Helpless Dancer

The Endless Note

Return of Sly and The Family Stone

Sly Stone has announced plans to release his first album in almost 30 years.

The Sly And The Family Stone leader has teamed up with a host of guest stars including Jeff Beck, former Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek and Heart lead singer Ann Wilson for the 11-track album ‘I’m Back! Family & Friends’, which is due out on August 16.

The LP features reworkings of his classic songs as well as three previously unreleased tracks including ‘His Eye Is On The Sparrow’ – the CD version is backed by three club mixes.

The full tracklisting for ‘I’m Back! Family & Friends’ is as follows:

‘Dance To The Music’ feat. Ray Manzarek
‘Everyday People’ feat. Ann Wilson
‘Family Affair’
‘Stand!’ feat. Carmine Appice & Ernie Watts
‘Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)’ feat. Johnny Winter
‘(I Want To Take You) Higher’ feat. Jeff Beck
‘Hot Fun In The Summertime’ feat. Bootsy Collins
‘Dance To The Music’
‘Plain Jane’
‘His Eye Is On The Sparrow’
‘Get Away’

Stone released his last album ‘Ain’t But The One Way’ in 1982. He last made an appearance with his band onstage at the Lovebox festival in London four years ago.

Original Source :-

July 7, 2011 Posted by | New News, New Releases, Video | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sunday Jazz – Madeleine Peyroux


The great Madeleine Peyroux has a new album in the shops now.

“Standing On The Rooftop” is weighted more towards her continually developing songwriting skills yet still has three of her typically inspirational cover versions.

Perhaps the most startling is her take on Robert Johnson’s “Love In Vain”, previously turned into a typical Stones R&B cover, however, Madeleine strips it back down to sound like it should totally tortured!



To buy the music of Madeleine Peyroux click HERE

July 3, 2011 Posted by | Blues, Jazz Vocal, New Releases, Video | , , | Leave a comment

New News – John Fahey

Rare material from John Fahey is set to be exhumed on the upcoming box set ‘John Fahey: Your Past Comes Back to Haunt You (The Fonotone Years 1958-1965)’.

Very much a neglected figure, John Fahey is extremely important to the evolution of American music. An important figure in the blues and folk revival, he helped rediscover performers long since thought lost to music.

His own recordings were an extraordinary mixture of technical virtuosity and emotional depth.

Sadly passing away in 2001, some rare elements of the guitarist’s back catalogue have now been

Releasing his debut album ‘Blind Joe Death’ in 1959, the guitarist seemed to arrive fully formed.

However he did make earlier recordings, laying down instrumental tracks for the Fonotone label.

Issuing in tiny quantities, the songs were pressed onto 78RPM discs. Unusual even for the time, the Fonotone label handled a series of John Fahey tracks between 1958 and 1965.

It is this period which forms the spine of the new box set (via Tiny Mixtapes). ‘John Fahey: Your Past Comes Back to Haunt You (The Fonotone Years 1958-1965)’ promises countless rare material, including some cuts which have never been released on any format.

Dust-To-Digital are to handle the release, which will contain a total of five CDs. Joe Bussard controlled the Fonotone label, and his archives have proved to be an invaluable addition to the Fahey discography.

Containing 115 tracks, the upcoming box set is edited by fellow guitarist – and Fahey collaborator – Glenn Jones, with the full approval of the late musician’s estate.

Alongside a host of musical rarities the upcoming box set also includes an 88-page book with essays and analysis, reproductions of those Fonotone labels and rare photographs donated by Jane C. Hayes — Fahey’s mother.

For more on the project click HERE.

June 30, 2011 Posted by | Blues, Folk, New News, New Releases, Video | | 1 Comment

Saturday Soul – Smoove & Turrell

Soul as a genre is always marked by its so-called “authenticity”….so when these Geordie guys turn up mixing contemporary electronic sounds with (northern) soul, it works at every level.

The track below is a massive slab of old-school soul taken from their album “Eccentric Audio” which is released on the 27th June.

“Hard Work” – Smoove & Turrell



To buy the music of Smoove & Turrell click HERE

June 18, 2011 Posted by | New Music, New Releases, R&B, Soul, Video | | Leave a comment

Father’s Day meets The Old Grey Whistle Test

With it being Father’s Day here in the UK on Sunday I set of this evening bleary eyed to Braehead to do a bit of relevant shopping.

It was only when I set foot in HMV that the concept of time passing hit me straight between the eyes.

It seems like only yesterday I was buying my Dad albums such as “100 Great Church Organ Tunes” or later Shirley Bassey “The Stripper” yet there in front on me on the HMV Father’s Day special display was “Dad’s Rock” 3CD set, “The Old Grey Whistle Test 40th Special Edition” and “New Wave For Dad”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In shock I settled for a book token from Waterstones and returned home and to cheer my self up I downloaded the aforesaid Old Grey Whistle Test CD, 60 tracks for under £10 many of them exclusive live recordings from the show.

So here is an Old Grey Whistle Test special.

From the album and for all cool Dad’s everywhere here is some live music from Tom Waits.

“Small Change” (Live In The Studio) – Tom Waits

To buy the CD click HERE

As a bonus and in celebration of Whispering Bob Harris’s recent OBE award here are some clips from the vaults.

…………….finally perhaps the most famous clip of all.

Coming soon the Old Grey Whistle Test through the ages.

June 17, 2011 Posted by | Blast from The Past, New Releases, Old Music, The Who, Video | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New Music – Emmylou Harris

Emmylou Harris has paid tribute to folk legend Gram Parsons on her latest album ‘Hard Bargain’.

Parsons discovered Harris in a Washington D.C folk club in 1971 and invited her to sing on his
1973 album ‘GP’, but he tragically died in the same year of a drug overdose.

She has now recorded the track ‘The Road’ for ‘Hard Bargain’, which addresses her relationship with the singer.

Speaking to Rolling Stone, Harris said of the track: “It’s terrible that Gram died so young, but I’m grateful that our paths crossed. It’s a thank you to him and kind of a tip of the hat to the universe to say ‘I’m still here and I was given all these wonderful things because of that meeting with this person.’ It’s just a reflection.”

“The Road” – Emmylou Harris

I can still remember
Every song you played
Long ago, when we were younger
And we rocked the night away

How could I see a future then
Where you would not grow old
With such a fire in our bellies
Such a hunger in our soul

I guess I probably loved you
When those words rolled off your tongue
It seemed that we were travelin’
Under some ol’ lucky sun

I know I couldn’t save you
And no one was to blame
But the road we shared together once
Will never be the same

Hey hey gonna fly away
Won’t be comin’ round today
Hey hey with a song I pray
And on the wings of a song I’ll fly away

I wandered in the wilderness
For a while I was so lost
To everything there is a season
And every blessing has its cost

So I took what you left me
Put it to some use
Went looking for an answer
With those 3 chords and the truth

I come down from the mountain
I come walkin’ in your shoes
I was taken for a gambler
When I had no more to lose

Cause you put me on that pathway
How could I refuse
And I have spent my whole life out here
Workin’ on the blues

So I carried on
You can’t be haunted by the past
People come and people go
And nothin’ ever lasts

But I still think about you
Wonder where you are
Can you see me from some place
Up there among the stars

But down here under heaven
There never was a chart
To guide our way across
This crooked highway of the heart

And if it’s only all about
The journey in the end
On that road I’m glad I came to know you
My old friend

Harris has addressed her relationship with Parsons once before, on her 1975 track ‘Boulder To
, but said that ‘The Road’ is a very different track. She said: “‘Boulder to Birmingham’ was written in the throes of deep grief and shock, after losing someone that quickly
and unexpectedly. So that was just a way of dealing with it, whereas now, you’re looking back from a great distance with a great deal of affection.”

Original source:
To buy the music of Emmylou Harris click HERE

June 15, 2011 Posted by | New Music, New Releases, Video | , | Leave a comment

Blues Monday – Seasick Steve

Seasick Steve returns with what is for me his best album yet.

Perhaps it makes sense that Seasick Steve would align himself in a partnership with kindred spirit Jack White’s Third Man Records for the release of his new album, “You Can’t Teach an Old Dog New Tricks.”

As everyone probably now knows, following his now numerous appearances on “Later….with Jools” he makes his own instruments, creating a unique tone and sound that employs a strong sense of mood which easily moves from world weary to party hardy and this time he’s taken former Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones along for the ride.

The opening track is a barely audible worn-down sigh at the start of the melancholy “Treasures.” It’s
the kind of sound that might emanate from an older man who’s been burning the
years without much to show for it. Over a strummed guitar and lonely banjo line
he sings of how death will strip away everything you’ve built over time.

My current favourite track is this ode to the amber nector written by Steve’s son Paul Martin Wold

“Whisk(e)y Ballad” – Seasick Steve

More often than not though, Seasick Steve is just as fun, lively and instantly likeable as ever. Who cares if you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, because here’s another dumb truism: the old ones are the best.

To buy the music of Seasick Steve click HERE

June 13, 2011 Posted by | Blues, New Music, New Releases, Video | | Leave a comment

New Music – Ali Ferguson

Ali Ferguson has been for many a year a stable band mate of Ray Wilson, either in acoustic, Stiltskin or Klassik Genesis mode.

Back in 2005 he posted a demo track from his forthcoming solo album, finally the album “The Windmill And The Stars” is now with us.

Finally here he is with Ray and a cover of my favourite Pink Floyd song

June 12, 2011 Posted by | New Releases, Video | , , | Leave a comment

Roddy Hart & Gemma Hayes – The Dylan EP

Arriving a tad late for Dylan’s 70th birthday celebrations Scotland’s own Roddy Hart has teamed up with Ireland’s Gemma Hayes for a four track EP of Dylan covers, all of which happen to be favourite Dylan tracks of mine.

Some may ask why? Some may say why not, either way the four tracks (Most Of The Time, Oh, Sister, Not Dark Yet and It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue) are all recorded within a safe distance of the original arrangements with the dual vocals of the artists being the immediate difference bar Oh, Sister which tries hard but falls short of replicating the magic created between Dylan and Emmylou Harris on the original.

“Oh, Sister” – Roddy Hart & Gemma Hayes

From Amazon.comes this brief review:-

After successfully curating ‘Forever Young: A 70th Birthday Tribute To Bob Dylan’ at this year’s Celtic Connections festival – featuring a host of international artists including Rosanne Cash, Josh Rouse, Thea Gilmore, Kris Drever, Eddi Reader and more, and broadcast by Radio 2 and Sky Arts – Scottish
singer/songwriter Roddy Hart and his band The Lonesome Fire join forces with another of the night’s performers, Irish singer/songwriter Gemma Hayes, to release “The Dylan EP” on Vertical Records. Featuring four lesser known Bob Dylan tracks – Most Of The Time, Oh Sister, Not Dark Yet and It’s All Over Now Baby, Blue – the critically acclaimed artists combine with stunning effect to breath new life into the works of the world’s most iconic songwriter.

Following in the footsteps of Dylan’s prolific out put, Hart (who attracted the talents of US legend Kris Kristofferson for his first album, Bookmarks), and Hayes (who received a Mercury Prize nomination for her debut album Night On My Side) are both due to deliver their fourth albums later in the year.

To buy the EP click HERE

June 9, 2011 Posted by | Cover Stories, New Music, New Releases | , , , | Leave a comment

New Music – Jon Allen

Went to HMV at Braehead today to buy the new Jon Allen album “Sweet Defeat” as usual like so many times what I was looking for wasn’t available, thus given the choice of amazon or downloading it was iTunes for me.

Jon Allen (born Jonathon Allen, 12 May 1977) is a folk rock singer-songwriter born in Winchester, currently living in London.

His debut album Dead Man’s Suit was released on 1 June 2009 on Monologue Records.

He is best known for the hit songs In Your Light and Going Home the later of which featured in a worldwide advert for the Land Rover Freelander 2. His music is evocative of the folk-rock scene of the late 60s/ early 70s.

The new album is perhaps more varied and polished, however, it features as its last track “Last Orders” which could well be come the end of the year my “Song Of The Year”

“Last Orders” – Jon Allen

To buy the music of Jon Allen click HERE

June 8, 2011 Posted by | New Music, New Releases, Video | | Leave a comment

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