john mellencamp

john mellencamp on Elsewhere by Graham Reid - browse 14 items of content tagged as 'john mellencamp'.

John Mellencamp: Freedom's Road (Universal)

John Mellencamp: Freedom's Road (Universal)

If this guy hadn't been such a dickhead when he was John Cougar in the early 80s, or so arrogant when he became John Cougar Mellencamp we'd probably be falling all over him now as one of the authentic voices of Americana/alt.country rock. He reinvented himself as a man with a conscience and in touch with the spirit of small towns in the...

Danny McCrum Band: Awake and Restless (McCrum)

Danny McCrum Band: Awake and Restless (McCrum)

Here's a guess, this smart pop-rock album from an Auckland singer-songwriter and his tight, crackling band won't get much attention. The reason? There's not been much sympathy or space for well-crafted adult pop-rock in New Zealand, the Finns and Dave Dobbyn aside. Critics generally prefer something with a little more quirkiness and...

Luke Thompson: Here on the Ground (Pure)

Luke Thompson: Here on the Ground (Pure)

This young singer-songwriter from Tauranga came to my attention a few weeks ago when I was asked if I would write a bio to accompany the release of this, his debut album. I get a few such requests but only ever take on someone whose music impresses me (Miriam Clancy was another) and a quick check at Thompson's MySpace page told me all I...

Gary Louris: Vagabond (Ryko/Elite)

Gary Louris: Vagabond (Ryko/Elite)

Louris was a founder of the cornerstone alt.country band the Jayhawks whose career in the 90s saw them weave their way from country-rock to post-grunge rock and sometimes pure pop They were hard to get a bead on but that was the great pleasure of their career. With the Jayhawks seemingly on hold Louris steps out for a debut album under his...

Various: Song of America (Split Rock/Southbound)

Various: Song of America (Split Rock/Southbound)

This beautifully packaged 3-CD set (with explanatory booklet) is doubtless very useful as a teaching aid in American schools: it is a chronological collection from a Lakota dream song through colonial period and Civil War songs, to Depression Era laments for the parched land and Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? then into the civil rights period...

John Mellencamp:  Life, Death, Love Freedom (Universal)

John Mellencamp: Life, Death, Love Freedom (Universal)

John Mellencamp's last album Freedom's Road was so good -- a grounded, raw and uncompromising look at America in the hinterland and heartland -- that this similarly conceived new one should attract immediate attention.Mellencamp -- who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame earlier this year -- somehow falls below the sight lines in...

Danny McCrum Band: Say What You Mean (Paper Plane)

Danny McCrum Band: Say What You Mean (Paper Plane)

This bristling, tight, and emotionally taut album by McCrum and his Auckland band is a real step up from their already impressive debut Awake and Restless which found much favour at Elsewhere. This time out everything from the energy levels to the songwriting has been taken up a notch or two, there is a sense of real urgency in these rocking...

Melissa Etheridge: Fearless Love (Island)

Melissa Etheridge: Fearless Love (Island)

From the opening title track here – a windblown open-road rocker and statement of ferocious independence – Etheridge confirms her credentials as someone who performs open-heart surgery on the emotions while backing it up with powerful songs. As with Springsteen, she also drops into characters (the unfulfilled housewife in The...

John Mellencamp: No Better Than This (Rounder)

John Mellencamp: No Better Than This (Rounder)

The man they call "the poet laureate of the Interstate" (although he always sounds a backroads man to me) ha been on such a roll lately with Freedom's Road and Life Death Love Freedom) that the idea of him recording in mono with T Bone Burnett in Sun Studio, the Gunter Hotel in San Antonio (where Robert Johnson was committed to tape)...

THE BARGAIN BUY: Bruce Springsteen; Born to Run (Sony)

THE BARGAIN BUY: Bruce Springsteen; Born to Run (Sony)

It's commonly enough noted that this was the album which got Springsteen onto the covers of Newsweek and Time in the same week in October 1975. But looking at the size of those magazines today -- thin, articles of almost haiku length -- it is hard for many to understand now what that actually meant. They were massive-selling and influential...

Kid Rock: Born Free (Atlantic)

Kid Rock: Born Free (Atlantic)

Having always been a fan of Bob Seger in that classic period in the mid Seventies (especially the Stranger in Town album) it was a real pleasure to shove this disc in the car player and crank it up . . . because by halfway through the first track I was thinking this was the great and largely forgotten Bob accidentally put in a Kid Rock cover....

EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS, a film by MARTIN DAVIDSON (Triton DVD)

EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS, a film by MARTIN DAVIDSON (Triton DVD)

Although this B-grade rock-cum-mystery film from '83 has plot holes and continuity problems so big you could drive a pink '57 Chevy through them, it isn't without some interest, especially if Bruce Springsteen means anything to you. In the most broadest of terms, it starts like Citizen Kane (a television reporter Maggie Foley -- played by...

The Funky Kings: Singing in the Streets (1976)

The Funky Kings: Singing in the Streets (1976)

So just how pervasive was Bruce Springsteen's influence? One listen to this track by the short-lived Funky Kings from LA would suggest that even by his second album he'd managed to infiltrate the consciousness of these guys. Well, maybe. But the Funky Kings, who only lasted one album, were a supergroup in reverse. Just about all of them...

Ramblin' Jack Elliott: I Stand Alone (EMI)

Ramblin' Jack Elliott: I Stand Alone (EMI)

To be honest, I thought he'd died years ago. Most people who influenced Bob Dylan back in New York in the early 60s -- like Woody Guthrie who mentored Elliott -- are long gone. But not Jack, it seems. For one of Dylan's first gigs he was billed as "the son of Jack Elliott" (who was born Elliot Adnopoz 75 years ago) because...

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