Why don’t you try me tonight . . . . .

Posted: December 6, 2012 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s show:

Cruising with the Commissioner #86 (06.12.12)

Well, when you’re out on the road Cruising with The Commissioner it’s difficult not to realise that we are approaching the festive season, although the attentions hereabouts have been diverted lately by a flurry of activity amongst those who maintain the royal accession list . . . . . you might just imagine Alan Freeman providing the chart run down of who’s going up and down the charts and announcing the new entrants.

As the festive lights and decorations appear all around, it’s hard to ignore the enticements to buy ever more exotic presents for friends and relatives! But, amidst all this, we have found the time to prepare for our Thursday cruise and to search out some of the finest in rock, soul and real rhythm and blues. So, we were ready, with fingers poised above the controls to take the faithful on a whistle-stop tour across musical frontiers, in and out of time zones and jumping genres.Cruising #89

The chill in the air outside was no competition for the warmest of welcomes that awaited those who joined us on our musical adventure that (with a strong sense of identity) we continue to call . . . . Cruising with The Commissioner.

It has been an extra busy week here in the Grand Duchy and our gig list this week included a Saturday night out in the company of the SAS Band, whose band-list sports an impressive line-up of top-notch names. Their gigs always attract capacity crowds and we joined the crush for their Xmas special and our playlist included a taster from them, called ‘Hey Jealousy’ which comes from their self-titled album. The gig list included Tex Mex band, Los Pacaminos, who proved to be as entertaining as ever. Their set went down well with the crowd and we reprised one of their offerings, ‘Raised On Margaritas’ which ensured everyone was having a good time! We also caught a set by Jack Bruce and it was really good to see him still on top fine form. He was singing and playing his fretless bass with masterful assurance. As well as a few Cream hits, he included a version of the Jimmy Hughes hit, ‘Neighbour Neighbour’ and so we played that track from the Jack Bruce album ‘Cities Of The Heart’.

Now, there were some juicy gems for the blues aficionados amongst the Cruising Crew, including a track from a fine album called ‘On The Jimmy Reed Highway’ which features Omar Kent Dykes and Jimmy Vaughan. We picked out one of the Jimmy Reed covers called ‘Aw Shucks, Hush Your Mouth’ and we’re grateful to our good pal Arfa Pinetop for pointing us in the direction of that album. We also found time for another of our ‘girls with guitars’ tracks. This week’s choice was suggested by our good pal, The Spongeman, and it came from an album by Jane & June Millington, appropriately titled ‘Play Like A Girl’ and listen out for the guitar work on ‘One for Change’.

As if that was not enough, we set off on our cruise in the company of The Fabulous Silver Tones and their West Coast recording of Hey Sally Mae, which was a recent arrival at Cruise Control, and barely stopping for breath, we got up full cruising speed with the excellent 1954 Atlantic classic from Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters called ‘Bip Bam’. Take a look at what else we included:

Cruising for the border . . . . 
Hey Sally Mae – The Fabulous Silver Tones
Bip Bam – Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters
Tick Tock – Chris Allan
The Most – Boyd Bennett & The Rockets
Choo Choo Ch-Boogie – Louis Jordan
Pneumonia – Joe Tex
Hey Jealousy – The SAS Band
Aw Shucks, Hush Your Mouth – Omar Kent Dykes & Jimmy Vaughan
One for Change – Jane & June Millington

Three From Me . . . . . . Johnny Alpha
Mogambo – Sounds Incorporated
Casbah – Sandy Nelson
Buzz Saw – Gee Cees

Cruising in good company . . . .
Downstairs – Plas Johnson
One Way Love – Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers
It Should’ve Been Me – Zoot Money & His Big Roll Band
Why Don’t You Try Me Tonight – Maurice & Mac
Snap Your Fingers – Barbara Lewis
Raised On Margaritas – Los Pacaminos
Neighbour Neighbour – Jack Bruce
Needle In A Haystack – The Velvelettes
Full Tilt Boogie Man – Bare Bones Boogie Band
Coming Home – Junior Cole

Memory Lane . . . . . with The Commissioner 
Take Five – Dave Brubeck

Cruising for home . . . .
Tutti Frutti – Little Richard
Down To Memphis – J.J. Cale
Train To Skaville – The Ethiopians
She’s Not There – Santana
I Fell Apart – Drizabone Soul Family
Headline News – Edwin Starr
Get It Baby – Stanley Mitchell
It Went To Your Head – Charles Berry
Barefootin’ – Pee Wee Crayton

Well, believe me, we have been waiting a long time to welcome this week’s Three From Me guest and he arrived for his first visit to Cruise Control with arms full of the choicest 45s. So, it was a real treat to welcome our good pal Johnny Alpha, who has long been the host of the Killer Diller show here on Wireless FM and if you haven’t heard it, let me tell you its something of a treasure trove of great music.

This week’s detour down memory lane saw us heading back to 1961 and the arrival of a 45 that opened the charts (and yours truly) to the world of modern jazz. This possibly marked the first, tentative steps in genre jumping that have seen some subsequent occasional dabbling in modern jazz tracks. This memory was sparked by the sad news of the passing of jazz pianist Dave Brubeck, who was hours away from his 92nd birthday. But, his legacy lives on including his most successful venture into unconventional time signatures, ‘Take Five’.

Well, we nearly went into extra time this week, but we realised just in time. Indeed, it was while the Cruisettes were getting enthusiastic about their moves to ‘Barefootin’ that we noticed the hands on the Cruising clock creeping to the top of the hour. So, we abandoned the next record that was all cued up and had to say our sad farewells, but not before we identified the fine version of ‘Barefootin’ as coming from Pee Wee Crayton . . . . and there’s a great feature on Pee Wee Crayton by Matt The Cat on his recent Juke In The Back show.

Well, as the Cruise Mobile glided effortlessly to a halt at the end of our cruise, we gathered our belongings to go our separate ways, cheerful in the knowledge that there was only 7 more days to while away, before we could do it all again.  So stand by, same time next week, and we’ll call by for you to take you Cruising with the Commissioner . . . . . and until then, remember . . . . have fun!

  1. Amigo says:

    Well there I was with the Internet radio at the ready and nothing came out of the speakers. Anyway I shook the thing to see it it would work and it didn’t. ‘I Fell Apart’ and the radio nearly did as well! Never mind ‘She’s Not There’ it should have been He’s Not There. It was like looking for a ‘Needle in a Haystack’ and clearly you took ‘Aw Shucks, Hush Your Mouth’ too literally’. I decided to ‘Take Five’ and let the clock ‘Tick Tock’ and then I got your email so I went ‘Downstairs’ to listen to the blog on the laptop just in time to catch ‘Pneumonia’. My own fault for ‘Barefootin’ it around the house I suppose.

    Ah well, after yesterday’s ‘Headline News’ I’m off to Starbuck’s for a skinny latte to see if I can get ‘One for Change’ – seems like a fair price to me. Maybe I can get a ‘Tutti Frutti’ as well. Gotta go ‘Get it Baby’.

    • Amigo

      Good to hear from you and very glad that you didn’t take a ‘Buzz Saw’ to your radio.

      Hope all goes well with you and that we might entice you back to Cruise Control for a Three From me session . . . or more.

      In the meantime, have fun!


      • Amigo says:

        Hi Commissioner,

        Thanks for the invitation to’Come Back Baby’ I’ll do my best to oblige. By the way that Starbucks visit – it turned out to be a write-off!

  2. The Spinmeister says:

    Great show, as ever.

    We have similar recollections of the impact of Take Five,

    The first time I heard it was on Two Way Family Favourites, sitting in our kitchen, at home, waiting for Sunday lunch! Was it Judith Chalmers and Cliff Michelmore on the turntables?

    Like you, it was my introduction to modern jazz. I was stunned, never heard anything like it before. I think it instilled my life- long love of the sax.

    You bought the record. Wow! I don’t want to try a Sarf London boy parody of the Monty Python Four Yorkshiremen sketch, but I used to dream of buying such records!

    I had to make do with running into two record shops in Croydon on my way home from school next day, to ask to hear the record in one of those little listening booths they had. Unfortunately neither shop had heard of the record, so I had to wait, impatiently, for the next spin from the British Forces Network Overseas, the following Sunday.

    Kids today, eh? Don’t know ….. Etc


  3. The Commissioner says:


    Oooh . . . . a life-long love of the sax . . . . well, we can certainly help there!

    Such memories . . . . . not likely to be repeated in this modern age!


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