Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
All the News That's Fit to Sing
Genres: Folk, Pop, Rock
Phil?s 1964 debut release was all that and more, sporting not only songs drawn from the tumultous events of the day but also an adaptation of an Edgar Allan Poe poem (The Bells) and a tribute to Woody Guthrie (Bound for Gl... more »
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Phil?s 1964 debut release was all that and more, sporting not only songs drawn from the tumultous events of the day but also an adaptation of an Edgar Allan Poe poem (The Bells) and a tribute to Woody Guthrie (Bound for Glory)?immediate notice of a major new songwriting talent on the scene. When we were surveying the Elektra catalog to determine which albums to reissue, we were surprised, nay, astonished to discover that the first two albums by Phil Ochs had fallen out of print! These are only two of the most important albums of the early-to-mid-?60s folk music explosion, sporting some of the most barbed topical songs of the decade, and they are reissued here with new notes and mastering. A pair of indispensable exclusives!
Phil's best folk album.....
Grigory's Girl | NYC | 10/19/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is my favorite of Phil Ochs's early, folk albums. While some of the songs are dated (he was a protest singer, after all), many have stood the test of time and are just as beautiful and moving today as they were all those years ago. Here, Phil offers many of his signature songs, such as Power and the Glory, which some have said suggested should be the new National Anthem. The song Celia is one of Phil's most uplifting and moving songs. Bound for Glory is a great tribute to Woody Guthrie, and despite being a bit dated, the Ballad of William Worthy is really funny (the song is about a man who was arrested for travelling to Cuba, which is still illegal, but there's a line in there about the dictatorship in Spain. Spain was under the rule of Francisco Franco when Phil wrote the song. Spain is a vibrant democracy today.). The political song What's That I Hear is still vibrant and vital, and I love the adaptation of The Bells. Phil took the famous Edgar Allen Poe poem and put it to music (another example of this is Phil's masterful song The Highwayman, which is on Phil's 2nd album I Ain't Marching Anymore. It is a poem by Alfred Noyes that Phil set to music).
Sometimes political stuff can date, especially if its too explicit and topical. Some songs do that here (and on Phil's 2nd album), but there is enough great music here to make up for this minor trangression, and Phil isn't shrill and preachy like many political artists/entertainers. He eventually stopped writing political material, and his last 4 albums are much more ambiguous and mysterious than his early work. This is the best example of his protest phrase, even though that phrase simplifies this album, which is about much more than politics. I miss Phil. I feel that politics eventually destroyed him. While his later work wasn't political, he still was actively engaged as late as 1972. But he eventually gave up music, politics, and life, and the rest of his life was a complete mess. He eventually hung himself. It was a true tragedy, as he was a great artist."
A timeless look at a turbulent time in our history
Jennifer L. Metcalf | 06/12/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Ochs wit and sensitivity exceeds that of his contemporaries. This is an exceptional collection of songs that evoke the spirit and feel of the early 60s. It is a classic that I listen to nearly every week. You will love it."
Jennifer L. Metcalf | USA | 03/29/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Phil Ochs experienced a rather tumultuous career, and to the world at large, only after his death has his immense talent been recognized for its rich value. I was completely captivated the very first time I heard this album - all of less than two months ago. The voice wasn't a typically smooth, polished gloss of studio fabrication. There weren't huge orchestrations. But those ingenious words and infectious passion hurled notes from the speakers that insisted on holding my ears hostage.From the biographies that I've read, Phil Ochs was an extremely ardent man, and these songs are the proof in the pudding. "The Power and Glory" should, if it isn't already, be a staple of American folk music. The beginning guitar riff is simply awesome, like little sparks of magic that cast a spell over the listener. The words that follow are extremely patriotic, which may surprise some since many of the songs are quite anti-government. But that's the message: we don't have to agree with the government to appreciate the power and glory of our land. From the song, "Her power shall rest on the strength of her freedom. Her glory shall rest on us all.""Talking Vietnam" could be perceived as a folk rap song. Phil's wicked sense of humor and keen political opinions combine to produce a sharp commentary on our then involvement in Vietnam. Even if you don't agree with his politics, it's hard to argue that his words are not marvelously profound. An excerpt: "Sailing over to Vietnam,
Southeast Asian Birmingham.
Well training is the word we use,
Nice word to have in case we lose.
Training a million Vietnamese
To fight for the wrong government and the American Way."A few verses later, speaking about then President Diem of South Vietnam:"He said: `meet my sister, Madam Nhu
The sweetheart of Dien Bien Phu'
He said: `Meet my brothers, meet my aunts
With the government that doesn't take a chance.
Families that slay together, stay together.'Said: `If you want to stay you'll have to pay
Over a million dollars a day.
But it's worth it all, don't you see?
If you lose the country you'll still have me.
Me and Syngman Rhee, Chiang Kai-shek, Madam Nhu.
Like I said on _Meet the Press_
"I regret that I have but one country to give for my life." ' "Phil scored music to one of Edgar Allan Poe's most hauntingly beautiful poems, "The Bells," from 1849. The song is a perfect answer to those who claim that Phil was nothing more than a singing journalist. Amazingly, he propels his guitar to mimic bells. No doubt exists that Phil definitely did justice to Poe's spectacular poem. Poe would be impressed.From the moving tribute to the legendary Woody Guthrie in "Bound for Glory," to the working man's lament in "Automation Song," to the anti-war sentiment in "One More Parade," to the encomium to the US submarine "The Thresher (which tragically sank in 1963, taking the lives of all 129 lives onboard)," and eleven more songs that one biographer says comprise what Phil called a musical newspaper, this is, the first solo album that introduced Phil Ochs to the world outside of the intimate circle of Greenwich Village. It showcased a luminous talent who never received the recognition he deserved. Phil would later branch out as his musical talents grew, but if you're new to the world of Phil Ochs or simply hunger for a slice of nourishing Americana, this is a delicious treat."