All posts by Egil Mosbron

Bob Dylan’s 5 Worst Albums

This might not be the best idea for a list, I know. We here @ JV don’t write about music we don’t like. But this is different, this is my fav artist..by far, and the 5 worst Bob Dylan albums still contains much great music. A bad Dylan album might still be a good album.

It’s always easy to write negative critique, but I chose not to comment on the 5 albums on the list… except highlighting the best song/songs.

To set the record strait: on my “all time greatest albums” list I have 3 Dylan records @ top 3:

  1. Blonde On Blonde
  2. Highway 61 Revisited
  3. Blood On The Tracks
  4. Exile on Main St. – The Rolling Stones
  5. Born To Run – Bruce Springsteen

 

My rules:  I’ve excluded Greatest Hits/Best of albums, but bootleg series & live albums are in. And Christmas in the Heart is also excluded from this “competition”, it’s not really a Dylan album after all.

Then we are down to 52 albums.. and here are the worst:

  1. Down In The Groove

    Released May 30, 1988
    Recorded 1983–1987
    Genre Rock
    Length 32:10
    Label Columbia
    Producer unlisted

    Best song: Silvio

  2. Dylan

    Released November 19, 1973
    Recorded April 24, 1969 – June 4, 1970
    Genre Rock, folk rock
    Length 33:22
    Label Columbia
    Producer Bob Johnston

     Best Song: Mr.Bojangles

  3. Dylan & The Dead
    Released February 6, 1989
    Recorded July 1987
    Genre Rock
    Length 43:07
    Label Columbia
    Producer Jerry Garcia
    John Cutler

    Best Song: Queen Jane Approximately

  4. Self Portrait
     

    Released June 8, 1970
    Recorded April 24, 1969 – March 30, 1970
    Genre Country rock, rock
    Length 73:15
    Label Columbia
    Producer Bob Johnston

    Best Songs: Copper Kettle (The Pale Moonlight), Days of’ 49, Early Mornin’ Rain, Let It Be Me & Living The Blues

  5. Real Live
    Released November 29, 1984
    Recorded Summer 1984
    Genre Hard rock
    Length 50:15
    Label Columbia
    Producer Glyn Johns

     Best Songs: Highway 61 Revisited, Masters of War & Tombstone Blues

Here is a spotify playlist with the best songs from the worst albums:
(PS – I did not find “Dylan” on spotify… hence the missing “Mr. Bojangles”)

4 runners up:

  • Knocked Out Loaded (1986)
    remove Brownsville Girl and it might be the very worst
  • Bob Dylan at Budokan (1979)
    ok in small portions and contains a great Is Your Love In Vain 
  • Saved (1980)
    the tame & toothless sound nearly kills it off, still it contains some really good songs: Saved, Solid Rock, In The Garden,..
  • Empire Burlesque (1985)
    with typical bad 80’s production (horrible drum sound), and leaving best versions of key songs in the studio. This one also have some strong songs: Emotionally Yours, Dark Eyes & Tight Connection To My Heart
-Egil

Today: Prince was born in 1958 – 54 years ago

From Wikipedia:

Prince (born Prince Rogers Nelson; June 7, 1958) is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of the instruments on his recordings. In addition, Prince has been a “talent promoter” for the careers of Sheila E.Carmen ElectraThe Time and Vanity 6, and his songs have been recorded by these artists and others (including Chaka KhanThe BanglesSinéad O’Connor, and even Kim Basinger). He also has several hundred unreleased songs in his “vault”.

Earning 33 nominations, Prince has won seven Grammys. He also has had two albums − 1999 and Purple Rain − awarded the Grammy Hall of Fame Award.

Won:

  • 1985 – Purple Rain – Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal
  • 1985 – Purple Rain – Best Score Soundtrack Album for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media
  • 1985 – I Feel You – Best R&B Song
  • 1987 – Kiss – Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal
  • 2005 –  Call My Name – Best Male R&B Vocal Performance
  • 2005 – Musicology – Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance
  • 2008 – Future Baby Mama – Best Male R&B Vocal Performance

My fav Prince song:

Album of the day @ JV:

Other June-07:

Continue reading Today: Prince was born in 1958 – 54 years ago

Today: Sleepy John Estes passed away in 1977 – 35 years ago

Photo by Willa Davis

From Wikipedia:

John Adam Estes (January 25, 1899 – June 5, 1977), best known as Sleepy John Estes or Sleepy John, was a American blues guitarist, songwriter and vocalist, born in Ripley, Lauderdale County, Tennessee.

From allmusic.com:

Despite the fact that he performed for mixed black and white audiences in string band, jug band, and medicine show formats, his music retains a distinct ethnicity and has a particularly plaintive sound. Astonishingly, he recorded during six decades for Victor, Decca, Bluebird, Ora Nelle, Sun, Delmark, and others. Over the course of his career, his music remained simple yet powerful, and despite his sojourns to Memphis and Chicago he retained a traditional down-home sound. Some of his songs are deeply personal statements about his community and life, such as “Lawyer Clark” and “Floating Bridge.” Other compositions have universal appeal (“Drop Down Mama” and “Someday Baby”) and went on to become mainstays in the repertoires of countless musicians. One of the true masters of his idiom, he lived in poverty, yet was somehow capable of turning his experiences and the conditions of his life into compelling art.
—  Barry Lee Pearson

Mailman blues:

Album of the day @ JV:

Other June-05:

Continue reading Today: Sleepy John Estes passed away in 1977 – 35 years ago

Today: The late Curtis Mayfield was born in 1942 – 70 years ago

From Wikipedia:

Curtis Lee Mayfield (June 3, 1942 – December 26, 1999) was an African-American soul, R&B, and funk singer, songwriter, and record producer. He is best known for his anthemic music with The Impressions during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and for composing the soundtrack to the blaxploitation film Super Fly, Mayfield is highly regarded as a pioneer of funk and of politically conscious African-American music. He was also a multi-instrumentalist who played the guitar, bass, piano, saxophone, and drums. Curtis Mayfield is a winner of both the Grammy Legend Award (in 1994) and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award (in 1995), and was a double inductee into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, inducted as a member of The Impressions into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991, and again in 1999 as a solo artist. He is also a two-time Grammy Hall of Fame inductee.

Awards and legacy

Mayfield has left a remarkable legacy for his introduction of social consciousness into R&B and for pioneering the funk style. Many of his recordings with the Impressions became anthems of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s, and his most famous album, Super Fly, is regarded as an all-time great that influenced many and truly invented a new style of modern black music.

  • Mayfield’s solo Super Fly is ranked #69 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
  • The Impressions’ album/CD The Anthology 1961–1977 is ranked at #179 on Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of all time.
  • Along with his group The Impressions, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.
  • In 1999, he was inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist making him one of the few artists to become double inductees.
  • Posthumously, in 2000, he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
  • He was a winner of the prestigious Grammy Legend Award in 1994.
  • He received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995.
  • The Impressions’ 1965 hit song, “People Get Ready”, composed by Mayfield, has been chosen as one of the Top 10 Best Songs Of All Time by a panel of 20 top industry songwriters and producers, including Paul McCartney, Brian Wilson, Hal David, and others, as reported to Britain’s Mojo music magazine.
  • The Impressions hits, People Get Ready and For Your Precious Love are both ranked on Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, as #24 and #327 respectively.

People Get Ready / Move on up:

Album of the day:

Other June-03

Continue reading Today: The late Curtis Mayfield was born in 1942 – 70 years ago

Today: The Beatles released “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” in 1967 – 45 years ago

From Wikipedia:

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (often shortened to Sgt. Pepper) is the eighth studio album by the English rock band The Beatles, released on 1 June 1967 on the Parlophone label and produced by George Martin. The album is widely regarded as one of the greatest of all time, and has since been recognised as one of the most important albums in the history of popular music, including songs such as “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” and “A Day in the Life“. Recorded over a 129-day period beginning in December 1966, Sgt. Pepper saw the band developing the production techniques of their previous album, Revolver. Martin’s innovative and lavish production included the orchestra usage and hired musicians ordered by the band. Genres such as music hall, rock and roll, pop rock, and traditional Indian music are covered. The album cover art, by English pop artist Peter Blake, depicts the band posing in front of a collage of their favourite celebrities, and has been widely acclaimed and imitated.

Legacy

Sgt. Pepper has been on many lists of the best rock albums, including Rolling Stone, Bill Shapiro, Alternative Melbourne, Rod Underhill and VH1.

  • In 1987 Rolling Stone named Sgt. Pepper the best album of the last twenty years (1967–1987).
  • In 1997 Sgt. Pepper was named the number one greatest album of all time in a “Music of the Millennium” poll conducted by HMV, Channel 4, The Guardian and Classic FM.
  • In 1998 Q magazine readers placed it at number seven
  • in 2003 the TV network VH1 placed it at number 10.
  •  In 2003, the album was ranked number 1 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
  •  In 2006, the album was chosen by Time magazine as one of the 100 best albums of all time.
  • In 2002, Q magazine placed it at number 13 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever.
  •  The album was named as one of Classic Rock magazine’s “50 Albums That Built Prog Rock”.
  •  In 2003, it was one of 50 recordings chosen by the Library of Congress to be added to the National Recording Registry.

The best song from the album: “A Day In Life”:

….and the opening track:

……Lucy in the sky..:

 Other June-01:

Continue reading Today: The Beatles released “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” in 1967 – 45 years ago