Where do we go from here . . . . . ?

Posted: February 10, 2012 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s show:

Cruising with The Commissioner #45 (09.02.12)

Just when things looked like they were picking up gently, suddenly, it all takes off at a frenetic pace and there seems to have been little or no time to fit it all into the week. We’ve squeezed in social events, business commitments, some essential domestic maintenance chores and even found some time for a brief visit to a couple of my favourite music emporiums (or is it emporia?)

We heard from our good pals Joe Duckworth, Mi Amigo, Max Quirk and The Vikster and, who knows, we might persuade them each to return soon to deliver another ‘Three From Me’ spot. There was also the unexpected excitement of the call to stand in for Johnny Alpha on Tuesday night, because he couldn’t present his highly esteemed Killer Diller show. So, all in all, we had nothing like the usual relaxed preparations for our weekly revels before Thursday was upon us. Indeed, there was barely time to drink down the foaming elixir, clutch my throat and return from under the table as the suave and debonair Commissioner to extend a very warm welcome to one and all.

Having done that . . . . we set off with a pile of the best in rock, soul and real rhythm & blues, starting with Jackie Wilson and his recording of ‘Love Train’ (not the O’Jays song), followed smartly by Doris Troy and ‘Hurry’. After that, we raided the pending tray, which has been building steadily over recent weeks. So, we dipped in and pulled out some real gems, including Big Maybelle’s original of ‘Whole Lotta Shakin’, Otis Redding’s ‘Look At That Girl’ and Lee & The Leopards with the second 45 released on the Gordy label, ‘Tryin’ To Make It’.

Well, last week’s show was a bit of a feast for the ‘soulies’ amongst the Cruising Crew. So, this week the mood came upon me and I thought it was about time to pull together a long awaited tribute to one of my most favourite guitarists . . . . Peter Green. Fortunately, he’s still very much with us, although he is not as well as he was in his prime. Indeed, during his time with The Bluesbreakers and Fleetwood Mac, there was (in my opinion) no-one to touch him, particularly for sensitive and melodic, as well as brash, rocking blues guitar work. So, we rummaged in the archives to assemble some tracks by some notable artists who have recorded covers of his songs, or songs closely associated with him. I hope the result gives a glimpse of what an inventive and adventurous composer, musician and singer he was.

If you were one of those who has been pressing me to include some songs by The Beverley Sisters, I’m afraid this week will be another disappointment, but here’s what we did squeeze into the playlist:

Cruising for the city limits . . . .
Love Train – Jackie Wilson
Hurry – Doris Troy
Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On – Big Maybelle
There can be a better way – The Magnificents
The Payback – Etta James
Look At That Girl – Otis Redding
You’re So Fine – The Falcons
You Don’t Love Me – Willie Cobb

Three From Me – The Majestic
It’s Wonderful To Be In Love – The Ovations (Featuring Louis Williams)
So Hard To Break The Habit – The Webbs
You’re A Winner – Harold Andrews

Cruising with the Peter Green Songbook
Stop Messin’ Around – Aerosmith
Whatcha Gonna Do – Zoot Money & Bobby Tench
Supernatural – Seppo Valjakka
Need Your Love So Bad – Ted Taylor
I Loved Another Woman – Larry Mitchell & Jay Aston
Black Magic Woman – Larry McCray
Man Of The World – Ian Anderson
Oh Well – Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
Rattlesnake Shake – Rick Vito
The Green Manalishi – Arthur Brown

Memory Lane – . . . . with The Commissioner
Bishopstock 2001
Chicken Pickin’ – Scott McKeon

Cruising to familiar places . . . .
Seven Day Weekend – The New York Dolls
Take Me In Your Arms (and Rock Me) – The Doobie Brothers
Tryin’ To Make It – Lee & The Leopards
Sound of The Witchdoctors – The Mohawks
Where Do We Go From Here – Jimmy Walker
Pennies From Heaven – The Four Tops
So Blue (Without You) – Little Milton
The Voodoo Man – The Del Vikings
Let’s Rock While The Rockin’ Is Good – Little Willie John

In the midst of this particularly chilly period here in the Grand Duchy, it was good to have something that conjured some images of the Caribbean and The Mohawks did just that with a little number called it ‘Sound of the Witchdoctors’ . . . . and who am I to argue with that?

It was a great joy to welcome back that most elegant of visitors, The Majestic, fresh from his Go Go Club with a fistful of rare and sought after tracks for his latest ‘Three From Me’. He brought us tracks by The Ovations, The Webbs and Harold Andrews, in the sure knowledge that his selections are always destined to extend our wish list . . . . . and this time was no exception. So, we included Lee & The Leopards in our playlist, because we know he likes that track. Enjoy!

Meanwhile, on our dubious detour down Memory Lane, we went back to 2001 and the much missed Bishopstock music festival. This was the year that featured a young blues musician contest, that brought to the main stage a 17 year old guitarist by the name of Scott McKeon. He played a stunning version of Lonnie Mack’s ‘Chicken Pickin’ . . . . which, fortunately, was recorded, and we found a copy to bring back some cherished memories.

Well, we got to our last track with some real reluctance and it came from Little Willie John with an irresistible invitation to ‘Let’s Rock While The Rockin’ Is Good’ . . . . which is just what we did . . . . hoping that there were plenty of juicy gems in the playlist to entice you back again next week for even more rock, soul and real rhythm & blues. But, if you need an earlier ‘fix’, why not stop by and take a listen to the Tuesday night mafia here on Wireless FM, where The Spongeman, The Shake, Max Quirk and Johnny Alpha will make you an offer you can’t refuse and play you music you’ll never forget.

So, until once again we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . . remember . . . . . have fun!

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