A companion disc to music producer/entrepreneur Joe Boyd 's entertaining memoir of the same name, White Bicycles: Making Music In The 60s (Fledgling) is a fascinating overview of just some of the incredible recording schemes he helped hatch, with informative and sometimes hilarious accompanying notes.
Take the jaw-dropping opener, Eric Clapton 's pre-Cream version of Robert Johnson's Crossroads, backed by Stevie Winwood , Jack Bruce , Pete York , Ben Palmer and Manfred Mann singer Paul Jones on harmonica. Boyd recalls, "I suggested adapting a country blues to the urban electric sound, and we quickly zeroed in on Robert Johnson. I liked Standing At The Crossroads, and he [Clapton] preferred Travelling Riverside Blues."
But there's also the first recording of Arnold Layne by the house band at Boyd's UFO Club, Pink Floyd , along with a few charming folk-rock ditties by the likes of Fairport Convention , Fotheringay , John & Beverley Martyn and the Incredible String Band .
Of course, no Boyd overview would be complete without a couple of tunes by Nick Drake . An impressive set to match an extraordinary run in the business of making music. Boyd reads from White Bicycles at the NOW Lounge tonight (Thursday, June 7) at 7 pm and speaks at the Holiday Inn Friday (June 8) at 2 pm.
For some reason, Paris Jazz Corner Productions in conjunction with Universal has decided that now would be a good time to start pumping out budget-line collections of Indian film music from the 50s in a new Golden Voices Of Bollywood series.
Judging by the rudimentary cardboard envelope packaging and the absence of artist and composer photos, biographies or background information about the films from which the music is taken, little thought or money was invested in the first six volumes.
They cover the early recordings of Lata Mangeshkar (volume 1), younger sister Asha Bhosle (volume 2), some other women playback singers ( Bollywood Divas , volume 3), the male singers ( Bollywood Crooners , volume 4), male/female exchanges ( Bollywood Duets , volume 5) and perhaps the most interesting concept of the bunch, Bollywood Bizarro (volume 6), which features the nutty side of master composers such as S.D. Burman , O.P. Nayyar and Hemant Kumar .
While the term "bizarro" is a bit misleading (the dabbling with Western sounds and rhythms here isn't exactly mind-blowing), the songs suggest that Burman's truly groundbreakng work of the 60s and 70s was based on experiments begun a decade earlier.
If you've checked out the discs Mablib has issued in his insane Mindfusion series, there will be no startling discoveries amongst the tracks he drops in his mix for the Los Angeles edition of Time Out's The Other Side (Deaf Dumb & Blind) guided tour CD/DVD series exploring various hip scenes around the globe.
But it's definitely a dope mix that pulls together many of his different inspirations, opening with the funky jazz of the Lightmen Plus One 's Energy Control Centre, then moving into the proto-techno of Cybertron 's Clear, which works well with Dabrye 's Jay Dee-enhanced Detroit classic Game Over before detouring into some twisted fusion with Steve Grossman 's Inmate Man, then going dubwise with Prince Jazzbo 's Blood Dunza as a set-up for Sun Ra 's apocalyptic getdown Nuclear War.
As a bonus challenge, you can put on the DVD and try staying awake as Peanut Butter Wolf - the least charismatic member of the entire Stones Throw posse - sleepwalks around L.A. on a sneaks hunt and makes a couple of stops at eateries, junk shops, galleries and various places other than the hot spots where he makes his most ridiculous vinyl scores.