Saturday, March 20, 2010

In Memory of Alex Chilton : The Box Tops - Soul Deep The Best Of... (Arista - 1996)

I just read the sad news of Alex Chilton's loss.
The last true outsider? I'm quite sure he was. Always turned his back on the music industry and their tricky games. Possibly the best white soul singer although he touched also many of rock n roll's other genres. A Memphis native, tasted at a very young age the sweet success with the Box Tops and their "Letter". Many compared him to Steve Winwood and with a good reason. Both were whites with deep soulful voices and teenage stars. Alex soon gave up this shit. Never wanted to be part of a stardom universe. And that's why i love him. That's why we love him. The great Cub Coda wrote about him "In a business that reinvents itself at every turn, Alex Chilton has managed to survive for three decades with a three-fold career as well — his early recordings with the Box Tops, the three albums he did with Big Star in the mid-'70s, and the spate of cool, but chaotic, solo albums he's recorded since then..To some, he's a classic hit-maker from the '60s. To others, he's a genius British-style pop musician and songwriter. To yet another audience, he's a doomed and despairing artist who spent several years battling the bottle, delivering anarchistic records and performances while thumbing his nose at all pretenses of stardom, a quirky iconoclast whose influence has spawned the likes of the Replacements and Teenage Funclub.For a guy who grew up in and around Memphis, there isn't anything remotely Southern about Alex Chilton. Although fully aware of his surroundings and in tune spiritually with its most lunatic fringe aspects, Alex Chilton's South has more to do with genteel Southern intellectualisms than rednecks."... No more no less than these words.
I saw on the net that lots of blogs posted  Big Star's recordings or the later solos. White Trash Soul ADORES of course Big Star and thinks of "Bangkok" single as on of the best ever but.. The Box Tops is my favorite. Blue eyed Soul, with lots of R&B touches even some psychedelic...One of the best american bands of the sixties, hands down! If you haven't took a deep dive yet, here's your chance.

PS: Chilton was the man behind the board on some of the first (and best...) recordings by the Cramps. The embodiment of coolness! We really gonna miss you man!


Cry like a baby!

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