FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Playlist

by DAVID VEST

Last Man Standing, by Jerry Lee Lewis (Artist First)

After bouncing around a handful of labels, and having its release date
postponed repeatedly, the latest Lewis comeback effort finally appears.
(Remember when the movie bio was supposed to resurrect the Killer’s career? Unfortunately, Dennis Quaid took all the sting out of the project by playing the most dangerous man in the history of rock as a rube and a yokel.) Like that movie, this album should have been doomed from the start, with its everybody-but-Bono parade of duet partners, most of whom had more to gain than Lewis by appearing on the CD. Fortunately, the whole thing is mostly redeemed by the fact that for once you can actually hear Lewis’ piano playing on one of his records. Believe me, he can still play. Always anunder-rated if careless singer, Lewis can also still hit the notes when he wants to. And it sounds like he wanted to here. What John Halverson brilliantly called “Jerry Lee’s basic no-goodness” has always been a big part of the attraction, and the Ferriday Fireball, even at 70-whatever, still knows how to embarrass himself with the best of them: singing “Old Glory” with Toby Keith may be the nadir of a career full of rock bottoms. But if he didn’t make you cringe one minute and sit up straight the next, he wouldn’t be the Killer, would he?

Antony and the Johnsons, by Antony and the Johnsons (Secretly Canadian)

The debut CD by one of the great new voices in American pop, featuring the anthemic “River of Sorrow” and other classics. Like most people who hadn’t been in the loop, I discovered Antony through his amazing performance of “If It Be Your Will,” in the film “Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man.”


I am a Bird Now
, by Antony and the Johnsons (Secretly Canadian)

Never have guest vocals been more unnecessary than the drop-ins by Rufus Wainwright, Boy George, and Lou Reed on this band’s second CD. Not that the contributions aren’t good, but you’d rather hear Antony sing any of these songs by himself, if you’re familiar with his voice at all. Compare the duet with Boy George on “You Are My Sister” with Antony and his band’s brilliant unaided performance on Letterman: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_R3CYVLcYZw

And while you’re tubing, dig Antony’s cameo in the French film, Wilde Side, singing “I’m In Love With A Dead Boy“.


Black Dialogue
, by The Perceptionists (Definitive Jux)

The CD that contains my favorite antiwar song since the invasion of Iraq, “Memorial Day,” with its grunt point-of-view refrain: “Where are the weapons of mass destruction? We been lookin’ for months and we ain’t found nothing. Please Mr. President, tell us something!”

Marsalis Plays Monk (Standard Time, Vol. 4), by Wynton Marsalis (Sony)

When I visited with Marsalis, backstage at Rockefeller’s in Houston, in the 80s, I asked him to play something by Monk, expecting to get “Blue Monk” or “Straight No Chaser” or at best “Well, You Needn’t” for my troubles. He played “Raise Four” — raising my eyebrows and sending me scrambling back to the LP collection to see what other Monk tunes (such as the seldom-played “Work,” for example) I’d been overlooking. At a time when nothing could seem more uncool than listening to Marsalis, whose fall (into the depths of the Establishment) from the heights of jazz fashion has been stupefying, try his Monk tribute CD. Well worth the trouble, though I don’t see why Wynton’s fine versions of “Think Of One” and “Crepescule with Nellie” couldn’t have been included in the set.

DAVID VEST can be reached at: davidvest@springmail.com.

His CDs includes Serve Me Right To Shuffle and Way Down Here (Live).

 

 

 

More articles by:

DAVID VEST writes the Rebel Angel column for CounterPunch. He and his band, The Willing Victims, have just released a scorching new CD, Serve Me Right to Shuffle. His essay on Tammy Wynette is featured in CounterPunch’s new collection on art, music and sex, Serpents in the Garden.

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
July 28, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Diana Johnstone
Collateral Damage: U.S. Sanctions Aimed at Russia Strike Western European Allies
Jim Kavanagh
Donald the Destroyer: Assessing the Trump Effect
Carl Boggs
The Other Side of War: Fury and Repression in St. Louis
Eva Golinger
There is Still Time to Prevent Civil War in Venezuela
Anthony DiMaggio
“A Better Deal”? Dissecting the Democrats’ “Populist” Turn in Rhetoric and Reality
Conn Hallinan
Middle East Chaos
Mumia Abu-Jamal
James Baldwin: Word Warrior
Joshua Frank
The Fire Beneath: Los Angeles is Sitting on a Ticking Time Bomb
Myles Hoenig
It Wasn’t Russia, It was the Green Party!
Andrew Levine
Enter Scaramouche, Stage Right
Brian Cloughley
Time to Get Out of Afghanistan
Gary Leupp
The Trump Revolution Devouring Its Own Children
John Wright
Trump’s Hezbollah Gaff Was No Gaff
Alan Jones
“Finland Station” and the Struggle for Socialism Today
Robert Hunziker
Plastic Chokes the Seas
Eric Draitser
Enough Nonsense! The Left Does Not Collaborate with Fascists
Vijay Prashad
The FBI vs. Comrade Charlie Chaplin
Jane LaTour
Danger! Men Working
Yoav Litvin
The Unbearable Lightness of Counterrevolution
Charles Derber
Universalizing Resistance: How to Trump Trump
Gregory Barrett
Two Johnstones and a Leftish Dilemma: Nationalism vs. Neoliberalism
Joseph Natoli
Choosing the ‘Arteries that Make Money’
CJ Hopkins
Intersectionalist Internet Blues
Pepe Escobar
China and India Torn Between Silk Roads and Cocked Guns
Ralph Nader
Can the World Defend Itself From Omnicide?
Howard Lisnoff
Agape While Waltzing at the Precipice
Musa Al-Gharbi
Want to Shake Up Status Quo? Account for the Default Effect
Angela Kim
North Korean Policy Must Focus on Engagement Not Coercion
Hiroyuki Hamada
Delivering Art in the Empire
David Macaray
Talking Union
Binoy Kampmark
Refugee Conundrums: Resettlement, the UN and the US-Australia Deal
Robert Koehler
Opening Gitmo to the World
David Jaffee
No Safe Space for Student X
Thomas Knapp
The State is at War — With the Future
David Swanson
What’s Missing from Dunkirk Film
Winslow Myers
There Is Still Time, Brother
Robert J. Burrowes
Biological Annihilation on Earth Accelerating
Frederick B. Hudson – Dr. Junis Warren
Robot Scientists Carry Heavy Human Hearts 
Randy Shields
Not My Brother’s Reefer
Sam Lichtman
Where are the Millennials?
Louis Proyect
Death Race: the Cruelties of the Iditarod
Charles R. Larson
Review: Norman Lock’s A Fugitive in Walden Woods
July 27, 2017
Edward Curtin
The Deep State, Now and Then
Melvin Goodman
The Myth of American Exceptionalism
Nozomi Hayase
From Watergate to Russiagate: the Hidden Scandal of American Power
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail