They began making music in 1989. I discovered them in 1993 or so with their album Fire of Freedom. The combination of Celtic Rock, Irish Republican sympathies, intriguing instrumentation (guitar, uilleann pipes, saxes, and trombone), and broad influences (reggae, hip hop, folk, and jazz) grabbed me. Named after the worst year of the Great Potato Famine, Black 47 has been one of my favorites since. I have seen them in Irish festivals and bars. I have dragged friends along.
About a year ago, the band members announced the time had come for Black 47 to call it quits. They recorded a final album, The Last Call, and embarked on the Last Call Tour that will culminate on November 15 at the B.B. King Bar and Grill in New York.
On August 1, they played for Irish Night at Citi Field prior to the Mets game. Tricia went with me for one more, one last concert. In the words of their song, “Rocking the Bronx“: “that’s the story so far.” I am glad to have experienced a part of the story.
See you along the Trail.
While waiting with Tricia for
Black 47’s concert,
a stop on their Last Call tour,
a purple flower
winked out from a field of white.
1 August 2014
Queens, New York
Filed under New York, Photo
One of my former work colleagues and friends posted the following on Facebook:
In your status line, list 10 albums that have stayed with you. Tag ten friends including me. These shouldn’t be the critics list, but records that mean something to you. Do it fast. Don’t research it.
I don’t often do this sort of thing but I decided to give this one a try. I suspected that because of differences in our ages and tastes, my list would be quite different from his. It was. Both lists contained amazing music.
It also proved an interesting exercise because it allowed me to consider the tunes I carry in my heart and my soul. These are the soundtrack of my life. Each recording played a role in my life. They associate with moments and experiences, transporting me back across time and space. Many smiles accompanied the process.
Here’s my list. The significance to the order is the order they occurred to me.
- Derek and the Dominos – Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs
- Jimi Hendrix – Electric Ladyland
- Jackson Browne – Late for the Sky
- Eric Bogle – Scraps of Paper
- Bob Marley and the Wailers – Exodus
- Bob Dylan – Blood on the Tracks
- Van Morrison – Saint Dominic’s Preview
- Black 47 – Fires of Freedom
- Carole King – Tapestry
- Warren Zevon – The Wind
This proved far harder than I expected. Here’s a second 10 – actually 11 since I sneak in two by Brother Neil.
- Seeds – the songs of Pete Seeger
- Mountain – Nantucket Sleighride
- Neil Young – Prairie Wind / Harvest
- Arlo Guthrie – Amigo
- The Band – Music from Big Pink
- Bruce Cockburn – Nothing But a Burning Light
- Bruce Springsteen – The Ghost of Tom Joad
- The Temptations – Puzzle People
- Archie Roach – Charcoal Lane
- John McCutcheon – Live at Wolf Trap
And many, many more crossed my soul as I worked on this.
What tunes do you carry? What music would be on your list?
See you along the Trail.
Filed under Friends, Music