Friday, December 2, 2011

Saturday 6-Pack: #1

Here is the first "Saturday 6-Pack" mix, where I put together a week's worth of musical obsessions into one mini-set for your listening pleasure.



I've always felt that Little Feat were unnecessarily lumped into a group of bands like the Allman Brothers or the Grateful Dead when they really had a sound like no other, covering all grounds from their own brand of punk to funk, country and soul, R&B and more. This version of Allen Toussaint's classic may just be definitive.


A little known album cut from the great Motown legend. I first heard this tune when it was brought into the mix by my friend and keyboard player Steven, as a possible addition to my old band's repertoire. If memory serves, I don't think any band members were given the actual tune to learn. We just listened to Steven play, sing and arrange it. I was thrilled beyond belief to find out what it actually sounded like. This is a killer track, a little unlike most of your Motown catalogue.


This is a tune I had been familiar with as part of New Orleans drummer Stanton Moore's live repertoire. I always thought it was his. Then, while listening to a fantastic boxed set from Rhino Records, "What It Is: Funky Soul & Rare Grooves," I was drawn to a cover of a Meters tune by someone named Grassella Oliphant, a jazz drummer who played with people like Sarah Vaughan, Ahmad Jamal and Bobby Hutcherson. A few eBay clicks later, and I found the LP and the origianl version of "The Yodel."


From the Sun Records tribute CD from a few or so years ago, here is the old Prisonaires track with one of ol' Slowhand's very best vocal performances.


Only heard this tune for the first time this past Wednesday night, as part of G.E. Smith's mini-set performed at a reception for the release of the new book "The Guitar Collection," with photographs by another friend and band member John Peden.  I was smiling so hard at the lyrics to this tune, I think I sprained my ear. Can't say I've ever really loved The Bottle Rockets, but G.E.'s version made me track this down, and now I just might.


From one of Taj's later releases, "Senor Blues," this is a tune written by New Orleans native (by way of Australia) Jon Cleary. It has been on heavy rotation for about 6 years now. Just a beautiful melody and arrangement, sung from the gut by Mr. Mahal.


I was obsessed with a few more tunes this week, but I love how these 6 play together. If you do, we'll see you with Volume 2.


Anonymous said...

Splendid stuff Mr Nunziato. Ever since 'Record stores' disappeared from the high street, the chance to chat with informed staff and shop owners who could suggest new and interesting sounds is sorely missed. Your Blog is a fine recreation of that moment of delight when someone says 'have you heard this'? and says it with enthusiasm rather than as part of the latest marketing drive. You know your stuff all all right and I am deeply pleased that you continue to share what you enjoy so much

Best wishes

Anonymous said...

Inspired stuff, I am very fond of OYWD. My fav version might be from 1973 Denver boot Snakes On Everything.
Reading your blog every saturday has become a tradition. thanks.

The Buzzman said...

Oops. That posted under the wrong identity. Sal, can you remove it and let's try it again.

I am a huge fan of the big four of southern rock - Allmans, Skynyrd, Tucker, and Outlaws - HUGE, but it has always annoyed me incredibly to hear Little Feat categorized as a southern rock band. IMO the Feat are one of the greatest bands ever doing what they alone and uniquely do.

Anonymous said...

please do tell more about that G E Smith show.
Did he do the Bottle Rockets song in relation to the price of that book?
Something tells Santa won't leave it under the tree for me this year

Sal Nunziato said...

G.E. played a short set that showed off various styles of guitar playing. I think the Bottle Rockets song fit it in because of the lyrics:

If you've only got a $1000
You ought to just buy a good guitar.

Learn how to play it it'll take you farther,
than any old $1000 car.

buzzbabyjesus said...

The first three Little Feat albums are killer. Statistically "Sailin' Shoes" is probably my favorite album of all time. I wore out 2 or 3 vinyl copies before the cd.
I first heard "Strawberry Flats" on an Warner Bros "Loss Leader" I sent away for. I couldn't find that album, but got "Sailin' Shoes" instead. They managed to evoke The Flying Burrito Brothers, Captain Beefheart, and pretty much everything West Coast all on one record. And it was funny in all the right ways.
"Cold, Cold, Cold" has the best drum sound anywhere and the instrumental break reaches the upper limits of controlled mayhem.
After "Dixie Chicken" I started to lose interest as Lowell George seemed to as well.

Sal Nunziato said...


Check out the opener of this Weekend Mix from 2009



This is a great mix and a wonderful idea.

I'm sitting here on a rainy afternoon making my six pack of last week ... maybe not as interesting as these six but hey ...


Sal Nunziato said...


Share it!

A walk in the woods said...

Nice mix - thanks Sal!

OK, did I miss it or is there a story why you are back? How about this time you just post when you want to, don't post when you don't want to, and don't worryaboutit, yokay?

Glad you are back because your mixes are always appreciated.

Sal Nunziato said...

@Walk IN The Woods,

Sure there's a story why I'm back. There's always a story. But you didn't miss it. It was so boring, it even annoyed ME.

Thanks for reading. ;)

Ken D said...

A great version of "Thousand Dollar Car" is also on the Bottle Rockets' new acoustic concert album titled "Not So Loud."
Recommended if you're giving the band another listen (although fair warning; album is not for the banjo-intolerant).

charlie c. said...

First time I ever heard Little Feat lumped to gether with Grateful Dead is right here right now, but what do I know . . .