Saturday, May 31, 2014
I wonder what either of the individuals in Roberta Bayley’s photo would have thought if you’d told the other that one day in the future that the gal would sing a song on her debut solo elpee by the guy?
Well, it’s come to pass that “Nobody’s Baby” features just that. What presumably began a mess around quickly took shape as a full album. It’s long been considered that Sam Elwitt was a genius. After all, isn’t The Nutley Brass play The Ramones Songbook one of the greatest albums of all time? I bet Herb Alpert wishes he’d come up with that. Incidentally, did that ever come out on vinyl? With all that Record Store Day landfill around you’d think such a beastie would be a shoe-in.
This one man Rockpile has cajoled Ms Linna into making an album that’s perhaps the best, most consistent example of the girl group sound since the debut Pussywillows mini-album. Did that come out on Telstar around the time Billy + Miriam got married? My recall tells me it did but that’s been misfiring of late. A few years ago, a woman by the name of Duffy scored a big seller with an approximation of this. I don’t want to call the sound here authentic. In time and space, such a description can give entirely the wrong idea. All you need to know is that this is pretty much as good as it gets in terms of timeless. All 12 cuts embody a feel and depth and sound that you seldom if ever hear anymore. What it should really be is a box of 7 inch singles. It reminds me fondly of Tracey Ullman’s tenure at Stiff and the videos where they sang into their hairbrushes.
The version of “Questioningly” sounds like a gal Joey. I have no idea what Miriam thinks of such a consideration but to my ears she truly does. I wish the big guy could have been around to hear it. If there’s any truth to this afterlife malarkey then undoubtedly he can but it might be some time until I can ask him in person. Something got in my eye when I heard it.
I’ve been eager to hear it again ever since HT and I visited Norton HQ in January and now I can. Everything about “Nobody’s Baby” is a total triumph, the sound, the sleeve and mostly the power of the music trapped on either side of the record. It is available in them modern formats the kids are said to prefer but NBT types will be favouring the vinyl methinks. That’s where it all really makes more than sense.
Mike Myers should give Sam a large wedge of cash to out shadow Shadow Morton and score the next Austin Powers movie with the proviso that Miriam makes a cameo showcasing a couple of these tunes. Meanwhile, until then, I hope to hear this blasting forth in several cool cabañas next time I’m in Spain. And that maybe a show or three on this side of the world might be in the offing?
Union Pool in "the Brooklyn" is the place to be tonight as a few of these tunes get their live premiere. Meanwhile, you can order your copy here and be all set to be tooled up with the sound of this summer and many more to come. Irrespective of the weather outside. It's magic I tells you!
Miriam and Joey pic by Roberta Bayley