Wednesday, September 29, 2010

PHIL OCHS "There But for Fortune"

The new Phil Ochs documentary, Kenneth Bowser's "There But for Fortune," is a brilliant one, which correctly identifies Phil as a major player on both the music and political scene, and strong influence in his time. And his influence has endured. With input from the family (who appear on screen, including Phil's wife, daughter, brother and sister) the humanity of Phil emerges, and without tears, the tragedy of his decline is also examined. Check for the latest info.

The film's title is of course based on one of Phil's songs. As Michael Simmons mentioned in his liner notes for "On My Way," a collection of newly discovered 1963 recordings by Phil, "these topical songs are in the 21st century. Change some names and facts, and one is confronted with the horrifying and tedious reality that we're debating the same simple matters of justice 47 years later." "There But for Fortune" opens with two potent lines that could easily lead you to think of the Middle East and the World Trade Center:

"Show me a country where the bombs had to fall, Show me the ruins of the buildings once so tall…"

Update: the Illfolks salute to Phil Ochs was more than a share, it was also a Cher. But a busy-bot forced its removal here...which hopefully means her version, currently out of print and never on CD, will turn up for you to enjoy. More common cover versions are around from: Chad & Jeremy, Francoise Hardy, Joan Baez, The Living Voices, The New Christy Minstrels, Peter Paul and Mary, the Spokesmen, Tom Paxton and Marianne Faithfull, making it arguably Phil's most popular song. Below, you get a version from Phil himself, NOT something you can buy; a track from a yet-to-be-released concert recorded at The Stables in East Lansing, Michigan in 1973. Which is here to serve as an intro for those who've never heard of Mr. Ochs.

PHIL at EAST LANSING PHIL OCHS: THERE BUT FOR FORTUNE, East Lansing unreleased live version Instant listen or pop-ups, pop-unders, porn-ads, Russian website spyware or wait-time extortion.

No comments: