DAVE STEWART Nashville Sessions : The Duets

’Nashville Sessions : The Duets’ is a new collection that presents the best duets from the recording sessions at John McBride’s famed Blackbird Studio in Nashville that resulted in the album trilogy of ‘The Blackbird Diaries’, ‘The Ringmaster General’ and ‘Lucky Numbers’ released by Dave Stewart between 2011 and 2013. ‘Nashville Sessions : The Duets’ features striking vocal performances by Stevie Nicks, Alison Krauss, Colbie Caillat, Joss Stone, Martina McBride and more.

‘God Only Knows You Now’ (with Jessie Baylin)

Dave Stewart played two UK shows in September 2017 with his Nashville All Star Players to celebrate his 65th birthday, folking.com was there at the London gig and the other was in his birthplace of Sunderland.

Here are the photo’s from the O2 Shepherds Bush Empire London show… click on the photo below to view the full set.

Dave Stewart's 65 Birthday Party

Support came from the London Gospel Community Choir and guests included:
– Bob Harris
– Holly Quin-Ankrah
– Martin Chambers (a founding member and drummer for the Pretenders)
– Candy Dulfer
– Diane Birch
– The other Doom Brother, Bob Geldof
– Jon Stevens (from Noiseworks)

Set list:
– So Long Ago.
– Beast Called Fame.
– Magic in the Blues.
– (Eurythmics) – Here Comes the Rain Again (with Holly Quin-Ankrah)
– Lily Was Here (with Candy Dulfer).
– Soul Years + This Little Town (with Martin Chambers).
– Jealousy.
– Heart of Stone.
– All Messed Up – (with Diane Birch) from Dave’s latest Nashville Sessions: The Duets project – http://wp.me/p5SuEn-9Ul
– (Eurythmics) – There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart) – (with Diane Birch).
– This Is The World Calling (with Bob Geldof).
– Don’t Come Around Here No More (the song Dave wrote for Tom Petty) – (with Bob Geldof).
– Starlight – from the 2016 project with Jon Stevens (with Jon Stevens).
– (Eurythmics) – Missionary Man (with Jon Stevens and Holly Quin-Ankrah).
– (Eurythmics) – Thorn in My Side
– When the Day Goes Down (with London Gospel Community Choir).
– (Shakespears Sister) – Stay.
Encore:
– (Eurythmics) – Would I Lie to You?
– (Eurythmics) – Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This).

Nashville Sessions : The Duets – Track-listing:

1  Drowning In The Blues (with Alison Krauss)
2  All Messed Up (with Martina McBride)
3  Just Another Fall (with Diane Birch)
4  God Only Knows You Now (with Jesse Baylin)
5  Bulletproof Vest (with Colbie Caillat)
6  Cheaper Than Free (with Stevie Nicks)
7  Picnic For Two (with Joss Stone)
8  One Way Ticket To The Moon (with The Secret Sisters)
9  Nashville Snow (with Karen Elson)
10  Every Single Night (with Martina McBride)
11  You And I (with Laura Michelle Kelly)

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click on the DAVE STEWART Nashville Sessions link to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website. Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

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‘One Way Ticket To The Moon’ (with Secret Sisters)

VARIOUS – Gentle Giants: The Songs of Don Williams (Slate Creek SCR0526172)

Gentle GiantsNow 78 and still going strong (his most recent album being in 2014), Don Williams is, both in person and on disc, one of the most laid back country artists you could imagine. Initially finding success as part of 60s folk-pop outfit The Pozo Seco Singers, whose hits included ‘I Can Make It With You’, ‘Hey Look What You’ve Done’ and ‘Excuse Me Dear Martha’, he embarked on a solo career in 1971, going on to score huge success with such song as ‘We Should Be Together’, You’re My Best Friend, ‘Some Broken Hearts Never Mend’ and, only released as an A-side in the UK, ‘I Recall A Gypsy Woman’.

Inducted into the Country Hall of Fame in 2010, he’s now the subject of a tribute album although, strictly speaking, it should The Songs Made Famous By Don Williams, since he’s better known as an interpreter than a writer

While curiously omitting ‘Gypsy Woman’ and ‘Best Friend’, it also doesn’t always go for the obvious crossover numbers, several numbers here likely to be familiar only to dedicated country fans, such as Keb Mo’s recording of US Country number 1 ‘Lord I Hope This Day Is Good’, Lady Antebellum’s string arrangement of Dave Loggins’ ‘We’ve Got A Good Fire Going’ and, a number 11 country hit in 1984, Loggins and Lisa Silver’s wistful story song ‘Maggie’s Dream’, sung here by Trisha Yearwood with Dan Dugmore on steel and electric guitars.

The collection opens with his 11th number 1, 1978’s uptempo ‘Tulsa Time’, given a suitably gutsy, going over by Pistol Annies with Mickey Raphael on wailing harmonica and tasty guitar by Colin Linden. Brandy Clark takes it into ballad territory for one of two numbers co-written by Roger Cook, 1980’s ‘I Believe In You’ waltzing lazily along on Guthrie Trapp’s resonator guitar. Three of his best known recordings come on a roll, kicking off with 1977 number 1 ‘Some Broken Hearts Never Mend’, Jerry Douglas providing dobro to Dierks Betley’s vocals. Only ever released as a B-side, but, for many, one of his signature songs, Bob McDill’s ‘Amanda’ gets a stripped down and throaty dusty blues treatment by Chris Stapleton, wife Morgane on harmonies, recorded live at the Grand Ole Opry in 2013. Arguably the seminal Williams number, and one he actually co-wrote with Wayland Holyfield, Alison Krauss gives ‘Till The Rivers All Run Dry’ a gentle, beautiful, reflective acoustic reading with a lush string arrangement by Kristin Wilkinson.

The second Cook co-write, 1982 number 1 ‘Love Is On A Roll’, is actually performed by himself and his co-writer John Prine, Linden on electric slide, Raphael on harmonica and Cook also providing ukulele and joining Garth Fundis on background vocals.

The most recent Williams hit here comes from 1981 and was actually a duet with Emmylou Harris and, while it’s a bit cheeky to assign a widely covered Townes Van Zandt classic to the songs of Don Williams, the spare version of ‘If I Needed You’ featuring Jason Isbell and wife Amanda Shires more than warrants turning a blind eye.

The album ends with another McDill song, Garth Brooks stepping up to the plate for a faithful rendition of ‘Good Ole Boys Like Me’, a suitably mellow end to an album clearly made with love and affection for the true Texan gentle giant.

Mike Davies

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click on the VARIOUS – Gentle Giants: The Songs of Don Williams link to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website. Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

ORDER – [CD]

Artist’s website: www.don-williams.com

Don Williams himself – ‘You’re My Best Friend’:

JERRY DOUGLAS – Traveler

Jerry Douglas TravelerWhen you’ve got a little black book loaded with contacts you use them don’t you? And in the case of dobro maestro Jerry Douglas that’s quite some book. Paul Simon, Alison Krauss, Eric Clapton etc they’re all in there and only too pleased to lend a hand on this, his thirteenth solo album. I first became aware of Jerry’s playing in 1987 on Davy Spillane’s “Atlantic Bridge” album and was stunned by the musicality and expression on what I thought at the time was a pretty anodyne instrument. Of course, since then I’ve become an avid fan and Mr Douglas’s collaborations are without doubt some of the most stimulating Continue reading JERRY DOUGLAS – Traveler

RICHARD THOMPSON – ELECTRIC

Declared by Rolling Stone as one of the Top 20 Guitarists Of All Time and considered one of the UK’s most outstanding songwriters, musician Richard Thompson returns with a brand new, guitar driven record titled ELECTRIC for Proper Records on Monday, February 11th. 

After taking the bold step of recording his last album of new songs live, when it came to recording ELECTRIC, Thompson turned to Buddy Miller (Robert Plant’s Band Of Joy, Solomon Burke, Emmylou Harris, Patty Griffin) to produce, recording at Miller’s home studio in Nashville, TN. Miller who himself is renowned for his guitar skills recently told Rolling Stone: “I played along on the record, playing rhythm guitar for him, and I got a two-week guitar lesson while he camped out in my house.”  The record was recorded as an electric trio with Thompson, drummer Michael Jerome and bassist Taras Prodaniuk, who both sing background vocals. Jerome and Prodaniuk formed part of the band which recorded and toured the UK Top Twenty album DREAM ATTIC, released in August 2010.

They make up the trio, with Thompson, on his forthcoming UK dates, his first extensive tour in two years. Continue reading RICHARD THOMPSON – ELECTRIC

ALISON KRAUSS & UNION STATION – Paper Airplane

It will come as no surprise to anyone that knows me how Alison Krauss more or less single-handedly re-kindled my liking for all things bluegrass. OK, Ms Krauss and her well oiled band of Barry Hales (bass), Jerry Douglas (slide guitars), Ron Block (banjo) and Dan Tyminski (guitar & mandolin) are the ultimate kings of cool lifting the often berated yee-haw cliché to new peaks of excellence. On this recording her gifted bunch of musicians prove truly inspirational for those ready and eager to embrace ‘acoustic’ music in all its glory and conversely, for those that feel there’s no relevance of this genre in today’s society (and specifically aimed at those ‘Countryfile’ viewers amongst you) then I suggest you check out the three minute diatribe of Peter Rowan’s song “Dustbowl Children” where the stark banjo and desperation in the vocal performance speaks volumes for those who feel rightfully aggrieved at the onslaught of modern technology. As ever though it’s the towering presence of the lady herself where her unhurried and almost breathless tones generate the warm glow of a mother cooing her baby to sleep with a lullaby. Perhaps, for some this album may be a bit laid-back particularly without the recent pyrotechnics displayed on Steve Martin’s latest release but for those who enjoy ‘listening’ to an album and broadening their musical tastes this Grammy awarded album will do nicely. By the way, congratulations to the website design team for the inclusion of the lyrics (a real bonus for reviewers) as space is limited in a CD booklet.

PETE FYFE

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click on the banner link below to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website. Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

Artist web link: www.alisonkrauss.com

Alison Krauss Live From The Tracking Room (Rounder Records)

Perhaps it’s Alison’s beautiful smile beaming from the sleeve or the thoughts that inspire it that convey so much about this country gal done good. For those of you that haven’t heard the ‘angels from heaven’ vocal style that evokes memories of the sadly departed Karen Carpenter for its individuality then do yourself a favour and, by hook or by crook obtain a copy of this great DVD. Whether you’re a musician or not, everyone will appreciate the duets with, amongst others; James Taylor (How’s The World Treating You), Brad Paisley (Whiskey Lullaby) and “Lay Down Beside Me” with John Waite. The glittering array of top-notch musicians she surrounds herself with is based on a mutual respect shown to a truly great artist and includes Jerry Douglas on steel guitars, Abraham Laboriel Snr (bass guitar) and Gordon Mote on piano. Predominantly used to promote the album A Hundred Miles Or More (of which there isn’t a duff track!) this visual record shows an artist in her prime and should be required viewing for anyone interested in getting on in the music business. You can tell during the linked interviews with the band the empathy they all feel towards Alison and she is equally rewarded by her trust in them in getting exactly what she wants in putting across her lyrics. When expounding the virtues of Alison’s performance everyone agrees (this reviewer included!) that she has that rare, gently commanding charisma that endears her music to anyone who hears it. The photography, as expected is first class with plenty of close-ups on the musicians’ digital dexterity and also shows the intensity and passion of the singers. If you’ve just become aware of Alison or are a long established fan then this DVD is for you. For more information visit www.rounder.com PETE FYFE