January 24, 2011

Graham Parker & The Figgs: Live at The FTC

Graham Parker has been at it for a little over 35 years, releasing album after album filled with three minute soulful storytelling rock songs. He never released a live DVD until now, which is odd for an performer who can captivate an audience with his performance, not to mention his totally-at-ease banter between tracks, explaining the song's background and cracking jokes. The show at the intimate Stage One of the FTC in Fairfield, CT was filmed, a no-thrills document of the proceedings on stage on Friday April 23, 2010. Backed by The Figgs, a band that he has been working with on and off with since the late Nineties.

On Live at The FTC Parker showcases six songs from his latest studio album Imaginary Television, a collection of songs for TV shows that never happened. With a huge back catalog such as his, he cherry picks gems from the past such as White Honey from his 1976 debut album Howlin' Wind, and Blue Highways the under appreciated Eighties highlight of his career, from The Mona Lisa's Sister album. He may not sound as angry as he did in his early work, but he isn't slowing down. Songs like Beancounter (of his 1997 album Acid Bubblegum and the new 1st Responder, (the story about a dad who has to get his son out of a jam, because he nicked a car, hasn't got a car himself, so he has to steal one himself to save his kid) all draw from the same well: stories about people getting into trouble and trying to deal with the ensuing mess.

On Live at The FTC is released as DVD/CD combo. The DVD has the show in full, with all the banter, tuning, giving the view a front row seat in this intimate club. Two songs were left out on the CD to make it fit on a single disc. Apart from being able to watch the whole thing, the DVD also has an interview with Parker made a few hours before the show, detailing his career from the humble beginnings of in Deep Cut, a small town 35 miles South of London, a gas station attendant who got a record deal, whose career got a lift when punk rock happened. Few musicians can talk as entertaining about his work as Parker does. The only odd thing that he goes on a bit about Don't Ask Me Questions, the song that gave him first shot at fame in the UK, but wasn't performed during the concert. Maybe he is saving that for the documentary that Michael Gramaglia is putting together.

Graham Parker & The Figgs:
Graham Parker: guitar, vocals
Mike Gent: guitar
Pete Donnelly: bass
Scott Janovitz: keyboards
Pete Hayes: drums

Graham Parker & The Figgs: Live at The FTC

Live at The FTC is released on Primary Wave Music.

  1. Chloroform
  2. Turn It Into Hate
  3. It's My Party (But I Won't Cry)
  4. England's Latest Clown
  5. Hole In The World
  6. Life Gets Better *
  7. Weather Report
  8. Broken Skin
  9. You Hit The Spot
  10. My Love's Strong
  11. Black Lincoln Continental
  12. Blue Highways
  13. Bring Me A Heart Again
  14. More Questions Than Answers
  15. Beancounter
  16. Local Boys
  17. Local Girls
  18. White Honey
  19. Snowgun *
  20. Mercury Poisoning
  21. 1st Responder
  22. Soul Shoes
  23. Interview *

* DVD only

Video: Graham Parker & The Figgs - "Live at The FTC" trailer

Graham Parker solo
  • 02/26 The Sanctuary Concerts, Chatham, NJ (co-headline with Garland Jeffreys)
  • 03/02 Salt Gastropub, Bryam, NJ
  • 03/04 The Record Collector, Bordentown, NJ
  • 03/05 Rosendale Cafe, Rosendale, NY
  • 03/06 Turning Point, Piermont, NJ
The Graham Parker Duo (featuring Mike Gent of the Figgs)
  • 03/25 Infinity Hall, Norfolk, CT *
  • 04/02 City Winery, New York, NY
  • 04/03 Coffee Works Roastery and Cafe, Voorhes, NJ *

* Mike Gent opening

» grahamparker.net

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