Posts Tagged ‘Columbia Records’

Jeff Lynne will release the 14th Electric Light Orchestra album, From Out of Nowhere, on November 1st via Columbia Records. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee previewed the LP , the second billed under the moniker “Jeff Lynne’s ELO” following 2015’s Alone in the Universe — with the dreamy title track.

“From Out of Nowhere” conjures vintage ELO, minus the symphonic edge of the band’s layered keyboards and strings. “Let me go, let me fly to a place that I love,” Lynne croons over a jangling, descending guitar progression and steady, choppy drums. “Let me fly away and start anew.

ELO recently concluded their second North American tour since 1981, featuring Dhani Harrison as opener. Lynne, the band’s singer-songwriter, performed virtually every instrument on the new record — just as he did on Alone in the Universe. Accordingly he played “nearly every note of the music on guitars, bass, piano, drums, keyboards and vibes, as well as singing all of the lead and layered harmony vocals,” with engineer Steve Jay “[adding] some percussion.”

“From Out of Nowhere — that’s exactly where it came from,” Lynne said in a statement. “That’s the first one I wrote for this album, and it’s kind of like that.” He noted that he was aiming to spread optimism with both the song and album: “Everybody’s got to have a bit of hope.”

bruce springsteen there goes my miracle, bruce springsteen, bruce springsteen western stars, bruce springsteen new album

Bruce Springsteen is gearing up to release his first new album in five years, Western Starsdue out on June 14th via Columbia Records. The solo album marks Springsteen’s first collection of new, original songs since 2012’s Wrecking Ball. He had previously released an album of covers and re-worked originals, High Hopes, in 2014.

Following the release of the album’s lead single, “Hello Sunshine”, Springsteen has shared “There Goes My Miracle”, the second single from his forthcoming Western StarsLP. “There Goes My Miracle” features some impressive vocal arrangements from The Boss along with a lush string section. “There Goes My Miracle” features a lush and orchestral arrangement, with melodic detours more reminiscent of the Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds than Glen Campbell, even though some electronic drums show up midway through the bridge.

Much like Springsteen’s previous two albums, Ron Aniello produced the project in addition to playing bass, keyboard and other instruments during the tracking sessions. Western Stars also features work from over 20 musicians, including original E Street Band keyboard player David Sancious and violinist Soozie Tyrell, as well as organist Charlie Giordano, who currently plays with the group. Jon Brion, who’s best known for his work with Kanye West and Fiona Apple, also contributed in playing celeste, Moog, and Farfisa to the album. Springsteen’s wife and E Street bandmate Patti Scialfa is responsible for the vocal arrangements on four songs and contributes her vocals on several others. It’s uncertain whether Springsteen will tour in support of his forthcoming album. Recently, while chatting with Martin Scorsese at a Netflix event in Los Angeles, Springsteen revealed “I wrote almost an album’s worth of material for the band. And it came out of just … I mean, I know where it came from, but at the same time, it just came out of almost nowhere. And it was good, you know?”

He noted that it woke him out of a seven-year stretch where he was doubting the prospect of any new music. He said was relieved after the “little daily visitations” of creativity. “You go, Fuck, I’m not fucked, all right?” he said. “There’ll be another tour!”

Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band have been off the road since their Working on a Dream tour wrapped in 2017.

Western Stars arrives on June 14.

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Vampire Weekend have shared yet another taste of their highly-anticipated LP Father of the Bride” in the form of two singles, entitled “This Life” and “Unbearably White.” . The rollout to “Father of the Bride” – due out on May 3rd – CONTINUES!.

Following on from the release of “Sunflower,” Vampire Weekend return with “This Life.”

It’s an ebullient piece of music that finds Ezra Koenig sharing vocal duties with Danielle Haim, with both artists singing about life’s woes over a sanguine guitar line that alludes to Van Morrison’s “Brown Eyed Girl.”

The first tune features additional vocals from Haim guitarist Danielle Haim as well as guitar work by Time Crisis (Jake Longstreth), who hosts a Beats1 radio show with VW frontman Ezra Koenig.

On the other hand, the very tongue-in-cheek “Unbearably White” – which acknowledges a criticism often hurled at the band – is a production-heavy, somewhat psychedelic come down.

Father of the Bride will be release on May 3rd via Columbia Records

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Last week, Vampire Weekend continued to roll out tracks from their upcoming new album, Father of the Bride” (due out May 3rd via Columbia Records), and today the band shared a new video for one of the new tunes, “Sunshine,” a playful track featuring The Internet’s Steve Lacy.

The video, which was directed by Jonah Hill and features some disorienting camera work, follows Lacy and frontman Ezra Koenig as they walk through Upper East Side Manhattan staples Zabar’s and Barney Greengrass, and happen to run into comedian Jerry Seinfeld at the latter establishment.

Vampire Weekend will play a run of London shows later this month

Fresh off a two-record stint with Asylum, Bob Dylan returned to Columbia Records in 1975 with one of the most acclaimed records of his career.  Blood on the Tracks found Dylan reinvigorating the “confessional” singer-songwriter genre, even as he repeatedly insisted that the album’s songs had no relation to his own life and then-recent marital turmoil.  Whatever the truth, Blood on the Tracks was painfully raw, vulnerable, and altogether exquisite, boasting such all-time classic compositions as “Tangled Up in Blue,” “Simple Twist of Fate,” and “Shelter from the Storm.”   The making of the album was anything but smooth, however – and now, the full story can be told on the fourteenth volume of Dylan’s long-running Bootleg Series More Blood, More Tracks will be available on November 2nd as a 6-CD box set or 2-LP/1-CD highlights editions, chronicling the album’s original New York sessions and subsequent Minnesota rebirth via all of the extant session material including 75 previously unreleased tracks.

Dylan began recording at New York’s A&R Studios with producer-engineer Phil Ramone on September 16th, 1974. The first group of musicians including Eric Weissberg and his band, Deliverance, only lasted a couple of days before the artist brought in Paul Griffin on organ and Buddy Cage on steel guitar.  (Tony Brown was retained from Weissberg’s group.)  After ten days and four sessions with this group, Dylan had assembled an entire 10-song album which Columbia took to the test pressing stage in November.  But the restless Dylan had second thoughts.  With a new set of musicians, he entered Minneapolis’ Sound 80 studios in December.  In a couple of days, he re-recorded five of the ten songs, and the raw, stark, and powerful Blood on the Tracks as we know it was finished.

Over the years, session material has trickled out.  Only one of the five tracks from the test pressing, “You’re a Big Girl Now,” has ever been officially reissued.  It appeared on the Biograph box set along with a version of the outtake “Up to Me.”  Subsequently, The Bootleg Series Vols. 1-3featured New York alternate takes of “Tangled Up in Blue,” “Idiot Wind,” and “If You See Her, Say Hello.”  “Call Letter Blues,” an embryonic version of “Meet Me in the Morning,” was also included on that set.  An alternate of “Shelter from the Storm” was released on the Jerry Maguire soundtrack, and in 2012, an alternate “Meet Me in the Morning” appeared as the B-side of “Duquesne Whistle” on a Record Store Day single.  That left “Lily, Rosemary, and the Jack of Hearts” as the only song from the New York sessions which had not been released in any take.

More Blood, More Tracks follows the format of The Bootleg Series Vol. 12: The Cutting Edge 1965-1966 in presenting all of the available studio material in chronological order and so every song is heard in multiple versions.  (Alas, it seems much of the Minnesota session material no longer exists.)  The leadoff “single” is the first take of “If You See Her, Say Hello.”The 6-CD box set boasts a lengthy hardcover book featuring new liner notes as well as high-quality reproductions of pages from Dylan’s original notebooks used during the Blood on the Tracks sessions. A 1-CD or 2-LP version will have one alternate version of each song plus one take of “Up to Me.”

The Bootleg Series Vol. 14: More Blood, More Tracks arrives from Columbia/Legacy on November 2nd.

The earlier album sessions that went down in New York City left many more demos and alternate versions on the cutting room than most anyone outside the innermost Dylan camp imagined.

Disc 1 consists entirely of Dylan alone in the studio, accompanying himself on guitar and harmonica, at the very beginning of the process. None of these appeared on the original album. The second disc is made up of Dylan’s initial band sessions with the group Eric Weissberg & Deliverance, whom he quickly grew dissatisfied with and replaced. Only one of those made the finished album. It’s these two discs that may represent the greatest treasure trove for serious fans.

But the remaining four discs are hardly fool’s gold themselves. Disc 3 finds him continuing to work in New York with a mostly different band that was more to his liking and produced more of the eventual album. On Discs 4 and 5 and the first part of Disc 6, he ditches that band and performs the songs solo once again, or with just a bass player, ending the New York portion of the proceedings as intimately as they started, in the creation of what many consider his most intimate album.

Bob DylanMore Blood, More Tracks: The Bootleg Series Vol. 14(Columbia/Legacy, 2018)

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Remembering Alexander Lee “Skip” Spence, born on April 18th, 1946, born in Windsor, Ontario, Canada — he died on April 16yj, 1999.

He was co-founder of Moby Grape, and played guitar with them until 1969. The first Moby Grape album is probably in the Top 10 Psychedelica rock albums of all time! Skip released only one solo album, 1969’s Oar, and then largely withdrew from the music industry. He had started his career as a guitarist in an early line-up of Quicksilver Messenger Service, and was the drummer on Jefferson Airplane’s debut album, Jefferson Airplane Takes Off.
He has been described on the Allmusic website as “one of Psychedelia’s brightest lights”; however, his career was plagued by drug addictions coupled with mental health problems, and he has been described by a biographer as a man who “neither died young nor had a chance to find his way out.”

Described as “one of the most harrowing documents of pain and confusion ever made”,the album was recorded after Spence had spent six months in Bellevue Hospital. Spence had been committed to Bellevue following a delusion-driven attempt to attack his ex Moby Grape bandmates Don Stevenson and Jerry Miller with a axe.

In November 1968, Alexander ‘Skip’ Spence stepped outside Bellevue Hospital for the first time in five months. While he had dozens of new songs and sketches in his head, he was no longer a member of Moby Grape. He needed another outlet. Meeting with producer David Rubinson at a hotel in Manhattan, Spence hatched a plan to record his new material in Tennessee.

Receiving some advance money from Columbia, he bought a motorcycle, and… well, either he returned to his family in California, or he drove down to Nashville. The timeline and course of events is uncertain. What is certain, however, is that in early December, Spence entered Columbia’s Nashville studio on 16th Ave. Though his future was unclear, he was ready to embark on a solo project. It turned out to be a recording process – and record – like no other.

The 12 original songs on Oar communicate a whole range of emotions. Often, it’s as though Spence is whispering to us, stuck somewhere between accusation and confession. At times, he croons in a baritone, telling tales of travel and betrayal. Other times, he cracks himself up with his own wordplay. There are moments when his music veers towards the dreamy, others when the sense of intimacy is arresting.

After its original release in May 1969, Oar went out of print. Yet over the years it has returned to us again and again. When first released, Oar was not promoted by Columbia Records, despite pleadings fromproducer  Rubinson. It was at the time the lowest-selling album in Columbia Records history. Subsequent reissues have added ten more songs, in different stages of completion, to the original dozen. The original release ended with a fade out of “Grey / Afro”. The 1999 Sony/Sundazed reissue appends “This Time He Has Come” to a fade-less “Grey / Afro”, which reflects how the two songs appeared on the master tapes.

Bob dylan nashvilleskyline

Released 50 years ago, it surely is one of his most controversial albums.. “Embracing” classic Country music & kicking off the “Country Rock” genre. I’ve always liked this album… It’s not a masterpiece, but a solid Dylan album.
Recorded February 12th–21th, 1969 Nashville Skyline was the ninth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released in April 1969 by Columbia Records.

He’s worn many hats throughout his career—rock star, folk crooner, musical intellectual and political troubadour—and 50 years ago, he unexpectedly added country singer to that list. Dylan released Nashville Skyline, one of the most noteworthy style deviations in his discography, it ranks high among the best albums of that year. It features the suggestive hit “Lay, Lady, Lay,” Bob Dylan’s finest drawl and a reworked version of his 1963 tune “Girl From The North Country” featuring the country king himself, Johnny Cash.

Building on the rustic style he experimented with on John Wesley Harding, “Nashville Skyline” displayed a complete immersion into country music. Along with the more basic lyrical themes, simple songwriting structures, and charming domestic feel, it introduced audiences to a radically new singing voice from Dylan—a soft, affected country croon. At the time, the album was viewed as yet another new direction for Dylan, whose previous album had been the spare, rustic, lyrically opaque, acoustic guitar-based John Wesley Harding(1967); itself a departure from the mostly electric sound of Highway 61 Revisited (1965) and Blonde on Blonde (1966). Both Blonde on BlondeandJohn Wesley Harding were recorded in Nashville, the latter using three local musicians exclusively, but when he returned to Nashville in February 1969 to record Nashville Skyline(released in April ’69), he embraced country music more than he ever had before—penning simpler, more straightforward lyrics, doing a deeper dive into country instrumentation as accompaniment, and also singing with a much warmer, sweeter tone than he had shown before,

The first track on the album was a retooling of a tune Dylan originally wrote and recorded in 1963 for The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (his second album), called “Girl from the North Country.” On Nashville Skyline it was sung as a duet with Johnny Cash, which might sound like an unusual pairing, but the two had actually been friends dating back a few years when both lived in Woodstock, New York. Cash even wrote an evocative liner notes poem for the Nashville Skyline.

When Johnny Cash began his three-year run as host of a popular—and excellent!—summer TV series, The Johnny Cash Show, which was shot at Nashville’s famed Ryman Auditorium and each week featured various country and country-leaning artists. Dylan, who had barely been seen in public since early 1966, agreed to appear on the June 7th episode of Cash’s show, and they sang this version of “Girl from the North Country,” no doubt baffling some of his old fans, while introducing himself to many, many new ones.

Watch Dylan perform the song “Girl From The North Country” live in Oakland, Calif., in 1988

The result received a generally positive reaction from critics, and was a commercial success. Reaching number 3 in the US, the album also scored Bob Dylan his fourth UK number 1 album.

bob dylan nashville skyline back

“Lay Lady Lay” turned out to be one of Dylan’s biggest pop hits, reaching #7 in the US, and giving him his biggest single in three years. “Lay Lady Lay” was originally written for the film Midnight Cowboy, but Dylan did not deliver it in time for it to be included in the score. He was initially reluctant to authorize the single’s release, but eventually approved at the insistence of Columbia president Clive Davis.

In the end, Nashville Skyline is a lovely album but not a heavyweight contender, though its effects were major ones. Country music was despised, hick music when Dylan took it up. People were divided into the hip and the non-hip. The counterculture was in full swing and riddled with its own self-importance and snobbery. Nashville Skyline was a hard pill to swallow: but it did ’em good. Nashville Skyline was a full-fledged country album, complete with steel guitars and brief, direct songs. It’s a warm, friendly album, particularly since Bob Dylan is singing in a previously unheard gentle croon — the sound of his voice is so different it may be disarming upon first listen, but it suits the songs.

So here he is, folks, Homebody Bob, singin’ ten songs for your listenin’ pleasure — well, nine, actually one is a hoedown sort o’ thing. Everyone knows by now, I hope, how intense that pleasure is. But hasn’t anyone noticed something odd? ….. but no one mentioned that by the mere trick of changing his entire vocal style, Dylan had crossed us up again, that “Nashville Skyline” was a bigger switcheroo than “John Wesley Harding.” It is touching that everyone wants to believe Bobby has settled down, but don’t bet on it. All those protestations of easy innocence may be just one more shuck.

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Blood on the Tracks is the fifteenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, released in January 1975 on Columbia Records. The album marked Dylan’s return to Columbia after a two-album stint with Asylum Records. Most of the lyrics on the album revolve around heartache, anger, and loneliness.

The album, which followed on the resurgence of critical acclaim for Dylan’s work after Planet Waves, was greeted enthusiastically by fans and critics. In the years following its release it has come to be regarded as one of his best albums; it is common for subsequent records to be labeled his “best since Blood on the Tracks.” It is also commonly seen as a standard for confessional singer-songwriter albums; though Dylan has denied that the songs are autobiographical, but his son Jakob Dylan has stated: “The songs are my parents talking.”

 

With good reason, Dylan is most revered for his nearly unparalleled streak of legendary albums in the 1960s (including 1963’s The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, 1965’s Highway 61 Revisited, and 1966’s Blonde on Blonde), but he saved arguably his finest album ever until 1975, making one of rock ’n’ roll’s most jaw-dropping comebacks with the striking, emotional Blood on the Tracks. Despite being recorded in a ridiculous 10 days (barring a last-minute re-tracking of a few songs), the album remains Dylan’s warmest, richest recording—loads of purring organs, shuffling acoustics, and soulful rhythm sections. But as always with Dylan albums, it’s the words that steal the show, particularly on the bitter epic “Idiot Wind” and the haunting, uplifting “Tangled Up in Blue.” Rock’s most critically acclaimed troubadour kept on releasing wonderful albums after Blood on the Tracks but he never topped this classic album release.

Well, Blood On The Tracks did consciously what I used to do unconsciously. I didn’t perform it well, I didn’t have the power to perform it well, but I did write the songs; they can be changed but the idea was right…
~Bob Dylan (to Matt Damsker, September 1978)

in stunning, total contrast to the previous album, Before the Flood, this 16th Dylan album triumphantly shows more subtlety and nuance than anything he’d ever done, and as honed a use of understatement as on John Wesley Harding. At the time this was the most unexpected leap of Dylan’s career. After years of comparatively second-rate work and a considerable decline in his reputation, here was an album to stand with Highway 61 Revisited and Blonde on Blonde.
~Michael Gray

‘Simple Twist of Fate’ is another absolutely extraordinary performance. Where ‘Tangled Up In Blue’ is bright, bouncy, jangly, ‘Simple Twist Of Fate’ is soft and warm and mournful. Dylan’s voice is.. gentle and rounded.
~Paul Williams (Bob Dylan: Performing Artist, Vol 2: The Middle Years 1974-1986)

Bob Dylan BOTT back

thanks to All Dylan

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Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit have unveiled the title track from their forthcoming LP, Ruins, due out on January. 19th via Columbia Records.

Following the release of advance tracks “It’s A Shame,” “Postcard” and “Fireworks,” “Ruins” is a more somber affair, its introspective folk musing on the end of a relationship with the duo’s vocals beautifully weaving in and out of one another, surrounded by minimal, calming instrumentation.

The “Ruins” video is a live performance from the Rebel Hearts Club Austin Texas, featuring a witty introduction from an older British man before the duo’s acoustic song gently mesmerizes with its lap-steel guitar and luscious, tender country vocals. Watch the live video for “Ruins” below.

The duo’s fourth studio album, Ruins was produced by Tucker Martine (My Morning Jacket, Laura Veirs) and recorded in Portland, Ore. where the Söderberg sisters collaborated with R.E.M.’s Peter Buck, Wilco’s Glenn Kotche and Midlake’s McKenzie Smith.

Rachel Platten

Growing up in Boston, Rachel Platten recalls harmonizing with her family to finely crafted pop songs – from Sam Cooke to The Beatles – that dominated her parents’ vinyl collection. As a teenager, Rachel gravitated towards, and began to become affected by, hip-hop and female singer-songwriters. “My CD collection was Tori Amos and Patti Griffin but then A Tribe Called Quest and Nas.” The commonality between the two seemingly different genres: confessional and vulnerable songwriting. Singing in various bands in New York Rachel went solo and booked herself on a coffee shop tour before collating her demos into an album and releasing single “1000 Ships” on an indie label. Her first single through Columbia “Fight Song” followed in 2015 and Wildfire is available now.