When Was The Last Time You Played This Album?

Blues

Bonnie Raitt “Nick of Time”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#160 in the Series) is Bonnie Raitt, Nick of Time.

In 1988, Bonnie Raitt was one of many performers that would continuously pound out good release after good release but never really popped!  We’ve seen a ton of these acts. ‘Boy is she good. I’m surprised that she’s not better known.’  There was the odd Me and the Boys or Angel From Montgomery, but the lady from California still wasn’t a household name.  Heck she wasn’t as well-known as her stage star father John Raitt.

Then she met Don Was.  Don was a producer that had done well with the great band Was (Not Was) and had produced a few other acts as well.  Be his career was quite a bit like Bonnie’s. Ok, but not spectacular.

They met when Don was putting together a compilation of Disney songs for an album. The session went well and Raitt and Was decided to continue in to another project that would become, Nick of Time. It was if the title track decribed both of their feeling about meeting the other at this point in their careers.

Nick of Time ended up selling 5 million copies and garnered Ms. Raitt three Grammy Awards.  It was ranked #229 on Rolling Stone Magazines Top 500 Albums of All Time.  It won Grammy’s for Album of the Year, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.

The biggest hit on Top 40 radio was Have a Heart. The biggest hit on rock radio was John Hiatt’s Thing Called Love.  The best song on the album was the title cut, Nick of Time.

Guest artists a plenty were on the album. To name some, David Crosby, Graham Nash, Sweet Pea Atkinson and Sir Harry Bowens from Was (Not Was), Paulinho Da Costa, Ricky Fataar, Herbie Hancock and Kim Wilson.

Don Was continued to produce Bonnie on her next album, Luck of the Draw. It sold seven million copies.

Here’s some Bonnie Videos. Nick of Time, Have a Heart and lastly a live version of Thing Called Love from an old Farm Aid show complete with John Hiatt!


Tom Waits “Blue Valentine”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day is Tom Waits, “Blue Valentine.”

What a piece of music this one is.  I just love Tom Waits.  This is yet another example of the album I love is the tour I saw.

I can’t remember the name of the place. But there was a little roadhouse between Merrillville + Valparaiso, Indiana where I saw this tour.  It had to be in 1978 or ‘79.  The opening act was Leon Redbone who had laryngitis that night and did everything instrumental.  He then held up a ‘thank you’ sign after every song.

TW does an amazing version of ‘Somewhere” from West Side Story as an opening number on this album. It’s truly a remarkable version.

Other highlights include ‘Red Shoes By the Drugstore, Whistlin’ by the Graveyard, Romeo is Bleeding, $29’ and of course, ‘Christmas Card From a Hooker in Minneapolis.’

His concert from this tour was just as strong.  It’s hard to remember much of it.  I do know that he opened the show leaning against a gas pump smoking a cigarette.  I’ve actually seen this tour on Austin City Limits if you can catch it.


Atlanta Rhythm Section “Red Tape”

Today’s “Cool Album of the Day” is Atlanta Rhythm Section, “Red Tape.”

Kind of a forgotten band here. Atlanta Rhythm Section was all over the radio in the late 70’s early 80’s. ‘Red Tape” was a little before that.

This album was released in 1976. Some of the best tracks were ‘Jukin/San Antonio Rose, Free Spirit’ and especially ‘Mixed Emotions.’

Recorded in Doraville, Georgia and released on Polygram, “Red Tape” peaked at #146 on the Billboard Top 200 Charts while the only single to chart, ‘Free Spirit’ reached #85.


Roy Buchanan “Roy Buchanan”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#90 in the Series) Is Roy Buchanan’s self titled debut, “Roy Buchanan.”

Have you heard this guy play guitar? I can never say who’s the best guitar player to walk the planet. But I can tell you who I think would be in the team picture. Roy Buchanan would be in the team picture!

“Roy Buchanan” was released in August of 1972. It’s a great blues album.

It features what I think was Roy’s best song, ‘The Messiah Will Come Again.”

It’s hard to believe that it’s been 22 years since Roy left us.


Keith Richards “Talk is Cheap”

Today’s Cool Album of the Week is Keith Richards, ‘Talk is Cheap.”

I think I listen to this album more than any Stones album.

Great songs, great arrangements, great musicians, great performances. But talk is cheap. So give a listen to ‘Struggle, Take It So Hard, You Don’t Move Me’ and ‘I Could Have Stood You Up.’

Word has it that this 1988 recording was during a period when Keith and Mick weren’t getting along to well. Hence the song, ‘You Don’t Move Me.’

The thing that most impressed me during these sessions was the band that Keith assembled. Later to be dubbed ‘The X-pensive Winos.’

He had Waddy Wachtel on guitar, Steve Jordan on drums, Ivan Neville on keys. Guest appearances by NRBQ’s Joey Spampinato, Bobby Keys, Bootsy Collins!, Chuck Leavell and even some guy named Mick Taylor.

Talk is Cheap was produced by Keith Richards and Steve Jordan and peaked at #24 on the Billboard Top 200.

Here’s a live version of ‘Struggle’ followed by ‘You Don’t Move Me Anymore.’


Little Feat “Down on the Farm”

Today’s Cool Album of The Day is Little Feat, Down on The Farm.

This album was released in 1979. It was being recorded when lead singer, slide guitarist, front man Lowell George passed away. Today is the 31st anniversary of Lowell death.

It wasn’t one of the bands better selling, nor better received albums. But I loved it. It’s one of my Little Feat favorites.

Favorite tracks? They’d include, ‘Six Feet of Snow, Down on The Farm, Perfect Imperfection’ and ‘Wake Up Dreaming.’

Some interesting guest players on the disc. David Linley, Robben Ford, Sneaky Pete Kleinow (Flying Burrito Brothers), Bonnie Raitt and future Little Feat member, Fred Tackett.

Lowelll George
(4-13-45) — (6-29-79)

Here’s a video of the title track but for something different. It’s by Paul Barrere’s band, The Bluesbusters, it’s followed up by Feel the Grove.


The Rolling Stones “Exile On Main Street”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day is….Could there be any other choice for today? ……. The Rolling Stones,’ “Exile On Main Street.”

Not a bad album huh? I’m sure we know about the reissue today. I don’t have it yet. I’m sure I’ll get it. I’ve heard mixed things about the new tracks. I’ll make up my mind for myself, thank you.

This album contains possibly my favorite Stones track. One of the Stones most complex tunes, ‘Rocks Off.’ Completely under-rated and under appreciated.

Some better known Stones classics also appeared here. You know them. ‘Tumbling Dice, Happy, All Down the Line,’ and ‘Let it Loose.’

Besides Mick, Keith, Bill, Mick and Charlie, were also treated to some great guest musicians here. Nicky Hopkins, Lisa Fischer and Bobby Keys (of course), but also Al Perkins, Billy Preston and Dr. John, etc etc.