Monday, August 11, 2014

Look Sharp: Not Your Average Joe

Let's queue up a tasty little performance from way back in the Eighties today, in honor of the 60th birthday of one of my all-time favorite songwriters.
I have dug the music of Joe Jackson since I was about 13 or 14 years old... the radio station I grew up on, which was sort of a cutting-edge New Wave station in the first few years of the 1980s, played his stuff constantly. I think the first song I ever heard of Joe's was "Sunday Papers," which is a pretty great place to start, in around 1979.
Throughout adolescence no one's music meant more to me than his. For instance, later in life, when I read Joe's autobiography "A Cure for Gravity," I found out about his struggles with sexual identity as a young adult. But as a queer youth, at age 17 nothing meant more to me than his song "Real Men," one of the most frank portraits of gender issues ever crafted into song... before such things were acceptable or even permissible.
So for his big day here, I spent most of yesterday remastering and recalibrating an excellent performance from the tour supporting his most famous record, the ridiculously awesome Night & Day. This one is a full 80-minute extravaganza from the legendary Orpheum in Boston, featuring many of his best tunes. There's also NO guitar, which I love... the record had no guitars, so neither did the tour.
Joe Jackson
Orpheum Theater
Boston, MA

01 On Your Radio
02 Another World
03 Sunday Papers
04 Look Sharp 
05 Fools In Love
06 Is She Really Going Out with Him?
07 One More Time
08 It's Different for Girls
09 Target
10 T.V. Age
11 Steppin' Out
12 Beat Crazy
13 Got the Time
14 A Slow Song
15 I'm The Man

Total time: 1:19:15

Joe Jackson - lead vocals, piano
Joy Askew - keyboards, percussion, vocals
Ed Roynesdal - keyboards, vocals, percussion
Graham Maby - bass, vocals
Sue Hadjopoulos - percussion, vocals
Larry Tolfree - drums and percussion

master FM off-air cassette, remastered by EN
This is a smokin' set, I'd like to think improved by the audio massage techniques I have employed here in my little massage parlor of audio iniquity. So pull it down, fire it up and celebrate the birthday of a tremendously underrated songwriter, born this day back in 1954. --J.

1 comment:

  1. Do you have the BBC live CD set? That has a show from the Hammersmith Odeon in 1982 that has two songs that were not played in Boston: great versions of Cancer and Friday.