It’s Tuesday early evening and facing the north of Glasgow from the south of the city I’m driving into a spectacular sunset and listening to the radio. On the radio was Bryan’s Burnett’s brilliant Get It On and I hear a song I’m not aware of listening to for 30 years: U2 and Gloria. It reminded me how exciting they were in these early days and how fresh the new is when you hear it the first time. Earlier this morning Lauren Laverne played Neat, Neat, Neat by the Damned and hearing it again I though how great it sounded. I’d often thought I didn’t bond with some punk tunes at the time as my ears were in a different place. Sometimes it takes years to recognise the beauty of it all, sometimes years later the song doesn’t sound as good as it does going around in the juke box of your memory.
A couple of weeks ago Chuck Prophet came into the studio to talk about the songs he’s loved and the people he’s listened to as well as the stories behind his own records. Later on after our interview I went down to King Tuts where Chuck was playing and he would perform a song by one of these bands as an encore. I happen to think this particular track still sounds as great as the day I first heard it…and that was some time ago. You can here that on Friday night. There is so much more to Chuck though: guitarist with Green on Red, solo artist and country music connoisseur. (he once got locked in a studio and covered an entire Waylon Jennings album). On Friday he and his wife, Stephanie Finch give us a great acoustic insight into the songs from Temple Beautiful his excellent new album. Chuck and I talk extensively about San Francisco, brothers, baseball, Jim Jones death cult, strip clubs and country music…how could you not want to hear that? It’s so good we’ve given over the second half of the show. The picture above is Chuck, Stefanie and a friend as they take journalists and media types on their San Francisco bus tour to launch the album. I think Willy Mays is in the legend in the background.
But there’s so much more…… Neil Young (again it’s so great), Beach House (likewise), Jack White, Alison Krauss and Union Station, Levon Helm and a lovely tribute to Robin Gibb from an unlikely source. We will also share something really beautiful from a new Scottish artist (to us), Robin Adams and play you a track from the new Shawn Colvin album – produced by our old friend Buddy Miller.
You see…sometimes it all comes back to the same familiar names, just we put them in a different order! Join us on Friday if you can at five past eight on BBC Radio Scotland.
I’ve found myself returning to some old favourites of late, and that – alongside intriguing, artful new music – sums up the allure of Another Country. Personifying that, I’m metaphorically on the edge of my seat awaiting Shawn Colvin’s new album – not to mention a pre-ordered, signed copy of her autobiography, “Diamond in the Rough”, which is released the same day! – and it will be great to hear her on the show.
Beach House ….. YES !!!!!!