Saturday, January 8, 2022

Owsley - Vintage Vinyl Records, Fords, NJ, 4-3-2004

A couple of weeks ago, I posted two albums by the Semantics, the band Owsley was a part of in the early 1990s. Now I'm going to start posting some of Owsley's solo material. A good start is this concert, which features him in solo acoustic format.

In short, Owsley put out two solo albums, one in 1999 and the other in 2004. But neither got the attention they deserved, and his troubles mounted, culminating in his suicide in 2010. This concert took place shortly after the release of his second album, "The Hard Way," so it contains versions of the best songs from both of his albums. 

If you've been following this blog, you'll know I'm a particular fan of acoustic versions of songs. This is a good case in point. I enjoy the full band versions in all their power pop glory. But it's nice to see them radically reinvented in a stripped back format, and still show themselves as quality songs.

It seems this concert was recorded by the venue it took place in. You can still see the video of the entire concert on YouTube, along with many other concerts by others at that same venue. So that probably accounts for the excellent sound quality. There are only a handful of Oswley bootlegs (and no official live albums), and this at least ties for best sound.

Unfortunately, because his career never took off, you can hear that the crowd is quite small. But for a concert recording, it creates a very intimate atmosphere, with him taking requests for most of the songs. The only cover is a version of "A Hard Day's Night" by the Beatles, thanks to what sounds like a little kid, who requested it. 

This album is 47 minutes long.

01 talk (Owsley)
02 Good Ol' Days (Owsley)
03 talk (Owsley)
04 Coming Up Roses (Owsley)
05 talk (Owsley)
06 The Hard Way (Owsley)
07 She's the One (Owsley)
08 talk (Owsley)
09 Oh No the Radio (Owsley)
10 talk (Owsley)
11 Zavelow House (Owsley)
12 Rainy Day People (Owsley)
13 talk (Owsley)
14 Uncle John's Farm (Owsley)
15 talk (Owsley)
16 Rise (Owsley)
17 talk (Owsley)
18 Be with You (Owsley)
19 talk (Owsley)
20 A Hard Day's Night (Owsley)
21 talk (Owsley)
22 Sonny Boy - Undone (Owsley)
23 talk (Owsley)
24 The Sky Is Falling (Owsley)
25 talk (Owsley)

Often when making the cover art, I have to choose between photo quality and relevance. This time, I went for relevance. I took a screenshot from the YouTube video of this exact concert. The downside is that it's rather low-res.

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