I've been busy doing politics elsewhere and normal work and need to take a little respite. In the meantime, a couple of musical comments.
My CD player and amp/receiver both gave out recently and I found the time to replace them with new old (used) systems--including a five CD player. I'm not quite ready to fully enter the digital era of MP3 players,but maybe I'll more there soon.
I bought Vince Gill's new 4-cd set These Days about a week ago. It's outstanding. Allmusic.com has a very laudatory review which seems on target
this is Gill's masterwork. It's an exhaustive, profound, fun and fulfilling set that not only gives fans something to delight in, but goes wide and if given half a chance could and would attract many new ones. It is one of the major recordings not only of 2006, but of the decade so far -- in any genre. This is the treatment a seasoned artist like Gill deserves, and along with the benefit and support of being able to indulge in such a project, it lives up to the responsibility of delivering the goods in abundance. This is yet another example that the new media-savvy form of country music introduced by Brooks in the '90s has yielded something far more interesting and exciting than some folks are willing to accept, and yet still others are able to believe.
I've also been listening to Prime Prine a compilation of John Prine's first four albums. I've never really listened to Prine, but he has some fanatical fans and he's coming to Wichita on February 2 so I figured it was about time to give him a hearing. I transferred a vinyl that I had rescued from a flea market to CD. It's fine stuff, but not sure I'll want to spend $39-$49. To complicate matters David Allan Coe is playing the same night at a Wichita club for $20.00. (Prine was a buddy of folk singer-songwritter Steve Goodman and Coe recorded Goodman's "You Never Even Called Me Darling"--the perfect country and western song.)
Also playing is Stompin' at the Savoy classic jump blues, R&B, and proto-rock. Really good and joyous stuff.