Friday, February 26, 2010

PLAYLIST: Joe Strummer pts. 1 and 2

[Playlist is an attempt to distill my favorite artists to 80-minute compilations and, hopefully, provide a gateway into their music.]

Earlier this month, I wrote a review for Joe Strummer's Walker soundtrack for As much as I enjoy focusing on new music, I get more satisfaction out of documenting lesser known gems from my favorite artists for the site's archives, in the somewhat vain hope that some young punks out there can learn more about Strummer (among others). I'M DOING IT FOR THE KIDS. The article promoted a discussion of Strummer's solo material during those post-Clash, pre-Mescaleros years. Fellow staff writer GlassPipeMurder posted this clip from the film I Hired a Contract Killer, an English/Finnish film about a man who hires an assassin to kill him and his attempts to escape the hitman after he chooses life. Check out Strummer's cameo, in which he performs "Burning Lights":

Man that song is good. I had never heard of this tune and needed to find a copy quick. But since it came out during the peak of Strummer's artistic depression, he only had a few hundred copies pressed. I doubt I'll ever be able to find the original seven-inch it came out on, although I did locate a bootleg from the U.K. I also obtained a digital version, which I've been playing quite frequently as of late. I quickly made a playlist on my iPod. Given the breadth of Strummer's discography, I opted to keep the energy level mellow, if only to focus it slightly. Even then, though, it doesn't fully represent Strummer's catalog - since I own Walker on vinyl, it couldn't make the cut.

Cool 'n' Out
1. Joe Strummer - "Island Hopping," Earthquake Weather
2. The Clash - "Bankrobber," The Singles
3. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Mondo Bongo," Global A Go-Go
4. Joe Strummer - "Sleepwalk," Earthquake Weather
5. The Clash - "Hitsville UK," Sandinista! [I just realized that Mick Jones actually sings lead here. Whatever, dude.]
6. The Clash - "Stop the World," Super Black Market Clash
7. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Willesden to Cricklewood," Rock Art & The X-Ray Style
8. Joe Strummer - "Burning Lights," I Hired a Contract Killer
9. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Long Shadow," Streetcore
10. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Redemption Song," Streetcore
11. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Ramshackle Day Parade," Streetcore
12. The Clash - "Straight to Hell," Combat Rock
13. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Yalla, Yalla," Rock Art & The X-Ray Style
14. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Silver and Gold," Streetcore
15. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Minstrel Boy," Global A Go-Go

I listened to this playlist off and on for about two weeks, mostly at night. While I enjoyed it in a more leisurely setting, I wanted something with more pep for driving. Basically, I wanted a playlist that segued from "Burning Lights" to "Coma Girl," because those songs are so ridiculously good. So I girded my loins and attempted to make an 80-minute mix of Strummer songs ranging from The Clash's debut to the Mescalero's swansong. I had to make some tough choices - Earthquake Weather and Rock Art & The X-Ray Style are both left out while I overindulge in tracks from London Calling and Streetcore. In fact, I took the songs from record one, side one of London Calling and rearranged them. Yeah, even "Rudy Can't Fail," which Mick sings lead on. I justify that decision by reminding myself that the best part is when Joe goes "Sing Michael sing!" I still have some regrets - I really wanted to fit "1977" on here - but overall, I am so stoked on this mix, especially now that I'm bumming around my house waiting for yet another snow storm to end.

1. Joe Strummer - "Burning Lights," I Hired a Contract Killer
2. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Coma Girl," Streetcore
3. The Clash - "Hateful," London Calling
4. The Clash - "Rudie Can't Fail," London Calling
5. The Clash - "Rock the Casbah," Combat Rock
6. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Arms Aloft," Streetcore
7. The Clash - "I Fought the Law," The Clash [U.S. version]
8. The Clash - "Tommy Gun," Give 'Em Enough Rope
9. The Clash - "White Riot," The Clash
10. The Clash - "Brand New Cadillac," London Calling
11. The Clash - "London Calling," London Calling
12. The Clash - "Straight to Hell," Combat Rock
13. Joe Strummer & The Long Beach Dub All Stars - "The Harder They Come," Free the Memphis 3
14. The Clash - "Jimmy Jazz," London Calling
15. Jimmy Cliff featuring Joe Strummer - "Over the Border," Black Magic [This one's a little polished for my taste, but damn is it catchy.]
16. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Global A Go-Go," Global A Go-Go [First Mescaleros tune I ever heard, on the Give Em the Boot Volume 3 compilation.]
17. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Bhindi Bhagee," Global A Go-Go
18. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Get Down Moses," Streetcore
19. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Ramshackle Day Parade," Streetcore
20. The Clash - "(White Man) in Hammersmith Palais," The Clash [U.S. version]
21. Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros - "Silver and Gold," Streetcore

1 comment:

Bryan said...

I can't believe you included "Over the Bortder," such an overlooked track. Could you do a Jimmy Cliff playlist at some point?

Also, how did you get your job with punknews?