Thursday, January 19, 2012

A Bob Dylan Getaway

Fancy yourself a serious Bob Dylan fan?

Looking for an opportunity to discuss 'America's Bard' with other Dylan aficionados in a beautiful setting?

Who isn't?

Well, author on all things Bob Dylan Michael Gray is offering an extraordinary opportunity to chat about Bob Dylan in his home in southwest France. Michael Gray has written several Dylan-related works including the well reviewed (and still in print) Bob Dylan Encyclopedia.

Though you would have to get to Gray's home on your own, he provides a room in his home for the weekend, breakfasts, dinners (with regional wines), and (most importantly) will hold two intimate discussions of Dylan's music, to be complemented by Gray's music collection if need be. Possible topics of conversation include "Dylan & the Blues; Dylan & Rock’n’roll; Dylan's Use of the Bible; Dylan & Plagiarism; Dylan & Literary Culture; Dylan On Tour; Dylan Bootlegs."

Originally, there were three weekends available, but one has already booked up, so if you are interested you better get your reservation in sooner rather than later. The available weekends are: May 4 to May 6 and June 15 - June 17. The cost is £399 or £599 for a couple.

For more information, go to Michael Gray's site, or drop him an email. Let him know Spoony sent you (I don't receive a commission, but I'd love to hear that someone found out about this on account of my blog)!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Jimmy Fallon does David Bowie!

I was not a big fan of Jimmy Fallon when he was on Saturday Night Live, but the guy has won me over with his spot on Bob Dylan and Neil Young impressions.

Fallon is back at it with this fantastic spoof of David Bowie, lampooning Tim Tebow to the tune of "Space Oddity ." It's neat the Fallon is now using unique lyrics (and hilarious ones at that), instead of old tunes (Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Charles in Charge etc).

Check it Out:

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Leonard Cohen - Darkness

Leonard Cohen has released a new single from his upcoming album, entitled "Darkness." And Whoa Nellie does it live up to its name. Opening with some very brooding guitar strumming, Leonard Cohen sings with a dangerous tone reminiscent perhaps of "Waiting for the Miracle." But make no mistake: this song is no repackaging of old tunes.

This song departs sharply from the first single of the album, "Show me the Place." I cannot recall anticipating an album's release as much as this one. Does anyone know if the Webb Sisters are supporting Cohen on this album? At any rate, the female vocalists on this balance Leonard Cohen nicely. Cohen is 77 years old. Hopefully, this album goes a long way to dispel stereotypes about what people can accomplish as they advance in years.

Have a listen!

Leonard Cohen - Darkness by leonardcohen

The album is available for pre-order on Amazon for 9.99!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Abbey Road to Open its Doors (One Day Only!)

For many a music fan, Abbey Road is a mysterious music studio (the Wonka Chocolate Factory of music if you will), where innovative recordings were produced. Though the recording studio has existed since 1931, it is best known for the Beatles recordings that came out of Abbey Road's famed Studio Two. However, a number of other artists have recorded significant albums at Abbey Road, including Odessey and Oracle, The Dark Side Of The Moon, and S.F. Sorrow.

However, the public has rarely had a chance to see inside of the famed recording studio. In honor of the studio's 80th birthday, there will be two tours conducted on March 10th of this year.

The 75 pound admission fee includes a lecture by the authors of the out of print Recording the Beatles, and will include the opportunity to see memorabilia associated with the studio. Though 75 pounds isn't chump change, I expect tickets will sell out quickly.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A Mingus Memorial in the Works!

As some of you may know, Charles Mingus is my favorite musician (email me for album recommendations). That's why I was delighted read that Mingus's hometown of Nogales, Arizona is planning to honor the jazz bassist with a memorial. Charles Mingus composed and performed an extensive and diverse array of avant-garde jazz before dying of Lou Gehrig's disease in 1979 at the age of 56.

However, this news got me thinking: how do you honor Charles Mingus through a monument? His music is so full of life that a stodgy statue of the man seems insufficient to capture Mingus's spirit: how do you represent Mingus while conveying his larger-than-life personality? It's a tall order. Any ideas?

I look forward to seeing what they come up with.

At any rate, the article reports that organizers hope that the monument will be complete before the town's Charles Mingus Festival (!!!) in April, which would coincide with what would have been his ninetieth birthday.

I certainly hope to see tribute albums in honor of Mingus's ninetieth birthday!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Inspiration for "Mr. Tambourine Man" Releasing His First Solo Album

Bruce Langhorne, who played guitar for Dylan during his heyday and was the inspiration for the acoustic classic "Mr. Tambourine Man" has released his first solo album, to be titled "Mr. Tambourine Man." It's reasonable that he would try to capitalize off the popularity of the Dylan classic, but odd that he would wait over 45 years to do so!

In addition to playing with Dylan, Langhorne recorded with Joan Baez, Gordon Lightfoot, and other giants of the 1960s folk music scene. explains that the new album "which explores his talents in a showcase of his many styles, including reggae, rock, blues, Afro-Caribbean and salsa."

Langhorne's own website includes some lengthy clips from the album. The clips confirm that the album is heavily invested in Afro-Caribbean music, rather than trying to replicate "Bringing It All Back Home," underscoring the range of Langhorne's musical talent.
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