A Far Away Feel – Happy Birthday Gram Parsons

“Left us too soon” and “What might have been” are often terms associated to the brief career of Gram Parsons who overdosed in Joshua Tree, CA on September 19, 1973 at the age of the age of 27.  I say screw that, let’s celebrate the greatness that was!

Though largely unappreciated in his lifetime Parson introduced the world to Emmylou Harris, laid the groundwork for bands like The Eagles, Uncle Tupelo, the Rolling Stones country leanings of Exile on Main Street and Sticky Fingers and was directly responsible for shaping the country rock fusion that resulting in cow punk, alt.country and Americana.

On this 66th birthday of Gram Parsons what is your favorite Gram song? Here’s mine – Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris – Love Hurts (Studio Recording)


GRAMMYs Night One – T. Bone Burnett

Of all the events I am covering for the GRAMMYS, this is the one I most looked forward to. Great time at the Producers & Engineer’s Wing 10th Anniversary Honoring T. Bone Burnett took place at the historic Village Recording Studio which since opening in the late 60’s has worked with The Allman Brothers, The Beach Boys, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, Eric Clapton,Elvis Costello, The Doors, Bob Dylan, The Eagles, George Harrison, Elton John, Tom Jones, B.B. King, John Lennon, Little Richard, Ringo Starr, and many others. Built by the Freemasons in the 1920s, the building was originally a Masonic temple, then in the early 60s the building was used by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

This was , for an entertainment industry event, a relaxed one. The focus of the guests wasn’t on image or attitude, these were people focused on the sound. the board geeks that make the good sound great, the great sound timeless and the lame…well…there’s little hope even for these wizards. Making my way through the crowd I ran into Robbie Robertson (The Band), Ray LaMontagne (nominated for 3 GRAMMYS – Song Of The Year – “Beg Steal Or Borrow”, Best Contemporary Folk Album – God Willin’ & The Creek Don’t Rise and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical)

The event to celebrate Burnett was christened “Shaken Rattled & Rolled” and the slide shows around the event showed how extensive his career has been as a producer, engineer and a musician. After brief comments by Senior Executive Director Maureen Droney and Co-Chair James McKinney there was a film celebrating the Producers & Engineer’s Wing of the GRAMMYS and their commitment to documenting and preserving historic and contemporary recorded media.

Then after a recording introduction by Elton John (“greatest producer working today, run away with me!”) and Leon Russell (“I’m not sure what this award is for be this man deserves it!”) Burnett hit the stage to loving applause. The gist of his speech was that the sound he’s famous for championing, warm analog, has a a place in current recording as well as a future. And  that “the recording industry made a mistake when they started making music for people that don’t like music. ” Burnett then introduced his latest proteges, The Secret Sisters and they serenaded the happy crowd late into the night. Thanks to my companion GRAMMYs Country Music blogger Meesa from 365 Days of Country Music.

Dixie Chicks team up with The Eagles in L.A.

I’ve said in the past that I though the Dixie Chicks‘ “Taking The Long Way” was their move towards the soft-country rock of the Eagles. Seems the transformation may be coming to completion.

Dixie Chicks will be part of a special grand opening concert event this fall to open downtown Los Angeles’ new 7,100 seat state-of-the-art venue NOKIA Theater L.A. Live. Dixie Chicks will be teaming up with The Eagles to co-headline these special shows, and the Nokia Theater appearances will be both groups’ only concert performances in 2007. Tickets for October 18th and 20th concerts go on sale Monday, August 13th at 10:00 AM via ticketmaster.com, Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines at (213) 480-3232 or (714) 740-2000, and at all Ticketmaster Ticket Centers. Additionally, tickets will be available at the STAPLES Center Box Office and the Box Office at TEAM LA at Universal CityWalk starting Tuesday, August 14th.