music on the record... this is one of my favorite album covers from the Psychedelic era. The title of the LP came about because at some point in the recording process, Eric was talking about his bike, and referenced the 'derailleur' gear..a roadie who walked by named Mick Turner chimed in something about the Disraeli Gear and the band cracked up, and eventually used this as the title. It remains my favorite Cream album. A tremendous pairing of Psychedelic and Blues..
It was the Winter of 1963 and Bob Dlyan, his girlfriend Suze Rotolo, and a staff photographer from Columbia records, all trooped out to W.4th street in the villiage and took the picture that would end up on Bob Dylan's 2nd album, "The Freewheelin'" Bob Dylan. The record would contain some of the most powerful social and political statements in American music. Songs like Blowing in the Wind, Masters of War, and Hard Rain's Gonna Fall. Young muscians everywhere were served notice that all the rules of songwriting have changed. The picture on the album cover shows Bob and Suze, absolutely freezing in a New York January morning. Bob with his threadbare suede coat was cold beyond belief according to Suze in an interview years later. I stared at this picture for hours while listening to some of the most provocative music I had ever heard. "Freewheelin'" was the real coming out party for the bohemian, socially conscious young rebel pre-Beatles. Suze has since passed from cancer, Bob of course is still singing and I'm sure wearing a proper coat in his travels.
Did you know that Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta have a Christmas album out? No? Well now you do. They just released a new video, which some may find cute, but opening with country line dancing on some random street made me tune away very quickly. As one commenter on TMZ said, "I got irritable bowel syndrome after watching this."
Crosby Stills and Nash wrapped up their five show run at New York's Beacon Theatre this week. It also ended their current tour, and who knows, maybe it was the last show of an amazing career. The sold out crowd was treated to a performance of their first album, in it's entirety. It came in the second set, without a lot of fanfare, the band launched into "Suite Judy Blue Eyes" and then, steamrolled into Marrakesh Express, Pre-Road Downs, Wooden Ships, Helplessly Hoping and Long Time Gone...whew. With little or no rehearsing, the material came off flawlessly. I can still see that cover from the first album. According to Henry Diltz the photographer, the musicans are sitting in the wrong order. They are pictured as Nash, Stills, Crosby. When they went back a few days later to re-shoot it, the house and the sofa were gone! The house had been demolished. I love that first album, It came at a great time and brought the singer-songwriter mode back in vogue.
They have been called the greatest rock and roll band in history. No, not the Stones, although that would be my choice, we are talking Led Zeppelin here. Check out this video promoting the release of Celebration Day. The reunion of Zeppelin was one of the most highly anticipated events in rock. We will get to experience this one time event on November 19th, when their concert DVD is released.."Celebration Day". Check out this trailer and tell me it doesn't just get your blood boiling. There is only one Led Zeppelin, and here they are!
1968 was a year filled with political turmoil, crazy good music, and of course the counter-culture, the youth of America. A year that featured Richard Nixon getting elected as President and college demonstations all over the country over Vietnam, Meanwhile, even hippies have to drive something to get to the love-in and the cars of 1968 covered quite a range..The California Automobile museum has put together a great exhibit that features the cars and the culture of 1968. From wildly painted Hippie VW Vans to Mustangs, Chargers and Road Runners. It's all right here. the Museum is located at 2200 Front St. Sacramento. For more info. call 442-6802. or click here. Right On!
Rolling Stones 50th anniversary news. The Stones 1966 film 'Charlie is my Darling"..Ireland 1965 has been restored and will be screeended at the 50th New York Film Festival. The film was shot on a quick tour of Ireland just weeks after (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction went to number one. It's an intimate behind the scenes diary of life on the road and features ther first professionally filmed concert. This updated version with never before seen footage, will also be shown on TV though no date has been announced and will be released on DVD and Blue-ray on November 6th. A rare glimpse into the early days of the five original members of the band.
Some birthdays this weekend..Friday congrats out to a real local treasure, Carlos Santana. 65 years young and still has more licks than any 3 guitar players put together. Carlos has taken up residency at the House of Blues in Las Vegas, where he plays his hits and people just can't get enough. This weekend I'll play from Santana's amazing, Latin tinged debut. Also blowing out candles this week is John Lodge, the bassist who replaced Clint Warwick in the Moody Blues and never left. He has been a key member ever since. Finally Cat Stevens a.k.a. Yusuf Islam. He left the pop scene in the late 70s, when he converted to the Muslim faith. He took his millions and started schools and helped communities. He still sings. Now you sing..HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU! We'll have music on the Revolution from all these b'day boys and more. See you this Saturday..
Rock's English royalty were gathered at London's Royal Albert Hall, but not for a music performance, instead to honor Peter Blake, the pop artist who created one of the 60's most iconic images. The cover of the Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover was his doing. All those celebrities on the cover, the trippy group photo that seemed to draw you into another world. Peter Blake turned 80 last month, and all these rock giants came to pay their respect and to check out some of his other work that is on display at the Hall. In honor of his birthday, he has re-created the famous Album Cover using contemporary British cultural personalities. Amy Winehouse, J.K. Rowling, and Monty Python are among those chosen for the re-creation. Of course, the original is the best, that trippy photo of iconic celebrities was the image of 1967 that says it all. The Beatles gave us a great picture to stare at while we listen to the amazing music in the grooves. Thanks Peter Blake and happy B'day.
This Monday marks the birthdate of a man whose musical influence is part of the very fabric of the "Revolution"..William James "Willie" Dixon was his name..Willie Dixon. This humble genius came from the deep South, Vickburg Mississippi and like so many others looking to get out of the poverty, he went North, to Chicago, and along with Muddy Waters, pretty much invented Chicago Blues. Willie worked with the biggest names, he played both upright bass and guitar. Howlin Wolf, Otis Rush Bo Diddley, Joe Louis Walker and countless others. But it was Rock and Roll that really got the benefit of the Willie Dixon touch. His songwriting was stellar, and the rockers picked his songs and made them into hits, classics really. Songs like The Stones "Little Red Rooster", "Spoonful by Cream", Back Door Man from the Doors first amazing album. "I Just Want To Make Love To You", sound familiar Foghat fans? The list is too long to go on, but suffice it to say that Dylan Cream, Hendrix, Zeppelin, the Yardbirds, Foghat, The Rolling Stones, The Doors, The Allman Brothers Band, and the Grateful Dead all have a thank you to lay on Willie Dixon's grave this Monday. He died of heart failure in Burbank California on January 29, 1992. He is buried in the Burr Oak Cemetery near Chicago. He was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll hall of fame in the 'early influence' category in 1994. Willie you were one of the originals. Thanks for the tunes.