Wonderful Crazy Night – Elton John

Wonderful Crazy Night

Elton John’s 33rd studio album, co-produced by Elton with T-Bone Burnett and recorded/mixed at the Village in Los Angeles.

Available worldwide on February 5, 2016, all EltonJohn.com pre-order customers will receive an MP3 of the album’s debut single, “Looking Up”, instantly.

Track Listing

  1. Wonderful Crazy Night
  2. In The Name Of You
  3. Claw Hammer
  4. Blue Wonderful
  5. I’ve Got 2 Wings
  6. A Good Heart
  7. Looking Up
  8. Guilty Pleasure
  9. Tambourine
  10. The Open Chord
  11. Free And Easy
  12. England And America

Available in Standard CD, Vinyl, and Super Deluxe box set.

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Cradle to the Grave – Squeeze

The band, Squeeze released their first studio album in 17 years, Cradle to the Grave in the UK on October 2nd. According to The Guardian, the reaction the band is getting live is, “Play more new material!”. That is quite an acknowledgement for the songwriting duo of Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford. They have built an enviable reputation with their classic hits (Up The Junction, Tempted, and Black Coffee  in Bed just to name a few ditties).

 

Sukiyaki – Kyu Sakamoto

The Music Of Our Heart Jukebox recalls noteworthy 45 r.p.m. hits. Today’s selection C5 on Throwback Thursday is “Sukiyaki by Kyu Sakamoto.

The song reached the top of the Billboard Hot 100 charts in the United States in June of 1963, and remains to date the only Japanese-language song ever to have done so. It is one of the best-selling singles of all time, having sold over 13 million copies worldwide.

English: Private photograph from my own collec...
English: Private photograph from my own collection. Photograph taken in 1961-62 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

Jay & The Techniques

I grant you it’s a supercilious song yet I find myself captivated with the hit single, “Apple, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie” by Jay & The Techniques. I recall it as a hit on AM radio in 1967. The song makes me smile when I hear it. It’s a fun, good time classic. We need more hits like this 🙂

Formed in Allentown, Pennsylvania, USA, in the mid-60s, Jay And The Techniques were an interracial pop group best known for the Top 10 debut single ‘Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie’ in 1967. The group consisted of vocalist Jay Proctor and six other members: Karl Landis, Ronald Goosly, John Walsh, George Lloyd, Charles Crowl and Dante Dancho. The group built a following in the northeast and was discovered by producer Jerry Ross, who arranged to have them signed to Smash Records, a subsidiary of Mercury Records.

‘Apples, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie’, was their biggest hit, reaching number 6 in the US in 1967. ‘Keep The Ball Rolling’ was, like the first, based on a children’s game, and it climbed to number 14. The formula held up for one further game-orientated single, ‘Strawberry Shortcake’, which scraped into the Top 40 in 1968. A final chart success, ‘Baby Make Your Own Sweet Music’, ended their run on the pop charts in 1968, but a revived Jay And The Techniques placed ‘Number Onederful’ on the R&B charts in 1976, on Event Records. This was the group’s swan song.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin.

 

 

Jessie Ware Is Everywhere

Jessie Ware is everywhere. The word ingenue comes to mind when I hear her sing. Her début album Devotion a top seller in 2012 is being re-released on April 15th with the addition of four bonus tracks including two previously unheard cuts – ‘Imagine It Was Us’ and ‘Wildest Moments – Feat. A$AP Rocky’.

Is there a track on the album you’re proudest of?

I think maybe “Running“. It came right at the end of the album, and maybe that was when I was at my most relaxed and content and confident, so it became I easier to write. I feel so proud of that song: it sounds like everything that I wanted to achieve, with the references to old soul and dance, and the groove and electronic feel.

Expect more hype to follow when Jessie Ware invades America next month for concert dates in the New York Area and two appearances at Coachella.

Music Journalism A-Z – Aidin Vaziri

Aidin Vaziri

I love to cultivate new music influences. One benefit in blogging this series is to learn more about music journalists I have not experienced yet like Aidin Vaziri.

Aidin Vaziri is a Pop Music Critic for the San Francisco Chronicle. He was featured in the book  “Best Music Writing 2009,” that was edited by Greil Marcus.

Click on the buttons to read his blog and past SF Chronicle articles.

Many of the music journalist’s I have covered have written for the New York Times so it’s refreshing to read the West Coast perspective. San Francisco is such a vibrant music city. Aidin writes about music with conviction and honesty. He’s a straight shooter.Aidin Vaziri

Aidin is adept at interviewing many famous musicians passing through San Francisco. Since turnabout is fair play he was interviewed by The Bold Italic an online San Francisco Magazine. Click on his picture below to read how he parries and thrusts with the questions for a change 😉

Aidin

You can keep up with Aidin Vaziri via Twitter here

Andy Warhol’s The Factory – Men In Black 3

I saw Men In Black 3 last night. My favorite sequence was when they went back in time to Andy Warhol’s The Factory. Bill Hader of SNL fame portrays Andy Warhol. Wouldn’t you just love to have been part of that experience for just a little while, witnessing The Velvet Underground with Lou Reed?

Bill Hader as Andy Warhol in Men in Black 3 (2012)