Saturday, November 13, 2010

Elton John...Leon Russell...........WHAT a collaboration

If you like either Elton or Leon, you will love THE UNION, their new CD.  This CD is so so FAR better than I could have even hoped.  I figured Leon would be there capitulating and supporting Elton's 'predictable stuff' , maybe more as an edgy background player, but boy, was I wrong.     Leon SHINES in this CD and Elton's more fabulous than I've known him as I've never been his biggest fan though I've liked his music.   
From reading all the notes of how this album came about, it turns out that Elton and Z, both piano players (tho I hesitate even to suggest we're close to the same level of talent!), have both looked upon Leon Russell as "THE MASTER."  I have loved Leon since I first heard him open his mouth and I have missed him.  Turns out Elton had missed him, too, and decided to do something about it.
I just finished listening to the CD my sis in Canada sent me yesterday and I got a tingle when I heard the fourth song and thought "That other voice is way too high for Leon to be singing at his age and it's not Elton....odd, but that sounds like Neil Young"  I checked the notes and it IS Neil Young, how's that?  (I was always a big fan of Young's and have a bootleg album of his singing at the LA Music Center, as a matter of fact....which I found out at ebay is worth about the vinyl it's printed on, unfortunately!)
Anyway, if you know anyone who loves Elton John and loves honky/tonk, gospel, bluesy paino/voice, you will adore this album.  If you happen to be a huge fan of Leon's, like me, and I know far fewer people even know him let alone admire him as they do Sir Elton, GET THIS CD.   I PROMISE you will not be disappointed, you'll be thrilled.
By the way....if you're also a CLASSICAL MUSIC fan, as I am, check THIS some of the music at Amazon, you'll want to get that CD to your house this afternoon...Murray Perahia is one of my favorites pianists, too.



Sue said...

Thanks for the review! You KNOW I'll be all over this one...I so adored Elton in my youth and you know how much I love Leon. Can't wait to hear this. I am a huge Neil Young fan, too, so how can I go wrong????

Thanks, Z!

Anonymous said...

ditto. the other sue

Anonymous said...

Z - I should add - I am a fan of Elton John and Neil Young, but for some reason I never connected with Leon Russell. other sue

Z said...

Other Sue (!)...i'm a Leon Russell fanatic and always have been.I don't love everything he's done but I love most of it!
I've always adored Neil Young, too.......Elton's fine; he's very talented but lots of his stuff is too 'pat' for me........
but this CD is absolutely fantabulous!

Sue, you are going to LOVE IT! Let me know!!!! You're SO welcome.

I can't tell you guys how thrilled I was that Elton lets Leon do SO much on this album......and what a good blend they are, too.

Anonymous said...

Z - Do you know which Sue is which?

I suppose you can tell the difference in the way we write. os

Z said...

Sue, I can tell from the don't have one and the first Sue here does :-)

christian soldier said...

do you have a link to a 'sample' of the E John-L Russell offerings?

BTW RE: your post on the Vietnam Vets' returning to vicious actions and words-
One of my first posts on my blog had a warning to anyone who spit upon one of our BEST--
I would perform a citizen's arrest on that person-I meant it then and I mean it now...

Anonymous said...

Sooooooo glad you love your new CD, Zed!! Listening to Leon do his amazing thing sure takes me back in time when we were kids....upstairs and only a room apart!! Lou

Elmers Brother said...

they were just here in concert together last week.

Z said...

Hi, CS..."citizens arrest" is a very good idea..GOOD for you.

Elbro, how fabulous...this truly is an amazing collaboration.

Ya, a room apart but remember the days when we were in ONE room in the old house when we were very little listening to Dad rehearse with his Barbershop Quartet and learning OUR harmony abilities from that!? You remember me listening to Leon back when we were at home!?
Thanks again for the CD and for commenting!!

Stoney Coyote said...

Check out his A Mighty Flood cd, the best gospel around!
The Union is awesome, it was so good theaeon helped out Elton's career

Z said...

stoneycoyote...Leon helped ELTON'S CAREER??? :-)

THanks for the link..I wrote to Leon there, I HOPE he sees it! I rarely do that but I"m still drooling over this music.

The funny thing is a friend from Monterey, CA just left a phone message saying she'd bought this CD but hadn't thought to pick me up one and she's going to buy me one and send it down..My next email is writing her I HAVE IT! My buddies know about ME AND LEON RUSSELL!

Craig said...


Hope you don't mind me breaking my ban to comment on Leon. I'm sitting in my wife's shop, a little bored, and trolling the blogs.

Leon Russel was one of the first big rock & roll shows I attended as a rebel youth. I think it was 1972, and he was touring the Carney album. All I remember was, it was over 3 hours long and something like going to a circus. Lot's of musicians and strange characters prancing about. It was a incredible show and probably spoiled me as far as expectations for future concerts.

The only person that matched his stage presence and showmanship, without resorting to props and pyrotechnics, is Springsteen.

The other night I was watching some youtube vids of the "Mad Dogs and Englishman" concert. (I still like Cocker's "Delta Lady" better than Leon's). I'd forgotten Leon was there. Anyway, thanks for the blast of nostalgia.

ps. Should I be surprised you're a Neil Young fan? We have so much in common. Except, you know.

Z said...

Craig...don't be banned...give your opinion politely and don't belittle.
I promise I"ll try, too.
And ya, we probably do have a lot in common, except...ya, I know :-)