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on Friday, March 30th, 2012 at 9:39 am by Radley Balko
and is filed under Five-Star Fridays/Music.
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Maybe Cooder could write the soundtrack for a Walter Hill movie in which a bunch of anxious neo-cons go to a conference in New Hampshire, where they clumsily trample on the sensibilities of the genuine minarchists who have settled in the area, only to find themselves gravely outmatched in the showdown that follows. It could be called “Southern Comfort II: Northern Style”.
Very nice track. I bought his Paradise and Lunch disc in the 70’s, and was blown away.
I got a chance to hear him at a small club a year or so later. He played some the tracks from the album. To my amazement, what I had thought was Ry and a couple of backup guitarists was just Ry, a bass player, and a drummer, and a trio of black backup singers.
As an amateur guitarist, I was especially impressed as I watched his hands as he played. Many good guitarists will look very impressive when they play, with hands and fingers flying all over the fretboard. Watching Ry, you could see that his left hand did not seem to move much, and you did not see rapid finger motions that would seem to be necessary to make the sounds I was hearing.
As I got better on the guitar (only a little to be truthful), I realized that he was using what I call cheater chords, or as some call it “cowboy chording” which involves moving the fingers flat against the fretboard to just depress the actual strings needed for the portion of the chord played instead of moving to the the formal chord position that we all learn first as we start to play.
The effect was that those who didn’t play had no idea what he was actually doing. He looked like a pedestrian backup picker, not the amazing performer that the sound produced testified to.
I know I have pitched it here before (and this second plug is probably considered obnoxious), but the second song on my new video album is about a policeman “casing” and then deciding to enter a suspicious house (for no good reason). I think many here at this board would like the piece and I worked hard on it. I don’t think Mr. Balko would like the song because I like to think I know what his tastes are from what he posts here, musicwise, and my stuff if way different than what he likes. That is okay. I luv Anodyne (and what an album title!!!) and Mr. Balko seems to prefer Lucinda Williams or the old 97s or Squirrel Nut Zippers or Pine Hill Haints or Gibson Bros. whosoever. Its all good. I ain’t gonna say that stuf is bad — not in the slightest. Frexample, I do have and enjoy Car Wheels LP, but that isn’t the point. My song about police searches from my new album: