Some Music

“Look At Miss Ohio”

The highlight of Buffalo Springfield at the Santa Barbara County Bowl was this. A live rendition by Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings of a cult song everybody in the Americana/No Depression world knows but which has never appeared on Top Forty radio and has not been lauded by the mainstream press. This is the new world. Where you’re a king in your niche, and outside you’re unknown.

But this niche is pretty big. Even Miranda Lambert has covered “Look At Miss Ohio.”

But what has got me writing this is Blind Pilot’s take:

Look At Miss Ohio – Blind Pilot

She says I wanna do right, but not right now

What kind of crazy fucked up world do we live in where two rootsy folk/wannabe hillbillies nail the rock and roll ethos better than anybody with long hair and an electric axe?

One in which everybody’s dashing for cash and worried more about the sheen than the essence.

It’s a constant fight… Do what you’re supposed to, or what you want to?

You’re in high school. Get good grades to get into a good college or…have fun? Get drunk and lose your virginity or study for your SATs?

Gonna drive to Atlanta and live out this fantasy
Running around with the ragtop down

Not New York or L.A. She doesn’t need to be the IT girl. Doesn’t need to be famous. She just wants to shoot pool in her cowboy boots and wink at the men. And see what transpires.

It’s hard to explain the magic of “Little Miss Ohio.” It’s the laconic groove, the feel, the lyrics, the mental movie that’s created.

Too much of today’s music is made for everybody, made to be heard in a crowd, “Look At Miss Ohio” is made to play in your head only, as you drive with the window down and your arm resting on the sill, sitting on the couch, slipping a glass of wine as the sun sets…

Gillian and Dave’s studio take is great, but it misses the target just a bit. You’ve got to experience it live.

Check out this take from the BBC:

Look At Miss Ohio – Gillian Welch & David Rawlings -BBC4 Sessions

She’s singing like she means it.

It ain’t about fame, it ain’t about money, it’s about life.

And that’s when music is best.

Miranda Lambert version

Counting Crows version

Seems everybody knows “Look At Miss Ohio,” and now you do too!


And they said soundtracks were dead.

Yup, the kind that sold ten million copies that were populated by tracks that weren’t even in the movie. But the “Django Unchained” soundtrack is akin to what once was, in the days before VHS, DVD and pay cable, when you were home and you wanted to remember, feel the essence of the theatre experience.

Listen to this, the title track. It’s so derivative, such an homage to what once was, that it makes you smile. It’s big and overblown, just this shy of parody!

And “The Braying Mule” is hookier than anything on those million-selling hip-hop albums. Ennio Morricone is a master. Just because you’re old, that does not mean you’re not great, or irrelevant.

And “Lo Chiamavano King (His Name Is King)” will positively blow your mind. It’s like Shirley Bassey was preserved in amber after “Goldfinger” and set loose in 2012, just to sing this. This track is just one step to the side of Adele. It’s tongue-in-cheek, but in an alternative universe, this is a Top Five record.

When everybody else is down in the dumps, trying to crack the hit parade, Quentin Tarantino has cast off the chains, lifted the magic slate and created something brand new.

Even if you haven’t seen the movie, you’ll get it.


“The Braying Mule”

“Lo Chiamavano King (His Name Is King)”

“Honky Tonk Women”

Yes, the Stones song.

But no, not the Stones recording.

But a rearranged acoustic take by John Batdorf and James Lee Stanley.

Dedicated readers will know that I loved their initial “All Wood and Stones” collaboration, now they’re doing another one, and this is one of the tracks.

The acoustic guitars take you to the mountains and Batdorf’s vocal soothes you, it’s pure magic, I look forward to more.

And you should too.

“Honky Tonk Women”

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