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Weekly Wednesday Steal: Gram Parsons' 'GP' on Vinyl for $10

Posted by Billy Gil, August 27, 2014 08:37am | Post a Comment

gram parsons gp lpThis week’s Weekly Wednesday Steal is Gram Parsons' debut album GP on vinyl for only $10 (originally $24.98).

This 1973 solo debut from the country-rock pioneer marked his departure from The Flying Burrito Brothers and includes such songs as "That's All It Took," featuring Emmylou Harris. This reissue comes on 180 gram vinyl.

The Weekly Wednesday steal is happening every Wednesday, in which we sell some prized piece on discount for only $10 while supplies last. It's limited to one per customer. Previous deals have included releases by Boards of Canada and tUnE-yArDs for only $10. Keep coming back every Wednesday to Amoeba.com to see what we have going on. As always, there’s FREE SHIPPING on Amoeba.com for music and movies in the U.S.

 

My real introduction to Gram Parsons ...

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 15, 2007 10:43am | Post a Comment
I came at Gram sideways, when my eyes saw the words ... Grievous Angel, Fallen Angel, Love Hurts  ... it was December, 2003 and I hadn't listened intently to any of Gram's music. I'd heard it over the years, but I'd never sat and played it in a dark room with my soul torn open, Gram playing on a little boombox while I sobbed like I could cry everyone's mortality away.

See, someone had just died. Here were all of her things, I'm trying to sort them out - and here was her Gram records. I had never known that Gram sang "Love Hurts,"  honest to God. I thought that was a Nazareth song. I know a lot about music, but sometimes I'm still that dumb kid who grew up in the 70's.

I spent about 3 weeks in that apartment listening to those albums over and over, and I thought ... this is what miracles are. That something so beautiful, angelic and sorrowful could whisper in the background of your life as your friends were all hip to it ... but sometimes the music waits until exactly when you need it. Then it runs you over like a Mack truck. The kind of Mack truck that heals you while you fall in love with it.

I had to put aside Gram for years, because the pain was too great. See, it was my best friend's Mom who had just died. I'd never been in a situation to have an aging parent, and I certainly had never been around to take an older woman to her (frustrating) doctor appointments, carry grocery bags upstairs and talk about how Nevada Barr is no Faulkner, but sometimes you can go the prettiest places in a 1.99 soft cover from Moe's Books in Berkeley, when you can't afford to get on a plane. Or when you're dying, and you probably know that deep in your bones. I'd never watched someone I respected so much ... just waste away. Disappear.

I wish we'd talked about her music too, because that woman had some damn good records. (You bet a whole lot of Emmylou was in in there was well.)  You never know someone it seems, until far too late. What would my life had been like if she'd hit play on "Love Hurts" back in the summer of 2003? Different, but in a way, I suppose this was better. I can't judge.

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That Avalon Ballroom back in '69 ...

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, November 7, 2007 10:34am | Post a Comment
I remember the day Dave Prinz, one of the owners of Amoeba, came running into the office of the Haight Street store in San Francisco. Dude wasn't walking: he was floating. He was beaming, bouncing and dancing. He was pretty much out of his mind with the happy.

"You have got to hear this,"  he said as he reached for the office boom-box. Maybe he would've said that to anyone who was standing there, I have to grant his excitement that much. Cause the dude was on Cloud 9 and the fact that he even saw me standing there is a miracle, but I'll take it as he knew what all this would mean to me.

"This is it, this is the goods," he said as he prepped the CD player, and I knew exactly what he was talking about: the Gram, the live Gram Parsons that no one had ever heard before. He'd finally gotten it on the CDs to bring in and show us all that he wasn't nuts: this was GOLD. Hell, this is platinum. (industry joke, sorry.)

Man, that day was a long time ago. It was a damn long time ago, what with everything that happens in everyone's lives? You know how long a year or two feels. But there I was, last night, finally: I had my copy, I was reading the liner notes, and at first I was laughing, thinking "Dave! You left out the part where you talked about this record every day since then!! Every day!"


But that's the beautiful thing: when anyone is that much of a fan ... and we all knew how much of a fan Dave is before he ever got to go over to that magical place: Bear's Vault. (Forgive me, at 39, I am practically an old fogey to most of you and a lifelong Deadhead.) That much of a fan you can forgive almost anything. (Almost = Hinckley, Jr.)

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GRAM PARSONS' LEGACY CONTINUES TO GROW

Posted by Billyjam, November 6, 2007 09:57pm | Post a Comment
   

As you likely already know, today (November 6th) was the release date of the anticipated Gram Parsons with the Flying Burrito Brothers' Live at the Avalon Ballroom 1969 2CD set -- the first volume in the long lost sessions from the late great artist who created "Cosmic American Music," and the second release from the recently launched Amoeba Records. (The premiere release a couple of months back was Brandi Shearer's Close To Dark.) Coincidentally, there is also a new biography just out on the artist titled Twenty Thtwenty thousand roadsousand Roads: The Ballad of Gram Parsons and His Cosmic American Music written by David N. Meyer and published in hard copy by Villard Books.

Gram Parsons, who died of a drug overdose at the young age of 26 and who would have celebrated his 61st birthday yesterday, November 5th, is one of those great artists whose contributions to American music are realized increasingly more and more in every year since his 1973 tragic death. And as each year progresses the legions of fans and artists directly touched by this long deceased singer/songwriter/guitarist/pianist just seem to continue to grow.

"Parsons was born in 1946 into a rich but dysfunctional Southern family; his father committed suicide when Gram was 12, and his mother died of alcoholism the day Gram graduated from high school. Although he grew up in Georgia and Florida, Parsons wasn't turned on to country until he went north to Harvard (where, obsessed with music, he flunked out freshman year), but once he discovered Buck and Merle, he was smitten," wrote the New York Times in its lukewarm review of the new 559-page biography on Parsons. The book, and other reviewers agree, is by no means a perfect biography -- skipping some important details and over-emphasizing others -- but it is a good book to have, especially for diehard fans and Parsons completists. It is also by no means the the only book out there on the fascinating character that was Gram Parsons. Others include Grievous Angel: An Intimate Biography of Gram Parsons by Jessica Hundley with Polly Parsons (Gram's daughter) that was published by Thunder's Mouth Press a couple of years ago and is available in both hard-cover and on paperback. There is also the recommended Hickory Wind: The Life and Times of Gram Parsons by Ben Fong Torres that is well worth reading to further understand the artist. Other books in the long list under Gram Parsons' bibliography include Pamela Des Barres' I'm With the Band: Confessions of A Groupie which was published by Jove Books in 1988. DeBarres, who counts Gram Parsons among her closest past friends, also wrote the liner notes for the new Amoeba Records release.

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Lee Hazlewood 1929 - 2007

Posted by Whitmore, August 5, 2007 10:30am | Post a Comment


Yesterday, August 4, Lee Hazlewood passed away from renal cancer at the age of 78 in his home in Las Vegas. Born Barton Lee Hazlewood in Mannford, Oklahoma in 1929, he was a music legend and viewed as one of the more iconoclastic figures of 20th-century pop. Just his baritone voice alone made him sound like a cantankerous, hard living son of a bitch. I suspect he was.

Hazlewood was mostly known for his work from the 1950s through the 1970s, he composed such masterpieces as “These Boots Are Made For Walking,”  “Some Velvet Morning,”  “Sand,”  “The Fool,”  “Summer Wine,”  “Houston” and “Trouble Is A Lonesome Town.” He built a reputation as a solo artist, producer, and label owner. In the 1950s he produced Duane Eddy developing the whole ‘twangy’ guitar sound. The single “Rebel Rouser,” co-written by both Eddy and Hazlewood, became a huge international hit in 1958.  As far as being in the public eye, 1965 was his breakthrough year when he teamed up with Nancy Sinatra for a string of hit singles and an album Nancy and Lee.  A few years later his own LHI label, released what is widely considered the first country-rock record, the International Submarine Band featuring Gram Parsons. Over the next couple of decades he produced a series of beautifully odd solo albums that were mostly unheard of in America until Sonic Youth reissued them in the 1990s. His final release, Cake Or Death (Ever), was released earlier this year. 

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