Monday, September 06, 2010

Blog Update: Not Dead Yet

Just wanted to let readers know the status of this blog. We're not dead yet, but have certainly seen better days. I have to admit that blogging has not been particularly rewarding as of late, that couple with a backlog of music (in other formats) that I have yet to listen to means that I haven't been making digital copies of any LPs lately. However, I still have a stack of vinyl that I want to transfer to MP3/CD formats, and so I expect that there will be some posts further down the line. Just can't say when, and ceratinly not done regularly. Until then I encourage you to check out the links to many another fine blog--I do slowly, but regularly try to update the links (deleting ones that haven't had a post in over a year and adding new ones I find). Thanks to all of you who have left comments or sent emails.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Fiebre Amarilla - Fiebre Amarilla (unknown, mid-70s?)

Something different this time. I don't know much about the band or the record, and would probably never have heard it if it hadn't been for the anonymous person up the street who through away a nice little collection of Central and South American lps from the 1970s (thanks, whoever you are). A number of the LPs are pretty cool Latin rock, but many have been reissued in their home countries. That doesn't seem to be the case with this one by Fiebre Amarilla (yellow fever, in English).

Fiebre Amarilla is from El Salvador and is still performing today, but from what I can tell (see Youtube videos below) they've evolved into a more staightforward Latin/Salsa outfit, although still quite good. On this, which I suspect is their 1st album (it's at least self-titled) they perform in a wider variety of styles. In addition to some salsa (including a Joe Cuba cover), you can hear some stone cold funk (check their version of the Beatles' "I Gotta Feeling"), some boogie-rock (check "You'll Belong to Me"), and even a bit of prog-rock ("Introduction"). The band is talented and they some nice vocal harmonies. Songs are in Spanish and English. The whole is a varied and quite tasty release.

Whoever left the album for me didn't place it in the correct sleeve, so I have no cover images for this LP. The picture above is from the sleeve in which I found the record, but is another Fiebre Amarilla album. You can, however, see the band as well as their autographs.

Here is a tracklist
Side A
1. Introduction (Fiebre Amarilla)
2. Let It Bring the Music (Jorge Rivera)
3. I Gotta Feeling (Lennon & McCartney)
4. La Cartera (D.A.R.)
5. Hecho Y Derecho (Joe Cuba)
Side B
6. Por Que No Llegaste Ayer? (German Mangandi)
7. Mananas de Abril (Ele Juarez)
8. Sembre un Poema (German Mangandi & Tony Delgado)
9. Si Yo Canto (Jorge Rivera)
10. You'll Belong To Me (German Mangandi)

Give a listen here.

Here you can check out a couple more recent performances from the group:

Friday, April 30, 2010

Billie Joe Becoat - Reflections from a Cracked Mirror (1969)

I promised an April post and since I have been too busy to copy an LP of my own, I'm reposting this excellent Billy Joe Becoat album. I think it originally appeared on the excellent Retelephone66 blog, one of a number of fine blog that has been getting hammered lately by DMCA complaints (despite the fact that over 1/3rd of the complaints Google receives are not from legitimate copywrite holders & probably none of the albums he's posted are the property of the artists that recorded them). Hopefully, I will avoid a similar fate since this, like all my current posts, has never been reissued and is only available in used record stores. Anyway, since Redtelephone has reposted some of my "rips" I don't think he'll mind me putting this one up.

Billie Joe Becoat released two LPs, of which this is the first, before leaving the music scene and inventing the 2-wheeled drive bicycle (which, I'm pretty sure, was a much more profitable enterprise). He is another fine African-American folk singer, who has been unjustly overlooked. On this album he sings about people setting the cities on fire, about being abandoned by his lover, and about the lives of the poor and dispossessed. Although he's not without a sense of humor about it too--check his satirical Dylan rewrite on "Hi Fiddle De Fi" and the pointed irony on tracks like "I've Got Everything I Need" and "I'm a Good Man, a Fine Man." The arrangements are fairly sparse, consisting of Becoat's acoustic guitar and harmonica and a rhythm section of acoustic bass and occassional tamborine. His voice is pretty good too. But it's the verbal play of Becoat's songs that are the real highlight here. Give it a listen.

As an aside, the record was produced by Ray Shanklin who was a composer for Ralph Bakshi's Fritz the Cat and Heavy Traffic (both great soundtracks).

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

On Vacation

Just a quick update. Actually, I'm not on vacation, although I did get to spend a few days in a hotel while our heat and electricity were off. Now I'm back home buried under 3 feet of snow.

Anyway, it's been a busy winter and I haven't had the energy to post some new music. If you regularly check the blog I'd say come back when Spring arrives--I hope to have another post up sometime in April.

Until then, check the links. I will continue to (slowly) update them and eliminate the dead ones.

Happy new year and all that.