Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Allen Toussaint - Go Back Home (ALON 9021)

Go Back Home

This is the B side of the great "Poor Boy Got to Move", which has been comped on CD. The record was released in 1965, and was one of the last things Toussaint ever did for Joe Banashak. Once again, it's years ahead of it's time... the piano, the guitar, that whole dark moody ambience thing - I love it!

The song takes on special meaning in light of all the misery and tragedy our beloved New Orleans is going through now, huh? In the early days after Katrina hit, it was being reported that Allen Toussaint was stuck down with the crowd at the Superdome, remember that? That's when the whole thing really hit home for me, man.

Allen Toussaint is THE MAN, pure and simple. Without him, our entire musical world would never have existed, know what I mean?
I always made it a point to go see him on the rare occasions he would come to town, as well as every year at Jazz Fest. I even became an "official" member of the fan club...

I went to visit Sea-Saint Studios on Clematis Avenue in New Orleans sometime in the late 80s. Toussaint was there, and personally showed me around the place. He was so humble, and like accessible, man. To stand in that space where albums like "Rejuvenation" and "Desitively Bonaroo" were recorded with DA MAN at my side just blew me away!

I don't know if you saw the pay-per-view benefit thing from Madison Square Garden, but it was really great to see Toussaint at the center of it all, finally getting some of the recognition he deserves.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Well, here goes...

I've been laying awake nights trying to figure out how to set up an "audioblog" dedicated to one of my secret passions: the B sides of 45rpm records.

I mean, the first 45 I ever bought was "Do the Mouse" by Soupy Sales. It sucked. BUT, the B side was a little number called "Pachalafaka", or something like that, and I thought it was just da bomb! Later on that year (1965) when I bought the single of "Help" by the Beatles, lo and behold - the B side was "I'm Down", the real deal! Or like, how about the flip side of "Good Vibrations" being "Let's Go Away for Awhile" one of Brian Wilson's awesome Pet Sounds tone poems?

I knew I was on to something... I never understood why other people didn't "get it".

Essentially, this went on to color my whole life, I think... I mean, I always wanted to be different or something - always lived on the B side of life somehow.

If it was popular and glamorous (read: A side), I wanted no part of it.

I still don't.

When I was in 9th grade, I found a scratched up copy of Cold Sweat -Part 1 (of which the B side, of course, was Part2) outside the Electric Circus on St. Mark's Place in NYC. This event changed my life. I couldn't believe music like that actually EXISTED! I've been in search of that funky groove ever since... Through yard sales and street fairs; hunting through dusty record shops from NYC to New Orleans, Amsterdam and London... eventually I even bought the entire stock of 45s from a record store that was closing down in Cottondale, Alabama... but THAT'S a whole other story...

So, here I am with all these obscure slabs of vinyl... with all these yummy B sides to explore together!

ANYWAY, I'm sure you're totally bored with this by now (like I am!), SO sit back and enjoy the ride...

I'm going to attempt to post at least one B side a week here, if I can figure all this shit out!