Greetings! This is a strange day, mixed with some sadness, some embarrassment and some ecstacy. The sadness comes from having to write another obit; the embarrassment comes from having witnessed the worst twisting of the National Anthem in history, this time by Christina Aguilara, not to mention the worst half-time show in the history of the Super Bowl; the ecstacy comes from the Packers winning the game and erasing the memories of those other aberrations. Please subscribe to this and the Minneapolis Movies Examiner page. It’s free to have both emailed directly into your life. Thank you!
NEW CD’S, TUES., 8 FEB. ’11:
THE BUCKINGHAMS: “UP CLOSE”: on Renaissance. SRP: $30 (CD/DVD combo). www.thebuckinghams.com
The ’60’s Chicago band is still alive and kickin’ but with Carl Giammarese and Nick Fortuna as the only original members. This is a recent (2010) set recorded and filmed in Indiana. The Buckinghams are re-joining the Happy Together Oldies Tour this summer along with The Turtles, The Association, The Grass Roots and Mark Lindsay (former lead singer of Paul Revere and the Raiders). Without former singer Dennis Tufano, the Buckinghams aren’t quite what they were but the music is still great. Giammarese sang many great trax on their LP’s, especially “Portraits”, their best LP. He also teamed up with Tufano in a venture called, appropriately enough, the Tufano-Giammarese Band. That effort never fared as well as they deserved to but it was an important part of their history. Check out the website for tour dates. They will most likely do a local casino or an outdoor venue if they come here. Best Buy does not currently offer this title. Cheapo and the Fetus have an excellent used section where local shoppers might get lucky. In this case, online shopping (band website, amazon.com, etc.) might be necessary for hardcores. Remember, Cheapo and the Fetus have good luck specially ordering hard to find titles.
FOGHAT: “LAST TRAIN HOME”: on Angel Air. SRP: $20 (Import). www.foghat.com or www.foghat.net.
Foghat, always a borderline blues band disguised as hard rock, has made the full transition to blues, performing such standards as “Needle and Spoon”, “Louisiana Blues” and “Rollin’ and Tumblin'”. They’ve been compared favorably to early Savoy Brown but that’s a pretty brash statement considering how good Kim Simmonds’ band was back then. Still, it’s worth checking out if you like the blues. Best Buy will carry this title for the lowest price. No tour dates for 2011 have been announced yet.
STEVE LUKATHER/EDGAR WINTER: “AN OLD COUPLE LIVE”: on Rockarola Records. SRP: $26 (Import).
Recorded live at North Sea Festival in 2000, this is quite the unusual pairing of Toto’s guitarist and one of blues-rock’s most aggressive performers. Trax include “Frankenstein” and “Tobacco Road”. Best Buy and the Fetus for this one.
THIN LIZZY: “JAILBREAK” DELUXE ED. & “JOHNNY THE FOX” DELUXE ED. SRP: $30 EA. www.thinlizzyonline.com
By now, everyone knows how good these remastered, expanded versions of albums are. These were this band’s two best albums at the height of their popularity. Each package is fully remastered containing BBC live sessions and alternate takes of selected trax. The booklets contain expanded liner notes, new interviews and previously unpublished photos. Check Cheapo and the Fetus first.
OBIT: Former member of Thin Lizzy and solo blues singer/guitarist Gary Moore died of an apparent heart attack at the age of 58 on 6 Feb, ’11. Moore had a melodic style of playing the blues that was the equivalent of the melodic style of rock played by David Gilmour (Pink Floyd). In addition to three stints with Thin Lizzy, Moore toured extensively solo with good friends, played with Colosseum, Greg Lake (of Emerson Lake & Palmer) and was part of a power trio called Bruce Baker and Moore. Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker had previously played together with Eric Clapton as Cream. Moore’s work with them was not quite the same but not very different either. He also played guitar on one track for the Travelling Wilbury’s (“She’s My Baby), a band featuring George Harrison, Tom Petty, Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne.
Moore played Mpls./St. Paul several times solo, giving long and compelling performances that will always remain special to this author. He appeared almost sheepish but his playing was so beautiful, so powerful. His musical presence will be sorely missed by his many fans. Again, that’s trite and obvious but it has to be said as part of acceptance. He was truly great and gone way too young…too soon…
OVER THE RHINE: “THE LONG SURRENDER”: on Great Speckled Dog. SRP: $18. www.overtherhine.com
Over the Rhine are hard to pigeon-hole. Their eclectic presentation is reminiscent of Cowboy Junkies in many ways but they also bring back flashes of Curved Air and the Heartthrobs. They play a mix of rock/country/folk/jazz that is quite appealing, especially the airy style of vocalist Karin Bergquist. This disc contains a very poignant duet with Lucinda Williams. This should be widely available but check Cheapo and the Fetus.
Over the Rhine will appear at the Cedar Cultural Center, near Cedar & Riverside, on Sun., April 10. Tickets are $25. The Cedar is an intimate place to enjoy this band.
THE EAGLES: “GREATEST HITS 1971-1975”: on Elektra/Wea. SRP: $25. www.eaglesband.com
This contains all their early hits and is one of the best-selling hits comps ever. It is remastered on 180 gram vinyl with the original cover art. It sounded great the first time around, then on disc and now-again-on vinyl. Cheapo offers the best prices on new vinyl but Best Buy also has a growing selection.
When all is said and done, it’s about the music…