Recently I was at the Deep Tracks page on Facebook where I got involved in an interesting two-part discussion. The first part was about what constitutes a ‘deep’ track in the first place. There was general agreement that a so-called ‘deep’ track is one that’s relatively obscure, one that you wouldn’t hear on Classic Vinyl or FM classic rock. Within that definition, I’d say there are two sub-categories of obscurity: first is a rarely heard song from a familiar artist, say, “My Sunday Feeling” by Jethro Tull. The second kind of obscure is anything from artists who are never played on Classic Vinyl or FM classic rock, for example, anything by Mink DeVille or Ballinjack. Now, one of the problems you run into is that for some people, anything by Little Feat is obscure. For others, like me, you have to go to the very bottom of their catalogue before I’d consider it rare. The second part of the discussion was about whether Deep Tracks should play anything that’s not ‘deep’ by whatever definition you come up with. There were purists who argued that you should never hear a well-known song on Deep Tracks, that it’s a violation of the very name of the channel. The reason I bring all this up is that today’s batch of All Hand Mixed Vinyl contains two tracks that will drive those purists to distraction. Believe me, they don’t get any more overexposed thant the Steely Dan and War songs I’m going to play in this set. BUT, I’m playing them in service of a greater good; this is one of those times where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. The Steely Dan comes out of a Moody Blues track with such a perfect beat match, that I had to play it. And not only that, but then I found an obscure J.J. Cale track that sounds a lot like the Steely Dan AND is very similar in style to the War track. But all that’s later. Before we get there, we’ll hear a rare track from an obscure artist, but first, an obscure track from a familiar artist. Here’s Joni Mitchell.
|Joni Mitchell||Woman of Heart and Mind|
|John Martyn||Head and Heart|
|Moody Blues||It’s Up To You|
|Steely Dan||Do it Again|
If you tuned in during the middle of Steely Dan’s “Do it Again” and you thought to yourself, what’s this, Classic Vinyl? Well, you should’ve heard the commentary at the start of the show. As I’ve said before, the segues determine the songs we play, not the other way around. And the perfect beat match we got with the Steely Dan coming out of the Moody Blues track is a perfect example of what I mean when I say that. Before the set we were talking about a discussion on the Deep Tracks page on Facebook where listeners were debating the meaning of ‘deep’ in Deep Tracks and whether you should ever hear a familiar song here or only obscure tracks. Personally I like about an 80-20 mix of obscure to familiar, but that’s just me. Your tastes may vary. The one thing we all agreed on during this debate is that there’s a reason they have all those buttons on the radio. But getting back to the set, we followed the Steely Dan with a deep track from J.J. Cale, an obscure instrumental called “Durango.” As far as I know the only place you’ll find that is on a career retrospective collection, and not on any of his proper albums. And as long as we were grooving along with a semi-Latinish syncopation, we slipped into War’s “Cisco Kid.” By the way, if you’re interested, there’s a Rhythm Heritage mash-up out there called “Do it Again Cisco Kid.” At the top of the set, an obscure track from a familiar artist, Joni Mitchell’s “Woman of Heart and Mind.” Then a deep track from a deep artist: the late, the great, the underappreciated John Martyn with a song called “Head and Heart.” That’s from his album Bless the Weather. And bless your heart, we’re out of time. I’m Bill Fitzhugh, thanks for listening. You can find the set lists at billfitzhugh dotcom and you can track me down on Facebook and Amazon too. While you’re doing that, I’ll be working on another batch of All Hand Mixed Vinyl and I hope you’ll join us next time, right here in the Deep Tracks.