Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Speaking of Robert Palmer...

Recently I added some songs from a 1989 session by Hot Joe, at my music site. The session actually comprised 14 songs all recorded in one night at the old Easley studios on Marion in Memphis in the summer of 1989. Most of these were instrumentals, of the kind that only Hot Joe could really pull off, but I have only shared tracks on which I sang, because it seems disingenuous to do otherwise. However, the other tracks include a fine take of Linda Heck singing her song "Look Out for Love," and some blistering playing from the band, which was Jim Duckworth (guitar), Jim Spake (soprano, tenor, and baritone sax), John McClure (bass), Ross Johnson (drums), Doug Garrison (drums and percussion), and the late Robert Palmer (clarinet). Listening to these tracks again brought back memories of what an adventure it always was to play with Bob Palmer (he was always "Bob" to us). His unusual take on sound and form introduced an element of risk which kept Hot Joe from sounding too slick, but he could also be surprisingly smooth (check out the solo on my version of "Look Out for Love."). Bob introduced me to the term "skronk," which was my inspiration for the short-lived Skronkadelic project. It was also through Bob that I first learned of the Master Musicians of Jajouka, whom I finally had the pleasure of seeing last year at Ornette Coleman's Meltdown. This recording comes from a concert organized by Bob's daughter Augusta as a tribute to her dad, to benefit the Master Musicians of Jajouka, and features Robert Poss from Band of Susans, giving a personal history of guitar playing and then showing what he's really made of, which is pure awesomeness. I think a lot of bands, whether they knew it or not at the time (or since), drew inspiration from these guys, who were championed by both Bob and John Peel, of both of whose knowledge and wisdom we are now sadly deprived.






2 comments:

Augusta said...

Beautiful stuff of Robert Poss. Linda Heck and Lisa McGaughran also pointed me toward the Hot Joe recordings on myspace. Really fantastic to hear my dad (and everyone else) on those recordings!

James Enck said...

Thanks Augusta. Drop me your mailing address at james.enck@gmail.com and I'll send you a disk of the entire session.