The Bottom Line Archive, Harry Chapin Live

One of my regrets even with all the live music shows  I have attended in the tri-state area (425 concerts in 46 years) was never getting to a live show at the Bottom Line. This famous club was located at 15 West 4th Street in Greenwich Village. It was owned by Allan Pepper and Stanley Snadowsky, the Bottom Line opened February 12, 1974 and enjoyed a 30-year run.

The Bottom Line would broadcast live shows in conjunction with top NYC progressive rock radio station, WNEW-FM 102.7. A historic milestone in the club’s history was The Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Bands 10 night “Born To Run” engagement in August, 1975. I recall listening to the raw excitement of those sold out shows on the radio that evening.

Thankfully to Allan Peppers credit and ingenuity I can cancel that regret because we have the Bottom Line Archive.  The treasure trove of live recordings that Alan Pepper is housing is mountainous, over 1,000 live recordings.

Allan Pepper is working with Greg Bendian, formerly of The Mahavishnu Project a jazz-rock fusion cover band that we saw perform at Toad’s Place, Lily Pad room in 2011.

I am very interested in the Harry Chapin recording, HARRY CHAPIN: LIVE AT THE BOTTOM LINE (JANUARY 8-10, 1981) 35th Anniversary Expanded Re-master. The release includes the original set, as released in 1998, PLUS an extra offer a previously unreleased 88-minute show.

I preordered this recording on Amazon which is due to drop on June 30th.

We spent several magic moments in concert and discussion with Harry Chapin in the day. Looking forward to hearing  Harry live in concert once again.

Marking his 2000thperformance (January 8-10, 1981) this release provides a unique snapshot of an artist at the peak of his career – intimate and intense.

I think I will be buying more Bottom Line Archive recordings in the future.

Rosanne Cash, The River & The Thread, Blue Note Records

Blue Note Records continues to extend the panorama of their artist portfolio by signing, “Americana” artist Rosanne Cash to the label. I view this signing as a healthy sign that Blue Note Records is widening their artistic purpose as they diversify from their historic role as a “venerable jazz label”.

I first reflected upon the jam band initiative that Blue Note Records was embracing in  July.  I wrote about the significance of the Elvis Costello and The Roots collaboration, Wise Up Ghost, as well as new recordings from Robert Randolph Family Band and Gov’t. Mule forging a new Blue Note product line.

The second phase of Blue Note Record’s distribution strategy is Americana music with Rosanne Cash’s collaboration recording, The River & The Thread leading the way.

Courtesy of Blue Note Records and Rosanne Cash 2013

The River & The Thread, Rosanne Cash’s first album in more than four years, will be released on January 14, 2014 by Blue Note Records. Cash wrote the album’s 11 original songs with her longtime collaborator (and husband) John Leventhal, who also served as producer, arranger and guitarist.

The River & The Thread is sweeping in its breadth, capturing a unique, multi-generational cast of characters – from a Civil War soldier off to fight in Virginia to a New Deal-era farmer in Arkansas to a contemporary Mobile, AL couple. While Cash and Leventhal found inspiration in the many musical styles associated with the South – swampy Delta blues, gospel, Appalachian folk, country and rock, to name a few – this is a completely contemporary collection. Cash’s crystalline voice and Leventhal’s compelling guitar work are at the heart of the album, and they bring in more instrumentation to suit the tone of each particular song – from the delicate orchestral passages of “Night School,” (which nods to Stephen Foster, who also had a deep affection for the South) to the ghostly keyboards of album closer “Money Road.”

She was joined in the studio by a cast of friends and fellow musicians who also have a deep affection for and/or roots in the South, including Cory Chisel, Rodney Crowell (who also co-wrote one song), Amy Helm, Kris Kristofferson, Allison Moorer, John Prine, Derek Trucks, John Paul White (The Civil Wars), Tony Joe White and Gabe Witcher (The Punch Brothers.)

Rosanne Cash and her band will preview some of the new material from The River & The Thread tonight  (Sept. 19) at Nashville’s 3rd and Lindsley as part of the Americana Music Festival.

Rosanne Cash – The River & The Thread – Track Listing

1.      A Feather’s Not A Bird
2.      The Sunken Lands
3.      Etta’s Tune
4.      Modern Blue
5.      Tell Heaven
6.      The Long Way Home
7.      World Of Strange Design
8.      Night School
9.      50,000 Watts
10.    When The Master Calls The Roll
11.    Money Road

I love when multifaceted artists like Rosanne Cash (singer-songwriter, writer and author) take on research pursuits that add to their core values and strengths. On December 5, Cash will begin a three-day residency at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC. Events will include a concert, a round robin with Leventhal, Crowell, Cory Chisel and Amy Helm and a conversation with Natasha Trethewey, U.S. Poet Laureate. For additional details, visit http://www.loc.gov/today/pr/2013/13-141.html.

I’d love for us to attend this event.

December 5 through 7, 2013, Rosanne Cash Residency

“The Long Way Home: Songs of Travel and Longing”

Rosanne Cash is a major advocate of the arts. She has appeared twice at the International Festival of Arts and Ideas in nearby New Haven, CT. We especially love her appearance on the PBS-TV advertisement for the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City. She has performed 13 acoustic Cash concerts at the Rubin Museum of Art since 2004.