The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale by Eric Clapton & Friends is the Pick of the Week

#NewMusicTuesday for July 29, 2014
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Having grown up very near Tulsa, Oklahoma I've certainly heard of JJ Cale (who was raised in the city) though I don't recall ever hearing him perform one of his songs.  Tulsa has a small but influential musical history (and many passionate fans) and growing up I heard about it a lot, but actually heard it very little.  I was way too into hair metal and then grunge to care about those old guys making laid back boogie music.

There's no doubt JJ Cale was hugely influential though and while he never became a household name he's been name check and covered by an array of big stars, the biggest of which is Eric Clapton.  

Clapton's newest album, The Breeze, brings together an array of guests including Tom Petty, Mark Knopfler, John Mayer, Willie Nelson, and others to play the songs of Cale.  Looking through the track list I gotta admit I'm not familiar with any of the songs, but as an old Okie I know I need to catch up on my home state's musical history and who better to bring it to me than Eric Clapton and friends?

Also out this week that looks interesting:

Hypnotic Eye - Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers:  Speaking of Mr. Petty, his first album since 2009s Mojo is supposed to be a straight up rocker.  You can stream the album before you buy over at NPR. You can also check out the preview we had of this one.

The Voyager - Jenny Lewis:  I never really got into Rilo Kiley but I've really dug Jenny Lewis' solo work.  Her last one, 2008s Acid Tongue was one of the best of the year.  This one is supposed to delve into some pretty personal spaces including the death of her dad and the break-up of her band.  Ryan Adams produced most of it (and lord knows he can get into pretty personal spaces) and appears on one track, as does Beck.

The 1971 Fillmore East Recordings - Allman Brothers Band:  At the Fillmore East is rightly considered one of the greatest live albums ever made.  It has been released in different versions a couple of times before but this is the biggest and most complete version that's ever been released.  It includes all four sets from March 12 and 13 including 16 previously unreleased songs.  You can purchase it in either a 6 CD, 3 Blu-ray or 4 LP version.  

This is terrific news and yet there is always the realization on these things that more is not always better.  I'm certainly a fan of more live music being officially released and I tend to be a completist so getting these full sets is excellent, and yet I suspect that many folks will go back to the original cut album because its such a perfect album.  Either way its awesome this is getting released.

Beck Song Reader - Various Artists:  Folks like Jack White, Norah Jones, Jeff Tweedy, Fun. Jason Isbell, Jarvis Cocker and more have created an album of Beck covers.