Earworms 10 February 2014

A little tenderness; a little funkiness; a little frollicking and some passive-aggressive behaviour – it must be Valentine’s week! Hope you all have a happy Valentine’s day on Friday, and for those who don’t subscribe I’ll see you in the King’s Head at Friday lunch time – mine’s a pint. Thanks to all and please send LOTS more worms to earworm@tincanland.com.

The Miserable Rich – Boat Song – BethNoir: The first is by a Brighton chamber pop quintet who I’ve only just noticed, written for the vocalist’s mother who was worried about getting older, it’s quite lullaby-like, I think.

Kiila – Viisi Hirvasta – Fuel: Kiila’s Viisi Hirvasta (Five elk) is freak folk music from Finland. Standing tall and proud at the edge of a forest before frollicking away and disappearing from view.

Kim Churchill – Coded In Concrete – severin: I saw this Australian guy last year supporting Billy Bragg. Just him and a guitar but what a sound. Absolutely blew the crowd away. I chose another faster track of his called “Season’s Grind” as my Festive Spill number one track of the year. This is by way of contrast but still earwormy imho.

Bush Tetras – Can’t Be Funky -Shoegazer: Cleaning up my tune archives (3 months so far, & I’ve gotten through A-C). Anyway, saved a few tunes that may be worm worthy for some.  Will try to save a few more as the epic quest through the alphabet continues, but don’t hold your breath. Here’s 1 from the funky females of post punk series…

Etta James – I Just Wanna Make Love To You – AliM: You can keep the washing and the baking but the love-making sounds cool.

Louis and Ella – Cheek to Cheek – goneforeign: Louis and Ella recorded this in 1956 for the Verve label. Verve was founded by jazz impresario Norman Granz who was also Ella’s manager. They are backed by the Oscar Peterson quartet, Oscar  on piano, Ray Brown [Ella’s husband] on bass, Herb Ellis guitar. and Buddy Rich on drums and Louis quietly plays his horn behind Ella. This was probably the album that introduced me to Ella and made me a lifelong fan.

15 thoughts on “Earworms 10 February 2014

  1. I’m looking forward to these, but a quick lunch break comment on the last two, which I know and indeed love:

    The Muddy Waters original of “I Just Want To Make Love To You” has great words: I don’t want you to bake my bread… I don’t want you to make my bed…. I don’t want you to be true or indeed, because he’s sad and blue. You can accuse the songwriter, Willie Dixon and Muddy himself of having one-track minds, but the way they exclude domestic tasks, emotional baggage and even monogamy serves to purify the song. I think Etta’s version is great and packs a real punch, but why does she have to volunteer for domesticity. I don’t want to bake your bread would’ve been much, much better.

    Ella and Louis – I’ve nominated a few of their collaborative songs, from their three LPs in that series, for various RR topics. I always comment on the subtlety of Oscar Peterson’s piano playing, when he sits back with the rhythm section. It’s worth checking out his solo pyrotechnics – the man could play fast and furiously – just to appreciate how understated and complementary he is as an accompanist. I’ll post this promising-looking link to, hopefully, make the point (though I can’t check it at work). There is some lovely music on those albums – easy to think of it as background music (and it’s very fine in that role) but also rewarding to really listen.

  2. Daddy P: Right on on both counts. Re. Louis and Ella, I was recently thinking of a friend from the 50’s, he had two young children, he named ’em Louis & Ella. And you’re dead right about Oscar P, fabulous pianist, I’ve got a large stack of his LP’s, he’s probably my favorite pianist in all those categories. while you’re up at youtube check out this one, an illustrated conversation with Dick Cavett from the 60’s.

  3. I enjoyed them all, but especially the Miserable Rich (with shades of Antony Hegarty), Kiila, and Kim Churchill. All new to me, which is a bonus, and as has been said so many times, discovery is a USP of earworms.

  4. The Miserable Rich: I hear what ghe is saying with Antony – on occasional notes, you suddenly hear him. And then he’s gone. That aside, rather lovely.

    Kiila: Was starting to lose it a bit before the vocal but then it became all King Creosote-y and I really loved it.

    Kim Churchill: Very Australian sounding. (Not in a bad way.) Yeah, quite like it without being, like, totes wowed.

    Bush Tetras: Yeah, fun. I’ll wager they’ve heard Talking Heads/Tom Tom Club.

    Etta James: What is it, Diet Coke? One of those ubiquitous ads. Which is a bit of a shame because it’s obviously a great track. I agree with daddyP on the domesticity thing. And isn’t it sort of contradictory to say you just want to do something and then say you wanna do a whole load of other (peripheral) things?

    Louis and Ella: Sheer class. Where’s Ella though? Ah here she is! How unusual to have a duet partner wait so long before their entry.

  5. The Miserable Rich and Kiila were lovely; Kim Churchill does indeed make a fine sound with just solo guitar. The Bush Tetras took me back to a time when I was a bit sniffy about post-punk “funk”, and student boys doing twitchy dances to it, but now it somehow sounds better and I quite like being taken back.

    I had a further thought about Etta, as the slowest-witted Innuendo guru in the history of RR. I just want to bake your bread / Make sure that you’re well fed…. Maybe there’s some wickedness being alluded to. I hope so. Bish is right about the multiplicity of “justs” though.

    Ella and Louis singing Irving Berlin may just drive me back to my vinyl. Bish’s point about Ella having to wait around a while, just seems to be how they did their duets. They often have a key change between their contributions so they can be in their preferred range, and the point where she takes over the singing freed Louis up to do his little trumpet and vocal accompaniments.

  6. Liked all the worms this week. I have the Etta and Ella recordings but the others (apart from mine) were new to me. The Miserable Rich were gorgeous.Kiila were ethereal and haunting. Great start.
    I think Kim Churchill provided a bridge between that kind of ambiance and the Bush Tetras as he starts off quite moody before the percussion kicks in. I saw the Tetras once in the mid eighties on a bill with Pere ubu and The Gang of Four. With Alexei Sayle compering. That was a strange evening. Anyway I don’t remember them sounding like this. More feedback as I recall. This was indeed rather funky in a post punk kind of way. I see there’s a compilation on Amazon.
    I hate it when advertisers use great recordings like Etta’s for their crappy ads but she still sounds great despite the lyrical changes. I would also pass on the washing and baking thanks all the same Etta. Did anyone else see the rather wiccked parody of the song that used to be on Youtube? The one that libelled (she says) Gillian McKeith.
    Ella and Louis can do no wrong. Nor can Oscar come to that. Wonderful stuff.
    Yes, I enjoyed that.

  7. “A game of two halves, Jimmy” Saw The Bush Tetras a few times. More dynamic than on record and used to use lots of percussion, especially a thing that looked like a spatula & made a wobbly metallic sound. Funky indeed.

  8. I like everything here but most of all I like Etta James – music rarely gets better than that.

    A quick note on Kiila: Lots of memembers of the Finnish psych-freak-folk scene in the band. This is their website, http://www.kiila.com/ It’s written in English and has nice soundcloud links and a list of their (Niko-Matti Ahti’s) ear candy, which is very obscure – I only really know of Antti Tolvi, Javelin, Tomutonttu, Peaking Lights, Kurt Vile and TV-Resistori.

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