Tag Archives: Harvest

reed ayers & lou kevin

Computer says no & Wiki fails to mention it’s the best Lou Reed parody ever … Kevin Ayers recorded his early version (bonus track on the 2003 cd remaster) on 1971-07-09, and released his final version of Stranger in blue suede shoes1972-01 on his third solo lp Whatevershebringswesingon Harvest … who’d already released it as a single by Kevin Ayers and the Whole World somewhere in 1971 … Funky lyrics too …

soft space machine


Late Soft Machine sounding like Giorgio Moroder has reworked Can‘s I want more“. Produced by … Mike Thorne, actually! Off the expanded 2cd remastered edition of Alive & Well – Recorded In Paris(rec. 1977-07, rel. 1978-04 on Harvest, reissued 2010-11 on Esoteric with bonus tracks, cat. no. ECLEC 22234). Can’t wait for a Soft space12″ with all versions and more!

the regretful rainmaker


ThoughFully Qualified Survivor(Harvest 1970) is often regarded as Michael Chapman‘s masterpiece, his debut lp Rainmaker(Harvest 1969) is just as magnificent. “You say” is as delicate as any of Nick Drake‘s gems but one senses the same taste of disappointment that Tim Hardin voiced so elegantly … “No song to sing” betrays strong US folk influences but sounds very personal in the way it reeks of regret over yet another lost love. “One time thing” comes right after with the most weary, depressing lyric … but then again we’d been warned upfront by the lp’s opening track – the roaring lament of “It didn’t work out”! Make no mistake: “Rainmaker” darkens your days with grey gale force showers that announce a bitter winter of discontent, rather than refreshes you with a pleasant spring drizzle that makes you look forward to the annual dance around the maypole … Folk rock at its most ominous, and no madcap Harper in sight either. But what a poignant debut, Chapman‘s! Produced by Gus Dudgeon; organ by Norman Haines; drums by Aynsley Dunbar or Barry Morgan; bass by Rick Kemp, Danny Thompson or Alex Dmochowski; guitars by Clem Clempson & Michael Chapman. Hey and do check the 1976 remake of “It didn’t work out” on Savage Amusementas well – e.g. via the neat little Dogs Got More Sense – The Decca Years 1974-19772cd+dvd box set (2004) on Shakedown / Secret! 2012-01 update: Light in the Attic have just reissued the album on lp (no bonus tracks) and on cd (6 bonus tracks, 3 previously unreleased – see tracklist via the Second Disc), cat. no. LITA079.

michael chapman’s fully qualified ghosts


The bitter wailings of the master of regret: Michael Chapman … Since discovering Chapman’s music around 1986, I’ve never taken those people seriously who find Leonard Cohen‘s music depressing. (Cohen has tremendous wit, actually.) Michael Chapman (do not confuse him with Family’s Roger Chapman) has worked with Ronson, Dunbar, Buckmaster … and has recorded his best work for Harvest. After reissues by BGO, C5, Repertoire and See for Miles, the San Francisco label Light in the Attic is the latest to rerelease him. They’re starting with his second album Fully Qualified Survivor (1970). Hopefully, Rainmaker (1969),Window (1971) and Wrecked Again (1971) will follow, and Millstone Grit (Deram 1973),Deal Gone Down (Deram 1974) and some of his lesser known later work (on Decca and beyond) as well. (Meanwhile, Chapman has released twenty-six solo guitar versions of tunes spanning his entire career via the Trainsong: Guitar Compositions 1967-20102cd on Tompkins Square – whose site fails to state the cat. no. or barcode of their release, sadly.)

41°N 93°W

Finally at long last … exhaustive details on that 41°N 93°W location Wire sang about (and MBV too)! Utterly obvious someone should’ve dedicated himself to this issue thoroughly …and now that’s happened – many thanks Mr Basement Geographer! (And one last question: did Mr. Lewis fly over Iowa with BEA?)


the same old same old


Roy Harper & Jimmy Page, off the Stormcock lp (1971, Harvest SHVL 789). Lately, Mr. Harper has been touring with Joanna Newsom, who has said this album (lavishly reissued in 2007) has changed her life (Humo #3638, p. 162, 2010-05-25).