Thursday, August 7, 2008

No Sleep 'Til Brooklyn

This is the first of what we hope will be many posts from our good friend and music aficionado Ari. He'll be attending Wilco's show in Brooklyn next week and submitted this content as a preview to the gig. (Ari - You're welcome for the tickets and we look forward to posting your review).

If you believe the story told by Bob Dylan in his Chronicles Vol. I, about 40 years ago, just before the death of his great idol Woody Guthrie, a young Bob Dylan was invited to trek through ice, snow, and salt air to pick up a few boxes of hand written, forgotten, unpublished lyrics kept in the closet of Woody Guthrie's Coney Island, Brooklyn apartment.
"On one of my visits, Woody had told me about some boxes of songs and poems that he had written that had never been seen or set to melodies - that they were stored in the basement of his house in Coney Island and that I was welcome to them...I found the house...One of Woody's kids, Arlo...told the babysitter to let me in. Arlo was probably about ten or twelve years old and didn't know anything about any manuscripts locked in the basement.... Forty years later, these lyrics would fall into the hands of Billy Bragg and the group Wilco and they would put melodies to them, bring them to full life and record them. It was all done under the direction of Woody's daughter Nora. These performers probably weren't even born when I had made that trip out to Brooklyn". -BOB DYLAN CHRONICLES VOL. I-
As referenced by Bob...about 10 years ago, Jeff Tweedy and company, at the request of Billy Bragg, and the prodding of his manager, took a look at those old lyric sheets and together, with some guests, put them to music. The results: Mermaid Avenue and Mermaid Avenue Vol. II are classics. After ten years, I consider them some of the best albums to come out of that period, 1998, and 2000 respectively. (you can argue with me, its ok, perhaps you were sitting at home getting real psyched about Fat Boy Slim, or Moby or something...hows that going for you?...)

Track Highlights:
California Stars
Way over yonder in a minor key
She came along to me
Airline to Heaven
Hoodoo Voodoo (could have been a rubber soul/revolver outake)
Stetson Kennedy
Remember the Mountain Bed
Blood of the Lamb
Someday Some Morning Sometime

Which brings this Post back to Brooklyn. Forty years after Bob Dylan traveled across the East River in search for that box of scribbled lyrics, and 10 years after Wilco received the material, they too will be crossing the East River to Brooklyn to perform August 13, 2008 at McCarren Park Pool, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (East Village East).

Thank you WeightStaff for the tickets.

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