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Archive for August 8th, 2013

Humble Pie is Served! Omnivore Preps Box Set of Complete 1971 Fillmore Concerts

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Humble Pie - PerformanceThe latest sensational release in Omnivore Recordings’ catalogue is a massively-expanded edition of Performance: Rockin’ the Fillmore, the 1972 live album and commercial breakthrough by British blues-rockers Humble Pie. This sensational album, taped over two nights at the legendary Fillmore East in the spring of 1971, is now coming out as a four-disc box set featuring all four recorded shows in their entirety.

Humble Pie was the brainchild of Steve Marriott, powerful frontman for The Small Faces, who’d left to pursue other projects in 1969. He very quickly formed Humble Pie with a stunning stable of young talent: drummer Jerry Shirley, a 17-year-old session player for Andrew Loog Oldham’s Immediate label; bassist Greg Ridley, who’d just come off two years with Spooky Tooth; and an 18-year-old Brit known in his native country as the frontman for psych-pop band The Herd but a relative unknown in the rest of the world: Peter Frampton.

Having scored a Top 5 hit that year with “Natural Born Bugie,” Humble Pie would spend 1970 and 1971 attempting to penetrate the American market. That didn’t work much as studio albums and tracks went, but the band’s live act was top-notch. Their two nights at The Fillmore East in May of 1971 featured strong sets, mostly covers of great blues and soul tunes. There was Ida Cox’s “Four Day Creep,” Willie DIxon’s “I’m Ready,” Ray Charles’ “Hallelujah I Love Her So” and “I Don’t Need No Doctor” (penned by Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson), Muddy Waters’ “Rollin’ Stone” and a killer, 23-minute version of Dr. John’s “I Walk on Gilded Splinters.”

Ultimately, Performance made it to Billboard‘s Top 30 in the U.S. – but its success arguably did more favors for Frampton than Humble Pie at large: he left the band before the album was released, and would later release an iconic live album of his own.

This four-disc complete version of Performance features all four Fillmore shows from May 28 and 29, in their original sequences. Much of the original album was sequenced from the second shows on each night – and none of the very first show has ever been released, making this a definite must-buy for fans. Each disc is packed in its own CD wallet, all of which will be housed in a lidded box with new art in the style of the original LP sleeve. Best of all, the shows are newly mixed and mastered, under the supervision of Humble Pie’s surviving members, Shirley and Frampton.

Performance: Rockin’ The Fillmore – The Complete Recordings will be available October 29. Pre-order links from Amazon are not yet available, but the track list is below.

Performance: Rockin’ The Fillmore – The Complete Recordings (Omnivore, 2013)

Disc 1: Friday, 5/28/1971 (first show)

  1. Four Day Creep
  2. I’m Ready
  3. I Walk on Gilded Splinters
  4. Hallelujah (I Love Her So)
  5. I Don’t Need No Doctor

Disc 2: Friday, 5/28/1971 (second show)

  1. Four Day Creep
  2. I’m Ready
  3. I Walk on Gilded Splinters
  4. Hallelujah (I Love Her So) *
  5. Rollin’ Stone *
  6. I Don’t Need No Doctor *

Disc 3: Saturday, 5/29/1971 (first show)

  1. Four Day Creep
  2. I’m Ready
  3. I Walk on Gilded Splinters
  4. Hallelujah (I Love Her So)
  5. Stone Cold Fever *

Disc 4: Saturday, 5/29/1971 (second show)

  1. Four Day Creep *
  2. I’m Ready *
  3. I Walk on Gilded Splinters *
  4. Hallelujah (I Love Her So)
  5. Rollin’ Stone
  6. I Don’t Need No Doctor

* released on original LP – A&M Records SP-3506, 1972

Written by Mike Duquette

August 8, 2013 at 14:43

BBR Unveils Trio of “Winners” From The Jazz Crusaders, Inner Life and Kleeer

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Jazz Crusaders - Give Peace a ChanceOdds and Ends Dept.: In the excitement over Big Break Records’ recent quartet of titles from Philadelphia’s Baker-Harris-Young production partnership, we temporarily overlooked three no-less-worthy, just-released reissues from the busy Cherry Red imprint: The Jazz Crusaders’ Give Peace a Chance, Kleeer’s Winners, and Inner Life’s self-titled album.

Prior to reinventing themselves as The Crusaders in 1971 and emphasizing a funkier electric style, Joe Sample (piano), Wilton Felder (saxophone), Stix Hooper (drums) and Wayne Henderson (trombone) carved out a niche in the West Coast jazz scene with their blend of bop, soul and R&B. They were notable for the unusual piano/sax/drums/trombone composition of the group, and recorded a series of albums for the Pacific Jazz label beginning in 1961. By 1969, they found themselves recording on Liberty, the label that purchased Pacific in 1965. The group’s first Liberty album, Give Peace a Chance, has just been reissued by BBR.

The Jazz Crusaders latched onto John Lennon’s song (originally credited to Lennon and McCartney) just months after Lennon introduced it in 1969, and it became the title of their September 1970 album release. As he had in the past, bassist Charles “Buster” Williams joined the group; Williams had previously played for the likes of Lee Konitz, Nancy Wilson and Herbie Hancock. The short, eight-song LP included “Give Peace”along with one other Lennon/McCartney copyright, “Blackbird,” as well as the blues standard “The Thrill is Gone” and a brace of originals from Hooper, Felder and Sample. With both of the Lennon/McCartney songs and “Thrill” on the first side of the original LP, it pointed the way towards the group’s future amalgamation of pop, rock, soul and jazz; the second side concentrated on the more adventurous originals.

Give Peace a Chance turned out to be The Jazz Crusaders’only album for Liberty; they soon moved over to the Motown-distributed Chisa label and then to Motown’s West Coast arm, MoWest. More successes as, simply, The Crusaders followed for Blue Thumb and MCA including 1979’s smash Street Life LP. But by that point, Henderson had already quit the band. Hooper would step down in 1983, and Felder and Sample called it a day in 1991. Various reunions have occurred since, though the original four have yet to reunite fully. The original eight-track Give Peace a Chance LP, produced by Richard Bock, has been remastered by Mark Stratford and reissue producer Wayne A. Dickson. Stephen “SPAZ” Schnee has contributed new liner notes.

After the jump: the latest reissues from Kleeer and Inner Life! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 8, 2013 at 12:30

Paul Allen and the Underthinkers’ “Everywhere at Once” Welcomes Joe Walsh, Chrissie Hynde, Ann and Nancy Wilson, Derek Trucks

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Paul Allen - Everywhere at OnceFor years, Paul Allen has been leading a double life.  By day, he’s known as the co-founder of Microsoft, a company which needs no introduction.  He currently heads Vulcan, Inc.; its holdings include Ticketmaster, the Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trailblazers.  With an estimated net worth of $15 billion, Allen routinely ranks high on the Forbes 400, and his philanthropic activities add up to lifetime giving of over $1.5 billion.  But that’s only part of the story.  Allen is also a lifetime music devotee.  The founder of Seattle’s Experience Music Project Museum, he played violin from second grade, and guitar from age 16.  Today, Allen owns legendary guitars by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, George Harrison, and Eric Clapton, and his lifelong love of music has just translated into the release of the first album by Paul Allen and the Underthinkers.  Everywhere at Once has just arrived from Legacy Recordings, and features Allen as both songwriter and guitarist, joined by a Who’s Who of musical talent including Chrissie Hynde, Ann and Nancy Wilson, Joe Walsh, Derek Trucks, and Clapton’s frequent collaborator Doyle Bramhall II.  Everywhere at Once is Allen’s second major statement on record, following a 2000 album with his band The Grown Men.

Once Everywhere at Once establishes its likeably polished blues-rock feel, the pace rarely slackens.  Almost entirely produced by Bramhall and Justin Stanley, it showcases Allen as a committed songwriter and an electric guitarist beholden not just to his hero Hendrix, but to roots-rockers like Clapton, The Band and Delaney and Bonnie and Friends.  Though he doesn’t play on every song, Allen either wrote or co-wrote every track on the album with Bramhall, Ty Baillie, or his bandmates John Bohlinger (guitar), Doug Barnett (bass) and Tim Pike (vocals).  And if a man can be judged by the company he keeps, Allen has nothing to worry about; in addition to those fine musicians, David Hidalgo of Los Lobos also contributes guitar to nearly every track.

We take a closer look after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 8, 2013 at 11:34