Search - Alan White :: Ramshackled

Ramshackled
Alan White
Ramshackled
Genres: Jazz, Pop, R&B, Rock
 
  •  Track Listings (9) - Disc #1

Alan White is best known as the original drummer for Yes. His first solo album was "Ramshackled". Originally released in 1976. It has long been a collector's item, being issued on CD only for a short time overseas.

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Alan White
Title: Ramshackled
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Wounded Bird Records
Original Release Date: 1/1/2006
Re-Release Date: 2/28/2006
Genres: Jazz, Pop, R&B, Rock
Styles: Jazz Fusion, Soul, Progressive, Progressive Rock
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 664140816725, 081227860363

Synopsis

Album Description
Alan White is best known as the original drummer for Yes. His first solo album was "Ramshackled". Originally released in 1976. It has long been a collector's item, being issued on CD only for a short time overseas.
 

CD Reviews

Diverse musical styles, good sounding reissue
Sky Mann | California, USA | 12/31/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"During 1975 and the first half of 1976 all of the then current members of Yes took some time off from the group and created and released solo records. Alan White's contribution, "Ramshackled" was originally released on Atlantic records in April of 1976. Sounding the least like Yes of all the solo works this is still a remarkably strong release that withstands the test of time quite well. Yes listeners that don't have an ear for more "ethnic" vocals and rhythms might want to pass this release by though. This is not a "drum" record and Alan makes the wise choice of going for musical content rather that showing off his significant skills as a drummer on these sessions. This is essentially a Kenny Craddock (keys), Pete Kirtley (guitar) and Colin Gibson (bass) band (all the tunes are composed by combinations of the three) with Alan co-producing, co-engineering and most importantly, playing drums. This release is "ethnic" in a way that Yes never has been with tunes like "Ooooh Baby" leaning toward "soul-jazz" and "One Way Rag" getting very funky and containing some great backing vocals by Madeline Bell with others. Alan is surprisingly swinging on these (not something we get to hear with Yes much). With Colin Gibson on bass, Alan sets up grooves that are very infectious. "Avakak" is a fusion type instrumental and is at its strongest when it is exploring some of the interesting rhythms it has. A beautiful ballad, "Song of Innocence" that uses William Blake's text closed side one of the original LP and features Jon Anderson doing a lovely vocal and also has Steve Howe doing his spacey lap steel slide guitar texturing back in the mix. This is the only slightly sounding Yes type piece on the disc. The "soul-jazz-vamp" feel continues with "Giddy" featuring a strong vocal performance by Alan Marshall complete with string section. Next we head to the Caribbean for "Silly Woman". This is a fun piece that features some steel drums for great effect. Think white sand beach in Jamaica with booze, dancing and a grass roof hut bar. "Marching into a Bottle" is the second of the two instrumentals here. This one is a feature for nylon string guitar and flute in a slightly classical folk vein. This is an effective composition and arrangement and is a nice relief from the other types of pieces here. Oboe, clarinet and bassoon are also heard here but go un-credited. "Everybody" is another urban vamp type piece with some steel drums, horn section and backward guitar solo. Probably the weakest piece here but it is also the shortest. The set closes with "Darkness (Part 1, 2 and 3)". This starts off as a sort of progressive rock tune but then evolves into a "jazz" vocal ballad complete with string section and some beautiful melancholic trumpet from Henry Lowther.

The Wounded Bird CD release (WOU 8167) sounds quite good and is an improvement over my LP from 1976 so I'm happy I decided to get it. I figured the CD would be a hack remaster but I was surprised by how good it sounds. Perhaps they had access to a good quality master to transfer from. The CD packaging is missing the color handwritten lyric insert that the original record had with it (it would be un-readable in CD size) as well as the artwork on the label of the LP which was a variation on the sleeve painting by Henry Hodgson which happily is included in the CD insert. Of course everything is smaller and the info and photos of the musicians are so small you can't really see much. This is a minor issue that is unfortunately par for the course of the CD format. Recommended for those wanting an upgrade on their LP or for Yes fans that might want to explore some different sounds or for anyone that likes good music regardless of genre.

An interesting footnote is that Phil Hardiman is listed as second engineer on these sessions. Hardiman later went on to engineer the Advision and Odyssey (where the majority of "Ramshackled" was recorded) studio sessions and was head engineer on final mix for all the tracks of Kate Bush's masterpiece, "The Dreaming".
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Withstanding the test of time
Scott Kutos | Bethesda, MD | 08/10/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"When I first heard Ramshackled some 30-odd years ago, I cast it aside as the lamest of the mid-70s Yes solo albums. Having gotten an 8-track tape version, the sound quality was terrible and the music didn't interest me. Now, however, I've come to appreciate the musicians and musicality of this work. The remastering is great and I've come to appreciate the tunes on this CD for what they are, rather than comparing to Story of I or (gulp) Olias. Well worth another listen!"
Ramshackled Still Sounds GREAT
Kenneth Dehart | Sarasota Fl. USA | 01/22/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I bought this LP back in '77 and was blown away by the versatile drumming of Alan White. Every track has a different feel. I had to add this CD to my collection of growing YES CDs to replace old LPs. This is one of my favorits..."