The Sunday Six

Celebrating music with six random tracks at a time

Welcome to another Sunday Six and hope you’re enjoying your weekend. Whatever it is you’re doing or plans you may have, most things go better with great music. I invite you to join me to embark on a new trip to celebrate music of the past and the present, six tunes at a time.

Coleman Hawkins Quartet/Love Song From “Apache”

Let’s start our journey in August 1963 with some soothing saxophone jazz by Coleman Hawkins. According to Wikipedia, German jazz music journalist Joachim-Ernst Berendt characterized Hawkins as one of the first prominent tenor sax jazz players, saying, “There were some tenor players before him, but the instrument was not an acknowledged jazz horn”. It’s my first exposure to Hawkins, so I’ll take that comment at face value. Born in St. Joseph, Mo. in 1904, Hawkins started playing saxophone at the age of 9. As a 17-year-old, he already was playing with Mamie Smith’s Jazz Hounds. While Hawkins became known with swing music during the big band era, he also had a role in the development of bebop in the ’40s. Love Song From “Apache”, composed by Johnny Mercer and David Raskin, is a beautiful track from a 1963 album by the Coleman Hawkins Quartet titled Today And Now. For jazz aficionados, Cole was backed by Tommy Flanagan (piano), Major Holley (upright bass) and Eddie Locke (drums).

Tears For Fears/Advice For the Young at Heart

On February 25, Tears For Fears released their first new album in nearly 18 years. While I’ve yet to spend more time with The Tipping Point, it brought the British new wave duo of Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith back on my radar screen. Formed in 1981, they are best remembered for their ’80s hits Mad World, Shout, Everybody Wants to Rule the World and Sowing the Seeds of Love. Given the Beatlesque sound of the latter, perhaps it’s not a surprise that tune, off their September 1989 album The Seeds of Love, is my favorite. Another song from that album I’ve always liked is Advice For the Young at Heart. Like several other tunes, it is credited to Orzabal and Nicky Holland, the keyboarder in Tears For Fears’ touring band during most of the second half of the ’80s.

John Hiatt & The Gooners/My Baby Blue

Next, let’s jump to May 2003 and a great tune by John Hiatt, an artist I’ve really come to appreciate over the past couple of years. While Hiatt has written songs for 50-plus years and recorded close to 30 albums, his tunes oftentimes became hits for other artists. Perhaps the most prominent examples are Thing Called Love and Have a Little Faith in Me, which became hits for Bonnie Raitt  and Joe Cocker, respectively. Hiatt’s songs have also been covered by an impressive and diverse array of other artists like B.B. KingBob DylanBuddy GuyEmmylou HarrisJoan BaezLinda RonstadtThe Nitty Gritty Dirt Band  and Willy DeVille. My Baby Blue, penned by Hiatt, is from his 17h studio album Beneath This Gruff Exterior, the only one that also credits his backing band The Gooners who also backed him on the Slow Turning (August 1988) and The Tiki Bar Is Open (September 2001) albums.

Chuck Prophet/Ford Econoline

When Spotify served up Ford Econoline by Chuck Prophet the other day, for a moment, I thought I was listening to a Ray Davies tune. From his AllMusic bio: Chuck Prophet is a singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist who has created a handful of impressive solo albums when he isn’t busy collaborating with some of the most respected figures in roots rock. A songwriter with a naturalistic sense of storytelling and drawing characters, and a melodic sense that brings together the impact of rock with the nuance of country, blues, and folk, Prophet has been releasing worthwhile solo albums since 1990, when he brought out his first solo LP, Brother Aldo. Prior to that, he was a key member of the rough-edged Paisley Underground band Green on Red, who had a small cult following in the United States and a significantly larger one overseas, and in between solo efforts, he worked as a sideman, collaborator, or producer for Alejandro Escovedo, Kelly Willis, Warren Zevon, Cake, Kim Richey, and many more. Well, I’m glad to finally “meet” an artist who it sounds like should have entered my radar screen a long time ago. Ford Econoline, written by Prophet, is a track from Night Surfer, an album that appeared in September 2014. Man, I love that tune and really want to hear more by Prophet. Any tips are welcome!

Traffic/Walking in the Wind

Alrighty, time to pay the ’70s a visit. The year is 1974 and the month is September. That’s when Traffic released their seventh studio album When the Eagle Flies. It would be the English rock band’s last record before Steve Winwood and Jim Capaldi revived Traffic one more time for Far From Home, the final album released under that name in May 1994. On When the Eagle Flies, apart from Windwood (vocals, acoustic piano, organ, Mellotron, Moog synthesizer, guitars) and Capaldi (drums, percussion, backing vocals, keyboards), the band’s line-up also included founding member Chris Wood (flute, saxophones), as well as Rosko Gee (bass). By the time the record came out, percussionist Rebop Kwaku Baah had been fired. Perhaps this explains why he remained uncredited for the congas he provided for two tunes – not a nice thing to do! Here’s Walking in the Wind, which like all other tunes except one was co-written by Winwood and Capaldi.

The Animals/Boom Boom

And once again, we’ve reached the final stop of our little trip. Let’s finish things off with a great rendition of John Lee Hooker classic Boom Boom by The Animals. The British blues rock band first released this gem as a single in North America in November 1964. It was also included on their second American studio album The Animals on Tour from February 1965, a somewhat misleading title for a studio recording. Originally, Boom Boom had appeared in March 1962 on Hooker’s studio album Burnin‘. The Animals’ rendition reached no. 43 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and no. 14 in Canada on the RPM Top 40 & 5 singles chart. Hooker’s original peaked at no. 60 on the Billboard Hot 100, only one of two of his songs that made the mainstream chart, as well as no. 16 on Billboard’s Hot R&B Sides. I never get tired to listen to Eric Burdon’s great voice and the band’s hot sound!

Here’s a Spotify playlist featuring the above goodies. Hope there’s something there you like!

Sources: Wikipedia; AllMusic; YouTube; Spotify

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16 thoughts on “The Sunday Six”

  1. Great soulful playing by Coleman Hawkins. He has the tremulous quality that I love! Have that T4F album and that cut sounds almost like it was remastered? The whole album is excellent. Hiatt’s tune sent me into orbit it was so good. It feels like it was written with G Harrison in mind and as a tribute to him. Sounds very similar to his music. I’m listening to Chuck Prophet’s “Night Surfer” album on spotify right now. Thank you for the introduction. Most bella music. The last 2 are good as well. Another great playlist, Christian. They just keep getting better and better. Happy Sunday.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Lisa. Coleman Hawkins and Chuck Prophet were new to me. Prophet’s voice really reminded me of Ray Davies. In the meantime, I’ve also listened to the “Night Surfer” album and like it as well.

      And what can I say about John Hiatt? The more I listen to his music, the more I dig the man. It’s not a coincidence so many other artists have covered his songs!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Lisa, Not sure whether you’ve listened to any other Chuck Prophet albums. “Night Surfer” is an excellent start, and it doesn’t appear to be an exception. I’ve started sampling some of his other music. This guy is so good!

      I keep coming back to Ray Davies. I could totally picture Davies do some of Prophet’s songs. I think it’s primarily his voice and intonation.

      In any case, if you dig “Night Surfer”, I’m sure you’re going to like other Prophet songs as well.

      I’ve been checking out “The Land That Time Forgot”, which is his most recent full-length album that came out in August 2020.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for the heads-up, Christian. I recently started a 30-day free trial of ad-free spotify (it now will play in my car via bluetooth!) and will be listening to spotify a lot more now. Will check out that album for sure.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Cool, would be curious to know what you think about it. Perhaps it’s the medicine I’m on.😆

        I‘ve been battling an annoying flu-like cold for the past 8 days and finally made the “smart” decision to see a doctor yesterday. Probably viral but unlikely to be COVID, given my fairly recent episode!

        I don’t mean to sound stereotypical, but men can really be stupid about not going to the doctor!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. So what medicine did they give you?? Christian, there are a lot of females — myself included — who avoid going to the doctor as if it were the plague. I don’t like them, I don’t trust them, and I’ve never seen anything compelling to make me change my mind about them. That said, they do have their uses, if only as the gatekeepers to some necessary medicines and for some surgeries (e.g. appendectomies, setting compound fractures, sewing up artery bleeds.) Hope you feel better soon.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Thanks, Lisa, you sound a bit like my dear wife😀

        In general, she’s also pretty skeptical when it comes to traditional doctors and traditional medicine. It’s not unusual that after she has seen somebody she didn’t like, she ignores their counsel or adjusts” the treatment plan.

        I will say she reads a ton about health and medicines, so her opinions are informed. I’m also happy to report that knock on wood she hasn’t killed herself so far!😆

        While I also believe you shouldn’t blindly trust any doctor, I’m generally not opposed to traditional medicine. At the end of the day, I feel it comes down to weighing potential benefits and potential risks. And realizing pretty much all drugs can have side effects.

        The doctor prescribed me a low dose steroid to help clear up my stubborn congestion. I tried an expectorant, but it didn’t do much.

        I know you have to be careful with steroids. But I’m just sick of being sick. Plus, yes, I also felt the doctor was thoughtful and that I can trust his judgment.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. John Hiatt and Traffic…that will keep me good the rest of the day. I haven’t heard that Hiatt song in a while…great selections Christian!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Another fine selection of songs Christian. I’m a big fan of Tears for Fears, and love their “Seeds of Love” album. I nearly wore it out playing it for months on end when it came out, and agree “Advice For the Young At Heart” was terribly under-appreciated. Their 1990 concert was one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. “Ford Econoline” is terrific, and I always love listening to The Animals.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. No one sounds like Hawkins. When he comes in on this tune it’s as good as music gets for me. The accompaniment is perfect. Beautiful. When I hear him I think of so many things. My old man, Sonny Rollins, Lester Young, Ben Webster, jazz.
    Good set. Traffic is just one of my favorite bands. Love that bass line. I like the whole album. I can still remember when I picked it up when it was released. I guess I was a fan.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for stopping by, CB. Hope all is well with the fish!🐟🐠🎣Always great seeing a comment from you.

      Completely agree with you on that Coleman Hawkins track. His tone is so smooth. It’s almost like he’s caressing his saxophone – glad I finally “met” him.

      And, yep, I pretty much love any earlier music that involved Steve Winwood – whether it’s with Spencer Davis Group, Blind Faith or Traffic!

      Liked by 1 person

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