Monday, July 21, 2008

massachusetts (thrice): another view

varulven records 805-111.
feauring jonathan richman.

First off, let me explain why "Massachetts (Thrice)".

This is not the original version of "Sticking With You" from the unreleased 'fourth' album by the Velvet Underground, recorded in NYC between 1968-69 for MGM, and repackaged as "VU" on Verve in 1985. There never was really a 'lost' album as such, just a collection of unreleased songs which never made the final cut in the transition from MGM to Atlantic.

The original version of the song, penned by Lou Reed, is a much more laid-back affair and lacks the childish vitality and spark of this 1974 collaboration between Moe Tucker and Jonathan Richman.

It was released on the Boston imprint, Varulven, as a split 45 backed with "Count Viglione's Love and Flame featuring Lady Carolyn" in 1980, and remains - as far as I'm aware - out of print, although it was re-released as part of a five track EP, again on Varulven, in 1985.

The line-up features Willie "Loco" Alexander on keyboards and backing vocals; Jonathan Richman performing Lou Reed's original vocal part; and a possible - but uncorroborated - guitar part by George Nardo.

MOE TUCKER & FRIENDS: ANOTHER VIEW (I'M STICKING WITH YOU) from "Another View b/w Of Yesterday" Split 45 (Varulven) 1980 (US)



Your driver said...

I'm a big Maureen Tucker fan largely because of the sheer ordinariness of her. After being a rock star, she went to work at Walmart. The thing is, she doesn't seem to treat that as a tragic story. I like that.

ib said...

Yeah, not only that but she somehow managed to record 'Playin' Possum' in her own time; in her living room; overdubbing every instrument herself; looking after her kids... and holding down a shitty job at Walmart at the same time.

What an album, too!

Well. She did go on record as saying she hated that job - and who can blame her ? - but what struck me as 'tragic' was that she was in that position at all. I mean, it's common knowledge that The Velvets didn't sell nearly as many records as their influence might suggest, and it wouldn't be the first time that an artist got stiffed... but still.

Lou and John Cale didn't seem to do too badly out of it in comparison.

What an amazing woman. And definitely one of the best Bo Didley rhythm makers ever. No mean feat.

WZJN said...

You're kidding me, right? Count Viglione and Willie "Loco" Alexander mentioned in the same blog? Same post? Bliss. Pure.

I read a few of your comments from other postings and you mentioned Lyres and Morphine. Sounds like you knew the scene as I did.

Nice to meet someone online with Boston musical knowledge and class.

ib said...

Well. I think Jon from Poetry Is For Assholes was the one who mentioned the Lyres. And I only know of Count Viglione in connection with this one split Moe Tucker 45, so my knowledge of the scene isn't so detailed...

Thanks for your support, though. Cheers.