Thursday, September 23, 2010


Let us start with a brilliant---and I do mean brilliant---new CD from Ken Whiteley who is ably abetted by some great artists in this wonderful work.  Artists   such as Kim & Reggie Harris, Maria Muldaur, Guy Davis, and a lot more---you know ---the famous many others.   The CD's title is "ANOTHER DAY'S JOURNEY" which means that Ken Whiteley has some damned interesting journeys.  

As I said on TRADITIONS last week---this is an album (I hope that term does not become archaic) you want to hear from beginning to end  since each track just grabs you and you want more.  Since it was so hard to select the few pieces to air I went with Another Day's Journey, Butterfly, and I Want To Live So God Can Use Me.  Trust me---I would have played the rest since this CD is so good and the artists on it are truly ones you do not want to stop hearing.   Meaningful Music and Meaningful People.  Probably the best description.   Ken Whiteley comes to us from Canada and is on Borealis Records.   Here is a brief bit of his work---nothing similar to what you will hear on this CD:

Not really what this CD is about---but, perhaps, in a way it is when you hear the Kim/Reggie Harris tracks; but it does show the talent and charisma of Ken Whiteley.

Moving on to another artist that I have been featuring and who's performances / recordings I have long admired. Let me start by saying that his guitar playing is truly almost amateurish but give his voice and his stage presence one has to take notice. I did. TED HAWKINS

There is a lot to say about Ted Hawkins but, briefly,he sang on the boardwalk at Venice Beach in California, he did move to France and England for a time and did some recording there. In fact he was a well received performer with a large following in those places. For whatever reasons he had he came back to California and went back to , basically, busking on the beach. Even there a few recordings were made of his unique voice and song interpretations---and he did compose some of his own (which can be found on a few recordings including More Songs From Venice Beach). His UK recordings are quite rare and there is a wonderful VH tape of a documentary about him that is hard to come by.

As to his unique talent. As I mentioned previously; his guitar playing left a lot to be desired----BUT then came that voice and that rhythm. Amazing. You will find it on the albums----Happy Hour, The Next Hundred Years, The British Recordings, and a few others. I would avoid Love You Most Of All---More Songs from Venice Beach ( he does cover songs of people like Dylan and Paul Simon---not his forte). That said I have to add that on that album he is accompanied by his wife on two tracks which does make it a rarity---and those tracks are quite good.

In any case here---to me---is a sample of the Ted Hawkins I have come to love---forget the guitar work:

THURSDAY---Another Edition of.....

A flip of the fedora to Jimmy Cannon


1)         Ted Hawkins was a terrific singer with a unique voice and style and, frankly, a poor guitar player who you really have to hear.  He is amazing.

2)         Since the blog viewers are increasing at the pace of a turtle we shall move from a telephone booth shortly to a larger venue—suggestions are welcome for venues that are able to accommodate these less than vast numbers that do not reach the heights of some blogs that, for whatever reason, attract millions.   Pass your recommendations on.  Mr. Zuckerberg seems to be ahead so I am not able to donate millions to my favorite cause.

3)         I do hope you will be tuned in to Traditions  (WFDU. FM) on October 3---Buskin and Batteau will surely brighten your day with their wit and wisdom.

4)         More wit and wisdom emanate from Family Guy than from many of the much over-rated “human” programs.

5)         Why does everyone have to be first to jump on the tech bandwagon with all the new “smart” phones.  Seems the phones are “smarter” than the buyers.

6)         Have you noticed the new posture people have---head down, thumbs up and “smart’ phones always in use----what happened to conversation?

7)         “Boardwalk Empire” is a lot of fun---mostly for its attention to period detail. 

8)         “Yoo Hoo Mrs. Goldberg” is out on DVD now and is really fascinating with its 2 discs—the documentary and the extra interviews and sidelights.  One minor fault---which Aviva Kempner had in her Hank Greenberg bio as well---why a scene from a Marx Bros. film.  I love the Marx Bros. as , it seems, so does Ms. Kempner who feels she has to insert them into her films when they have nothing to do with the subject.

9)         “Mad Men” does slip a little when it gets too many sub plots going.  It is right on target when it sticks to the detail of the period and the ad business---and a few drinks before the meetings at Y&R, BBDO, or O & M.  Who remembers, as I do, what those initials stood for.

10)   Succoth is here and many are in their Sukkah.  So it looks like “Modern Man” had it wrong---Jews Do Camp.