Friday, July 31, 2009

Random 10, 7/31/09

Sunny Afternoon The Kinks
Bessie Couldn't Help It Hoagy Carmichael And His Orchestra
Selfless Cold and Composed Ben Folds Five
Anapse To Tsigaro 3 Mustaphas 3
If You Want Me Markéta Irglová and Glen Hansard
Find Yourself Another Fool Elvis Costello & The Attractions
Something's Gotta a Hold On Me Etta James
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence Gene Pitney
Just a Girl No Doubt
Baubles Bangles & Beads Nina Simone

Here's a Random 10 worthy of the adjective "random". It's even somewhat random what was available on The You Tubes. Why would there be a version of Hoagy Carmichael's Bessie Couldn't Help It? It turns out his hand picked orchestra had some of the best white jazz players in the world, including Jack Teagarden and Bix Beiderbecke. It would be a few years before jazz groups began to integrate, when Benny Goodman went to Carnegie Hall with Teddy Wilson.

Let me say a few kind words for the songs not on The You Tubes. All the songs are there, but not by these particular artists. Elvis is covering a soul tune by the not very well-known soul singer Arthur Conley, Nina Simone is doing a version of a song that Miss Peggy Lee made a hit, but Nina's version isn't like anyone else's, and with Nina Simone, that's always the case.

Then there's Anapse To Tsigaro. "Light a cigar and to hell with the world." As far as I can tell, this is the song every Greek orchestra with a mandolin player has to know. There are a boatload of versions on The You Tubes, but not the one by the British world music band 3 Mustaphas 3. I only bought two albums by The Mustaphas, but they can play any type of popular music from anywhere in the world. Balkan music, Nigerian dance songs, Bollywood musical numbers, you name it. My favorite of the albums is Heart of Uncle, the one that contains this tune. You might like it if you still can find it in a record shop, and if not, iTunes has pretty much all the music in the world, doesn't it? Take a 30 second listen and see what you think.

Have a nice weekend.

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