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Old 09-24-2009, 02:25 PM   #31 (permalink)
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I came across this & thought 'Hmm, Bulldog might find this to be of interest'...

http://theultimatebootlegexperience....969-06-08.html
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Old 09-25-2009, 08:22 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Urban Hatemonger View Post
I came across this & thought 'Hmm, Bulldog might find this to be of interest'...

T.U.B.E.: The Flying Burrito Brothers - 1969-06-08 - Hollywood, CA
Sir, you're a legend Featuring the original and by far best lineup too. Many thanks!

And for anyone awaiting it with baited breath, my disjointed rant on the subject of Grievous Angel is coming soon. Just haven't really been in a very analytical mindset lately is all.
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Old 09-26-2009, 01:09 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Bulldog View Post
Well, pinpointing the the original of any sub-genre is always gonna be difficult. To me, as I said in the review, the first album to come up with an across-the-board mix of country and rock was Sweetheart Of the Rodeo. Sounds like I should probably hear Music From Big Pink sometime though.
BIG PINK doesn't sound like "country music" to me, it sounds like music made in, for, by and of "the country," ie the sticks. (I'm from them myself and I feel I can testify) ... It just isn't urban music, is all, regardless of genre or influences.

SWEETHEART OF THE RODEO sounds urban to me - not so much as the Burrito Bros (and I'm not saying they are or are not from the city or the country in the case of either band, just how the music strikes me) but definitely not like music made in the backwoods.

I don't mean to state a preference, tho I do have one, just to observe a genre vs culture/environment disparity ...
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Old 09-27-2009, 06:58 AM   #34 (permalink)
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I get your point, and before I say anything else just know that I am as English as fish n chips, rubbish weather and ill-disciplined football fandom, so I'm no expert by any means. Sweetheart Of the Rodeo doesn't sound authentically country to me either, but songs like Blue Canadian Rockies, Pretty Boy Floyd and You Ain't Going Nowhere certainly do to me. It's a vibe that's balanced out on that album, but it's in that way that it serves as a kind of halfway point between classic country and alternate country - a pretty vital cog in the machine of musical history then. So I wouldn't say it doesn't bear any sonic relation to classic country and honky tonk at all, because as far as I can hear, there's a lot of it in the sound of that album.

As I say though, this thread is very much an outsider looking in kind of affair, as I'm only making all the assumptions about the music based on what I hear and the little that I've read, just as the next, soon to come (later today if I'm feeling up to it) review will be.
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Old 09-30-2009, 10:06 AM   #35 (permalink)
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All the reviews about Gram parsons are really admirable and the biography of him is also very good to have.


Gram parson is a real rocker, and he is my all time favourite.


Thanks!!
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Old 10-03-2009, 11:54 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Right, let's put the lid on this thing eh...

Gram Parsons
Grievous Angel
1974, Reprise Records

1. Return Of the Grievous Angel [Parsons/Brown]
2. Hearts On Fire [Egan/Guidera]
3. I Can't Dance [Hall]
4. Brass Buttons [Parsons]
5. $1000 Wedding [Parsons]
6. Cash On the Barrelhead/Hickory Wind [Louvin/Louvin - Parsons]
7. Love Hurts [Bryant]
8. Ooh Las Vegas [Parsons]
9. In My Hour Of Darkness [Parsons/Harris]

After touring GP throughout most of 1973, Gram Parsons reconvened with his old partner in crime Emmylou Harris, guitarist James Burton and pianist Glen Harding (members of Elvis Presley's former band who'd also toured with him a few months before), and array of session players and guests such as Linda Ronstadt and Parsons' former Burrito Brother Bernie Leadon, to take to the studio for what would turn out to be the last time prior to his death that September 19th. Unlike before though, any truly new material was very thin on the ground. As such only a couple of new songs were composed for the sessions while the rest of the final tracklisting comprised of older, unreleased parts of Parsons' repertoire and the obligatory renditions of country standards.

The result is an album that's far less mediocre than you'd think it would be from that description, and one that actually expands on Parsons' musical vision and his creative partnership with Harris in more of a sense than GP did before it. One of the true classic album openers, Return Of the Grievous Angel, was one of the new songs hastily written just in time for the recording. With its lyric written by Bostonian poet Thomas Brown and the simmering, laid back, piano and fiddle-driven music by Parsons, making for a very fine and easygoing tune indeed that it's so easy to just kick back to.

As I said earlier, a lot of this album consists of old country standards, like the slow-burning Walter Egan/Tom Guidera composition Hearts On Fire, which sounds a lot more like a torch-lighting rock ballad for the most part, serving as it does as a very smooth vehicle for the very potent Parsons/Harris vocal coupling. Coming straight atchya from the back-catalogue of the prolific singer-songwriter Tom T.Hall, I Can't Dance takes the mood and tempo up a few notches, with this rendition turning into practically the most concrete example of what I've been on about whenever I've said the words 'cosmic', 'American' and 'music' in one phrase. It's a country standard for starters and one that, while still sharing a lot in common with country music, sounds basically like pure rock 'n' roll. A raucous little tune and keeps up the relentless level of quality of the album so far.

Brass Buttons slows things right back down again, being a sweet little lovesong dating from Parsons' days in obscurity in the mid 60s, although such a sudden change in the feel of the album doesn't bring things down at all, seeing as this is another show of the man's knack for the good old-fashioned, miserable ballad. $1000 Wedding is very similar in that sense, and is another blast from the past as well (having been recorded and aborted by the Burrito Brothers a few years earlier), but this being a soppy little declaration of love, it lacks the sense of misery that dominates Brass Buttons. Still definitely among Parsons' very best though, especially for the wonderful tempo changes and increases in the song's urgency in places.

Then comes the Cash On the Barrelhead/Hickory Wind medley, a little snippet of what seeing the guy tour must have been like. Very good performance overall and, frankly, you can never have too much Hickory Wind in your life, the element of sticking a live medley in the middle of an album does disrupt the flow somewhat, and could only have been one of the posthumous changes made to the album in the post-production stage.

Speaking of Hickory Wind, you can hear little snippets of its melody in the next song (or at least I can), Love Hurts, another slow-burner re-worked during the sessions from its place in the vaults beforehand. Not a bad song by any stretch of the imagination, but certainly a part of the less spectacular part of the album. Ooh Las Vegas, an outtake from GP, does feature some very fine guitar work from Burton and is a neat little up-tempo drinking song, but not exactly what I'd call a highlight.

In My Hour Of Darkness, though, would probably be not only my personal highlight on Grievous Angel, but also quite possibly my favourite Gram Parsons song ever ever ever. Being the only co-write between Parsons and Harris that's ever been officially released, it goes to show that they were a hell of a songwriting partnership as well as a vocal one. If anyone reading this doubts all the praise I've heaped on this guy throughout this thread, listen to this song (you'll find a video if you scroll down a bit).

It's basically what convinces me that Parsons died far, far too young. With the finished album in the bag, Parsons went to the Joshua Tree in California where he died from a lethal combination of morphine and alcohol. After his death his widow, who didn't exactly care much for his relationship with Harris, oversaw the post-production of the album. The sleeve art, which originally featured her late husband and Harris, was replaced with the rather crappy one it has now and, not only was the album credited to Parsons as opposed to him and Harris as it originally had been, but three numbers big on their vocal partnership - Sleepless Nights (the original title of the album), Brand New Heartache and the Angels Rejoiced Last Night - were removed from the final tracklisting. As a result, the flow that Parsons and Harris would have wanted from the album they made was interrupted.

That's not to say that this album was ruined by any means. In fact, it's definitely my favourite of Parsons' solo albums. It is, after all, the most complete realisation of cosmic American music that the man had overseen since his days of playing and writing with the Byrds and the Flying Burrito Brothers. For the virtually seamless level of quality, for those kinds of laid back yet lyric-centric vibes that can only be accomplished with a stonker of a country-afflicted album, this is among my favourites for sure.

As I say though, it's such a shame Parsons died so young as especially after hearing a song like In My Hour Of Darkness, one can only speculate where he and Harris would've gone next as artists, or what kind of classic albums there could have been just around the corner that now no-one will ever hear.

Anyway, less talk, more numbers!
9/10





Erm, yeah, and thanks for reading eh.

A nice, all-encompassing mixtape is on the way...
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Old 10-04-2009, 10:44 AM   #37 (permalink)
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I'd do little album samplers like for my other completed rambling discography thread, but since there are only 6 albums here you might as well get a mixtape for them all at once. So then, if anyone cares to hear a bit more of the music behind the thread, click the picture for the link and help yourself. Best to re-arrange them chronologically as I've done below if you want any kind of flow out of it too.

Gram Parsons In a Nutshell

1. Miller's Cave The International Submarine Band - Safe At Home
2. Luxury Liner The International Submarine Band - Safe At Home
3. Hickory Wind The Byrds - Sweetheart Of the Rodeo
4. One Hundred Years From Now The Byrds - Sweetheart Of the Rodeo
5. Hot Burrito 1 The Flying Burrito Brothers - The Gilded Palace Of Sin
6. Hot Burrito 2 The Flying Burrito Brothers - The Gilded Palace Of Sin
7. Farther Along The Flying Burrito Brothers - Burrito Deluxe
8. Wild Horses The Flying Burrito Brothers - Burrito Deluxe
9. She Gram Parsons - GP
10. That's All It Took Gram Parsons - GP
11. I Can't Dance Gram Parsons - Grievous Angel
12. In My Hour Of Darkness Gram Parsons - Grievous Angel

And here endeth the thread! Thanks for reading. Hope you've enjoyed and maybe picked up on a good album or two from it.
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Old 10-04-2009, 01:28 PM   #38 (permalink)
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good review, it is really hard to pick a favourite Parsons solo album but that one has the coolest title so i guess it takes the cake
shall download this sampler as i am stuck at home base without the ext.HD and the CD drive doesnt work on this infernal machine. Cheers buddy. shame you didnt include 'christine's song', that one gets me moist. the kind of music that makes you wish you had a devil woman just to focus some country misogyny on
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Old 10-04-2009, 01:41 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Yeah, it's a pretty good vibe eh I'd have included it, but two per album keeps this nice and sizeable. Plus both the Hot Burrito songs are too awesome for words, to the extent that everyone needs to hear them both at least once in their lives.

If you're around a bit later I'll pop on MSN by the way. Just gotta finish a little bit of work off here first.
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