So over the weekend I’ve been listening to a variety of music: something old, Phil Ochs’ Pleasures of the Harbor, something new Notorious The Road to Damascus, something borrowed Jennifer Warnes’ Famous Blue Raincoat and something blue(s) Vorih Blues Band ‘s album Blues De Ville
Something Old: I think that somewhere along the line I had a copy of Phil Ochs’ album Pleasures of the Harbor. Actually, I think that I had it on eight track tape! Anyway it was good to hear the complete album again. I say to “hear the complete album” again because several of the tracks on the album have been listened to over the years! Songs like “Flower Lady” (one of my favorite all time Ochs songs), and “Outside of a Small Circle of Friends”, “Pleasures of the Harbor” and “The Crucification” have all appeared on other compilation albums like There But for Fortune. But it was good to hear songs like the opening track “Cross My Heart” and “The Party” for the first time in a long time!! …….”and I crawled beneath the rug and re-tuned my piano”
Something New: Notorious is mostly a duo, composed of Eden MacAdam-Somer (violinist, fiddler) and Larry Unger, sometimes they’re a trio if they add Sam Bartlett on mandolin and jaw harp, and sometimes a quartet if they add Bartlett and Mark Hellenberg on percussion and banjo/uke. From their website:
“Eden MacAdam-Somer is a remarkable musician. Violinist, fiddler (there’s a difference), clogger, and vocalist, she bowed, plucked, and danced up a storm, Unger contributing harmony, rhythm, musical ambiance and style. And style there was – in abundance…MacAdam-Somer has mastered it and Unger hung on for the ride. Heartrending vocals poured through All Night Long and a Jewish wedding song. Singing and fiddling at the same time is her specialty, but her rendition of a Vaughan-Williams piece for soprano and violin was truly extraordinary.” – Michael Huebner, Birmingham New
Notorious plays a mixture of folk, Celtic, Gypsy, and Eastern European music “Hora Miresii” is a Romanian song and “Caje Sukaarije” is a song made popular by Macedonian singer vocalist, songwriter, and humanitarian Esma Redžepova. Throughout the rest of the album are great instrumentals like “Blues at Daybreak”, “Hangman’s Reel” and “Planxty Eden” along with tracks where Eden’s vocals shine like “Wild Rose of the Mountain” and a great song “Do You Know What It Means to Lose New Orleans”. All in all it was a good album that I know is going to be listened to a lot!
Time for a break and then Something Borrowed and Something Blue(s)!
Here’s a performance of a Romanian Train Song by Notorious