Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Valentine Countdown Bonus! St. James Infirmary Blues, Arlo Guthrie and the University of Kentucky Orchestra


Anonymous said...

I was at this concert. Good show! Arlo complimented the oboist(sp?) at the end of applause.

David aka True Blue Sam said...

Anon: Arlo says in his liner notes that he thinks this is his best album, and that this rendition of The City of New Orleans is his favorite. I have to agree! This album is always in our car stereo. It is still available on his website. He frequently comments on Rising Son Records on Facebook.

David aka True Blue Sam said...

Anon: Here is a writeup that Arlo put on John Nardolillo's FaceBook page about his In Times Like These album. "Arlo Guthrie
May 1, 2021
May 1, 2021 - Washington, MA - The Farm
15 years ago, March 10th 2006 I was Lexington, KY working on a fairly ambitious project - A recording of a benefit concert at The Singletary Center for the Arts at The University of Kentucky. It was called "In Times Like These." My friend, John Nardolillo was conducting the UK Symphony Orchestra, in concert with me. My old friend, Al Tucker was doing the front of house sound, while my new friend, George Massenburg was recording the event.
Something unexpected happened. It turned out to be one of those nights that rarely comes along at all - Pure unadulterated magic. The wondrous arrangements were done by my friend Jamie Burton. But, Singletary is not known for its acoustics, student orchestras are not known for professionalism, and there were circumstances that made what occurred seem unlikely.
Somehow all the expected challenges were overcome by what can only be described as grace. The fact that it happened is one thing, but to have it recorded is more in the miracle department. It will probably not be remembered (if it is at all) as the most successful record I'd ever made, but it is without question the best. It's not the best for back porch pickin' or of some historic value like other recordings I've made, but it's the best anyway especially if you are inclined to love the best of both worlds (musically speaking).
I was reminded of all this as I enjoyed my morning cup of coffee and hearing stuff on the radio. There's a sound that never comes thru the speakers, that hits you mostly in the gut. You can feel it as well as hear it. It's memorable as a physical experience as well as an audible one. And I was remembering what that felt like earlier today, as well as being thankful I was able to be there.
The same can be said for all kinds of live music. There's nothing like actually being there. So as venues open up again, and schedules start to fill in, I remain thankful for the 50+ years I was able to do just that. I get messages and see comments from people who were at one gig or another over the years and decades. I was there too, sometimes alone, but mostly with friends and family who enjoyed being there as well.
I was communicating with Pat Boone recently about the time I began work on Steve Goodman's song "The City of New Orleans" which had begun is his recording studio in Hollywood. Although we have different views on a whole lot of stuff, the fact remains that my most commercially successful recording was begun at Pat's studio (that was a long time ago). The final version was recorded elsewhere in Hollywood. The first recording of that song will remain the one most people will remember. But, the one I like is the one we recorded 15 years ago with a full symphony orchestra. There've been a lot of recordings in-between too.
"in Times Like These" is still available from our Get Stuff at www.arloguthrie.com"