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Love him or hate him?
Where is the best place to start?
early work is better, less pompous. also he's far better when he's not singing explicitly about politics. sometimes it works (The Home Front), but at others its just cringworthy, despite the fact that i share a lot of his views.
start with Talking To The Taxman About Poetry.
But then I only really know the 'big' singles. I should investigate more, but he's one of those people I don't think about that often when I'm out buying stuff, for some reason.
as all the recent-ish 2CD reissues of his albums are £7 each on fopp. or were.
Like Jamie I agree that his less overtly political songs work better.
Though I recall listening to the charts once, and after N'Sync came 'Take Down The Union Jack' by Billy Bragg.
Juxtaposition at its best
My favourite song is Greetings To The New Brunette
from mr adams rock and roll is a tiny bit of a ripoff of braggs A New England, but as every song on that album is a homage to some band/artist, tis no bad thing.
but i've never spotted that before, although i've always thought it sounded like something else but couldn't work out what.
and the whole tone of the song is a bit braggish, though the lyrics are obviously a bit poop.
whenever i hear it start i rather annoy hannah by singing the bragg in my most cockerney accent
i dont know if its a comp or what, but its fucking boss
It's the first two albums plus the "Between the Wars" EP. An excellent place to start, in fact.
got some of his strongest stuff on it.
it's great. Love him.
is my favourite. Waiting For The Great Leap Forwards is possibly the greatest closing track to any album ever. Or at least, one of the best "building" songs.
i have just realised i DO own some bragg, 'cause i've got the first Mermaid Avenue album. i like it. i keep meaning to buy the second one..
that got me listening to Wilco.
a purchase? as they're all drawn from the same sessions, i fear diminishing returns.
apparently there are enough unreleased songs for a #3..
all the songs were gonna be given to dylan but he was on tour so they gave them to bragg instead. bizarro.
dylan complained they weren't given to him, but that guthrie's daughter said her father "would've wanted" them to go to a new generation of musicians.
but I'm sure it's worth a punt.
"Valentine's Day is over"...
That LP reminds me of uni. Ha.
him doing a cover of Jeane by the smiths which is fantastic. It sends shivers down my spine.
My favourite track is "The Few" from Don't Try This At Home.
Life's A Riot With Spy Vs Spy, Brewing Up With, Workers Playtime and Talking With The Taxman About Poetry. He really wore his heart on his sleeve on these and when it's good it's great. Saw him live on the bandstand in my local park doing a miners benefit around 1984 :)