Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Charlie Louvin - Love At Home

Did you all see these gob-smaking photos in the Observer at the weekend? There's a whole series of 'american legend' portraits - please do click through if you missed them - highly recommended.

I've been meaning to post this since it grabbed me by the throat on the train the other day, and this picture was just the kick I needed. You all know by now that I'm a sucker for anything 'home' related; add to that a cracked and weathered voice and a hint of gospel, and, frankly, I'll be a snivelling wreck. Enjoy.

Listen: Charlie Louvin - Love at Home.

Buy Steps to Heaven.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

RIP Carl Smith - the gentleman honky-tonker

Oh no. Remember last week's post about Goldie Hill and how love led her away from the blues? Well, this is the fella that made her happy enough to stop singing the blues, and he died today.

Carl Smith is the "gentleman honky-tonker", a bit more brushed up that your Hanks or your Ernests, but his is still a proper honky-tonk, steel-soaked, tears-in-your-beer world. There's a real charm to his stuff, perfect for a gentle sway around the kitchen.

Listen: Carl Smith - Guilty Conscience

Listen: Carl Smith - If Teardrops Were Pennies

Buy it

He's also known for being married to June Carter Cash in her pre-Cash incarnation, and they had a daughter called Carlene. Love that.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Frank Sinatra - Cycles

Okay, so it's the end of the first day of a week working from home and it's not boding well. I've already cracked through a lot of Walker Brothers and Scott, a fair whack of Francoise and now I've got the big guns out with a spot of Frank.

It doesn't look good, people. And I'm taking you all down with me.

Do you all know this album? It's not flawless but there are some crackers on here - and, well, it is Frank. And, oh, just listen to those strings...

Listen: Frank Sinatra - By The Time I Get to Phoenix

Listen: Frank Sinatra - Rain in my Heart

Buy.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Rhett Miller

Hang on a minute, what's this? Something new on lonesome? Why, yes, newish and very fine indeed.

Rhett Miller (of Old 97s semi-fame) released an eponymous album last year that very nearly passed me by, so I'm pleased to have caught up with this. [Likewise, I nearly missed the Sara Hawkins one - more on that in another post]. It's a cracking album, with unexpected twists and turns and very good company indeed.

Listen: Rhett Miller - Nobody Says I Love You Anymore

Listen: Rhett Miller - Sometimes

Buy

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Julie London - 'Round Midnight


In response to this post by Mr H.

We had quite a few emails about the divine Ms London last time she went up, so here's another, and it's a belter. Swoon.

Listen: Julie London - 'Round Midnight

Do yourself a very big favour and buy it.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Goldie Hill - Don't Send Me No More Roses

Right, hands up who knows about Goldie Hill? I must confess that I didn't until last year, when my friend Kate shared her copy of this little beauty, a re-release of some of Goldie's unrelentingly miserable hits.

It's full-on 1950's heartbreak, bleak as hell and bloody marvellous. Along with Kitty Wells, Goldie was one of the first women to score a country number one hit. Apparently love and Nashville radio made her go a bit more uptempo in the 1960's, but we're not here for that, are we?

Listen: Goldie Hill - Call Off The Wedding (this starts with the wedding march and a talky bit - joys!)

Listen: Goldie Hill - I'm the Lonliest Gal in Town

Buy it - they're all as good.