Johnny Cash: The Great Lost Performance

Released this week is a live performance by Johnny Cash entitled The Great Lost Performance. Recorded on July 27, 1990 (17 years ago this week), this album includes Johnny Cash’s first performance anywhere of his original “What Is Man?,” his only recorded version of country gospel’s “Wonderful Time Up There” and “A Beautiful Life,” and his only concert version of “Life’s Railway To Heaven,” whose studio version by Cash was released only posthumously on the 2006 release Personal File. “Life’s Railway to Heaven” is even obscure on the album Personal File- it is the 48th of 49 tracks. For your listening enjoyment, please click on the links above for sound clips and click below to listen to several complete audio streams from the album.

Streaming audio from Johnny Cash’s Lost Performance CD: “Walk The Line” and “Ring of Fire

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Beatles Photos that you Haven’t Seen and Versions of Songs that You Haven’t Heard

My friends at Music You (Possibly) Won’t Hear Anyplace Else feature some nice Beatles covers of the songs “Hey Jude, ” “She’s a Woman,” “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “I’ll Cry Instead,” “Yellow Submarine,” “Dear Prudence, “George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord,” “All You Need Is Love,” Let It Be,” “Eight Days a Week,”and John Lennon’s song “Mother.” These covers are by Maynard Ferguson, Chet Atkins, and others. To add to the Beatles love, I found a number of high quality Beatles images for your enjoyment.

John Lennon: John Lennon and wife Cynthia Lennon in an airplane 1964, John Lennon interview 1974

George Harrison: George Harrison standing before crowd of photographers in Los Angeles, Calif., 1974, George Harrison and Ravi Shankar 1967

Ringo Starr: Ringo Starr with his house on fire in the background 1979

Beatles Fans: Boy holding baseball cards and pictures of The Beatles, 1964, Beatles Fan with”Call Paul Button” 1964

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Unchained (not so lost) Melody

Unchained Melody is one of the most iconic songs of all time. The writer of this song, Lyricist Hy Zaret, passed away yesterday at the ripe old age of 99. In his memory, I found some of the more well known renditions (and there are a lot to choose from):Elvis Presley, Righteous Brothers, U2, The Scene from the movie Ghost, Tom Jones, and Engelbert Humperdinck.

There are two other songs which I had always attributed to others were in fact Zaret originals. These include One Meat Ball (which I had always thought was a Josh White original), as well as one of my favorites-Why Does the Sun Shine? (The Sun Is a Mass of Incandescent Gas) performed by They Might Be Giants (version 1, version 2). It sounds like a TMBG original! (during my search, I found a ridiculous version lip synced by Sting)
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Vieux Farka Toure’s debut

Vieux Farka Toure inherits the Malian blues-guitar torch from his famed Grammy winning father, Ali Farka Toure on his self-title debut album, which was released on February 13th. The music is really fresh, has influences that range from Malian guitar to reggae and include Ali’s final recordings. You can order a copy of the CD.

In case you are wondering whether Vieux is merely trying to profit off his father’s name or really has talent of his own, I would recommend checking out some of his solo performances (performance 1, performance 2, performance 3, performance 4) and his music video. And I am sure you will agree, Vieux is quite a talent. Welcome to the new superstar of Malian guitar.

Update 2/12/07: 10% of the proceeds from this album will be donated to Bee Sago, a UNICEF-affiliated organization, as part of Modiba’s “Fight Malaria” campaign. They hope to reach their goal of providing every pregnant woman and child in Toure’s home region of Niafunke with a treated mosquito net- the most effective preventative measure in the fight against malaria, Africa’s leading cause of infant mortality. Just another reason (though you really don’t need another) to pick up this album.

Update 2/18/07: New NPR Review of Vieux’s work.

Related Tags: Mali, Malian Guitar, Vieux Farka Toure, Ali Farka Toure, debut, Grammy, Reggae

Vista Song: Just Wasting Time

With today’s lauch of Vista, I find myself thinking about the ALO post I wrote in October. What does ALO have to do with Vista? It’s the song Wasting Time (Isla Vista Song),of course! So, one might wonder, is updating to Vista a waste of time? Frankly, I have no idea. You can let the other technophile bloggers duke it out over that one. For now, I’m going to drink a Margarita and listen to the Isla Vista Song. Cheers!

Related Tags: Animal Liberation Orchestra, Jam Band, ALO, Vista

New Ways to read Lost Melodies

I wanted to let you know some easy ways to stay up to date with this site. I added a new page dedicated to subscription options. There should be something for everyone including RSS subscriptions, email subscriptions, and the newest addition would be add this page to your Google homepage. Other options that you would like featured, just let me know.

As always, recommendations and submissions are always appreciated.

Thanks

African Blues Man: Ali Farka Toure

At the suggestion of a Lost Melodies reader, I checked out the music of Ali Farka Toure. He has a unique sound that combines American blues with African music (though The Blues is a direct decendent from West African music).

Toure was a musician from Mali who was often compared to John Lee Hooker (Hooker has a new box set out, by the way). This comparison is due to his guitar licks and the similarity of his music to the blues sound. Unfortunately, Ali Farka Toure passed away last March from bone cancer. Here are an impressive number of mp3s by Toure as well as a fantastic video of the man in action (the song on the video is entitled “Goye Kur” is the opening track on The Source). To hear more Toure, pick up Toure’s self titled debut and Talking Timbuktu (with Ry Cooder). Thanks, Adam!