Ric Ocasek: A Short Appreciation

Ric Ocasek was a legend. As a songwriter, his pop melodies were among the best. The way he blended alternative ideas with timeless power pop sensibilities marked him out as not only a great songwriter, but a master arranger. The very fact that tunes like ‘My Best Friend’s Girl’ and ‘It’s Candy-O’ became fixtures on oldies radio stations despite carrying the kind of vocal that was…quirky, to say the least, speaks volumes about his talent.

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WATCH: Tedeschi Trucks Band cover Derek & The Dominos’ ‘Layla’ album in its entirety…and more

The Tedeschi Trucks Band are known for their great live performances.  Epic sets where – in the time honoured Grateful Dead and Allman Brothers traditions – anything can happen.  Many of their previous live shows have been shared by fans, but few match the grandness of their set a couple of nights ago at the LOCKN’ Festival.

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Watch: Dr. John & The Nite Trippers – Live @ Levenkusener Jazztage, 2014

When most people think of Dr. John, first, they’ll think of his 1968 album ‘Gris Gris’ – a groundbreaking work melding voodoo blues, deep psychedelia and a touch of New Orleans jazz – or his popular ‘Right Place, Wrong Time’ single which showed a love of funk that fit the early 70s perfectly.  Maybe they’ll think about his appearance at The Band’s Last Waltz, where he was invited to sing ‘Such A Night’, captured on celluloid for future generations to discover.

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Eric Clapton: Behind The Sun Tour – Live ’85

Eric Clapton is more than fairly represented when it comes to concert DVD releases.  In fact, these stretch to seventeen different releases at the close of 2018.  However, most of these feature festival shows from after 1999 and only really represent the latter stages of the legendary musician’s career.

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Smashing Pumpkins – Live In Seattle 24/08/2018 (Shiny & Oh So Bright Tour, opening night)

When Smashing Pumpkins made their one and only UK stop in London on the first leg of the much anticipated ‘Shiny & Oh So Bright Tour’, it was an utterly thrilling experience.  A mammoth three hour audio-visual extravaganza, the set made fantastic use of video screens and costume changes.  Despite being in a huge, impersonal venue, it truly felt special – a show in every sense.  [A full review of the night can be found here.]

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