Tell Me Something

Here’s an interesting statistic, and one that shocks me a little. In late August, I had 3,239 songs on my laptop. As of this moment, just seven weeks later, I’ve got 4,389. (Clearly, I am spending too much time reading music blogs.) Here are the first 10 songs that came up when I hit “random” late this afternoon.

“Hypnotized”/Fleetwood Mac/The Chain (box set). The best-known song from the Bob Welch era of the Mac, it’s also one of the coolest things they ever did.

“Tell Me Something”/Van Morrison/Tell Me Something: The Songs of Mose Allison. Tell Me Something, from 1996, is billed as a collaboration with Georgie Fame, Ben Sidran, and Allison himself, who made blues and jazz records continuously from the 50s to the 90s. I can listen to Van sing blues for hours, so this album is OK with me. If you’ve never heard of it, I’m not surprised. Van is so prolific these days that each album he makes has only a short time to make an impression before the next one comes along.

“Security”/Susan Tedeschi/Hope and Desire. This is one of the lesser tracks from the gorgeous Hope and Desire, but on that album, lesser is more-er.

“Sweet Lil’ Sister”/Bad Company/Run With the Pack. Allmusic says that by this, their third album, Bad Company was sticking to a formula and lacking memorable material. This is what they meant—if you’ve heard “Good Lovin’ Gone Bad,” you’ve heard this, too.

“Play Children Play”/Three Dog Night/Cyan. By its title, you might think this is another “Black and White”-styled nursery rhyme. It’s actually a hippie exhortation to enjoy the grass, trees, and breeze, since tomorrow will be too late, what with all that pollution and stuff.

“Just Pretend”/Elvis Presley/That’s the Way It Is. Features all the vocal mannerisms of his late-period work: big whoa-whoa-whoas, low wordless hums, and the Sweet Inspirations providing plenty of soul. Vegas: It’s what’s for dinner.

“Bright Side of the Road”/Van Morrison/Into the Music. I’ve got 168 Morrison songs on this thing, so it’s no wonder he’s my most-played artist. There are some good ones on Into the Music besides this one, including “Full Force Gale” and an idiosyncratic cover of “It’s All in the Game.”

“I Left My Heart in San Francisco”/Jimmy McGriff/Cherry. I have been listening to near-overdose amounts of Hammond B3 organ jazz lately. This is a swingin’ version of the Tony Bennett standard, recorded in 1966.

“Don’t Let It Bring You Down”/Wings/London Town. If you bought Wings albums in the 70s, you may be tempted to upgrade with the expanded editions that have been available in recent years. Some of these editions are worth it, and some are not. London Town seems worth it: It includes “Girls School,” which is quite a rarity, and “Mull of Kintyre,” which has been a bit easier to find. Plus you get the never-anthologized McCartney single “I’ve Had Enough.”

“Honey Dove”/Lee Fields/Problems. You know I love me some neo-soul. The biggest names in the genre at the moment are women, Sharon Jones and Amy Winehouse. Lee Fields is carrying the mail for the guys, although he got started in the days when his music was just plain soul. Problems was released in 2002, and “Honey Dove” is what the kids call a sweet slow jam.

One thought on “Tell Me Something

  1. Abby F

    Let’s not forget Bob Welch’s/FM “Sentimental Lady” (not his solo version) and “Future Games”. These parallel anything from the Buckingham-Nicks era.

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