All aboard the Night Train!!!!!!!
It’s been a while since I added to my Music From The 50’s trail of posts so here let’s get back on track with the brilliant Jimmy Forrest.
This artist could easily have popped un in my Sunday Jazz series but deserves this post as headliner for his ability to cross genres and for the track “Night Train” alone.
To buy Jimmy Forrest music click HERE
The track was of course also famously recorded by the great James Brown
And now for the song…………….
To buy James Brown music click HERE
For those who remember the 1950’s
This year is the 50th anniversary of the release of the iconic “Summertime Blues”
Here is some background information.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
|Single by Eddie Cochran|
|Released||June 11, 1958|
|Genre||Rock and roll, blues|
|Label||Liberty Records 55144|
|Writer(s)||Eddie Cochran, Jerry Capehart|
It was written in the late 1950s by Eddie Cochran and his manager Jerry Capehart. Originally a single B-side, it peaked at #8 Billboard Hot 100 on September 29, 1958 and #18 UK Singles Chart. The handclapping is performed by Sharon Sheeley, and the deep vocals at the end of each verse are done by Cochran.
The song is ranked #73 in Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
There have been many cover versions some good some bad, perhaps the most famous is via The Who’s version which featured on their “Live At Leeds” album.
The Who’s Version
|Single by The Who
from the album Live at Leeds
|B-side||“Heaven and Hell”|
|Format||7″ 45 RPM|
|Label||Track (UK)Decca (US)|
|Writer(s)||Eddie Cochran, Jerry Capeheart|
|Producer||Kit Lambert, Chris Stamp|
|The Who singles chronology|
The Who‘s version appears on the 1970 album Live at Leeds. Their version is done in a more aggressive (and louder) style than the original. It is played in the key of A major and on the 3rd verse modulates up to B major.
This version features John Entwistle singing the vocal parts of the boss, the father, and the congressman in his trademark baritone growl, in addition to playing the bass guitar. The track features the original four-man Who lineup of Roger Daltrey, John Entwistle, Keith Moon, and Pete Townshend.
Another live version from The Who is featured in the concert and documentary film “Woodstock“.
“Summertime Blues” was a staple of Who concerts between 1967 and 1976 with intermittent appearances thereafter.
This video is their version from Woodstock in 1969
John Joseph Burnette was a true pioneer of the Rockabily sound, born in 1934 he died in 1964, the trio in it’s best known form came together in 1956 they were allegedly turned down by Sun Records for sounding too like Elvis.
With the rise to fame in the 1960s of groups like the The Beatles and The Yardbirds, with their professed admiration for The Rock and Roll Trio, interest in the group was rekindled. The Beatles would cover the trio’s songs (Lonesome Tears In My Eyes and Honey Hush in particular) at live gigs and on BBC radio. The Yardbirds, when Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page were part of the lineup, were said to have practically made a career out of covering the Trio’s songs, particularly with “The Train Kept A Rollin” and their own rewrite of that song, “Stroll On”. “Stroll On” was featured in the 1966 Michelangelo Antonioni film “Blow Up”, which starred David Hemmings.
The Yardbirds went on to record a cover of this version of “The Train Kept A-Rollin'”
This version of “Lonesome Train” supports the Elvis comparisons.
Next up in this series is a 1957 track from Little Richard “Keep A Knockin'” not perhaps his most famous or popular song it remains a key influence on the 60’s boom years with John Bonham of Lez Zeppelin fame replicating the drum intro for their “Rock & Roll” from Led Zeppelin IV.
I listen to a great deal of music from the 50’s from SInatra and Fitzgerald through Rock & Roll, Blues, Jazz, Country and Folk, I believe the decade is often overlooked as people tend to find that the sound quality of the recordings aren’t up to the standards they are used to, however, to me some of greatest music ever recorded came from this decade therefore here in the first of a series of posts is a great song from 1950 by Doc Pomus called “Send For The Doctor”
Born Jerome Solon Felder in Brooklyn, New York of Jewish heritage, he became a fan of the blues after hearing Big Joe Turner on record. Pomus had polio as a boy and got around on crutches. Due to post-polio syndrome, exacerbated by an accident, he eventually used a wheelchair. He died in 1991 from lung cancer, at the age of 65.
His brother is New York attorney Raoul Felder.
Using the stage name “Doc Pomus,” he began performing as a teenager, becoming a white blues singer. In the 1950s, Pomus started songwriting in order to make enough money to support his wife. By 1957, Pomus had given up performing in order to devote himself full-time to songwriting. He collaborated with pianist Mort Shuman to write for Hill & Range Music Co./Rumbalero Music at its offices in New York City’s Brill Building. Their songwriting efforts had Pomus write the lyrics and Shuman the melody, although quite often they worked on both. They wrote these hit songs: “A Teenager in Love“; “Save The Last Dance For Me“; “Hushabye“; “This Magic Moment“; “Turn Me Loose“; “Sweets For My Sweet“; “Can’t Get Used to Losing You“; “Little Sister“; “Suspicion“; “Surrender“; “Viva Las Vegas“; and “(Marie’s the Name) His Latest Flame.”
During the late 1950s and early 1960s Pomus also wrote with Phil Spector (“Young Boy Blues”; “Ecstasy”; “Here Comes The Night”; “What Am I To Do?”), Mike Stoller and Jerry Leiber (“Young Blood” and “She’s Not You”) and other Brill Building-era writers. Pomus also wrote “Lonely Avenue“, which became a 1956 hit for Ray Charles.
In the 1970s and 1980s in his eleventh-floor, two-room apartment, at the Westover Hotel at 253 West 72nd Street, Pomus wrote songs with Dr. John, Ken Hirsch and Willy DeVille for what he said were “…those people stumbling around in the night out there, uncertain or not always so certain of exactly where they fit in and where they were headed.” These later songs (“There Must Be A Better World,” “There Is Always One More Time,” “That World Outside,” “You Just Keep Holding On,” and “Something Beautiful Dying” in particular), which were recorded by Willy DeVille, B. B. King, Irma Thomas, Marianne Faithful, Charlie Rich, Ruth Brown, Dr. John, James Booker, and Johnny Adams, are considered by some, including writer Peter Guralnick, musician, songwriter Dr. John and producer Joel Dorn to be signatures of his best craft.
Together with Shuman and individually, Pomus was a key figure in the development of popular music. They wrote such hits as “Save the Last Dance for Me“, “This Magic Moment“, “Sweets for My Sweet“, “Viva Las Vegas“, “Little Sister”, “Surrender“, “Can’t Get Used to Losing You“, “Suspicion“, “Turn Me Loose” and “A Mess of Blues”. He was elected to the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and in 1991 was the first white recipient of the Rhythm and Blues Foundation Pioneer Award. Ray Charles did the honors via a pre-recorded message. The songs written and co-written by Pomus are referenced as standards of songwriting by token of sheer prolific consistency, and continue to be covered by musicians of every generation.
The song “Doc’s Blues”  was written as a tribute to Pomus by his close friend, Andrew Vachss. The lyrics originally appeared in Vachss’ 1990 novel Blossom. Doc’s Blues was later recorded by bluesman Son Seals, on Seals’ last album, Lettin’ Go.  He was personally responsible for Lou Reed‘s exposure to the music industry in the early 1960s, and is one of two friends memorialized on Reed’s 1992 album Magic and Loss (the other being Rotten Rita).
In 1995, Rhino Records released a tribute album to Pomus titled Till The Night Is Gone. It offers performances of Pomus songs by Bob Dylan, Brian Wilson, Dion, Dr. John, Irma Thomas, Solomon Burke, John Hiatt, Shawn Colvin, Aaron Neville, Lou Reed, The Band, B. B. King, Los Lobos and Rosanne Cash.
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