BobbyJames

NEW ALBUM: Western Stars - June 14

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1 hour ago, whispered secret said:

Those of you who really like this album, are any of you getting tired of it yet?

I thought I needed to play something else yesterday, but today I was back with WS!

When I posted that lengthy piece several weeks ago in which I relayed how I felt about it I certainly didn't think the connection I'd made with the album could have gotten much stronger.

But I was wrong.

It really does seem as if the more I listen to it the more listening riches I find within it and the deeper my attachment to it becomes. God knows where this is going to end but it looks like Jon Landau's prediction of it being 'an album for the ages' is ringing more and more true as far as I'm concerned.

The album's sustained even quality is simply staggering such that I just cannot actually isolate any favourites. The thing has become the most complete musical entity I think I've ever heard. Such that now for myself I'm pretty convinced it even eclipses Astral Weeks and The Band Brown album. I doubt even Bruce and Jon Landau dared think of it in those terms but for me with Western Stars they've very likely gone and pulled off the nigh impossible. 

:)

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1 hour ago, albiedog said:

When I posted that lengthy piece several weeks ago in which I relayed how I felt about it I certainly didn't think the connection I'd made with the album could have gotten much stronger.

But I was wrong.

It really does seem as if the more I listen to it the more listening riches I find within it and the deeper my attachment to it becomes. God knows where this is going to end but it looks like Jon Landau's prediction of it being 'an album for the ages' is ringing more and more true as far as I'm concerned.

The album's sustained even quality is simply staggering such that I just cannot actually isolate any favourites. The thing has become the most complete musical entity I think I've ever heard. Such that now for myself I'm pretty convinced it even eclipses Astral Weeks and The Band Brown album. I doubt even Bruce and Jon Landau dared think of it in those terms but for me with Western Stars they've very likely gone and pulled off the nigh impossible. 

:)

Wow, that is high praise indeed! I think Bruce would be thrilled for WS to be placed alongside those two classic albums.

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1 hour ago, albiedog said:

When I posted that lengthy piece several weeks ago in which I relayed how I felt about it I certainly didn't think the connection I'd made with the album could have gotten much stronger.

But I was wrong.

It really does seem as if the more I listen to it the more listening riches I find within it and the deeper my attachment to it becomes. God knows where this is going to end but it looks like Jon Landau's prediction of it being 'an album for the ages' is ringing more and more true as far as I'm concerned.

The album's sustained even quality is simply staggering such that I just cannot actually isolate any favourites. The thing has become the most complete musical entity I think I've ever heard. Such that now for myself I'm pretty convinced it even eclipses Astral Weeks and The Band Brown album. I doubt even Bruce and Jon Landau dared think of it in those terms but for me with Western Stars they've very likely gone and pulled off the nigh impossible. 

:)

I am reading your piece here at 5am in California. The perfect time to unwind this masterpiece, Your words ring true to me.

I contimue to see myself as these people on this record...so utterly Springsteenian in its ability to find my hungry heart, In its brilliance I am not alone and its existance gives me life.

Thank you all for sharing it. Keep talking.

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11 minutes ago, Buddhabone said:

I am reading your piece here at 5am in California.

 

2 hours ago, Jerseyfornia said:

I haven't been listening to it exclusively, which I knew I wouldn't do forever, but I still play it every day and it's replaced my rain sounds for going to sleep in the morning.

Don't you guys sleep at night in California!!!:blink:

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1 minute ago, Thunder Roadie said:

 

Don't you guys sleep at night in California!!!:blink:

An added feature of being 50 for me is waking up at 3am.

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1 minute ago, Buddhabone said:

An added feature of being 50 for me is waking up at 3am.

Turned 50 myself this year! Keep looking at pictures of Bruce at 50 and saying ...hey it ain't so bad, he was cool as.....

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I’ve taken some brief pauses here and there... JJ’s shuffle challenge (all the cool kids are doing it :D); and in the car I switch over occasionally to see what songs/concerts were playing over on E Street Radio...

But mostly still listening to WS, with the title track and Sleepy Joe’s on repeat for several goes before moving on.  

I expect that will change soon enough (I’ll make a new playlist with some WS included!!).  But not yet... 

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I played the cd this morning and skipped the first 2 tracks - kept the rest as it is but just 'didn't listen' or went and did other things during tracks I don't care for.

It's on my Walkman and those that are skipped are the first 2, WS sometimes, Sundown, Stones and Hello Sunshine.

Favourite is still Moonlight Motel followed by Chasin' Wild Horses, Drive Fast, SNON, Sleepy Joe's Café, TGMM and I can take or leave TT.

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My long break from Western Stars has found me tipping over into the Moonlight Motel Affair camp more now. I'm trying to think this through so please bear with me because the songwriting allows for such uncertainty.


The use of 'backtracked' and 'my old spot' (not 'our old spot') plus that "ringing of the bell Across the valley floor", are all very suggestive of separate lives and furtive conduct. Still poignant and rueful. I'm struck more by the terse finality in the "gone like an old summer song" (not a "sweet summer song") and "Nothing but an empty shell" (a blunt summary of the state of the building and their now-past relationship), and I note a degree of selfishness or unconscious self-prioritising behaviour in "poured one for me and one for you as well" (where "poured one for you and one for me as well" would have shown how much he valued the lover by saluting them first with the first drink from the bottle).


The rueful tone remains, as does honouring their shared past and place, but there's a detachment in marking the loss of lover and motel, given
the apparent passage of time and the decline and fall of the motel and the relationship it had once nurtured and sustained.


I'm still unsure that the protagonist agrees with what the lover said: "yeah it's better to have loved" could be his way of confirming that that is what his lover said, not that he's convinced by it as an argument, and that ambivalence is deliberate, I think, because the tone in which the line is delivered is downbeat, not positive. Repeating that old quotation in part doesn't make it more convincing, although he doesn't face the full quotation head on. The subsequent 'chill' and falling leaves and black road emphasise the declining year and the ageing of the protagonist too, with the suggestion that loss is an inevitable feature of ageing, but the abrupt, bald statement that "She was boarded up and gone like an old summer song Nothing but an empty shell" shows the toughness of the protagonist's outlook - he doesn't sugar this, does he? I had thought he was more broken by this loss than he now seems to be: he couldn't say "and lost" to complete the quotation but he came prepared, with the bottle of Jack, and he marks the passing of lover and motel, salutes them, and will leave them behind again and move on with his life. He may have his 'lonely bed' now but he can cope just fine. Maybe his independence and resilience were factors in the ending of the relationship originally? 


I still think the lover has died, to allow for this finality: it is a relationship that can't be put back together. Honouring past experiences and moving on towards his own end without self-pity or excuses, that is what is left.

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35 minutes ago, JoleBlonAlba said:

I'm still unsure that the protagonist agrees with what the lover said: "yeah it's better to have loved" could be his way of confirming that that is what his lover said, not that he's convinced by it as an argument, and that ambivalence is deliberate, I think, because the tone in which the line is delivered is downbeat, not positive. Repeating that old quotation in part doesn't make it more convincing, although he doesn't face the full quotation head on.

I think that is exactly right. He doesn't know whether to believe that it is better to have loved. He doesn't reject the idea, but he is examining it, somewhat detached and rueful.

There is longing and resignation in his words and his actions, as is a very human thing when you recall lost or unrequited love.

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7 hours ago, whispered secret said:

Those of you who really like this album, are any of you getting tired of it yet?

I thought I needed to play something else yesterday, but today I was back with WS!

Not tired at all.

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3 hours ago, JoleBlonAlba said:

My long break from Western Stars has found me tipping over into the Moonlight Motel Affair camp more now. I'm trying to think this through so please bear with me because the songwriting allows for such uncertainty.

 

I really think he shot himself in the car park.

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5 hours ago, Buddhabone said:

An added feature of being 50 for me is waking up at 3am.

Wait 'til you're 53. You see 4am and 5am aswell. I'm writing this from the toilet.

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And when you're 65, you're in bed at 9 'I think I will go up and read' and awake at 3am, 4am, 5am...

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Loz Guest on Planet Rock playing The Wayfarer, saying it's the new single.

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Just now, Promise61 said:

Loz Guest on Planet Rock playing The Wayfarer, saying it's the new single.

Vanessa whatsit played it the other day. Sounds worse on the radio.

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3 minutes ago, bettertohaveloved said:

Vanessa whatsit played it the other day. Sounds worse on the radio.

It's not much of a song, tbh.  The strings and the church organ rescue it a bit, but there's not much there.

"I'm a wayfarer, baby".  Baby?  Baby?! For goodness sake.

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Dreadful stuff.

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5 minutes ago, bettertohaveloved said:

Dreadful stuff.

Pretty much.

I've said this before but I'll say it again because I'm old and I repeat myself.  Because I'm old and I repeat myself.

The song writing here is average, aside from Stones and Moonlight Motel.  The production and arrangements save this project from Devils and Dust territory.  The (western) stars on this record are the string and horn arrangers and the horn and string players.  (Do I have to drop in an 'imo' at this point?).

Great to see that it's shifting so many copies though.  His 'left turn' has paid off.

:)

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57 minutes ago, whispered secret said:

And when you're 65, you're in bed at 9 'I think I will go up and read' and awake at 3am, 4am, 5am...

I don't sleep well, and often check the lake in the early hrs.

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42 minutes ago, Promise61 said:

Pretty much.

I've said this before but I'll say it again because I'm old and I repeat myself.  Because I'm old and I repeat myself.

The song writing here is average, aside from Stones and Moonlight Motel.  The production and arrangements save this project from Devils and Dust territory.  The (western) stars on this record are the string and horn arrangers and the horn and string players.  (Do I have to drop in an 'imo' at this point?).

Great to see that it's shifting so many copies though.  His 'left turn' has paid off.

:)

I am also old and repeat myself, I still love it.:)

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1 hour ago, bettertohaveloved said:

Vanessa whatsit played it the other day. Sounds worse on the radio.

Can't sound any worse than Vanessa whatsit!

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1 hour ago, Promise61 said:

 

The song writing here is average,

:)

 

 

:D

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1 hour ago, Promise61 said:

Pretty much.

I've said this before but I'll say it again because I'm old and I repeat myself.  Because I'm old and I repeat myself.

The song writing here is average, aside from Stones and Moonlight Motel.  The production and arrangements save this project from Devils and Dust territory.  The (western) stars on this record are the string and horn arrangers and the horn and string players.  (Do I have to drop in an 'imo' at this point?).

Great to see that it's shifting so many copies though.  His 'left turn' has paid off.

:)

If it's the production and arrangements that save this album from being another D&D (and I like D&D VERY much!) then so be it. I'll go with that. Average songwriting? Not sure about that, but there is other 'average' songwriting on some of his 'classic' albums (imo ;)) and I still think they're great! So, when it all comes down to it, it could just be the orchestra that sends me :wub:

I'm getting older, so none of that probably makes sense, ha ha!

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5 minutes ago, janeymarywendy said:

I'm getting older, so none of that probably makes sense

No, not a word of it :rolleyes:

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