Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Watch, Listen and Singalong: Part 14: Wilco Wednesday

A bit of a dodgy clip but a rollicking song nonetheless from the Billy Bragg, Wilco, Woody Guthrie project. It makes me smile every time I hear it.

This is a cute beginning to a song from my favourite Wilco album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. Heavy Metal Drummer just one of many fabulous songs from an atmospheric album. I just love the whole thing. The documentary that traces the difficulties surrounding the release of the album is one of my favourite music documentaries also. That and Standing in the Shadows of Motown - which should be compulsory viewing, even if only for the Montell Jordan, Chaka Khan duet on Ain't No Mountain High Enough which is superb.

And this is a beautiful song, again from the Bragg, Wilco, Guthrie project Mermaid Avenue. Arguably this is the biggest "hit" from that album. But it's packed with gems. I particularly love the slow ballad "An Unwelcome Guest". If you've never heard it, "do yourself a favour". Hmmm...what a good catchphrase for a music journalist. Particularly one who wears a big hat.


Catriona said...

Everyone should own a copy of Mermaid Avenue. Admittedly, I came to it as a hardcore Billy Bragg fan, not as a Wilco fan--and I'm still a hardcore Billy Bragg fan--but it's a brilliant album.

Graceland brilliant.

Wendy said...

yes mermaid avenue is essential listening for all. i too was a billy bragg fan (although perhaps not quite hardcore) before a wilco now in the process of discovering wilco's earlier works which are wonderful also. But yankee hotel foxtrot remains the highlight for me so far.

Catriona said...

I have meant to listen to Yankee Hotel Foxtrot since it came out, but I've never quite got around to it. I remember a story I vaguely heard about its production and the record company being recalcitrant, which fascinated me.

I'm still a Billy Bragg fan. I love his early stuff--and, to me, early stuff comes all the way down to Worker's Playtime--quite beyond reason, but I've never been disappointed in a Billy Bragg album.

Some bands you just listen to early enough and often enough that they can never subsequently disappoint you.

Wendy said...

that's very true...they get you early and you're a fan for life no matter what.

The documentary "I am trying to break your heart" traces the problem Wilco had with it's record company and yankee hotel foxtrot...and it's fascinating. As well as being filled with great music it shows how ridiculous big corporations in the music business can be. It's well worth watching as both as a documentary and for the music.