The Gordon Lightfoot.

Seven Island Suite.

The great Gordon Lightfoot, who is not only a legend in the music world, but {arguably} rates as the highest-ranked Canadian of all time, has written some of the most iconic and memorable songs ever. A mere sampling is here presented, including some criminally neglected gems.

Townes Van Zandt.

Composer/Vocalist Townes Van Zandt is responsible for many poignant masterpieces; this represents merely a small-ish sampling. Loretta would be a prime example; though the lyrics are warm, a sense of melancholy nonetheless pervades the song. His “hit” Pancho and Lefty was covered by Willie Nelson/Merle Haggard, and wistfulness clearly prevails. The powerful Waitin’ Around to Die speaks for itself.

Tremendously influential, Van Zandt led a life that was quite troubled, being tormented not only by his bipolar condition, but by numerous addictions which eventually cost the great man his life. He contributed in ways difficult to fathom, however, to the musical landscape, and will not soon be forgotten.

David Bowie.

A modest collection of brilliant live performances by Mr. Bowie, with a wondrous, pared-down demo thrown in for good measure. The constantly reinventing, quasi-androgynous David Robert Jones {his birthname} pioneered his way through the music world, leaving the landscape forever altered—with new worlds and vistas previously undreamt of—in his wake.

The Bounding of The Al Stewart.

Two mighty renditions of this Bounding classic.

The maestro of haunting, enigmatic songster-ing, Al Stewart not only achieved immortality via his Bounding {Glaswegian Method}exploits; some of the most indescribably poignant, mysterious works ever composed/performed are entirely his doing.

Stewart here performs the timeless, iconic Year of the Cat; the mighty Lord Grenville {perhaps his finest, most evocative composition…}; and Palace of Versailles, so difficult to ignore or forget.

π‘π‘–π‘π‘˜ πΏπ‘œπ‘€π‘’: π‘ˆπ‘›π‘‘π‘’π‘Ÿπ‘Ÿπ‘Žπ‘‘π‘’π‘‘ π‘ƒπ‘Žπ‘›π‘‘β„Žπ‘’π‘œπ‘› πΌπ‘›β„Žπ‘Žπ‘π‘–π‘‘π‘Žπ‘›π‘‘.

“Ol’ Drain”, as Mr. Nick Lowe is called in some circles {i.e.: The None}—it’s his middle name, and a fine one—wears more than a few musical hats, and pulls it all off in such fashion as would create, probably, a dither of aesthetic paroxysms in any milliner or hatter. Earlier on, (than…??) Lowe, often with mate Dave Edmunds, in Rockpile, showed an uncanny talent for creating clever, charming, quite diabolically catchy songs that perhaps represented the very embodiment , the K2-like apotheosis, of Pure Pop Wonderment. Really…well, it was not fair. One had little to no choice but to come ’round to the man’s idiosyncratic ways. No one, however, minded, it seemed; either that, or such monumental courtesy was shown to Nick {OK, I’ll love it…} than to any other mammalian, extant or extinct.

To siphon away all the hysteria sure to erupt the very second one’s “Earlier on…” gaffe—or was it???—becomes public, let’s open our collective aesthetic Golgi apparati to Brinsley Schwarz. No, not the haberdasher. And yes, I understand that a haberdasher by no means specializes in hatwear, except for those who do. Formerly Kippington Lodge, Brinsley Schwarz gave Mr. Lowe a forum for his musical nascence—he penned So It Goes, and What’s So Funny whilst nestled in the Schwarz collective—and also, presumably, provided a harrowing de facto tutorial on how **not** to name bands.

Right. The supremely accomplished Nick Lowe, and the vastness of his achievements, cannot be adequately summarized. It won’t do. And I’ve already squandered most/all of the allocated space, ranting about…well, if anyone figures that out, do contact me, or the proper authorities. Therefore, I hereby resign my post, and retire to private life. To quote the man himself, as he signed off on a certain Elvis Costello LP: “Now, get happy. Your friend, Producer Nick Lowe.” I think that’s pretty damn cool. Because it is. Costello paid his friend homage many years later, quoting what was proclaimed in the midst of Peace, Love, and Understanding, during the Brinsley years. On Letterman. No. Brinsley Schwarz, nΓ©e Kippington Lodge, did not appear on Letterman. {Nick did, obviously}. Don’t be difficult.

π‘Ίπ’‘π’“π’Šπ’π’ˆπ’”π’•π’†π’†π’.

The songΒ BadlandsΒ is belted out with supreme force (Get It Straight!!) and something else I won’t attempt to name. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a crowd react in quite this way. 2002, in Barcelona.Β Badlands, defiant and uplifting,Β is one of Bruce’s best, to meβ€”the first cut off Darknessβ€”but this is simply transcendent. One sees here, for reals, why many witnesses to Springsteen’s legendary shows view him as an almost religious figure.

From 2009. The mighty and just a bit intense Bruce Springsteen unleashes the goods, ALL of β€˜em, on the moving Something in the Night. This song, from the great 1978 album Darkness on the Edge of Town, is, probably, if gun were put to head , to me, the greatest song the great man wrote. There are many. But this, this just totally embodies Springsteen.

𝑿𝑻π‘ͺ, π’‡π’†π’‚π’•π’–π’“π’Šπ’π’ˆ π‘¨π’π’…π’š π‘·π’‚π’“π’•π’“π’Šπ’…π’ˆπ’†.

Few bands can match XTC’s accomplishments as far as writing/performing memorably quirky, intellectual, and, yes, catchy songs. Lead vocalist Andy Partridge provides the oddball genius charisma to generate a potent cocktail of aural nirvana.

A masterpiece from Rockpalast.
A brilliant, somewhat crazed version.

π‘‡β„Žπ‘’ 𝐸𝑙𝑣𝑖𝑠 πΆπ‘œπ‘ π‘‘π‘’π‘™π‘™π‘œ.

Elvis Costello III
Mr. Elvis Costello.
Same performance as the following YT. 1983.

{Revised: 7/6/2019}

“Bowing, and squawking, Running after tidbits; Bopping and squinting, Just like a nitwit…”

Mr. Elvis Costello: One of the very greatest, most idiosyncratic performers and composers. Of this, or any, century/epoch. We will not see his likes again.

π‘‡β„Žπ‘’ π‘…π‘œπ‘”π‘’π‘Ÿ π‘Šβ„Žπ‘–π‘‘π‘‘π‘Žπ‘˜π‘’π‘Ÿ πΈπ‘₯π‘π‘’π‘Ÿπ‘–π‘’π‘›π‘π‘’.

whittaker on ice I

{Festival.}

He Starts Below.
Good Morning, Starshine.
Those Were The Days.
Don’t Let ‘Em Change.
Candy Cloud.
Pretty Bird.
Mistral. Bilingual.
Mistral. More Whistling.
Flap Flap.
Emily. {English}
Mexican Whistler.
Calypso!
Festival. {!!}
Swaggy. Australian Whistler. {alt version}
Swaggy. True Version.

The supremely talented, somewhat offbeat {esp. back in the day…} whistling mΓ¦stro , composer, and smooth, rich baritone vocalist Roger Whittaker. The man can just plain deliver a song; very gifted with phrasing, etc.