A bit more laid-back and acoustic feeling this week for Throwback Tracks, after Dave's foray into getting you all pumped up and sports-y...
The Guys From do not hold the rights to any of these songs, it is more our hope to expose our readers to new (*cough*) and different retro music, or re-expose them to things they may have forgotten about.
At the top of each section, will be the song name, followed by the artists' name linked to their website (if possible...which is totally hit and miss with oldies), so you can fall down the rabbit hole, finding and supporting what you dig.
I Can't Be Satisfied - Muddy Waters
McKinley Morganfield (aka Muddy Waters) leads Throwback Tracks off this week with "I Can't Be Satisfied". I cannot say that this track, originally from 1948 with Aristocrat Records (which eventually became Chess, who we have talked about before on here) is the best known Muddy Waters song...in fact there's probably a good chance that you're not familiar with it at all, especially when compared to his more popular work like 'Hoochie Coochie Man" or "Rollin Stone", but there's something about "I Can't Be Satisfied" that hooks me.
Perhaps it's the absolutely excellent, picked blues guitar, or the real, traditional blues feel of Waters' vocals. It's simple, pure early-blues at it's level best, being sung by a legend before he was a legend. This is one of the songs that I think about when someone says "blues", and is one of those tracks that I hold other "blues" songs up against when I'm hearing it for the first time.
Take It Easy - Eagles
The Eagles first single, released in May 1972, is "Take it Easy", which was eventually released as a part of their self-titled debut album, and although it never charted in the Top 10, it became on of the Eagles' signature songs (try grabbing a live album, or a compilation that doesn't have "Take It Easy" on it), which is actually quite remarkable when you think about it. Co-written by Jackson Browne and Glenn Frey, who both eventually released a version of "Take It Easy", with the Eagles version being the better of the two,
I know not everyone is a soft, 70s country rock fan, and I am also pretty much completely over hearing "Hotel California" ever again, but there are still definitely Eagles songs that I want to hear, and "Take It Easy" is one of them. This song holds up better than a lot of 70s country rock, or soft rock; maybe it's because it went for harmonic layering, and simplicity to tell a story. Plus this just makes me think about driving through farm fields on a summer day, headed somewhere fun...
Oh and I grabbed this live version from 1977 for something a little different, and an excellent guitar solo.
Rocky Mountain Way - Joe Walsh (& Barnstorm)
After the Eagles stopped recording in 1980, guitarist, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Joe Walsh did not stop, releasing a ton of great music, with several bands, but one of my favorites of his solo work actually released before he became a member of the Eagles (full time in 1975 in time for "Hotel California"): "Rocky Mountain Way".
"Rocky Mountain Way" off of the album The Smoker You Drink, the Player You Get (1973) proved to be a breakout commercial success, with the song breaking into the Top 40. Let's face it though: I live near the rocky mountains, and have my whole life, so there's something to be said about that, as there is really nothing better than being in the Rockies and listening to this track...preferably now with a beer.
It's also a pretty great blues-rock song, which has been covered a buttload of times (by bands like Triumph, Ween, even Godsmack), which is usually a good sign that it's pretty damn awesome--but there's nothing like the original.
Can't Find My Way Home - Blind Faith
One of the first "super-groups", forming and releasing only one album in 1969 (Blind Faith), Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Ginger Baker, and Ric Grech. Unfortunately, Blind Faith suffered due to the fact that while they were touring as a headliner (look at that lineup) they did not have enough material to fill an entire show, so they ended up playing Traffic or Cream songs (which, being stuck in the crazy expectation/popularity cycle that was Cream and/or Traffic--not allowing for experimentation--being a reason those bands broke up in the first place) meant that Blind Faith was ultimately doomed.
However, they released one, really good folksy, blues-rock album, that features this fantastic bit of folk rock. Ginger Baker's drumming really stands out in "Can't Find My Way Home", but really, what is impressive is that this song does not feel like it was released in 1969--it is as good today, as it was the day it came out, and I hear it's presence (and sometimes a desperate attempt to copy it) in a lot of indie folk I find while building Tuesday Tunes.
Oh and speaking of covers....you thought "Rocky Mountain Way" has a lot?
I believe "Can't Find My Way Home" has about 40.
Pink Moon - Nick Drake
English singer-songwriter Nick Drake is a tragic tale: Drake released three albums during his too-short career, but none of them sold well (Pink Moon for example selling around 5000 on it's initial release). Unfortunately, Drake suffered greatly from depression, and after the release of Pink Moon, withdrew from performing and recording altogether, an ultimately committed suicide via overdose.
Eventually, people came to realize that Drake was a fantastic folk musician, and songs like "Pink Moon" a beautifully stripped down, raw feeling 2 minutes that largely relies on Drake's voice, his acoustic guitar, and some piano accenting finally got their due. By 2003, Pink Moon was listed in Rolling Stone's "Top 500 Albums of All-Time", and you can hear Nick Drake's influences throughout folk music, especially in modern singer-songwriters like Alexi Murdoch.
Here is the July 2016 Throwback Playlist done in the usual fashion of trying to make it sound a bit like a set (which is never easy without transitions, or just yapping until I change genres)...this one was tricky thanks to Dave's journey through pre-Pearl Jam songs not really going with anything but themselves, but we've got a playlist!
In case you missed our previous Throwback Track playlists, here they are:
I will see you again next Thursday with some new....oldies...*cough*