I hope you like the new header…
Let’s give a warm welcome to Max from my neck of the woods, and the mighty DJ Blueprint, all the way from Luxembourg!!! I never dreamed that this blog venture would take off like it has, and on an international scale no less. I am indeed grateful.
Now, let’s get the festivities under way because as I promised, here is the next helping of Fufu Stew.
As you may recall, When I gave Mike the first volume all those years ago, he was quite impressed. Not only at the fact that there was life outside of the Jam Band realm, but that there was life outside of the Jam Band realm. You see, he was a really narrow minded son-of-a-biscuit-eater when it came to music.
Dateline 2000. We all witnessed the turn of the century (and life went on, didn’t it). I was learning the ins and outs of the new digital recording equipment I had purchased, and was ready to pick more tunes from the playstack that I had chosen for the first volume. As I proceeded to record the songs I wanted to a minidisc, I found that the editing capabilities were far more superior than anything that I ever did on cassettes, and I had been making cassette tapes for my friends for over ten years at that time. I am surprised that the minidisc format didn’t take off on a more commercial scale. In fact, I can only recall one official release being made available in that format. Surprisingly enough, that was U2’s classic “The Joshua Tree”. If the copies that were actually sold back in 1987 aren’t being used as paperweights now, then they may very well be worth a small fortune. Oh well, the fact that the minidisc pretty much made cassettes obsolete is enough for me. The formula was the same for this volume as the last. Lots of guitar chops and familiar names because as everyone knows, the sophomore effort is more crucial than the debut so off I went. The original playing order from the minidisc is intact with only two exceptions, but that is quite irrelevant now because as with number one, I was blown away at the results as I hope you readers will be too.
01 Sing A Mean Tune, Kid-Chicago Transit Authority. I had always been a fan of early Chicago, thanks to my uncle and his literal obsession with the band back in 1970-75. He went through about three or four copies of their legendary Carnegie Hall album. Seriously, he played it that much. This tune, as you should know, comes from their third record with the late Terry Kath doing his very best to make Jimi Hendrix proud. Legend has it that Kath actually posed a threat to Hendrix’ reign as one of the greatest guitarists to ever strap on. I can’t speak for Hendrix or Kath obviously, but if you give a listen to some of the deep cuts from the first three albums you may find just a bit of truth there.
02 Diving Duck-Taj Mahal. I don’t know about whiskey, but if the river were made of Remy Martin XO then… I’m kidding. Here’s a nice reading of the classic blues standard.
03 Don And Dewey-It’s A Beautiful Day. I originally bought this record on the strength of a couple of really psychedelic freakout songs I had heard some time earlier, but was kind of disappointed by the direction of the album as a whole. However, it is still a classic for Prog Rock purists, and the violin playing of Dave LaFlamme is really something special. Oh yeah, it had guitar chops, too.
04 Albert’s Shuffle-Al Kooper & Mike Bloomfield & Stephen Stills. Taken from an old compilation of Columbia artists called “Heavy Sounds”, which also featured the Taj Mahal selection too. A fine example of Koopers organ skills combined with the chops of Bloomfield and Stills on this nice little blues.
05 Dust My Broom (Live)-Canned Heat. This selection was taken from the then newly released box set of the Monterey Pop Festival. We were lucky to have hired a new employee with the same tastes in music as us, so he bought in a copy for us to dig on. And dig we did… thankfully so because now the disc is out of print! Amazon has a few floating around, if you can spare a hundred bucks or so.
06 Bullfrog Blues (Live)-Canned Heat. Also from The Monterey Pop Festival. This track closed the original set, but since the tracks are seamless on the original CD, they should be that way here so there you have it.
07 Thoughts (or Fresh From The Can)-Rare Earth. This bit of free form improvisation comes from the “In Concert” LP from 1971. You folks out there who thought that the Rare Earth was just that “White Motown Band” are in for a surprise. This song just cooks!
08 Stop (Bonus Track)-Al Kooper. Added at the last minute, once again in response to Mr. Grogan’s post from two weeks ago now. This is the first time I actually heard this version of the song, so thanks to you Larry for hipping me. I love the Hammond thing; it’s quite funky.
09 I Put A Spell On You-Creedence Clearwater Revival. Of course this is the classic Jay Hawkins number found on CCR’s debut. Another shout for thisistomorrow.
10 Super Stupid-Funkadelic. I had just picked up another copy of “Maggot Brain”, as the first one got lost in the shuffle. Actually, I didn’t understand it the first time around. After playing it again, I was sold hook line and sinker. It’s easy to see why.
11 Hip Hug Her (Live)-Booker T. & The MGs. Another blistering performance from the Monterey Pop Festival box set. Steve Cropper is really cooking here on this breakbeat classic.
12 Day Tripper-Otis Redding. This is the version from “Complete and Unbelieveable: The Dictionary Of Soul”, Self explanatory to say the least…
13 My Women-Pacific Gas & Electric. The first time I heard this song was at a friend’s house downing Jack Daniels feeling quite depressed about a love gone astray. Now some fifteen years later, it serves as one of the hottest blues rock tunes I own. Charlie Allen does a fantastic job on the vocals. The band is quite the tight unit featuring great chops by Glenn Schwartz, rhythms by Brent Block and Tom Marshall on bass and rhythm guitar respectively, with the time being kept by former Canned Heat drummer Frank Cook. Check out the album if you get a chance, it’s quite heavy.
14 Stop-James Gang. This version is quite dear to my heart for a number of reasons, most notably Joe Walsh’s guitar chops. It’s a no-brainer that this song was the obvious choice to close the set, and once again I had a hit on my hands. I hope you all enjoy it as much as Mike did all those years ago.
Please download and enjoy “Fufu Stew No. 2”, an .mp3 file, 72 MB.
It has been an absolute pleasure to serve you with all of this good ol’ rock and roll, and speaking of which, how many of you out there remember “The Midnight Special” TV series. Well as luck would have it, Leslie and I found ourselves watching a paid commercial while waiting for some programme to come on, probably a crime drama. They were advertising DVDs of clips from the original series which we just couldn’t pass up. The first volume came in the mail yesterday so when I put my good eye on it, I’ll come back and give you the results. The quality is supposed to be really spectacular, 5.1 surround sound and such. We’ll see…
On a final note: I feel like I have finally found my niche with this blog thing. I plan to make this a place where you can find some interesting mixtapes (uh, CDs). I have made literally hundreds of them on my computer. Some featuring single artists, some featuring single genres and others featuring a big old hodgepodge. One never knows what I will come up with next so please, tell your friends and neighbours to hop on board and be sure to bring a healthy appetite. Until next time.
For your downloading pleasure, you can get It’s A Beautiful Day, CCR and the Funkadelic discographies at eMusic for dirt cheap. Subscribe now and download away!