Wow, I'm starting writing this at 10:45 and it's a double record, so I am going to have to listen and write at the same time to get this under my self-imposed Saturday Deadline!
This album is a re-release of his Debut Album "Back Country Suite" and his second effort, "Local Color".
SIDE 1. (Originally released on the album Back Country Suite)
SIDE 2. (Originally released on the album Back Country Suite)
YOU WON'T LET ME GO
I THOUGH ABOUT YOU
ONE ROOM COUNTRY SHACK
SIDE 3. (Originally released on the album Local Color)
SIDE 4. (Originally released on the album Local Color)
TROUBLE IN MIND
I'LL NEVER BE FREE
DON'T EVER SAY GOODBYE
AIN'T YOU A MESS
An incredible piano player, Mose Allison's Jazz styles range from the smooth piano lounge to the snap-your-fingers jazz dance club. It's easy to see how he influenced and is covered by the Clash, The Who, The Stones, Hendrix, Elvis Costello, and the Yardbirds; Van Morrison even did an entire Album's worth. The Pixies song "Allison" is a tribute to him. The songs on these albums, a mixture of his own work and variations on others', are a foundation for his 40+ albums and have a sound that wove through Jazz and Rock for years to follow.
In this reissue, Pete Townshend and Ira Gitler fill the gatefold with tales of his life and his influence on them.
Years before Elvis brought was a white man doing black music, a teenage Mose Allison was playing jazz with an also teenage B.B. King in Memphis.
The first side of the record sounds like something you would hear on Itunes when you double-click a song. The songs start and play for about a minute before fading out, sounding more like a snippet than a complete works. The songs focus on the instrumentation (mainly his piano, but including solos on other instruments), with vocals used sparingly. The sparse use of vocals really pulls you into focus after you lose yourself in the groove of the instrumental tracks. Once you flip the record over, the other three sides have a more traditional length to them and a more complete feel as well. He even plays trumpet on the opening track of the final side.
I love the sounds on old records and I wish sometimes that things had never gone digital. The effect of the old microphones and the recording on to tape has such a warm, comfortable feel to it. Drums were recorded with two microphones and sound better than many of today's ten plus microphone setups.
This record is a terrific example of why I started this project in the first place. I have a whole host of records that I've never listened to and I just knew that I would be exposed to a bunch of new areas of music that I hadn't been previously. This record is a real gem and here's to hoping that I uncover more treasures along the way.
(writing finished at 11:51, record played until 11:59)