Saturday, April 30, 2011

Cordelia's Dad.

Uh...oh. Hi. So, yeah, it's been a few months since I've written anything here. It wasn't intentional, mind. And it's not like I haven't written anything at all...but let's just say that lack of free time and depression don't make for very good productivity. The ideas were in the back of my head, though, building up. And sometimes it's the smallest thing that can poke a hole in the wall. Like a band that I dearly love putting all their albums up on Bandcamp, and then me thinking to myself "I wonder what will happen to that DBC EP they did, or that one acoustic seven inch that was in their discography that I could never find..." And then going to eBay, searching for the band, and seeing that suddenly that very same 45 is for sale, at a very reasonable rate...

My mother is not an impulse shopper. But when she hears something she likes, she knows it. She knew it that day. It was probably a Saturday, and we'd driven out to Rochester. I wanted to go to my favorite record store, Broadway Records. While I browsed, Mom prowled the aisles of the nearby antique store, looking for who knows what. She came to rouse me from my record-shopping fugue, and heard the store PA. "What is this that's playing?" she asked the clerk. "It's Cordelia's Dad," came the reply. I walked away with something awesome, maybe a Shellac 7", maybe the Jesus Lizard/Nirvana split. Can't remember. Mom walked away with Comet, the third album by Cordelia's Dad. Funny how that record has meant as much to me as anything else I found there.

I was a teenager then, and didn't kno
w a lot about traditional music. I was pretty much a rocker, and maybe a bit of a jazzer. This was a whole different thing. Largely American traditional tunes, from the Appalachians, and presumably traceable back to English and European folk cetera. But there's more. The music, and Tim Eriksen's voice, spoke straight to me. The tunes were simple, easy to sing, and CLEAR, transparent music. It's like Louis Armstrong said, "All music is folk music." There's much to be said for complicated music, mind you. I'm continually fascinated by songs that I can't figure out. How, for example, did someone sit down and write "X-French Tee Shirt?" Or "The Anvil Will Fall?" No idea. But these songs. Anyone could have written them, anyone could sing them.

I was able to find more Cordelia's Dad albums du
ring college. Their earlier two records sounded like the last, electric track on "Comet." They tried to separate the electric and acoustic sides of the band, eventually, but could never really do it. Their 20th anniversary double live album is split evenly between the two. And the electric disc gets pretty violent.

They recorded an acoustic EP, though, before their second record. It had one song, "Sweet William," that was to appear on their next album, how can I sleep? and three others, recorded mostly on June 2, 1992.

It's a lovely record, but it's not a starting point. Go poke around on their Bandcamp page first. Start with the live version of "Idumea." It illustrates a lot of what I like about Cordelia's Dad. After that, come on back and get this.


Now, with that done, the flood will hopefully begin. Let's start with requested re-uploads:
Enon singles:
Enon live in Green Bay:
Supernova singles and live:

Stay tuned, y'all.