Sonntag, 30. Dezember 2018

Tom Paxton - Morning Again (1968)

Tom Paxton´s fourth album occasioned his first, albeit quite tentative, ventures into tracks employing some full band backing and orchestration. Among the session musicians were some notable players, including David Grisman on mandocello, Paul Harris on keyboards, and Herb Brown on bass. His songwriting, too, was becoming more diverse, from character sketches ("Victoria Dines Alone," about a lonely elderly woman) to comedy ("The Hooker") to languid introspection ("So Much for Winning," which ran almost seven minutes).

The expected political commentary was present in "Talking Vietnam Pot Luck Blues," and as much as U.S. involvement in Vietnam cried out for protest, this was a card that Paxton had arguably overplayed by this time. Unfortunately the best song, the odd "Mr. Blue" (whose protagonist is something of a Kafkaesque figure), isn't served too well by the almost tuneless arrangement and under-emoted vocals. The psychedelic cover by Clear Light (which actually preceded the release of Paxton's own version) absolutely tears it to pieces, and Judy Collins' interpretation (heard on a 1967 TV special, although not included on her albums) was also considerably superior. "Now That I've Taken My Life" rates as a highlight for its mordantly lighthearted and slightly surreal suicide note, complemented by mock-jaunty brass and orchestral fanfares. Only one of these songs was selected for the CD anthology The Best of Tom Paxton, so if you're hungry for more from his Elektra era, this is one of the more desirable places to begin.

Tracklist:

A1 Jennifers Rabbit 1:25
A2 Mr. Blue 2:20
A3 Victoria Dines Alone 2:55
A4 The Hooker 3:15
A5 So Much For Winning 6:40
B1 Talking Vietnam Pot Luck Blues 2:45
B2 Clarissa Jones 3:30
B3 Morning Again 3:37
B4 A Thousand Years 3:30
B5 Now That I've Taken My Life 3:30


Tom Paxton - Morning Again (1968)
(320 kbps, cover art included)

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