Posts Tagged ‘Jeff Buckley’

JEFF BUCKLEY

2011-01-12

[Picture of the Grace album cover]I love it when you see something by chance on the TV, that stops you in your tracks — and you just have to have more.  This is exactly what happened with the video promo for “Grace” by Jeff Buckley.

I immediately went out and bought the album “Grace“. Thing is, he’d recently died (by accidental drowning in the Wolf River in Memphis USA), so there would be no further wonderfully crafted original music from Scotty Moorehead (his “real” name).  I think there’s a Chet Baker legacy for the quieter ballads, but in the rock music side of things, Buckley is out there on his own — perhaps influenced by Robert Plant, but with lots of added extra influences, possibly black women such as Aretha Franklin.  You listen, you decide!

Over the years I have rediscovered Grace” again and again for the usual reasons — switching from CD to a computer file, the renewed interest in the media (mainly around “Hallelujah” and Cohen, Elisa, Burke etc) a couple of years ago.  But  I have no idea why I didn’t think of looking up YouTube until now.

[Embedded video clip from YouTube of The Last Goodbye]

His voice can give me chills and thrills, and he never plays it safe — the element of right on the edge vocals brings such amazement to me, really — I’ve sung live, I’ve taken chances and they have (luckily) paid off to my eternal immense relief — but to see someone totally risk everything, to squeeze every last drop of emotion, to face public disgrace and humiliation by singing flat or sharp or out of time (or all of the above). OMG. Just wow. It’s crazy, it’s wild, it’s utterly Buckley.

[Embedded video clip from YouTube of Grace – Live]

What a voice — what a guitar player, and what a song-writer!  Clearly Buckley has been a huge influence on Gregory Hoskins and loads more, such as The Antlers.  I can’t listen to “So Real” without thinking of Grizzly Bear, it’s the chords, the mood or something, y’know? But this guy is the original.  I saw a TV documentary about him a couple of years ago — and they reckon he was a blend of Robert Plant and Jimmy Page — now THAT’S an absolutely massive compliment right there, and possibly the best epitaph, I’ll leave it there.

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THE ANTLERS

2010-12-08

[Picture of Peter Silberman of The Antlers]Peter Silberman plays a Fender Mustang and has one of the best falsettos in the business. He formed “The Antlers” — and I have their album “Hospice“.  It is Brooklyn, and New York City in mood and lo-fi approach, but it is more straight, clearer and on focus. They opened for “The National” in Barcelona — now that would have been some gig!

I have been listening to this album on and off now for quite a while, but recently a chap I work with has discovered it — which has led to my returning to it again.

My favourite is “Epilogue”, simple guitar strumming (G major) — but a voice like Gregory Hoskins or Jeff Buckley.

“Hospice” is an incredibly emotional record. This guy really seems to pour out his heart and his art.  One for the headphones.

Here’re the usual links:

Peter did a blog that is intended to compliment the album: theantlershospice.blogspot.com

[Embedded videoclip: Epilogue by The Antlers on YouTube]

[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQwkbRVqqxU&feature=related]

In a nightmare, I am falling from the ceiling into bed beside you. You’re asleep, I’m screaming, shoving you to try to wake you up. And like before, you’ve got no interest in the life you live when you’re awake. Your dreams still follow story-lines, like fictions you would make.

So I lie down against your back, until we’re both back in the hospital. But now it’s not a cancer ward, we’re sleeping in the morgue. Men and women in blue and white, they are singing all around you, with heavy shovels holding earth. You’re being buried to your neck. In that hospital bed, being buried quite alive now. I’m trying to dig you out but all you want is to be buried there together.

You’re screaming, and cursing, and angry, and hurting me, and then smiling, and crying, apologizing.

I’ve woken up, I’m in our bed, but there’s no breathing body there beside me. Someone must have taken you while I was stuck asleep. But I know better as my eyes adjust. You’ve been gone for quite awhile now, and I don’t work there in the hospital (they had to let me go.)

When I try to move my arms sometimes, they weigh too much to lift. I think you buried me awake (my one and only parting gift.) But you return to me at night, just when I think I may have fallen asleep. Your face is up against mine, and I’m too terrified to speak.
–Epilogue or Sylvia Alive In Nightmares

Absolutely beautiful music.  Painful at times, but worth it. Enjoy.

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GREGORY HOSKINS

2008-12-23

[Picture of Gregory Hoskins playing guitar]Whenever I hear Gregory Hoskins’sNever a Stranger Kiss” I relax, sure in the knowledge that talent and creativity are not dead, that TV reality show singing competitions have not killed every other outlet and opportunity.

embedded video:

Sit back and just let Gregory Hoskins open his soul to you.  It’s superb — gripping, chilling — and the rest. The guy can sing and hit the spot too. Hit “Play”, do it!

Maaan, I can seriously sympathise with him in that I have years of unfinished and unpolished songs, tunes and arrangement ideas.  The bridge is always a fuss if it doesn’t just come along with the birth. Then again, I have some that need choruses, intros and more verses! Oy!  I think he’s worked it out beautifully on this one, don’t you?

I like the vibe he sets up — I have enjoyed a lot of salsa, mambo,  guaguancó, rumba, punto, and son for quite a few years, probably as a result of studying Al di Meola’s stuff way back in the 1970s! LOL! Later, I got “into” Bal-Musette and even electric/ modern tango, like The Gotan Project.  I really like that he gives his song some of that flavour; it adds a lot, it evokes that whole decadent insalubriousness mood!

You can buy his album, “The Beggar Heart” from Amazon.co.uk right now for buttons. Greg is the best thing out of Canada for years! This is one chap I would definitely go to see live should he ever tour the northern wastes of the UK!

As I may just have whet an appetite, I had better do my web-duty and provide some links! The first one is obvious: www.gregoryhoskins.com/, then this is a nice link:  www.comevisit.com/vezco/festival/hoskins.html.

Finally, the record company — the fabulous Candyrat Records (what would the world be like without them?). Enjoy!

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