Archive for September, 2014

Listen here to this week’s show:

Well, we’ve nearly said goodbye to September and it seems to have treated us well here in the Grand Duchy and we seem to have heard from a number of the Cruising Crew this past week. Along the way, some even suggested a few tracks for our future playlists . . . . and very welcome they were too. Our cheery postman contributed to our good spirits this week, by delivering a sought after 45 that first came to our ears on one of those UK Sue Story albums issued in the 60s. This was Tommy Duncan . . . although not the country singer of that name . . . and ‘Dance Dance Dance’ which we decided to share with everyone on this week’s show.Cruising #191

Well, the keen eared amongst you will have noticed that we’ve been including a few tracks from the recent compilation album, Acid Jazz Mod . . . which has some very fine tracks indeed. This week we chose ‘Left Right & Centre’ which is credited to Lord Large, who is actually British keyboard player, Stephen Large and one time member of the band Electric Soft Parade. But, perhaps the more interesting feature of this offering is that the vocals on that one came from Dean Parrish . . . . who may be known for some celebrated recordings in his own right.

We also stumbled across an album issued by Charley Records and called The Scene Club, Ham Yard London. As the connoisseurs of all matters Mod will know, The Scene Club was a notable bit of London’s 60s Mod Scene and the album has some fine stuff on it, including a fine piece of R&B from Harold Burrage and my favourite Billy Preston number, issued on the famous Sue Record label in the UK, ‘Billy’s Bag’. But, before that we got into gear and kicked off this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner with Georgie Fame & the Blue Flames and ‘Soul Stomp’ and it all rolled on from there . . . . 

Cruising way out of town . . . .Billy's bag
Soul Stomp – Georgie Fame
When I Get Home – Dave Ferrato
I’ll Take One – Harold Burrage
Billy’s Bag – Billy Preston
The Healer – John Lee Hooker & Carlos Santana
Big Change Is Gonna Come – Peter Green & The Splinter Band
Waiting For The Sonrise – Isis
Left, Right & Centre – Lord Large
Dance Dance Dance – Tommy Duncan
Slip Away – Dobie Gray
Housewife’s Choice – Derek Morgan & Patsy ToddIsis
Killer Diller Korner . . . . with Johnny Alpha
Can’t Do Without You – Dusty Wilson

Cruising where we please . . . .
In The Gym – Unicorn
High Flying Bird – The Boot Hill Five
I’m So Glad – Maze (featuring Frankie Beverly)
Fortune Teller – Tony Jackson & The Vibrations
Fixin’ To Die – Bukka White
Big Game Hunter – Steve Gibson & The Red CapsBukka White
Mr Blues – Damita Jo
You Really Got Me – The Buddy Miles Express
Are You Trying To Be Lonely – Andy Lewis & Paul Weller
Sweeter Than The Day Before – The Valentinos
Tear Stained Letter – Jerry Williams
Ko Ko Joe – The Righteous Brothers

Well, our Girls & Guitars feature this week offered double bubble, because we spotlighted two girls with guitars. You’ll remember that we recently focused on guitarist Carol McDonald, as a member of Goldie & The Gingerbreads, and when that band broke up . . . she went on to form her own band called Isis. They issued their own self titled album in 1974, with Carol McDonald on vocals and second guitar . . . and with lead guitar duties performed by Suzi Ghezzi. So, we took a track from that album called ‘Waiting For The Sonrise’ and you’ll quickly hear it’s definitely not the song made famous by Les Paul and Mary Ford.

Meanwhile, our venture into the realms of scratchy blues this week, featured a classic by American bluesman Bukka White. He was born in Mississippi in 1909 and he made his first recordings for Victor Records in 1930. But his career was interrupted by a two and one-half years sentence in Mississippi’s infamous Parchman Farm prison and, after his release, he wrote a song called “Fixin’ to Die”. It was recorded in Chicago for Vocalion records on May 8, 1940 and thave been many versions of the song by people such as, Bob Dylan, Buffy Sainte-Maries, Robert Plant, Country Joe McDonald and more, but we played the original from Bukka White

Now, we got some good feedback about our Righteous Brothers choice last week and so we were easily tempted to find another by them to bring us back home from our cruise . . . . this was their little rocker ‘Ko Ko Joe’.

So, if you enjoyed our cruising playlist this week, perhaps we can look forward to some more of your good company next week, when we’ll roll by in the Cruise Mobile . . . same time, same place . . . and with a seat saved especially for you . . . . just so we can all go Cruising with The Commissioner. Until then . . . . have fun!


Just one more time . . . .

Posted: September 24, 2014 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s show:

Well, this past week seemed to be consumed with whether we would need to build border posts along Hadrians Wall and repatriate Lulu and The Proclaimers. But, in the end, our ability to go cruising where we please remained the same, although it has inspired thoughts about independence for the Grand Duchy, with an official flag to fly on the front of the Cruise Mobile. However, when things quietened down, we rolled out the Cruise Mobile all ready for our weekly Cruising with The Commissioner, along with a playlist that offered a few gems for, the Northern Soulies, including the original of ‘Here Comes The Night Owl’, a couple of soul divas and something from the late, great Sam Cooke too.Cruising #122

Along the way, we noticed that it was Bill Medley’s birthday this past week and that was all the excuse we needed to play something from him and we chose his first single as one of The Righteous Brothers, and their first chart hit in 1963, ‘Little Latin Lupe Lu’. We also tracked down the original of ‘California Sun’, which has been covered since by The Rivieras and The Ramones, but this was Joe Jones with his original 1961 for Roulette Records.

Our ambassador to the North West Territories challenged us to find the song being used in a current TV advert . . . . and it proved to be the New Rhythm & Blues Quartet and a track from their album, Tiddlywinks, called ‘Want You To Feel Good Too’ . . . . and we do! But, before any of that, we kicked off our road trip with Mac Rebennack and his first 1959 recording for Cosimo Matassa’s Rex record label. The instrumental, “Storm Warning”, was also our small tribute to Cosimo Matassa, who we said a sad farewell to recently . . . . . and it all rolled on nicely from there . . . .

Cruising beyond the city limits . . . .Storm Warning
Storm Warning – Mac Rebennack
I Got A Line On You – Jeff Healey
Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood – Gary Moore
Just One More Time – Billy Gayles with Ike Turner’s Kings Of Rhythm
Hey Girl – Little Milton
Nite Owl – Tony Allen And The Chimes I Got Love – Maxine Brown
I Want To Feel I’m Wanted – Frankie Beverly & The Butlers
I’m Over You – Jan Bradley
That’s Where It’s At – Sam Cooke
Diddley Daddy – The Liverbirds
Want You To Feel Good Too – The New Rhythm & Blues Quartetliverbirds
No More Heroes – Night Trains
Tutta Mia La Citte – Giuliana Palma & The Bluebeaters

Killer Diller Korner . . . . With Johnny Alpha
L’estaca – The Javu

Cruising with the crew . . . .
Shadows & Reflections – Byzantine Empire
Need All The Help I Can Get – The Kitchen Cinq
Just A Little Feeling – The C-Minors
Preachers’ Daughters – Felix Pappalardi & CreationNight Owl 2
Come On Over To My House – Julia Lee
You Don’t Love Me – Jay Swan
Mystery Train – The Paul Butterfield Blues Band
What Kind Of Lady – Dee Dee Sharp
I’ve Been Hurt By Love – Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band
Little Latin Lupe Lu – The Righteous Brothers
California Sun – Joe Jones
Girls Girls Girls – The Coasters

Our Girls & Guitars feature this week focused on an all girl band from Liverpool . . . .The Liverbirds. They were one of the few all-female Merseybeat bands of the 60s and featured two singer/guitarists in their line up . . . . Valerie Gell and Pamela Birch. During their time together, they released two albums and several singles, one of which got into the German charts. It was a cover of Bo Diddley’s ‘Diddley Daddy’ and found a copy for this week’s playlist.

Now, this week’s venture into scratchy blues started was going to be a track from a Document album of Mississippi Blues recorded between 1927-1937. It featured Geechie Wiley & Elvie Thomas with a song titled ‘Come On Over To My House’, but it was almost drowned out by the surface noise of the original recording. So, we found a later version of the song recorded in 1944 for Capitol Records by Jay McShann’s Kansas City Stompers with vocals by Julia Lee, which was a great hit in its day and launched Julia Lee on her solo career.

In the end, Mr Merlot was looking very pleased with himself, because he’d been pointing at the clock and wagging his finger at us for a while and we nearly didn’t make it back in time. But the spirits were with us and we arrived back safe and sound with The Coasters. As the Cruise Mobile rolled gently to a stop, we gave it a polish up, ready for next week’s cruise, when we hope you’ll be there as we call by for you with a seat saved especially for you. So until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . . remember . . . have fun!



On our way . . . .

Posted: September 16, 2014 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s show:

Well, there’s been plenty to keep our attentions this week and we managed to catch up with some friendly faces too. We also heard from some folks who have been long-time pals and planned a few future escapades. So, our social agenda has been most enjoyable and . . . . there’s more in store!Cruising #186

Our cheery postman has continued his worthy work, which has ensured a few tasty treats arrived here at Cruise Control to tantalise our taste buds. Amongst these, were some hard to find and long forgotten items, which will be popping into our playlists in the weeks to come.

Meanwhile, our rummaging in the Cruising Library turned up a song that’s a particular favourite of Mrs TC’s. ‘The Thrill Is Gone’. There are many versions, by many artists, including BB King’s. But, we found the original recording of the song by Texas bluesman Roy Hawkins, which he recorded for Modern records in 1951 . . . . and it got to number 6 on the American R&B charts back then.

If you’re a longtime devotee of pub rock in and around London, there’s a good chance that you’ll remember Wolfie Witcher and His Brew. They we’re enthusiastic purveyors of R&B, blues and boogie, along with a little humour, and we found a 45 by them which featured their take on the old Chuck Berry number, ‘No Money Down’.

We managed to cram plenty of goodies into our playlist, kicking off with Roomful of Blues and ‘She Put a Spell On Me’ . . . . and there was plenty more besides . . . .

Cruising way out there . . . .Knockouts
She Put A Spell On Me – Roomful Of Blues
Gal From Kokomo – Roy Brown
Find My Way Back Home – The Nashville Teens
Any Time At All – The Fairies
Fever – The Knockouts
Don’t Be Cruel – The Upsetters
That Goes To Show You – Garnet Mimms & The Enchanters
The Boy From New York City – Mary Wells
Soulville – Aretha Franklin
Goin’ To New Orleans – Jane Bond
Lipstick Traces – Chris FarloweJane Bond
Fortune Teller – Benny Spellman
Abracadabra – Baked A La Ska

Killer Diller Korner . . . . . with Johnny Alpha
Milkcow Blues – The Kinks

Cruising with the crew . . . .
Ruby Tuesday – Twiggy
White Rabbit – Grace Potter & The Nocturnals
After Tea – Spencer Davis Group
On Our Way – Neighb’hood Childr’n
Hitchhiker – The ChucksAfter tea
She Shot a Hole In My Soul – Geno Washington & the Ram Jam Band
Do Lord (Remember Me) – Reverend Robert Wilkins
The Thrill Is Gone – Roy Hawkins
No Money Down – Wolfie Witcher & His Brew
It Don’t Take But a Few Minutes – The Refreshments
Put On My Shoes – Mary Ann Fisher
Cherrigale – Ed Townsend
6345789 – The Elgins
Tutti Frutti – Little Richard

This week’s Girls & Guitars slot featured someone suggested by our good pal The Spongeman. He pointed us in the direction of Jane Bond, a singer and guitarist now living in Austin Texas. Her recordings range from old-time country and blues, through to jazz and rock & roll. She captured a 20-month residency at Austin’s famous Continental Club and we chose a track recorded live at the club in 2006, ‘Goin’ To New Orleans’ . . . . something well worth doing.

For those who like a little scratchy blues, we went disturbing the dust in the Cruising library to find a song that we’ve played a number of times on the show by Jackie Wilson. This time it came to us in a recording by the Reverend Robert Wilkins, who is probably best remembered for his song ‘Prodical Son’, but this was his take on ‘Do Lord (Remember Me)’.

As we were coming into the homeward straight, we decided to end our cruise in the very good company of Little Richard and a classic piece of New Orleans R&B recorded 59 years ago this week . . . ‘Tutti Frutti’. After which, the Cruise Mobile rolled gently to a stop and we faced up to the prospect of tidying up the records and CDs and putting them away neatly for the next time. So, watch out for us next week, when we’ll be ready to call by for you in the Cruise Mobile, same time, same place, with a seat saved especially for you so we can all go Cruising with The Commissioner. Until then, remember . . . have fun!

Listen here to this week’s show:

Well, with all that’s been going on beyond the Grand Duchy, it’s been a little hard to concentrate on the task at hand . . . . to find some more excellent rock, soul and ‘real’ rhythm and blues for our playlist . . . . but we did!Cruising #82

When we finally pulled together our playlist, we had some ‘seasoned’ New Orleans R&B from Cosimo Matassa’s studios on North Rampart Street, along with some great UK blues from The Nimmo Brothers (who were on our giglist this week), as well as a version of ‘I Want To Be Loved’ that came from a rare album called ‘Doc K’s Blues Potion’ . . . and we’re very grateful to our good pal Arfa Pinetop for sharing that with us.

We also picked out some very choice soul sides and slipped in Santana’s single version of ‘Jingo’, which was on their Woodstock setlist . . . . although Carlos Santana has since claimed that he can’t remember any of his time on the Woodstock stage . . . . and to demonstrate our abilities at genre jumping, we even had a track from a band called The Soul Directions (a.k.a. The Pioneers) . . . . which came from a compilation album titled ‘ Skinheads on the Dancefloor’.

We included something from Otis Redding this week, because it would have been his birthday, but we kicked off our cruise this week in the company of Marcia Ball and her recording, ‘There’s A Party Goin’ On’ . . . . and we needed very little persuasion to keep it going . . . .

Cruising where we please . . . .Itchy koo
There’s A Party Goin’ On – Marcia Ball
Tell Me Pretty Baby – Lloyd Price
Let’s Start A Romance – Little Joe Hinton
Itchy Koo – Hank Blackman & The Killers
Can I Get A Witness – Jo Ann Kelly
Apron Strings – Curtis Hoback
It’s Been Nice – The Everly Brothers
Louie Louie – Otis Redding
I Need Your Lovin’ – Don Gardner & Dee Dee Ford
Stop Knockin’ – Juanita Nixon
Look For Me Baby – Goldie & The GingerbreadsHush
Everything’s Alright – The Mojos
How Can You Have The Blues – Kansas City Kitty & Georgia Tom Dorsey
I Want To Be Loved – Doc K’s Blues Band
Su Su Su – The Soul Directions

Killer Diller Korner . . . . with Johnny Alpha
Uprising – The Cherokees

Cruising where we please . . . .
Jingo – Santana
Diddy Wah Diddy – The Remains
Glad All Over – HushJoe Jama
Unchain My Heart – Johnny Winter
Que Sera Sera – The High Keys
She Shot A Hole In My Soul – John Fred & His Playboy Band
The Ice Man – Billy Watkins
My Life – Joe Jama
I’m Cutting Out – Ivory Joe Hunter
I Got Mine – Ry Cooder
Rock Around With Ollie Vee – Buddy Holly
I’ll Be Back Someday – The Nimmo Brothers

This week, our Girls & Guitars feature spotlighted singer and guitarist Carol MacDonald. She was a member of American band, Goldie & The Gingerbreads, who had a hit in 1965 with ‘Can You Hear My Heartbeat’. In 1972 Carol MacDonald went on to form New York based, all girl band Isis who got signed by Buddah records and released a self-titled album in 1974. But we went back to 1966, to hear Carol MacDonald with Goldie & The Gingerbreads on their last single for Decca records, called ‘Look For Me Baby’.

We didn’t forget those who likes a little scratchy blues, because we jumped in the cruising time machine to skip through a few time zones to 1930. This was when Kansas City Kitty & Georgia Tom Dorsey released their timeless reflection on the pursuit of happiness . . . . called ‘How Can You Have The Blues’.

Well, it seems there’s never enough time for all we want to play on the show. So, as we fought back the tears and waved a sad farewell for this week, we were cheered by the thought that you might be back again next week, when we’ll be here to call by in the Cruise Mobile, with a seat saved especially for you. Until then . . . . have fun!



Brand new Cadillac . . . .

Posted: September 2, 2014 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s show:

Well, here we are in September already and we’re still hanging onto some sunny days here in the Grand Duchy. Our social diary has included some thoroughly enjoyable encounters with some good pals,  along with a visit to one of our favourite record shops and some visits by our cheery postman which have swelled the contents of the Cruising Library . . . . so it’s been a good week.Cruising #100

In sorting through some of the records and CDs for our playlist this week, we came across some fine examples of UK rock ‘n’ roll, which we decided to share with the Cruising Crew. One of these came from Vince Taylor & The Playboys with their 1959 Parlophone single, ‘Brand New Cadillac’. It was in fact the b side of the record when it was first issued, but has been recognised since as a real classic. The song has been much covered since, including a version by The Downliners Sect. We also found another British rock ‘n’ roll gem by Adam Faith called ‘It’s Alright’, which always brings back images of Robin Williams’ frantic dancing around the studio to it in Good Morning Vietnam.

Our good pal Johnny Alpha brought along some more rock ‘n’ roll for our ears, with a track from Gene Vincent, which was recorded in the UK with Sounds Incorporated providing the backing. But before that, we got our cruise got off to a rocking start with Jimmy McCracklin and ‘The Wobble’, which we followed fast with the fabulous Little Richard and his 1959 Specialty 45 ‘I Got It’ . . . . and it all rolled on from there . . . .

Cruising where we please . . . .Martinels
The Wobble – Jimmy McCracklin
I Got It – Little Richard
Chicken & The Bop – Lloyd Price
What’s On Your Mind – The Four Bars
I Don’t Care – The Martinels
Love Machine – McKinley Jackon & The Politicians
The Man That Said No – Bettye Swan
Ain’t Love Wonderful – The Fantastic Four
Sho Nuff (Got A Good Thing Going) – JJ Jackson
I’m Satisfied With You – The Furys
Walkin’ Blues – Black Cat Bone
Goin’ To Texas – Romney GettyRomney Getty
Just Your Imagination – Cornell Campbell

Killer Diller Korner . . . . . with Johnny Alpha
I’m Going Home (To See My Baby) – Gene Vincent

Cruising with the crew . . . .
The Stems – At First Sight
You Really Got Me – Thundermug
On A Carousel – Glass Moon
Cry To Me – Professor Longhair
Rock With me Baby – Juke Boy Bonner
Brand New Cadillac – Vince Taylor & His PlayboysVince taylor
It’s Alright – Adam Faith
Tobacco Road – Jimmy Norman
At The Top Of The Stairs – The Formations
One Way Love Affair – Willie Hill
Tune Up – Junior Walker & The Allstars

This week our Girls & Guitars feature focused on Canadian singer/songwriter and guitarist Romney Getty. To date, she’s released two albums and we took a track from her 2005 album, titled, ‘Fill In Your Grey’. This was ‘Goin’ To Texas’, which has some nice harp playing and some nice guitar work that’s little laid back in the mix.

And we didn’t forget our adventures into the realms of scratchy blues, although this week’s choice wasn’t as ancient as some we’ve played. Our focus was Texan bluesman, Weldon H. Philip Bonner, better known as Juke Boy Bonner. He was a multi instrumentalist and became one of the celebrated one man bands of the blues. He started recording in the late 50s for the Irma record label and it was his first single on the label in 1957 that we chose . . . . ‘Rock With Me Baby’.

Well, all too soon, we ran out of time. We still had a pile of tracks to play, when we got a subtle signal that we need to be heading for home, as Mr Merlot started rolling his eyes and frantically pointing at the clock. So, we decided to finish with a flourish in the company of Junior Walker & The All Stars and their stomping little number ‘Tune Up’. . . . which got us home safe and sound. So, we parked up the Cruise Mobile in the hope that our cruising playlist met with the high expectations of the Cruising Crew and would entice them back again next week . . . . . just so we can go Cruising with The Commissioner again. Until then . . . have fun!