V/A feat. Gibson Bros. / Workdogs – Root Damage (2xLP, US)

August 2003 Sympathy For The Record Industry SFTRI 713
Side One:
01. R.L. Burnside – Georgia Women
02. Billy Childish/Dan Melchior – Length Of Pipe
03. South Filthy – Hot Dog
04. Chris Wilson – Dark Haired Girl
05. Soledad Brothers – Shakey Puddin’
06. Mr. Airplane Man – Sun Sinking Low
07. Junkyard Dogs – Lightning Bar Blues

Side Two:
01. Speedball Baby – Blackish Man
02. Jack Oblivian – I’m Too Old For You
03. Kirby Grips – Needless
04. Reigning Sound – As Long
05. Holly Golightly – Anyway You Like It
06. The Blackhands – Black Girl
07. Deadly Snakes – Love Undone

Side Three:
01. Interstate Leisure Kings – Best Liquor Store
02. Big Foot Chester – Harpoon Man
03. Tearjerkers – Bank, Gun, Jail
04. The Darlin’s – Take Me Dancin’
05. Frank Roach – Alabama
06. Gibson Bros – Memphis Chicken
07. Compulsive Gamblers Featuring Greg Cartwright – Two Thieves

Side Four:
01. Panther Burns – Fun Mob
02. Geraldine Fibbers – She’s A Dog
03. Dan Melchior’s Broke Review
– Laughing To Keep From Crying
04. Robert Cage – Liza Jane
’68 Comeback – ’68
05. Workdogs – Our Good Man
06. Beck – Leave Me On The Moon

V/A feat. Gibson Bros. / Workdogs - Root Damage (2xLP, US) - Cover
VIEW:
NOTES:
Double LP collection of blues songs released by Sympathy For The Record Industry issued in gatefold sleeve with die-cut white paper inner sleeves.

The vinyl release featured only 27 of the 49 tracks on the double cd edition.

Jon Spencer appears on both the Workdogs and Gibson Bros. tracks on this album.

Workdogs: originally released on A Tribute to Sonny Boy Williamson (7″, US)
Gibson Bros. : originally released on Memphis Sol Today (CD, US)

The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion album Mo’ Width features a track titled Rob K (Rob K is President on the re-release) on which he performs as a preacher. And Jon Spencer has recorded with Rob K on several Workdogs and the following Rob K releases; Dirty 12 7″ single, The End Of The Earth, ExCorpse and The Purgatory Home Companion, Ed. 1.

SONG CREDITS:
SIDE ONE:
01. R.L. Burnside – Georgia Women
sftri 494 (march 97)
Born in 1926 near oxford, mississippi r.l. burnside is to the blues what the sex pistols were to punk rock !! his incredible “ass pocket of whiskey” album was filled with real raw emotion and received accolades normally reserved for saints…his music has established him as one of the few true blues artists of our time…

02. Billy Childish/Dan Melchior – Length of Pipe
sftri 529 (january 98)
When originally released billy had already been a well-respected artist, but this was the first anyone had heard of dan melchior…the album, “devil in the flesh” is a supreme blues album in the time honored medway/hangman style and it has an authentic old field recording quality…it was recorded live on 1 / 2 track machine in billy’s cellar and kitchen…

03. South Filthy – Hot Dog
sftri 701 (november 02)
Spearheading the memphis/texas roots rock explosion, these guys are amonth the most talented and prolific around…it was difficult picking a track, but monsieur jeffrey evens won by a nose over jack oblivian and walter daniels with this seriously trashy rendition of the corky jones a.k.a. buck owens tune…god bless jeffrey evans…

04. Soledad Brothers – Shakey Puddin’
sftri 623 (april 01)
Although actually from toledo, they somehow weaselled their way onto the “sympathetic sounds of detroit” collection as a token motor city band and turned in one of it’s standout tracks…it is an original, but not completely original if you know what I mean…it’s old, but new, borrowed and blue with followers such as john sinclair (MC5 manager/white panthers founder) singing their praises more serious attention has gotta be just around the corner…

05. Mr. Airplane Man – Sun Sinking Low
sftri 690 (september 02)
Adding their personal spin to this mississippi fred mcdowell classic this genre-defying due are seriously shakin’ things up and currently have the critics on their knees and foamin’ at the mouth with their bigger, louderm window-smashin’, amped-up, ass-movin’ abandon and non-stop sonic assault…if the air-brushed rock ‘n’ roll and “feel good” blues of today leaves you cold and unfulfilled I’m certain mr airplane man will surely free your soul,…

06. Junkyard Dogs – Lightning Bar Blues
sftri 246 (september 94)
This is actually the supersuckers, well the supersuckers and about twelve of their inbred white-trash friends getting together to drink too much ripple wine and to make an impressive racket…the release of their “good livin’ platter” was met with overwhelming rave response and this version of hoyt axton’s song is just one of it’s many highlights…

SIDE TWO:
01. Speedball Baby – Blackish Man
sftri 531 (april 98)
Originally (de)formed as an impromptu wedding band speedball baby come on here like a heavily drugged bull in a china shop…they offer this blues/gospel hybrid as if thoroughly chewed to a pulp and spat out at the nearest clean wall…it’s about greasy hair, greasy hands and greasy guitars…it is a dirty rotten and raunchy celebration i.e. fun for your whole stinkin’ family…

02. Jack Oblivian – I’m Too Old For You
sftri 475 (february 97)
Taken from his first solo sympathy release, “american slang” this is kind of a pretty song about morals being stronger than love (a unique slant)…jack is being backed by members of impala and other memphis luminaries…this song was actually performed by the oblivians during 1994, but was never officially in their set because it apparently didn’t rock…hmmmmmph !

03. Kirby Grips – Needless
sftri 896 (september 02)
Likened to bikini kill on a sugar high the kirby grips go straight for your heart…this one taken from their second album, “rotations” manages to blend despair and hope and features drummer, michelle on lead vocals and as you will discover it is a testament to the strength and healing powers of a very sweet and tender country ballad…

04. Reigning Sound – As Long
sftri 654 (may 01)
Reigning Sound have a story to tell…it is a story older than you or me of found love and eventual catastrophic breakdown…does it sound familiar ?? this is from their first record which I believe is one of the best albums ever released by sympathy and main man, greg cartwright is a as of yet to be realized national treasure…they have since moved on to redder pastures, but I continue to respect and love them just the same…

05. Holly Golightly – Anyway You Like It
sftri 474 (august 97)
After releasing many records in england, germany and japan this was from holly’s first released in the united states… “painted on” quickly established her as an important singer and song writer and garnered her rave reviews outside of her main focus as one of thee headcoatees… we went on to do many projects with miss golightly and she continues to be a label favorite…

06. The Blackhands – Black Girl
sftri 222 (march 93)
Yes, it’s another billy childish project and no, they never cease…this time it’s with a six piece band including according and trumpet and they have recorded a pretty damn cool and thoroughly convincing version of leadbelly’s “black girl”..this is a shining moment in a long history of shining moments from this modern day renaissance man…

07. Deadly Snakes – Love Undone
sftri 562 (may 99)
Formed as boyhood pals in 1996 the deadly snakes are a 6 piece gang from toronto, canada…seems they were real sick of seeing fourth generation punk and indie bands treat rock ‘n’ roll as an ironic joke so they taught themselves to play instruments as if their lives depended on it…this is the title track from their wild and brutal debut album…

SIDE THREE:
01. Interstate Leisure Kings – Best Liquor Store
sftri 537 (april 98)
This is one of the 21 tracks on the ever-popular “shine on sweet starlet” soundtrack…it was recorded under the worst possible conditions in stereotypical sound…the project began during the “sore losers” vice party tour…j. michael mccarthy and his elitist entourage shot super-8 stag footage of starlets and collected music from the bands that played with the sore losers…this jangly, irresistible offering is one of the best…

02. Big Foot Chester – Harpoon Man
sftri 419 (may 96)
This confined explosion features walter daniels on blues harp and whisky-soaked vocals and he is joined by former members of poison 13 and the hickoids…’harpoon man’ was the debut release by this infamous austin blues/punk combo and this, dear listeners is a welcome musical aberration of extraordinary proportions…

03. Tearjerkers – Bank, Gun, Jail
sftri 643 (september 01)
Yet another worth project from ramblin’ jack (oblivian) yarber…I tend to lose track myself, but I think this was his first effort after releasing his two solo records on sympathy…this derailed love song is a modern day bonnie and clyde saga and is taken from the highly recommended (go buy it!!), “bad moon rising” album…

04. The Darlin’s – Take Me Dancin’
sftri 195 (january 93)
With roots in l.a.’s punk scene, the darlin’s rook a considerable detour and received an enthusiastic response from a usually hard-nosed rock audience with their acoustic guitars and beautifully blended voices…this, the darlin’s debut release was recorded with a full band featuring exceptional fiddle and steel guitar players and it then received a befitting lush country and western production…this is the prettiest track in this collection…

05. Frank Roach – Alabama
sftri 528 (february 98)
This glorious track is from the third single in the “for the love of jesus” series…this time we present famed and critically acclaimed louisiana blues man, frank roach…straight outta the fat possum clan he follows the time-honored tradition that began many years ago in backwoods juke joints…this is the real, genuine no fuckin’ around artefact…it’s raw, emotional and way down and dirty, just the way we like it…

06. Gibson Bros – Memphis Chicken
sftri 176 (march 93)
Joined by Jon Spencer this time around this was recorded at world famous sun studios in elvistown… “memphis sol today” was the last release and quite obviously the best recorded effort by this extremely influential band…the sun sessions for the most part evolved into their own personal demented version of rockabilly…this track is sung by monsieur jeffrey evans…

07. Compulsive Gamblers featuring Greg Cartwright – Two Thieves
sftri 572 (june 00)
Memphis’ favored sons ended their third full length release, “crystal gazing, luck amazing” with this sad but true story of a friendship interrupted by drugs and eventually untimely death…it is bitter sweet that this tragic tale is delivered with such sentiment and beauty and it is a generous and fitting tribute to the two people that it honors…

SIDE FOUR:
01. Panther Burns – Fun Mob
sftri 62 (march 90)
This little bit of barely controlled musical mayhem is from our first of many releases with the irrepressible and completely unapproachable tav falco and his panther burns…this was a massive coup for the label as tav had long been a personal favorite…there is currently in limbo a massive retrospective two-disc set titled, “souvenirs” and with some luck we’ll have that out in early 2004…

02. Geraldine Fibbers – She’s A Dog
sftri 314 (august 94)
Preceding their major label debut this is from “get thee gone” which was originally released as a ten inch record…the geraldine fibbers were a dreamy, rain-soaked band that simply and effectively crooned their heartache and desire in a way that few had ever accomplished…the multi-colored moods of miss carla bozulich evoked torment in her lullabies gone awry…this as you may have discovered is one of their much more lighthearted numbers…

03. Dan Melchior’s Broke Review – Laughing To Keep From Crying
sftri 579 (september 99)
Sympathy released dan’s first record which was a collaboration with billy childish and with it’s success a solo project was soon planned…this track is caught somewhere between the blues and country music and has blended them with an authentic down-home flair and it features the added bonus of background vocals by the ever-popular and ever-wondrous, miss holly golightly…

04. Robert Cage – Liza Jane
sftri 541 (june 98)
All that is known about robert cage is what’s been learned from an old man who sells iron skillets and rusty saws painted with smiling black people picking cotton… “robert is what I call a grunter” he said “I call him a grunter cuz he don’t sing as much as he grunts and I think he’s probably the last person on earth that still plays that grunting style. It’s different, but I like it. now my wife, that’s another storey, she can’t stand it at all” this is taken from the fifth single in the successful “for the love of jesus” series…

05. ’68 Comeback – ’68
sftri 422 (may 98)
The brilliant album, “a bridge too fuckin’ far” was nearly two years in the making and at least three years overdue…it was well received and it highlighted some of the finest musicians in memphis…the record was dedicated to dearly departed guitarist, jack taylor who was a member of ’68 comeback from the very beginning…an earlier version of this track appeared on the soundtrack of j. michael mccarthy’s pivotal cult film, “the sore losers” you should of course already own both records… where were you in ’68 ??

06. Workdogs – Our Good Man
sftri 324 (november 94)
Featuring jon spencer while the blues explosion were press darlings and the big “alternative” combo topping everyone’s “best of” list…it is interesting to see where he paid his respects and derived some of his inspiration…the workdogs are a very peculiar hybrid breed as evidenced by their slight popularity and modest sales and it is not a surprise that unbounding talent and originality don’t always equal success…this was a tribute to legendary bluesman, sonnyboy williamson…

07. Beck –Leave Me On The Moon
sftri 82 (may 97)
Taken from the original soundtrack album, “kill the moonlight”, this track captured beck before he sold millions of records and won the adoration of the world…at the time of this recording he was still living in a rat-invested tool shed in an alley in downtown los angeles and, as bands were setting up in clubs, he’d boldly jump on stages with his thrashed guitar to play his brand of infections punk, blues and country songs…

SLEEVE NOTES:
“Root Damage??

Well, it seemed to me to be an appropriate title…there was a lot of um, uh, for the lack of a better term, roots music, gathering moss and festering away in the dark, dank vaults deep below the sympathetic nerve center and when I finally began digging it out I couldn’t believe how much there actually was, how great it all really sounded and it just seemed like time was due to take a close look.. “Root Damage” is the result of a serious excavation through the Sympathy catalogue…it is admittedly a pretty eclectic and scattered assortment, but after a few listens you’ll discover (unless you’re incredibly thick) that there is a permeating defining spirit that follows throughout…the tracks run the gamut from sweet country ballads and modern interpretations/desecrations of the blues to the wild honky tonk debris and the real delta ramblings of the artists recording for the legendary Fat Possum label down in Oxford, Mississippi…

There are a few artists making several appearances in different projects or as guests on other recordings, and there are no doubt important tracks that should have been included that have been omitted through oversight, ignorance or by a proverbial act of god…I honestly tried my best to make “Root Damage” a cohesive and very special release and in fact struggled long and hard selecting and sequencing these tracks…if you feel I somehow have fallen short or that some of the material doesn’t fit very well into the “Root Damage” boundaries, all I gotta say is tough shit bosco and I’ll acknowledge your dissatisfaction by vowing to spread rumours about your “unique” sexual proclivities and to slash the tires on your car if I ever have the opportunity…

I was told by several people that 49 tracks on the CD version was simply just too much material, but seeing as I’ve never listened to anyone in the past, I figured that I wouldn’t start now; besides I kinda subscribe to the idea of the more the merrier, but because of obvious time constraints it was necessary to element a lot of tracks for the lp version…it was a brutal, gruesome process and it was kinda like chopping off the heads of my illegitimate children (sorry kids) but it had to be done…if you want the whole ding-dang story I guess you’re just gonna have to go and buy the ultra-swank cd version…well, I ‘spose that’s more than enough outta me for now…I sincerely hope that you’ll dig (geddit??) “Root Damage” and that it has introduced you to some new music and artists that you’ll find worthwhile and deserving or your complete undivided attention…

Like that…colour me,

two-Bit JOHNNY xx (25 cent)

this collection is dedicated to rail-riders, alley dwellers, the shopping cart battalions, the hobo’s that intrigued me in my youth and to shambles the pretender to the throne of the stripey beast…

about the cover: rob and christian clayton are currently among my favourite artists in Los Angeles and for a reasonably nominal fee they graciously agree to execute (I like that word) the rural masterpiece you now hold in your grubby little hands…support them and all visionary/outsider art whenever possible and don’t forget brush your teeth several times a day or they’ll rot in your mouth and fall our of your head…”

DETAILS:
ARTWORK: R. Clayton / C. Clayton

BARCODE: [no barcode on sleeve]

RUN-OUT GROOVE ENGRAVING:
A: “713-A- 5-52130”
B: “SFTRI – 713 – B 5-52131 SYMPATHY”
C: “713-C 5-52132”
D: “713-D 5-52133”

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