BOB LIND Live at the Luna Star Cafe
Limited Edition, numbered one to 1,000
Reviews for Bob Lind: Live at Luna Star Cafe
(Available at the Merch Table)
Susanne Gilmore, Longtime Lind fan -- When I used to see Bob Lind perform on a regular basis during the early 80’s, his sets consisted of mainly new, unreleased material. Elusive Butterfly was always trotted out at the end of the show, sometimes grudgingly, I suspected. Now 25 years later, Lind seems to have reconciled his past, present and future and presented them all for the listener in Bob Lind Live at the Luna Star Café. The songs on this CD span over 40 years, yet they seem to weave and flow together in a timeless fashionable harmony.
I was delighted to hear some old “friends”,( I Love to Sing, Spilling Over), thrilled that some of his older unreleased material (Laughing Song, How the Nights Can Fly, May) had finally been recorded, and totally mesmerized by the new songs (Two Women, Sophia, etc). It’s great to see that Bob hasn’t lost his sense of humor, his occasionally cynical viewpoint, his unabashed tenderness, or his way with words.
The vocals were crisp and clear (kudos to the engineers. Live recording is a tricky process) and to listen to the recording is to really feel that you are present in an intimate concert setting. This is obviously a setting that Lind feels comfortable in and it shows in the relaxed banter between the songs.
The songs ….. it’s interesting to note that lyrics to some of the older songs, such as Spilling Over, have changed over the years. Here, “cast her out” has become “let her go”, perhaps denoting increased regret with the passage of time.
“Sophia”, as Lind explains, is written for all the Chinese orphans adopted by American parents. “You will make a journey over water, the Chinese fortunes used to say, Not many trust those sunny proverbs anymore, But sometimes love still finds a way”. A touching lullaby for any child, adopted or otherwise, who will grow up and learn that “someday you’ll know how much you’re loved”.
Lind tells us that every man knows “Two Women”, and every woman can and will become both of them. People change during the course of a relationship, and this is a theme that Lind explores here with the voice of experience. Over the years, this has been the topic of many a Lind song, and he’s still got a new twist to put on the subject.
Now I am waiting patiently for a new studio album from Bob, and hoping that it retains the same personal, straight-forward simplicity displayed here. Just don’t make us wait another 35 years!
Michael Ofjord, All Music -- Bob Lind has proven once again that one-hit wonders often had more talent than one top-5 hit would suggest. Forty years after "Elusive Butterfly," Lind has given us an acoustic CD that showcases his folk roots and often tasteful picking on guitar. And it is evident that he is still chasing that elusive butterfly after all these years. His voice sounds surprisingly strong, and no different than it did in the 1960's.
Lind's choice of material for this CD is a good mix of old and new. In fact, one of the better tunes is the most recent one, called "Wearing You." It blends a good melody, strong rhythmic guitar, and his unique style of ethereal, but down to earth lyrics, stating at one point "You're the most revealing truth I ever wore."
Highlights include "Mr. Zero," "Theme From the Music Box," and the previously unrecorded "Love the Way You Lie." "Sophia's Lullaby" is an atypically sentimental look at a young girl who was adopted in China by American parents.
Perhaps the best song on the CD is the last one, "How the Nights Can Fly." Written in 1971 but not recorded until now, it shows us how Lind got the reputation of being a "sensitive, ethereal folk-poet," to use Lind's own words. The melody is beautiful and Lind's singing brings a high level of nuance and feeling.
Bob Lind, with the recording of this CD, shows us that he still has more music to reveal. One can sense his love of music and meaningful lyrics, and he obviously still enjoys performing in front of a live audience. Hopefully this is not the last of his recordings, but it is certainly a reminder of the substantial talent he is.
Carla Chadick, American Media -- If you're looking for an intimate album that makes you feel like you are there, then Bob Lind's exceptional CD Live at Luna Star is for you!
With his excellent guitar picking, thought-provoking lyrics and haunting tunes, Lind proves that his artistry has only improved with age.
His soaring tenor is the perfect instrument to interpret both lively ditties like "Love the Way You Lie" or the heartfelt ballad "Sophia's Lullaby." And the immediacy of the album is brought to the fore by Lind's biographical quips to the audience. He actually opens the door and gives you a peek at how a songwriter develops his craft - a real plus for any music lover.
One of the biggest surprises is the "Elusive Butterfly" cut - Lind's 1966 Top 10 smash. After performing it thousands of times over the last 40 years, this stunning performer gives it a totally fresh, exhilarating turn that has you believing you're hearing it for the first time.
Best of all, the zest and joy of this masterful folksinger infuses every selection.
BUY THIS ALBUM!
SONY recording artist Jamie Hoover, The Spongetones -- I LOVE this new "Live At The Luna Star Café" thing! It hasn't been out of my car yet -- which is where I listen to everything.
Bob's voice sounds amazing -- great falsetto, perfect pitch, everything! Great guitar playing too, and finger picking! All the banter between songs is entertaining, smart, interesting and funny. (This old "yellow dog" really liked the "cowboy" comment, by the way! ;-) I'd say all Bob's fans will love this disc, for sure. It's a real cut-to-the chase for what they want -- which is pretty much just to go out to dinner with Bob. All the songs, old and new, come across great. I really love the new stuff-stripped down from the demos too.
I hope he sells tons of these!
Daniel Brenner, Songwriter -- Bob's Since There Were Circles album has been my favorite one up to now, but after listening to Bob Lind Live at the Luna Star I may have to revise my opinion.
Its sound quality is great, but more importantly, the songs are terrific -- it is pure pleasure to listen to it. This enjoyment is enhanced by Bob's remarks between songs, which brings a sense of immediacy to the recording which wouldn't be there otherwise. I almost feel like I'm in the audience listening to it live, and am often tempted to join with their applause.
Songs I had never heard before include "Looking For You" and "Wearing You." I love both of these, and am struck again by the ability of a talented artist to put feelings and concepts into words in ways most people could never have thought of. The guitar work on "Wearing You" is remarkable.
I never heard "May" before either, and it is so pleasant and witty I think I will have to listen to it quite a few times before the newness starts to rub off it. "Spilling Over" (despite its last verse) reminds me of my wife's love so vividly it refreshes my love for her every time I listen it. Painfully lovely song. And just hearing the opening chords of "Butterfly" -- my all time favorite song by anyone -- releases feelings that clump together behind my eyes.
"Sophia's Lullaby" is a song so potent (notwithstanding its gentle texture) that one has to be careful when he or she listens to it. What a reminder of the preciousness of every individual life! It's the kind of song that can grab your heart a little too forcefully if you are not cautious.
Let me add that Bob's voice is simply great. It is better now than it was in the 60's and early 70's--more confident and vibrant. And his stage presence just keeps getting better.
Terry Upp, Freelance Music Journalist -- So, we've waited 35 years for this? Bob Lind's "follow-up" to the critically praised but sales-challenged "Since There Were Circles"? As a long-time fan, it was worth every minute of the wait, but Bob could sell me a new demo tape every six months.
Anyway, just to add a handful of new songs to my Lind collection is great. Especially the new instant classic "Wearing You". And, finally a Lind recording of "How The Nights Can Fly". Those two tracks alone are worth the price of admission, although I'd still like to hear a fully fleshed-out studio version of "How the Nights Can Fly" on a future release. It is a gem that just might be Lind's best song after "Elusive Butterfly". And, speaking of which, how great it is to have an alternate/live version of that after only 40 years. Best of all, Lind doesn't phone it in or make it sound like "yes, I've sang this @#$% 6,417 times".
The obligatory between song banter is standard issue "live album " filler, but the music is what's important. And, it fills this cd in fine fashion. My only real complaint: where are "Truly Julie's Blues", "Dale Anne", "Go Ask Your Man" "She Can Get Along", and a few other classics? Obviously, only so much could be included.
For those disappointed that a studio album ("Home In Time For Twilight"?) was not released first, look on the bright side: here are a half dozen more new songs that appear as if they would not have been included on that cd. Now, with the demos of those songs available for download until the "real" versions see the light of day, suddenly we've got about twenty new Lind songs in the course of little more than a year after a 35 year drought.
I consider this live release a portent of more great things to come. Welcome back to the music game, Bob! And, keep new releases coming, studio, "live", "dead" or whatever. Just don't make it another 35 years until the next one.
An Open E-mail From Dave the Rave, Host of the Nationally Syndicated Radio Show Relics and Rarities -- Love your CD -- the packaging and the sound quality. I played "Elusive Butterfly" on the show last week cause I knew it and it was great. Loved the stories (the setups), and will play a different tune from the disc this coming Sat nite.
It's a good CD and more importantly, you sound great on it. And the way you tell the stories before many of the songs gives a nice warm feeling. I think the power of your music combined with the warmth of your delivery makes for a powerful show & live recording!
I probably would have added "Cheryl's Going Home" or "It's Just My Love" to this release. But hell, what do us DJ's know? It's always, in my opinion, easier to introduce that which we wanna introduce: the NEW SONGS, when properly mixed with old favs.
Thanks for the disc. And feel free to call anytime if you need a push on any show or project.
-- Dave the Rave
David Melvin Thornburgh, written for The Folk Club of South Florida Folk Notes. -- It is with great joy that I mark the release of this CD. I have been a fan of Bob Lind since his "Elusive Butterfly" became a hit in 1966. I and nearly the rest of America and the world instantly fell in love with his magical, romantic writing style and "the something of the eagle" in his fine performance. To my delight, when I went to the local record store back then, the music available on a division of Liberty Records, World Pacific Records, Don't Be Concerned (WP 1841 for the audiophiles among us) included many of his other very fine songs of the time. It and a later LP, Photographs of Feeling (WP 1851) were and are great prizes of my record library. (I rate prizes not by street value of course, but by valuable creative content.) Many years went by. I lost track of Mr. Lind and his creative output, yet I revered his two LP's and later made cassette copies of them to play in my car. Once I even wrote a letter to Congressman Sonny Bono, whom Bob had mentioned in one of his early songs -- to the frustration of no reply. My friend Evan Chern* tracked down a CD compilation re-release of the two LP's-plus-bonus tracks, and I bought several copies. I have given all copies away to Lind-fan friends over the years. I think that it is currently out of print, but I hope that I am mistaken.
ENOUGH OF THE PAST ! HIS CREDENTIALS ARE SINE QUA NON IN FOLK AND POP MUSIC.
When Mr. Lind played a short set at The Main Street Cafe in Homestead a few years ago, he was very personable, friendly, and humble, to the point of expressing doubts that folks actually remembered him after so long. He had not played lately and was testing the air to see if he still had an audience.
I found it fortunate that he is now living in Florida, having had been based in California for many years.
We in South Florida are quite lucky to have many fine nationally-known folk and popular musicians right here. He played mostly new material, folk-style, his vocal and guitar, and it was -- and is -- good. His writing and his skills have not been lost, thank goodness! Shortly after that, Alexis at Luna Star Cafe gave him his first local solo gig - May 2004, as I recall, and it went splendidly. The house was full, to overflow capacity. We all had a great time, and he played very few of his old songs -- letting his new ones and some that he had written after his initial '60's success, fill the evening. He has played Luna Star Cafe several times as of this writing, and this CD, Bob Lind Live at The Luna Star Cafe was recorded September 17, 2005, also to a packed house.
Tracks 1 and 2 are his introduction by Alexis, followed by his ice-breaker, "I Love to Sing" and "Laughing Song" -- acappella - joviality unleashed.
Track 3 "Looking for You" is a humorous consideration of a semi-dark poetic report of looking for love in all the wrong ways and a few, odd places - gaffes definitely inwardly-barbed and outwardly-exposed. Most folks can relate to the awkwardness depicted. I commend Bob's courage in this presentation and good sense of humor during this seemingly-confessional reportage from an earlier time of his human development.
His clear, clean melodies, fine guitar-playing and distinct vocals equal his masterful skills as a poet-lyricist throughout this concert. I note how his voice can soar, yet suddenly dive to wrap tenderly around a word. This trait, to me is his unique, endearing signature as an individual, creative vocalist.
Track 5, "Wearing You" is a fearlessly honest song about vulnerability in a relationship. He wonders if tomorrow he might suffer for his totally head-over-heels, spiritual-nakedness in his love for the other, whose love is noted equal in its reality. His love is obsessive, he feels, to the point of himself being cloaked inside the other person. A totally-romantic, poetic vision, worthy of this classically romantic, modern Sun-treader and his art.
6, 7 - Mr. Zero, one of my favorite songs from Bob's first LP, is filled with many disparate images. It sharply contrasts sparkling, romantic images against the pain of rejection, e.g. "Trains with white letters and black iron sides...and tapestry kittens that hung on the wall / they all die in the air like a soft minor chord..." while "Mister Zero says, 'Please, help me up off my knees'...and Little Miss Someone does not want to hear." I first, in 1966, at age 14 or so related to the romantic images, wanting to yell at the writer, "Forget Mr. Zero and Miss Someone - concentrate on all the beauty, damnit !" Listening later in life, I came to understand the pain. Later still, I saw the contrast, as a whole. I love songs that allow for growth in understanding, that do not attempt to dictate feelings and awareness, but which honestly and artistically reach toward them.
Tr 8 - "I Love the Way You Lie" seems like a fun-type, upbeat, devil-may-care love song, but with elements and tinges of his "Reno, Funtown, U.S.A." -type wildness in the music. It evolves from fitful beatings on rhythm guitar, to a more genteel finger-style toward the song's conclusion. Note : "Reno, Fun Town" and its 'spiritual' companion "The World is Just a "B" Movie" I assume have been left to the old days and do not appear here. Tr's 9, 10 In "Two Women," the cliche of "whom do you choose, the easy fun-girl or the responsible wife who knows you, yet still loves you ?" - is not trite nor does it play out as expected. Lind is bright and creative, and the song ends in a bright and creative way. I'm sure you'll agree.
Tracks 11-19 inclusive comprise a remarkable set of gently-uplifting inspirations, the ethereal and spiritual "meat and potatoes" (if I may) of what endears Mr. Lind's art to me. Tracks 11 and 12, "Sophia's Lullaby" and its intro contrasts the divisive "us-or-them" protest-mentality with examples of personal, positive, result-generating activism. His strong opinions noted, persevere - yet perspective triumphs too, in this gentle song. Track 13, "Theme From the Music Box" tenderly entreats us to cherish fleeting moments, and even though "the world does not pretend to need you - let it make you beautiful." I can see this fine melody and these sublime words being inspired with the clean perspective and charm usually found only in a quiet room, music box sparkling its chimes to sunlight and silence. 14 - "May" is a lilting whisp of some sweet memory. 15 "Spilling Over" reminds one to recognize and respect a true love while you're together and before it's too late. Tracks 16 and 17 are reserved for "Elusive Butterfly," Bob's live, acoustic version of his best-known hit. A treat here to perceive and to cherish. On tracks 18 & 19, Bob Lind closes the evening's concert with "How the Nights Can Fly," which opens with the line, "There was something of the eagle, in the way his voice could rise..." and the later, "She was turning toward the sky." I've not yet heard the Richie Havens version mentioned in his intro (Tr. 18), nor can I imagine how there could be any improvement on such heartfelt, wistful beauty from the living muse who created such a song, an absolutely gorgeous work.
Bob Lind is a treasure of our time, here and now, as well as one who is worthy of inclusion in the ranks of "those who in their lives fought for life" (and who, better, love for life and love back to life) and who "wear at their heart the fire's centre" as that Stephen Spender poem "The Truly Great" goes. Please look to Mr. Lind's website above and buy his CD. It's a treasure, long-overdue, but right on time for us here and now. His concerts, as this CD attests - are special, and no one but Bob and his special lady Jan can really appreciate how special and truly delicious are these days of a remerging, vital and creative, romantic and spiritual, visionary poet of a songwriter.. May the world continue to play you both like the beautiful song you have become. You're right - they don't go by for nothing, these moments - they come to touch and carry you. We try so sadly to catch such moments in our hands. The night was magic, and it captured all of us there at Luna Star Cafe for a sumptuous hour or so. May this CD of that night capture and recapture Bob Lind fans and fans-to-be everywhere !
Reviewed by David Melvin Thornburgh / 6 March 2006.
*In the 1990's, my friend Evan Chern (at Yesterday and Today Records at 9274 Bird Road, Miami Fl. 33165, ph 305-554-1020, YandTrec@aol.com) - found the Bob Lind CD "You Might Have Heard My Footsteps" for me online somewhere. I am indebted to Evan and his co-worker Bob Rubin for record-finding help over the years. dt
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