Monday, February 21, 2011

“Whiskeyclone, Hotel City, 1997”

Monday morning already?  Must be time for some Monday Morning Blues!

As you’ve no doubt guessed from the title, I have something a bit different for you this morning: my take on a song from Beck’s extraordinary 1994 album Mellow Gold.  If you can wear new grooves into a cd, then I wore new grooves into Mellow Gold when it came out.  The musical stew Beck cooked up was pungent, savory (& unsavory too!) & just downright delicious to the ear. 

But of course, the further question is: why would I decide to add the song to my repertoire?  There are plenty of songs by any number of artists that I like a lot & yet wouldn’t consider playing myself simply because they wouldn’t fit with my abilities & strengths.  There are also songs that would work musically, but won’t work in terms of the lyrics, either because I personally find the words problematic or simply because they’d sound a bit silly (in my opinion) sung by someone who’s just months away from qualifying for the senior discount.  That’s not to say I can’t connect with a younger self when singing, but the more macho posturing lyrics (for instance) are just not me at this point in my life!

But “Whiskeyclone, Hotel City, 1997” worked immediately.  I think I got this on the second take, & with very little rehearsal.  The chord progression just seem to ask for slide work, as it moves thru an odd assembly of (by & large) major chords.  I assume the key center is A, tho I end the song on a C# chord.  I played “Whiskeyclone, Hotel City, 1997” on my Gold Tone resonator, tuned to open D & capoed on the second fret. 

As this post is being written, I've wound up the actual recording for the two cds I want to have in hand by the start of the spring performing season.  Now there’s some further mixing & mastering.  I feel really good about the recordings I’ve made this winter & I’m excited to see the project move toward completion.  There’ll be more news on this as things progress!

In the meantime: please enjoy “Whiskeyclone, Hotel City, 1997”!


  1. Interesting. This has a very Tom Waits feel to it, your version more so than Beck's.

  2. Hi Roy: That makes some sense. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I'm with Roy there. Both of them roots men and I think your version digs their roots in a little deeper.

  4. Hi Dick: Yes, that's true about Beck & Waits. Beck has even covered some of the same songs I perform regularly--he likes that raw old blues. Glad you liked it!

  5. I like what you do with the song. I also like the idea of visiting the sounds and words of youth at an older age.

  6. Hi Caroline: Thanks! As I've been trying to broaden my repertoire I have been listening again to things I hadn't listened to in awhile--it's been a fun ride!

  7. Hi Tess: Thanks! So glad you liked it!


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