Friday, September 16, 2005

Rockabilly fans, rejoice!
That's the main message I want to get across after listening to Brian Setzer's Rockabilly Riot! Volume One - A Tribute to Sun Records. Setzer set his sights on Sun's 1954-1957 catalogue and chose 23 songs to interpret and record here using vintage equipment and original drum charts. While there are familiar numbers like Carl Perkins' Blue Suede Shoes and Johnny Cash's Get Rhythm, there are also excellent songs by other artists I've never heard of like Jack Earls, Kenny Parchman, Carl Mann, Gene Simmons (no, not that Gene Simmons), Ernie Barton, Dean Beard and Ray Harris. And then there are songs that I know, but more through covers and not the original versions. These include Red Hot, Boppin' The Blues and Red Cadillac and A Black Moustache (all covered by Robert Gordon, who I've seen half-a-dozen times and who seems due to return to Toronto again soon), Jerry Lee Lewis' Real Wild Child (covered by Teenage Head) and Rockhouse (covered by The Bop Cats). There really isn't any filler here, and the love which the former Stray Cats frontman and guitarist has for this repertoire is obvious.
I don't know if it says more about me, or the state of current music, but two of my favourite albums this year -- this and Jimmie Dale Gilmore's Come On Back -- all reach back to focus on songs that are 50 years old. Look for both of them and you won't be disappointed if you like looking back to one of the golden ages of music.

np Blue Jays 3 - Yankees 1 after one inning

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