Monday, October 10, 2011
Roots, Right Hooks, and Hits
So here are a half-dozen Folk/Roots (&Beyond) CD releases, both new and older,
Purpose + Grace (Topic). Pride of place goes to our guest from across the Pond, Martin Simpson. Back in Old Blighty after several years’ residency in the U.S., Simpson plays a Blues-infused, Anglo-AND-American Folk now, his guitar work smooth and Root-solid, often surprising, occasionally sensational. His own vocals keep improving too, but for this eclectic set, he brought in some big guns: June Tabor, Dick Gaughan, Richard Thompson.
Pull Up Some Dust and Sit Down (Nonesuch). Ry Cooder’s new album
Note of Hope (429 Records). Opening salvo in the big build-up to the 2012 Guthrie centennial. Unfortunately there’s less meat and more aimless motion in this collection of unknown Woody texts nesting in new musical settings. The whole first half of the CD just limps along, but then Kurt Elling’s boogie and Ani DiFranco’s mechanized “Voice”
Wonder Wheel (Jewish Music Group). The Klezmatics had Guthrie Estate approval to adapt some of his Coney Island-era writings to klezmer music…
World Musette (Paris Jazz Corner). Klezmer clarinets, saxes, and fiddles show up sometimes in the wonderful French music called musette—bluesy and triste (sad)
There’s More Pretty Girls Than One (Arhoolie). Both Crumb and fiddler Ian McCamy appeared on World Musette; now, a decade later, comes McCamy's
“Drunken Hiccups” and “Goodbye Booze,” “Ragtime Annie” and “Old Molly Hare,” both the “Dill Pickle” and “Pig Ankle” rags, the “Quebec Quickstep” and “Saint Jobe’s Waltz,”
Catch ya on the other side.