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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

Dan Dyer sings mournfully,  earnestly and soulfully on these two direct to disc recordings produced at Chad Kassem's Blue Heaven Studios in Salina Kansas. He also plays keyboards and guitar and is accompanied by Michael Hale on drums and backup  vocals  and Mark Williams on bass and cello. 

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

The forced revisiting of old, long neglected favorites is one of the great benefits of reviewing reissues. I hadn’t played this chestnut for years, maybe decades and never in the mono mix since by then stereo ruled—at least for me and a small minority of other kids.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

If you didn’t know who was playing behind the honey-voiced Hartman on “They Say It’s Wonderful,” the opening track of this short, thirty one minute set, you’d probably never guess it was John Coltrane or that Coltrane asked Hartman to collaborate with him and his classic quartet on this mellow, relaxed and relaxing album, all of which was recorded April 7th, 1963.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

Steve Earle’s dusty, gritty tribute to his late friend Townes Van Zandt issued last year is about what you can usually expect from “tribute” albums. The two met when Earle was still a kid and Van Zandt was already established.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

Making a publicity appearance on the Jimmy Fallon show for the latest reissue of Exile on Main Street, Keith Richards professed a preference for vinyl. The audience applauded. Has an expression of a preference for CD ever gotten such a reaction—at least in the last decade? Not likely.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

Listening to Elvis makes clear his indebtedness to Dean Martin and Bryan Ferry’s to Elvis. No doubt Paul McCartney was imitating growing up too. There’s not been a voice like it since, which for detractors is a good thing.  

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 0 comments

This 1957 set spotlights the obscure Chicago alto sax hard bop player John Jenkins who led but one Blue Note session and three altogether in his short recording career, which he ended in the early '60s. 

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 0 comments

Elvis’s first post-Army album created a sensation when it was released just one month after he entered Nashville Studio B on March 20th, 1960, two week after his release from the Army. Unfortunately, for Presley and RCA Elvis Is Back!  wasn’t a big seller because it didn’t contain any hits. Presley had been away for two years.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

The first Costello album backed by The Attractions released in March, 1978 on Radar in the UK and Columbia in America (with differing song lineups) cemented the singer’s leadership in the “angry young man” wing of the late ‘70’s “New Wave” musical explosion. More than expressing anger, the album was a full-blown misogynist outburst that contains some really nasty stuff starting with the opener “No Action,” which is filled some deliciously ugly obsessive/compulsive sentiments.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Sep 01, 2010 1 comments

The opener to this heavily produced album “We Belong Together” owes its existence to Bruce Springsteen, but most of the rest channels Laura Nyro.

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