Saturday, 15 February 2020

Bless The Day #5: Stop This World

A casually caustic Mose Allison singing ‘Stop This World’ is something which seems very much of the moment, what with the way he suggests someone stopping this world, and letting him off, because there’s too many pigs in the same trough, too many buzzards sitting on the fence, and none of it is making any sense. Well, it’s easy to see where he’s coming from, and how it might be applied to the world today.

The song itself is a perfect example of Mose’s lightness of touch, the way he uses his wit as a weapon, with raised eyebrows and a studied nonchalance of manner. Mose and his piano are accompanied here by bluesy horns, which add to the drama. He may be down but he’s still the master of ironic inflections and acute observations delivered in a deadpan and detached wry way, the singer of songs which sting just as much as someone ranting and raving, yelling and hollering.

Saturday, 18 January 2020

Bless The Day #4: Lazy Afternoon

‘It’s A Lazy Afternoon’ as sung by Lucy Reed is quite something. Discreetly accompanied by Dick Marx on piano and Johnny Frigo on bass doing the bare minimum beautifully, her precise articulation, the exquisite enunciation, the unforced projection, everything, it’s all so subtly sensual and seductive, the mood is incredibly dreamy, so intimate, so tempting, so indolent. When Lucy suggests spending a lazy afternoon with her, only a fool would hesitate.

She really works wonders with John Latouche’s carefully chosen words, his very vivid imagery, with those beetle bugs zooming, and the tulip trees blooming, the farmer leaving his reaping, the speckled trout no longer leaping, the daisies running riot amid the quiet. You really feel as though you are there, with Lucy offering her hand, and with that look in her eye. There’s absolutely no need to answer is there?