Robert Baird

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Robert Baird  |  Jul 15, 2017  |  2 comments
One of my favorite South by Southwest moments over the 28 years I have attended was the early-1990s performance of Arthur Alexander who was literally sobbing before his set was done. In 1993, after many years out of the music game, Alexander, with the help of a lot of talented friends, made Lonely Just Like Me for Elektra Records, a swansong he never thought possible. Convinced he'd been forgotten, his triumphant performance in Austin just after the record was released, in front of a wildly enthusiastic crowd, moved him to tears. A few weeks later he was gone.
Robert Baird  |  Jul 08, 2017  |  5 comments
If you can put aside the fact that what was once a rock 'n' roll band has now grown into a merciless money machine, and a somewhat creaky repetitive live act that hasn't made a great record since 1978, they still do deserve a nod for never saying die. To borrow a famous line from Midnight Cowboy, those boys are gonna die on the stage. And yes, we will certainly miss them when they're gone!
Robert Baird  |  Jul 04, 2017  |  4 comments
I tend to gravitate towards Stephen Foster and Scott Joplin.
Robert Baird  |  Jun 27, 2017  |  2 comments
New Age. Most of it was acoustic. While there were vocals here and there, much of it featured instrumentalists playing solo or in groups. Some of it was meant to alleviate stress. Some of it was marginally connected to a similarly named movement in spirituality. Environmentalism and respect for nature were constant themes. Some New Age artists created moody, ambient sounds that were intended as background music, to promote healing and relaxation.
Robert Baird  |  Jun 25, 2017  |  1 comments
. . . with a second LP containing an never-released 1992 live show from the University of London.
Robert Baird  |  Jun 16, 2017  |  1 comments
The Dickinson brothers are traditionalists and modern proponents of the kind of music that was celebrated in American Epic.
Robert Baird  |  Jun 13, 2017  |  3 comments
Taj Mahal & Keb' Mo': TajMo
Concord CRE00432 (LP). 2017. Taj Mahal, Keb' Mo', prods.; Zach Allen, John Caldwell, Alex Jarvis, Jesse Nichols, Casey Wasner, engs.; Ross Hogarth, mix; Richard Dodd, mastering; Bernie Grundman, vinyl mastering. AAA? TT: 45:20
Performance ****
Sonics ****

The blues, that wonderful basis of so much American popular music, has for many listeners grown a bit stale and old-fashioned. It's not much of a draw outside bar bands, and other than Alligator Records, most of the biggest blues labels have folded or gone dormant. Losing many of the music's first- and second-generation practitioners hasn't helped.

Robert Baird  |  Jun 12, 2017  |  0 comments
"They are simultaneously high-fidelity in ways that are less easy to quantify . . . [and] many of the most expensive pieces of [modern] audiophile gear follow the structures of this early equipment."
Robert Baird  |  May 30, 2017  |  1 comments
For fans, of course, he's never been gone, not even for a minute. A jazz pianist who played from the heart and spent a tumultuous life fighting his demons while searching, as singer Tony Bennett has often said, "for truth and beauty," Bill Evans is now the subject of four previously unheard, recently released titles, on LPs, CDs, and downloads, of live recordings of his music. There's also, from Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab, a new and superlative One-Step Process vinyl reissue of his classic Sunday at the Village Vanguard. Finally, there's a wonderful new documentary, Bill Evans: Time Remembered, a labor of love by a fan and titled for one of Evans's best-loved tunes. And, unlikely as it sounds, the demand for Evans's music is still strong enough to inspire a controversy over rights and clearances, 37 years after his death, in 1980, at the age of 51.
Robert Baird  |  May 29, 2017  |  5 comments
His finest moments came just after the death of brother Duane in 1971 and then-bassist Berry Oakley a year later.

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