Thursday, June 28th, 2007

Oh My God, Whatever, Etc. Etc. Etc.

Waaaaait a minute. Didn’t I, who have professed no love for much of anything Ryan Adams has done in the past half-decade or so, just run a post on the man last week? Well yes, but I wasn’t at all prepared for the enthusiasm with which the contest in that post was received and coincidentally, I’ve just been given another DRA-related prize to give away. So I am revising/amending/what have you the contest to accomodate.

It will work like this: the original contest for the Easy Tiger LP, CD and poster, open only to Canadians, will still close tonight at midnight. BUT all non-winning entries will automatically be carried over to this new contest, which is a fancy-pants Easy Tiger lithograph autographed by Ryan himself (check it out). And since this contest, which comes courtesy of Filter, will be open to residents of the United States as well, I’ll ask that entries follow the same criteria as before – leave me a comment on this post saying which Ryan Adams song is your favourite (and the album it’s from, to help vote tabulation). Whiskeytown compositions are also eligible. A winner will be selected from the combined entries from the first contest and this one, which will close at midnight, July 4. Please be sure to leave a valid or decipherable email address I can contact you at.

This recent flurry of activity has prompted me to revisit some of Adams’ back catalog and reminded me of just how brilliant Heartbreaker was. This isn’t meant as a point of comparison to his recent stuff, that’s a horse that no longer needs beating, but just as a comment on the album on its own. It really is magnificent. So it’s no surprise that of the informal poll I was conducting via the original contest, 32% of the favourite songs came from that record. 19% were from Gold (the double-disc edition), 19% from Whiskeytown, 19% from his 2005 troika and only 11% from what I’m calling the Demolition era (the four shelved records that made up that compilation, plus the Love Is Hell and Rock N Roll releases). Curious to see if this ratio changes much with additional entries… I’m guessing no.

And to round things out, an interview with The AV Club, a short feature on Adams from Exclaim! and a the interview that it was culled from. Spinner has a couple of exclusive live videos of Adams and the Cardinals performing a song from Easy Tiger and another from Cold Roses. Finally, the first video from Easy Tiger is for the most directly rocking track from the album, “Halloweenhead”. Yahoo has an exclusive on it for now and has protected the content by geographic region – if you’re in Canada, use the first link. If you’re in the US, use the second. If you’re in neither, well too bad – though Yahoo UK seems to have two more live clips from the same session – or at least the same room – as those Spinner vids and they’re not behind any kind of territorial restrictions so everyone can share and enjoy.

Video: Ryan Adams – “Halloweenhead” (for Canada)
Video: Ryan Adams – “Halloweenhead” (for USA)

What else we got… Wilco are in town on Saturday for a show at Massey Hall. Jeff Tweedy apologizes to NOW for being a grump in interviews, thanks eye for comparing them to Television, Nels Cline shares a guitar tip with Spinner and The Boston Herald takes a wander through Wilco’s discography.

Patterson Hood gives Paste an update on the new album from the Drive-By Truckers as well as working with soul legend Bettye LaVette. He also talks to Savannah Now about recent goings-on in the Trucker camp. Ex-Trucker Jason Isbell, meanwhile, talks to Commercial Appeal about his new record Sirens Of The Ditch, out July 10. He’s at the El Mocambo here in Toronto on July 24.

Shows via For The Records: John Vanderslice is at the Horseshoe on October 1 and The Raveonettes are at Lee’s on October 14. Vanderslice’s new record Emerald City is out July 24. There’s an MP3. You can get it below.

MP3: John Vanderslice – “White Dove”

Totally overslept this morning and if my cat hadn’t decided to walk on my head for a good half hour, I’d probably still be asleep. Good kitty.

By : Frank Yang at 9:13 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Dave Rawkblog says:

    A favorite Ryan song? That’s like picking a favorite child… I’ll go with "Anybody Want To Take Me Home" from <i>Love is Hell</i>.

    On the off-chance I win, Frank, my e-mail is rawkblog at gmail dot com. I’m enjoying all the Ryan blog-love these days, even though I wish he’d gotten more of it for <i>29</i>.

  2. mark says:

    great post. tough call but i’ve always been a big fan of "what the devil wanted" from Pneumonia. it’s not your average Ryan song. but beautiful and sad. eatjunkbecomejunk at hotmail dot com

  3. Jason Mingo says:

    my favourite ryan adams song, tough one, but i’ll say Avenues from Strangers Almanac – Whiskeytown


  4. ryan97ou says:

    Wow, while i love heartbreaker, I have to say, lyrically for me Cold Roses is the best. Favorite song…hmmm, that’s a tough one. But "How do you Keep Love Alive" almost makes me want to be in the middle of a break up. In true Ryan Adams fashion, romanticizing about something that hurts so bad:

    Ryan Adams & The Cardinals – How do you Keep Love Alive

    "What does it mean?
    What does it mean to be so sad?
    When someone you love
    Someone you love is supposed to make you happy
    What do you do
    How do you keep love alive?
    When it won’t"


  5. Allen Dahm says:

    "Excuse me if I break my own heart tonight" … Whiskeytown.

  6. mastorna says:

    gotta say…the "420" on his watch is about the tackiest of things I’ve ever seen.

  7. jc says:

    "damn sam (i love a woman that rains)" from Heartbreaker

  8. Steve says:

    As cheesy as it is, I had my iPod on shuffle and on the day I moved on the bus from Toronto back home to Ottawa, Ryan started singing "It’s happening baby, they’re putting up the chairs" on ‘Goodnight Hollywood Blvd" off of ‘Gold. Gave me shivers and Ryan a better spot in my pod-rotation.

  9. Ryan Sanders says:

    "Bartering Lines" from Heartbreaker…I like other albums better, but there is just something about that song. THANKS for the contest!

  10. Ron says:

    I adore all things RA however, at this point in life I’m going to have to say "In My Time Of Need" off of ‘Heartbreaker’. It’s lyrical and emotional draw is very well thought out and portrayed in a beautiful acoustical serenade. In the song he seems he’s trying so hard to make things better but he still needs some help from his significant other. Truly masterful stuff.

  11. Tualla says:

    Come Pick Me Up from Heartbreaker.

    I’m like you though – not (at all) a fan of his recent cds. 2 or 3 good songs on each.

  12. zarklephaser says:

    Whiskeytown – Sit and Listen to the Rain

  13. Lisa Veronese says:

    Um, yeah, not trying to "cheat", but forgot to put my email address down when I replied last time…

    So, round 2, same answer as first time around:
    Fave Ryan song is Sweet Li’l Gal (23rd and 1st).

    But for the record, after Heartbreaker, my fave album(s) BY FAR is the Love is Hell release (i and ii).

  14. Patanoia says:

    I was going to say "Anybody Want To Take Me Home" too, so Dave Rawkblog should win.

  15. Bukowski says:

    My favorite Ryan Adam’s song is "Oh My Sweet Carolina" off Heartbreaker…just like the imagery.

    But if I had to choose an album, it would the Suicide Handbook – even though it’s not released, it’s available all over the internet…

  16. D. says:

    Hallelujah from Demolition.

  17. Jon says:

    Shadowlands – Love is Hell

  18. kelvin says:

    Shakedown on 9th Street

  19. matthew says:

    My fave Ryan Adams tune? Hmmm. tough one, that.

    But it would have to be "Come Pick Me Up" from Heartbreaker, but my favorite version is a live one(dated 2001 -?- ) i picked up which is purported to be the original.

    His opening banter? "I wrote this song today – it probably sucks…" Good ole Ryan.