Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Two For Tuesday: Sammy Davis Jr. & Be Bop Deluxe

Sammy Davis Jr . was often referred to as the "most talented man in show business." I had no issue with that moniker based only on his song and dance. Now this. Can I be the only one who has never seen Sammy behind a drum kit? This really surprised me.

(h/t Geno)

"Heaven'y Homes" is my favorite tune off of my favorite Be Bop Deluxe record, "Sunburst Finish." Here it is coupled with the hit single, "Ships In The Night." I don't say enough about this band, but the few times I have, I don't recall much feedback one way or the other. For those who are unfamiliar, Bill Nelson is a guitar god and this band was the perfect mix of accessible prog, glam-pop and rock and roll. And again, Nelson's guitar work is worth some time.


buzzbabyjesus said...

Man, I saw that Sammy Davis Jr clip a few days ago and it blew my mind. He was made of music.

I prefer "Futurama" to "Sun Burst Finish".

I tried to order it to no avail at your store. It was out of print and people were paying $90 for the cd on ebay.

I ended up getting sealed vinyl copies of both albums, which I painstakingly ripped. There are a couple cross fades which were hard to edit so that the cd I burned worked the same.

About two weeks after this the "Futurama" I ordered came into the store, so I bought it.

I liked each album after "Sun Burst" less and less, although "Drastic Plastic" was pretty interesting and forward looking. Two of my favorite songs are "Axe Victim", and "Adventures In A Yorkshire Landscape" from their deeply flawed first album.

In the '80's I fell hard for "The Love That Whirls (Diary Of A Thinking Heart)" and the "Chimera" ep, which I still play.

Here is "October Man", which is pretty close to Be bop Deluxe in sound and has a fantastic solo.


cmealha said...

If I remember correctly, you gave me Sunburst Finish for my birthday. It was constantly on my turntable for a long time. Sadly, it's been gathering dust for too long. Time to break it out and get lost in it again. I share your feelings on Bill Nelson
Re: Sammy Davis. What an amazing, amazing talent. I hate him.

dogbreath said...

Sammy Davis: the saying "they don't make 'em like that any more" has never been more true & I believe I saw him knock seven bells out of a drum kit on a TV show about 150 years ago. But I may be mistaken. As for Be Bop Deluxe: I started following them when I was a pale & tender youth from the "Axe Victim" album up to "Live! In the Air Age" & I was listening to "Burning Apostles" this very weekend (the track off "Sunburst Finish" & not some unusual weekend hobby). Excellent stuff!

whattawino said...

I remember seeing Sammy play drums on TV and he was in that old school style with traditional grip and tons of swing. Very impressive cat! He also used to twirl six-guns and do a double holster routine that was kind of mind-boggeling as I recall. He did it ALL and he did it better that most. One of a kind.

Anonymous said...

Sammy! If you've never read his memoir "Yes I Can" do yourself a favor and get it right away. One of the all-time greatest showbiz memoirs.

And belated welcome back, Sal!

Bruce H

softshoebanana said...

Be Bop Deluxe were a fantastic band, all albums are worth hearing, search out the many boots that are out there.
They were a killer live band.
We in Scotland always appreciated them

Anonymous said...

I second the emotion on Be Bop Deluxe

Anonymous said...

Bill and Be Bop are two of my faves. I love playing "Futurama". "Sunburst Finish" and/or "Modern Music" to see how many people ask, "Hey, who are those guys?"First time I heard "Maid in Heaven" and "Sister Seagull" I was hooked and still love it today. Heck, I even saw them in Milwaukee back in the deep, dark past. They were good, but they couldn't replicate the album magic. Bill latest live DVD, however, does both his solo and band work justice (having an extra guitarist helps). Sammy? always great and easily the most talented of the Rat Pack. Good sense of humor as well.

TimfromGR said...

Dance of the Uncle Sam Humanoids!

stivseed said...

Sal, we must`ve gone to different schools together. I love BBD, always have, since `75 when I bought Sunburst Finish at the local Korvettes.