Koerner, Ray and Glover

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Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:22 am

pinhedz
Thu May 01, 2008 5:05 am

In "Chronicles" Bob Dylan explains how he learned about folk music in Minnesota around 1959-1961 from musicians and record collectors near the University of Minnesota. He said he played with John Koerner (Bob remembers this better than Koerner does) and that Dave Ray had the only 12-string guitar in Minnesota. Bob got a guitar lesson from Koerner (maybe Bob's only lesson) and he hid in Ray's basement when he was being chased by some fraternity boys after he stole their food.

Koerner and Ray played with blues harp player Tony Glover, and they made this record together (David Bowie said in Fortune Magazine that it's one of his favorites):



In this picture, they are down by the Mississippi River flats, watching a police car drive up. The policeman wants to know why they are fooling around amongst some old abandoned warehouses. They said they were having their picture taken.

There is so much to tell, I won't be able to tell it all at once. But Koerner and Glover are still alive--here they are:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=po6L_rDrw_4&feature=related

Don’t the sun look lonesome, when you leave the day for night?
Don’t the stars look lonesome, even when they’re shinin’ bright?
Don’t a child look lonesome, when the world don’t treat ‘em right.

Look at the old oak tree, takin’ his good old time,
Standing there watching the world go by.
Never has been angry, never has been unkind.

Listen to the wind, blowin’ the leaves around,
Listen to a hoot-owl, who flies without a sound,
Listen to a heartbeat and the world spinnin’ ‘round.

Don’t the birds look pretty, when they’re flyin’ in the air?
Don’t the flowers look so pretty, just a-standin’ there?
Don’t a man and a woman look pretty when they make a pair.

See you in the springtime, see you in the fall,
I’ll see in the summer, when you’re havin’ a ball.
But when the snow flies, I may not see you at all.

Hey, but come on all you ramblers, all you travelers on the road,
The time has come to remember what you know,
Like where do you come from and where do you think you’re goin’?

Don’t the stars look lonesome, when you’re leavin’ night for day?
Don’t the sun look strong, just a-shinin’ away?
But don’t look now--here comes another day.


Last edited by pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:26 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:24 am

TinyMontgomery
Thu May 01, 2008 9:10 am

pinhedz wrote:In "Chronicles" Bob Dylan explains how he learned about folk music in Minnesota around 1959-1961 from musicians and record collectors near the University of Minnesota. He said he played with John Koerner (Bob remembers this better than Koerner does) and that Dave Ray had the only 12-string guitar in Minnesota. Bob got a guitar lesson from Koerner (maybe Bob's only lesson) and he hid in Ray's basement when he was being chased by some fraternity boys after he stole their food.

[...]

Don’t the sun look lonesome, when you leave the day for night?
Don’t the stars look lonesome, even when they’re shinin’ bright?
Don’t a child look lonesome, when the world don’t treat ‘em right.
Very interesting, thanks. I must have overlooked that passage in 'Chronicles'. The lines above reminded me of Dylan's version of 'Rocks and gravel':

Don't the clouds look lonesome shining across the sea,
Don't the clouds look lonesome shining across the sea,
Don't my gal look good,
When she's comin' after me?

He later went on to recycle these lines on his second most famous album:

Don't the moon look good, mama,
Shinin' through the trees?
Don't the brakeman look good, mama,
Flagging down the "Double E"?
Don't the sun look good
Goin' down over the sea?
Don't my gal look fine
When she's comin' after me?



Last edited by pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:25 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:25 am

pinhedz

Here's part of what Dylan says in "Chronicles." There's more, but he doesn't talk about the episode with the fraternity boys (that's from other sources):

"With my newly learned repertoire, I then went further up the street and dropped into the Ten O'Clock Scholar, a Beat coffeehouse. I was looking for players with kindred spirits. The first guy I met in Minneapolis like me was sitting around in there. It was John Koerner and he also had an acoustic guitar with him. Koerner was tall and thin with a look of perpetual amusement on his face. We hit it off right away. ... When he spoke he was soft spoken, but when he sang he became a field holler shouter. Koerner was an exciting singer, and we began playing a lot together."


TinyMontgomery

Doesn't ring a bell, but makes for a very interesting read.

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:28 am

pinhedz

Dave Ray said something in an interview in the mid-1990s that suggests that both "Good as I Been too You" and "World Gone Wrong" might be blamed on KR&G.

He said: "We used to know him, ya know, he used to live around here. We played with him at the Orpheum a few years back. He sat out on the bus during the whole show. He had it piped into the bus, I guess. ... When it was time for him to come on, we saw this phalynx of half-backs. There was Dylan's little head in the middle. They ran him out on the stage and at the end they took him back off again."

Ray said that Dylan must have enjoyed the show because shortly after that performance he recorded many of the same traditional tunes for "Good as I Been to You" and "World Gone Wrong" (most of the songs on those 2 albums appeared on KR&G recordings at some or other between 1962 and 1992).

I was going to type some more, but then I found this (saves me alot of typing and it's much better than I could do):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cVmPfw97b8&feature=related

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:29 am

pinhedz

Koerner, Ray and Glover with Willie Murphy:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:31 am

pinhedz

Bonnie Raitt told Koerner:
-- Your allbum "Running, Jumping, Standing Still" is a classic.

Koerner said;
-- I don't think that it's really a classic, it's got some things seriously wrong with it.

Bonnie said:
-- Those are the things that make it a classic!

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:35 am

pinhedz

Ever been to Stepan Wirz’s site? It’s a thing of beauty--hundreds of discograpies with all the album art. Here’s the page for Koerner, Ray and Glover. It’s remarkable when you consider that none of them had a record contract after 1969:

http://www.wirz.de/music/krgfrm.htm

There’s a couple that Wirz doesn't have on his list (I'll mark them with asterisks in my list).

Much of the discography is not too hard to find. The KR&G albums put out by Elektra in the 60s are back in print, and the solo albums by Koerner and Ray that Elektra put out during the same period can be had for cheap on eBay. Everything Koerner put out starting in 1986 is in print. All of Ray’s CDs from the 1990s are out of print, but you can get them with a little effort and patience.

But, if you become a KR&G completist (as everyone should be), you have to get the hard-to-gets. Here they are:

1966 -- Elektra records released a 7-inch 45-rpm record in the UK only. The songs on the two sides are “Don’t Stop” and “Won’t You Gove Me Some Love.” Koerner has a rockin’ back-up band with a lead guitarist pretending to be Mike Bloomfield--an obvious attempt to follow in Bob Dylan’s footsteps, 3 years before Koerner made a full album with amplified instruments.

1967 -- A promotional 7-inch 45-rpm record--no music, just talk with John Koerner and Willie Murphy. Here we learn that Koerner spent his first 5 years in the 1950s at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, because his father was employed by the Defense Department, making the first nuclear reactor for production of nuclear bomb material.

1971 -- Good Old Koerner, Ray & Glover (live 1963-1964). This was recorded at the Saint Olaf Folk Festival in Minneapolis and released on Papa John Kolstad’s own Mill City Records label.

1972 -- Music is Just a bunch of Notes. John Koerner with Willie and the Bumblebees. It was produced by Dave Ray and released on his own label--Sweet Jane LTD. To save money, there was no cover art--just a plain white jacket, and Dave Ray used a rubber stamp and felt markers to put on the name of the album and some crude designs.

1974 -- Some American Folk Songs Like They Used To. Another John Koerner album with Willie and Dave on Dave’s own label. This one has cover art, and it’s one of my favorite records.

1976 -- Dave Snaker Ray: Kid Man. Another Dave Ray production, but released on Mountain Railroad records (long defunct). It’s all solo Ray, on both electric and acoustic guitars.

*1978 -- Snake ’78. This is the last Dave Ray production, and he never released it (but his wife might burn you a CDr if you ask nice). It’s low-down funk--the meanest Dave Ray ever.

1984 -- A 7-inch 45-rpm single on the Ray-Ver label (Ray-Glover, get it?). The two songs are “Mattie May” and “I Been Watching You.” The second song is by Glover, and he sings it (this is very rare). They have a full band--the group they were playing with in bars.

1987 -- Legends in Their Spare Time. Ray and Glover recorded live at a club on the Mississippi River. It’s a return to the acoustic blues tradition. Only 600 were pressed, and they were all sold locally.

After that, the LP era was over, and everything came out on CD. You can usually find the CDs on eBay or GEMM or someplace, except for the very last one in the year 2000:

*2000 -- A Hollow Body Experience. Dave Ray and the 6L6 Band. This one was never pressed either, but they made CDprs to sell. The band was a group that Dave Ray played with in Milwaukee bars. They played bar music, and they were good.

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:37 am

I almost forget--there is one rare vinyl item from the CD era:

1992 -- Picture Has Faded. This album was released in both LP and CD versions. There are 4 bonus tracks included with the LP versions that are not on the CD.

There's a 7-inch 33-rpm EP with 4 extra songs inserted in the LP jacket:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:40 am

pinhedz

"Unlike most folk singers, John Koerner sings actual folk songs."

-- Who said that?


Hosni

Do people actually call him Spider to his face? Is it because his fingers dance across the frets like Boris the Spider?


Hosni

Shockingly, there is an active torrent that contains 10 Koerner albums. I'm downloading it, but at the rate it's going, it will be done in 30 days (no exaggeration).


pinhedz

Uzi wrote:Shockingly, there is an active torrent that contains 10 Koerner albums.
There are 2 extra-special old LPs on the Sweet Jane Ltd label: "Music is just a Bunch of Notes" and "Some American Folk Songs Like They Used To"

Of the more recent records, "Stargeezer" is the best.

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  felix on Wed Apr 20, 2011 11:21 pm

pinhedz wrote:pinhedz

Ever been to Stepan Wirz’s site? It’s a thing of beauty--hundreds of discographies with all the album art.

A labour of love, pinz. (Coincidentally, I supplied Stefan with a scan of the sleeve of Advent Records' 1966 'John Lee Hooker & His Guitar' album - sleeve drawing by my old friend, the late Ray Topping.)

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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Sun May 08, 2011 11:46 pm

I'm surprised it's already May and I haven't reposted this yet.

This is Koerner and Glover--Ray having already passed on to the Great Gig in the Sky:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:00 am

After running an insurance company for 15 years to put the kids through college, Ray decided to try the blues again:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:02 am

Last Dave Ray performance (he was sinking fast at this stage):




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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:07 pm

Youtube has all 10 or 12 episodes of this documentary. This one (#6) tells about how they made Bonnie Raitt's first record (the producer guy talking is Willie Murphy):


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:10 am

Here's something I didn't expect--a new record by Dave Snaker Ray Very Happy

http://www.amazon.com/Blue-Heaven-Dave-Snaker-Ray/dp/B004Y03L0S

You can pre-order now:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Sep 21, 2011 3:27 am


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Sep 21, 2011 3:28 am


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:40 am

Wish'd they'd do this stuff in studios so we could get some decent sound:




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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:42 am

I'm Mad at the Fat Man--Dave Ray and Tony Glover


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Tue May 08, 2012 12:50 pm

They say that Tony Glover is teaming up with some other Minneapolitans to celebrate Woody Guthrie's 100th in July:



I reckon it will sound something like this:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Sep 12, 2012 1:35 pm

This is the way it's supposed to be done:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Wed Sep 12, 2012 1:36 pm

He wrote this one:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Mon Oct 15, 2012 11:30 am

Young Dave is now on Youtube:


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:06 pm

It looks like young Dave is no longer on Youtube due to "multiple third party violations." scratch

But, things are looking up, here's "Blues Rags and Hollers" in it's entirety. cheers


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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

Post  pinhedz on Sat Apr 20, 2013 9:40 am

Here's young Dave and young Spider John--good stuff, really good:






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Re: Koerner, Ray and Glover

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