You never had it so good . . . .

Posted: January 17, 2013 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s show:

Cruising with The Commissioner #92 (17.01.13)

Well, I trust that this week found you on fine form and ready for a musical adventure. The Grand Duchy has experienced the unwelcome return of chill winds and damp days, but we have kept our spirits up by planning our gig list events and enjoying some good company with folks from amongst the Cruising Crew. There seems to have been plenty of drama in the news lately, so we prepared a non-controversial, non-contentious and (definitely) non-fattening playlist for this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner.
Cruising #92
We embarked on our quest for more rock, soul and ‘real’ rhythm and blues in the sure knowledge that our enthusiasm and excitement are shared by the faithful, who follow our unpredictable detours across musical frontiers, in and out of time zones and jumping genres. The feedback on the website and in emails has frequently re-directed our rummaging in the Cruising Library and sent us looking for something special . . . .as it did this week. A casual remark by one of the Cruising Crew ensured we caught up 60s hit parader, Eden Kane, to bring back a memory or two with a rather topical song, ‘Pulling me through the bad times’.

Paul Carrack was on our gig list this week and a fine show he put on too. So, we looked out his take on the old Motown favourite ‘Ain’t That Peculiar’ and also found time to mark the birthday of Bluesbreaker and Rolling Stone, Mick Taylor, with something he recorded when he was 18 years old, Freddie King’s instrumental, ‘Driving Sideways’.

There was athletic genre jumping and some time travel as we went back to 1922 and a little something for the devotees of scratchy records. This came from Trixie Smith with one of her first recordings from 1922, titled ‘My Man Rocks Me (With One Steady Roll)’. Beyond that, The Spinmeister’s Three From Me selection was much appreciated by those in the chatroom and possibly the radio debut for Three Second Delay.

With some squeals from our wheels, we set off in the Cruise Mobile with Titus Turner and his 1961 cover of ‘Knock Me A Kiss’, a song originally recorded in 1942 by Louis Jordan & His Tympany Five. We followed on with breathtaking speed to catch up with The Checkers (so called because they included former members of the Dominoes) and their 1953 King records release ‘You Never Had It So Good’ . . . . . and maybe you never had it at all!

Cruising beyond the city limits . . . . .  tee shirt kirk
Knock Me A Kiss – Titus Turner
You Never Had It So Good – The Checkers
I Want Some More – The Del Moroccos
Lollipop Mama – Wynonie Harris
Easy Pickin’ – Smiling John Pickens
Ask Anyone – The Ad Libs
Baby Call On Me – Wilson Pickett
Love What You’re Doing To Me – Janet & The Jays
Stubborn Kind Of Fellow – Paul Hill (featuring George Clinton)
Pulling Me Through The Bad Times – Eden Kane
My Daddy Rocks Me – Trixie Smith
Where Blue Begins – Dani Wilde
Three From Me . . . . . with The Spinmeister
Teenage Kicks – The Undertones
Just So You Know – Three Second Delay
The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore – The Walker Brothers

Cruising for fun . . . .
Sugarman – The Free Association
House On The Moon – Jacco Gardner
Abracadabra – Baked A La Ska
Saturday Night – The Mighty Sparrow
Saturday Jump – Tony Osbourne & His Jazz Group
Bossa Nova Baby – Tippie & The Clovers
Casting My Spell – Wilko Johnson
Rinky Dink – Cootie Williams
Dum Dum – Brenda Lee
Higher & Higher – Eric Bibb

Memory Lane  . . . . . with The Commissioner 
Free At Last – Fontella Bass
Cruising for home . . . .
It Don’t Take But a Few Minutes – The Refreshments
Driving Sideways – Mick Taylor
Diddy Wah Diddy – The Blues Band
Tell Me – Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings
Ain’t That Peculiar – Paul Carrack
Come and Get These Memories – Ray Godfrey & The Determinations
What You Gonna Do – Curtis Salgado
Just Looking For A Home – Big Walter Price & His Thunderbirds

Our trip down Memory Lane this week took us back to the mid 60s, when a young singer was recording some early tracks in her career, having decided to go solo, after a stint with Little Milton and his band. The singer was Fontella Bass and we were taking the opportunity to say our sad farewell to her after news of her recent passing. My first introduction to her came unexpectedly when my school pal, Lou Martin, arrived at my door with a Chess 45 called ‘Rescue Me’ and the memory of the track and his enthusiasm for it lingers on. But, we avoided the obvious and chose an earlier track as our salute to Fontella Bass, ‘Free At Last’, which was something that remained unreleased for many years.

Our girls and guitars feature focused on singer and guitarist Dani Wilde, who cut her second album, ‘Shine’ with blues producer Mike Vernon. We took a track from that album and played ‘Where Blue Begins’. Meanwhile, our good pal The Spinmeister returned this week with a trio of tracks for his ‘Three From Me’ that had some loose connection with The Walker Brothers. It all sounded good and seemed to make sense when he told his stories!

Well, eventually, the time ran out and we rolled gently to a stop on our cruise, with nothing left to do, but to park up the Cruise Mobile for another week and thank you for your good company during this week’s musical adventure. There’s plenty in the pending tray, so there’s every reason to return next week for more great rock soul and real rhythm and blues. We hope you will return, refreshed, relaxed and ready to go Cruising with The Commissioner. So until then . . . . have fun!

  1. David Conroy says:

    Thanks. I checked out the show and it is marvellous!! Rolling back the years. You obviously have plenty of time on your hands these days to pursue your alter ego – good for you.


  2. Arfa Pinetop says:

    Pie hot Emp, particularly liked The Refreshments especially when someone else is supplying ’em. Wonder if Ramblin Sid got away ok? I lent him my complete collection of Uncle Macs Childrens Favourites cassettes.

    Talking of favourite macs, I have finally been persuaded to dispose off my flashers/Jamesons dispenser multi pocketed white one. On scouring the cavenous pockets amongst the empties, Ladbroke tickets and 5 Boys choc bar wrappers, I found a wonderful CD by Big Mama Thornton with the Muddy Waters band 1966. 17 great tracks, in particular a superb gospel Guide Me Home and a fine instrumental Big Mamas Shuffle not to be confused with B M’s souffle which is bloody awful.

    Till our fringes entwine with our eyelashes, farewell


  3. The Commissioner says:

    Most esteemed Arfa

    I see you still have Ramblin’ on your mind! It seems that the dark corners of your old mac were clearly a treasure trove of goodies. Are you sure that there were not other gems in there somewhere?

    Have fun!


  4. Mrs TC says:

    Listening to Cruising and loving “Where Blue Begins 🙂

    Mrs TC

  5. Amigo says:

    I enjoyed listening on Thursday evening. There were more double entendres than a Frankie Howerd show. What next? Lil Johnson? Your memories of ‘Rescue Me’ took me back to 1965 and some good times but thanks for playing ‘Free at Last – it’s a good example of why we dig so deep for those musical gems.

    I just found out that Inez Andrews left us in December as well – another great singer from the gospel tradition gone home.

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