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PostSubject: Re: Lonely Avenue Article   Wed Nov 25, 2009 9:34 pm

wow Andy thanks for all that!
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PostSubject: Re: Lonely Avenue Article   Sat Dec 05, 2009 7:16 pm

Even after all this time people are still just getting around to reviewing SFLA. Here's the one from The Independent in the UK, properly spaced for your pleasure (the original article appears with very few spaces, at least for me). Just one question for our friends across the pond. What the heck is "jedward hair?!"

Setzer is the Jedward haired singer-guitarist who not only spearheaded the rockabilly revival of the early 1980s with the Stray Cats but also had a major hand in the big-band jive movement of the late 1990s with his Grammy winning The Dirty Boogie. Nowadays, Setzer switches between Rat Pack crooner and rockabilly rebel, often in the space of one line. Simultaneously smooth and raw, one minute it's crepe-soled jitterbug, the next it's Vegas razzle dazzle, and beneath the horn section's glitzy blare there always beats a bad ass heart.
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Lord Vincent Blackshadow


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PostSubject: JEDWARD HAIR   Sat Dec 05, 2009 11:26 pm

Theres a programme on in Britain which also shows in Ireland called ' the X Factor'. Its more or less the same thing as 'American Idol' only the talent is usually worse IMO. Two young Irish twins called John and Edward (called by the tabloids " Jedward) were doing very well on it until near the end. They couldnt sing but that didnt stop them. Anyway they both have Blonde hair combed high sort of like Brian Setzers younger days. Thats 'Jedward ' hair . Youtube them if you wanna see them but be warned - they're crap.
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PostSubject: Re: Lonely Avenue Article   Tue Dec 08, 2009 3:31 am

Thank you Lord B! Speaking of the X Factor...

Femme fatales, fast living and the blues

If your idea of big band music is another X-Factor brat murdering ‘Mack The Knife’ then think again.

Once upon a time, if you wanted low down and swinging R‘n’B then you needed a big fat orchestra to get the party started. Brian Setzer might be a rockabilly and blues revivalist, but he plays with it total conviction. You can almost smell the Brylcreem as he takes to the microphone, with his gritty guitar work the icing on the cake. It’s dark, moody and harks back to an age when glamour was glamour.

The songs are all about femme fatales, fast living and the blues. This cat is definitely too cool for school.


Words by Jamie Hailstone

(If reviewers are only going to give 7/10, I wish they'd explain why.)
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PostSubject: Re: Lonely Avenue Article   Tue Dec 15, 2009 9:51 am

The BBC finally gets around to a review:

It's hard to resist joining Setzer's charge into the past

With the Stray Cats now officially off the prowl, no longer to roam rock‘n’roll’s treacherous back alleys following 2008’s farewell tour, chief ’Cat Brian Setzer returns in his more artful solo guise.

Though, in the late 70s, Setzer and his quiffabilly outfit had to decamp from Long Island to London for their big break with producer Dave Edmunds, he has made little headway here since the days of Runaway Boys, Stray Cat Strut and the band’s other upright bass-slappin’ early hits.

If considered at all these days, he is usually written off as a Mark Lamarr-style figure of fun, a Stuckist 50s throwback, who, born in 1959, is simply the wrong man in the wrong time and place.

Stateside, by contrast, his unstinting service to post-War American music heritage has earned him three Grammys, and his 18-piece Brian Setzer Orchestra has notched up several million sales, across five albums and a Yuletide selection.

For his latest opus, he renews an association with Frank Cornstock, an 87-year-old arranger, noted for his ‘previous’ with the likes of Doris Day, Judy Garland and Stan Kenton. With this veteran master of swing and big-band skills marshalling the Orchestra’s 13-strong ‘young’ brass army, there is fabulous energy, intricacy and pizzazz to the sound, which is thus almost impossible to tag as merely retro, or authentic.

Setzer, irreversibly, is in thrall to the clothes, musical styles, vernacular and iconography of the 50s, right down to the titular Lonely Avenue – a narrow, more desolate thoroughfare, perhaps, adjoining the Lonely Street in Elvis Presley’s Heartbreak Hotel.

There is often a sense, however, that he’s making music that hasn’t been made before. Trouble Train imagines a fusion, unthinkable back in the day, of rockabilly’s thunderous railroad rhythms and electric gee-tar, with big-band jazz and bebop. Similarly, a pair of riotous instrumentals – indicatively entitled Mr Jazzer Goes Surfin’ and Mr Surfer Goes Jazzin’ – rebuild the surf genre afresh, first with tasteful jazzy fretwork, then full-tilt proto-garage frat-party dementia.

Elsewhere, in more straight-ahead fashion, Brian has a go at big-band crooning (My Baby Don’t Love Me Blues), film noir soundtrack melodrama (Kiss Me Deadly) and even flamenco (Elena).

Very fleetingly, during the jump-jiving Gimme Some Rhythm Daddy, the post-millennial world intrudes, as a whining femme orders her tea with “soya milk, please, I’m lactose intolerant”. Then, and throughout, it’s hard to resist joining Setzer’s charge into the past.
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PostSubject: Re: Lonely Avenue Article   Wed Dec 16, 2009 11:58 am

From last month:
Just Asking...Brian Setzer

Why does a tattooed, pompadoured, punkabilly rocker like Christmas so much? Read Steve Marsh's Q & A with the former Stray Cat.

Thanks to the students at the Institute of Production and Recording, Third Avenue North has provided the North Loop's lone Stray Cat plenty of cover over the past two years. But if you have a keen eye and the stamina to stare long enough through the hipster mess, you might occasionally pick out the bona fide Long Island rockabilly with the blond pompadour, the bicycle chain around his neck, and the inked-up arms—yup, that’s really Brian Setzer. He married a local girl, Julie Setzer (née Reitner) in 2005 (“It’s nice to have a girl in the band who can sing that’s your wife—it gets boring on the road”) and the couple bought a condo in the neighborhood a couple years later. It’s become home—the Stray Cats even reunited recently at the Fine Line for Setzer's 50th birthday. But he’s been on tour all summer (“I wanted it to be a Minnesota summer—that’s what people here live for—but Europe called back and doubled its offer”), and they’re going out again this fall with The Brian Setzer Orchestra in support of two records: Songs from Lonely Avenue, a new album recorded at local producer Mark Stockert's studio, and the re-released The Ultimate Christmas Collection. They have a local date at Mystic Lake on November 22.

Where is Lonely Avenue?
Oh, there’s a lot of ’em! One in every town. But if you look at the cover, this is on my rooftop here. That’s Minneapolis.

Do you consider any music, clothing, or haircuts other than from the years 1956 to 1959 to be cool?
Sure! There’s a lot of cool music from all sorts of different eras. The Stray Cats were influenced by the punk-rock energy of the late ’70s, for instance. But there’s something about that period in the ’50s—it’s the beginning of rock ’n’ roll. When I started listening to the Beatles, I heard my dad playing “Honey Don’t,” and I asked him why was he listening to a different version of a Beatles song. He said, “I don’t know who those guys are, but Carl Perkins wrote ‘Honey Don’t.’

What do you like about that early rock ’n’ roll sound?
The only way I can describe it is like when you make love, you kind of want to turn the lights down. You don’t want to do it in a hospital room. It kind of adds a little atmosphere. It puts a little repeat on it. It just makes it sexy.

The whole London thing—the three of you (in the Stray Cats) were from the same block in Long Island, and you sold all your instruments for three airplane tickets and left your hometown. And now you’re in Minneapolis. You must be comfortable being a stranger in a strange place.
I never thought about it like that. London had a reason because I knew that there were people there who kinda looked like me. I saw a picture of a guy with a pomp and he had an earring. To have an earring in 1976? You took a lot of shit for that. It doesn’t sound like a big deal now, but I had tattoos. What’s standard now in the rock ’n’ roll land, back then you had to be a tough guy to kinda live up to that.

How did you get inspired to do another Orchestra record?
When I started to write these things I didn’t know it was an Orchestra record. I love baseball, and I’ll put on the Twins game and I’ll watch the game and I’ll fool around on the guitar. And I’ll catch something. Something will come in and I’ll go, oh!, I gotta little lick. You know, ging-guh-ding-guh-ding. All my songs start with guitar riffs. Doesn’t matter if it’s a rockabilly song, or if it’s gonna be for the big band. Even “Rock This Town” is ging-guh-ding-guh-ding-guh-ding, you know. So I’ll come up with a little idea like that, and I have an old tape recorder that was my wife’s from when she played her Duran Duran tapes, you know! And then I go back to the game

I always get messed up by girls calling you daddy.
“Give Me Some Rhythm Daddy”? Well, I wrote that song for Julie. And I said, well, what am I going to sing? I went, gimme some rhythm, baby. And she goes, “Daddy!” And we kind of play off with each other. I wrote that song because I wanted to write a song for my gal.

Have you heard Bob Dylan’s Christmas record yet?
No, is it good?

It’s kind of funny. Isn’t Christmas kind of campy?
It’s not a joke to me!

How seriously do you take it?
Well, you’re not going to beat Elvis singling “Blue Christmas.” Or even Bing Crosby singing “White Christmas.” I wanted to have a little fun with it. I’m not mocking it at all.

But even Bing Crosby must have cracked up during “Mele Kalikimaka.”
Well, sure, that’s just humor. To me, I got pushed into it—in a good way—because people were bugging me. It started with that Schwarzenegger movie, Jingle All the Way. But you're right, it does have a sense of humor.

That ’50s sound doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously in general.
There they are—that’s pretty much the whole nutshell right there. (Hands me a coaster with Elvis, The Killer, Carl Perkins, and Johnny Cash on it.)

You’re a little obsessed with this era.
I don’t live in it, though. You know, I love it, I’m influenced heavily by it, but I’m not closed-minded to other things. Some people just want to live in that era, you know.

Why is that? Do they think it was a golden age before things went downhill?
I don’t know if they think that deeply about it. It’s a built-in lifestyle. You’ve got music, you’ve got cars, you’ve got clothes. And you have other people who like that. It’s like a club!

My dad has a buddy, Rebo, who has a ’57 Chevy that he takes to the car shows...
I do that too! I have fun with that. I have a ’56 Olds in the basement and a ’32 Ford. I like to work on ’em. It’s fun. You gotta have some kind of hobby or you’ll go crazy.

5 things you didn’t know about Brian Setzer
1. He started playing golf at Lakeview Golf Course in Orono. “I walk around in goofy second-hand clothes and golf like a nerd.”
2. His fan orientation: Mets, National; Twins, American.
3. He makes great ribs.
4. His last tattoo was a back piece in 2003.
5. His first tattoo was a Stray Cat head on his left bicep when he was 17. “I drew it myself.”
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PostSubject: Re: Lonely Avenue Article   Mon Dec 21, 2009 2:28 pm

Peter Chianca reviewed Lonely Ave back when it came out and has been doing his part to keep it afloat, I think I've seen mention of it from him a few times since. Today he's got an article called 29 fine songs from 2009 that includes this little gem:

“Gimme Some Rhythm Daddy,” The Brian Setzer Orchestra. Setzer, with his wife and backup singer Julie Reiten, has turned out the best rockabilly swing duet that name-checks Internet cafés and lactose intolerance you’ll hear this year. It rocks and rolls.

The rest of his list is very interesting and makes me want to seek out the other 28 tunes, many of which I've never heard. I think I like the way this fella thinks.

EDIT: speak of the devil, just found more from Chianca:

Five albums you should have bought in 2009

SFLA gets honorable mention: The Brian Setzer Orchestra, Songs from Lonely Avenue (Surfdog). If orchestral neo-noir performed by a 17-piece big band and a wailing rockabilly guitar doesn’t sound the least bit interesting to you, this is probably not your album. If it does, though, buy it today and enjoy Setzer’s most consistent collection to date.
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