49th Parallel is a good one, for sure. Perhaps try Nanci Giffith's "compilation" of covers and some duets "Other Voices Other Rooms" or the Chieftan's "Tears of Stone" which is a "compilation" of the Chieftan's backing a diverse group of female vocalists (one track each). The soundtrack to "Leap of Faith" is a favorite, as is "Oh Brother Where Art Thou" despite a few very wierd songs.
I really like "Sweet Relief", a benefit for Victoria Williams. It's 14 covers of Victoria Williams songs by some great artist. There are some great cuts by Soul Asylum, Lucinda Williams, Pearl Jam, Michael Penn, Lou Reed, Matthew Sweet, Evan Dando of the Lemonheads, The Jayhawks and several more.
It's been in my rotation since it came out in 1993.
Reubent, "Sweet Relief" is a good one. Although I'm not a huge Pearl Jam fan, their cut on that cd is a perfect example of what makes compilations so interesting.
Swampwalker, I'll check out the Chieftans and the "Leap of Faith" soundtrack. Already have both Nanci Griffith cover albums. I bought the first one because it was HDCD encoded and bought the second for the music. Both excellent. Thanks.
"I'm Your Man" (soundtrack) is all covers of Leonard Cohen songs and is, I think, excellent
an older one, may take a little digging to find, is "The World is a Wonderful Place", which is Richard Thompson covers done by mostly obscure artists but is great
Check out the studio compilation albums from Mississippi Studios in Portland , OR. Both local and national acts are booked there. These are basically "best of" CD's for 2004 and 2005. Great to play and discover new music.
The Leonard Cohen cover album I have is titled "I'm Your Fan." It includes a fantastic cover of "First We Take Manhattan" by R.E.M.
Another cover group I like is Nouvelle Vague. One album has interesting covers of "Guns of Brixton," "Making Plans for Nigel" and "Melt With You."
A great soundtrack album to look for is "Until the End of the World" (Wim Wenders pictur) with songs from Lou Reed, Nick Cave, Jane Siberry, and a whole bunch of good artists.
"Until The End Of The World" is a favorite from way back -- it turned me on to Jane Siberry! Listening to "Sweet Relief" now, it's been a while but still a great cd.
Thanks for the input, if you'll excuse me I have a few cds to order.
A lost 70's Classic in the vein of covers or a compilation of songs from various artists Todd Rundgren's Faithful. On side one he does some Dylan,Hendrix,Beach Boys and other artists and then on side two he does all original stuff that is some of his best work. He just nails all the covers,in fact he took great pride in how many hours of studio time it took him to get the songs to SOUND like the originals. And if that isn't enough you can pick it up on CD new for under 10.00 shipped on Amazon.
Check out the Live At The World Cafe series which culls intimate well-recorded performances from the radio show of the same name. This is a prime way to find great artists.
As for movie soundtracks, the one I always go back to is The Committments, featuring an Irish band playing 60's American black soul music. Cheers,
Some of the MTV Unplugged Compilations are actually pretty good too. If you like stripped down acoustic versions of some classic rock tunes, there is plenty of good stuff available in the Unplugged series.
I'm not really thrilled about promoting MTV, but IMHO they had a real winner in the Unplugged series.
Agree with Sbank - some big market radio stations put out some nice live studio performance compilations. Some that I have enjoyed have been released by KFOG (Live from the Archives) and WBCN ("Naked" series from the Naked Lunch show). Plenty of them for sale on EBay.
WBCN - Now that takes me back. I lived in New Hampshire 69-72. WBCN was the station to listen to then, if the radio would pick it up. Haven't been to New England in years.
KMMT From the Mountain series is pretty darn good, too.
If you liked 49th Parallel then try 21st Century Blues a collection of anti war songs by various artists covered by The Cowboy Junkies. It has that same slow durge that 49th has.
In addition to the wide ranging, eclectic kind of compilations, I have heard historic compilations that are really good. My favorites are the 10 CD collection of the Atlantic Label's R&B, and the rock & roll compilations that came in three separate sets: Roots of Rock and Roll (1946-54); Golden Era of Rock & Roll (1954-63); and British Invasion (1963- ).
A really good ongoing contemporary complilation is "Paste" music magazine. Every month you get a cd of music samples from some of the artists featured in the magazine. I've been turned on to some good stuff through them.
I heard several cuts off this cd More Horizons and every song i heard was awsome through the JM Lab Utopia be and Mac tube gear. It is now on the way because i had to have it.
If you can find either of the 2 CDs from the
"In Their Own Words" collection.
Songs, plus commentary from the performers recorded live at The Bottom Line in NYC. Sound quality gets unbelievably poor on a few tracks, but these recordings definitely provide the kind of unusual context which you describe.
"treasures left behind: remembering Kate Wolf"
Includes covers of Kate Wolf songs by Kathy Mattea, Dave Alvin, Nanci Griffith, John Gorka, Peter Rowan (with Rowan Brothers and others), Lucinda Williams, Chris Williamson (with Tret Fure), U.Utah Philips, Rosalie Sorrels, Greg Brown (with Ferron), Nina Gerber, Eric Bogle, Terry Garthwaite, and Emmylou Harris.
Lots of fine work there but my favorites are, heck--too many.
Don s, thanks for the Kate Wo;f tribute tip. Excellent cd and a perfect example of what I am looking for.
I am afraid I don't know the label, as a friend copied it for me, but there is a CD of Bob Dylan covers from the likes of Eliza Gilkyson and Martin Simpson, called "Nod to Bob", which is one of my favourite CDs
As for a CD of cover versions, try Shawn Colvins "Cover Girl" , very sensitive interpretations of great songs. I did'nt think anyone could sing "Guitar Town" better than Steve Earl himself, but I prefer Shawns version.
Incidentally, I just went to a Shawn Colvin concert. I don't think she said more than 10 words, but I can't remember a better concert
"A Nod to Bob" is on the Red House Record label as is the Kate Wolf tribute cd mentioned above. I've been touting the "Nod to Bob" cd for a while here. It is one of my favorite compilation cds with the bonus of HDCD. There are some wonderful artists on the Red House Record label doing what I guess is American music. Eliza Gilkinson, Greg Brown, the Wailin Jennies (spelling) and others that are definitely worth trying. The record label has some other fine compilation cds showcasing their artists; check em out.
Timrhu, Glad you liked the Kate Wolf tribute.
While I was looking for the "Nod to Bob" you and David12 recommended I found this:
Bob Dylan: This Ain't No Tribute Series
Taj Mahal, The Band, Leon Russel, Isaac Hayes, and others.
and an entire series called "This Ain't no Tribute Series"
featuring songs of Janis Joplin, Zeppelin, Clapton, Stones.
Never heard of the series before so maybe it isn't all that well done. Anyone familiar with the work?
Listened to Patti Smith's "Twelve" last night. Her version of George Harrison's "Within You Without You" is well worth the price of admission. Great bass on this cd also.
If you like the Kate Wolf - try:
Nanci Griffith - "Other Voices, Other Rooms" which is really a covers album of Nanci doing other people's material and it's great. You can sample the tracks here:
Also you may enjoy "Folkways : A Vision Shared" which has a number of contemporary artists like Dylan, Mellencamp, Springsteen, etc. doing their own interpretations of Woody Guthrie and Leadbelly songs. Little Richard's version of Rock Island Line is worth the price of admission alone.
I assume you've listened to Kate Wolf, herself. I have everyone of her albums on vinyl and love em all.