Ed, appreciated

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Posted by scrowe ( on November 05, 2016 at 22:36:23:

For many on this board the most fascinating thing about the band, the secret sauce that took it from strong to spectacular, the "je ne sais quoi" was Marc, but for me it was always Ed. I am a piano player because of Ed. Because of him, I have always listened for the keys parts of these records more intently than anything else. Odd bootlegs - the Band session rehearsals come to mind - were always gold to me, because sometimes Ed was accidentally mixed up more than normal, and I got to swim around in the B3. I always liked Adam's playing -- apples and oranges can both be good -- but it's a shame Ed wasn't in health to be a part of late era Crowes, because I think the music was in a better place to provide keys a more prominent, appreciated role in the mix.

Anyway, as an appreciation I want to share a few Ed tracks I love. This is hardly exhaustive.

1. First, it made me happy that CR posted the Tall cut of Descending. The richest sound engineering they ever allowed Ed in the studio. The piano sound is so full and deep. And this is of course the version they played live. The Amorica version outro solo is more developed, but they demoted his tone.
2. Descending 7-12-97. There's probably a better rendition, but this was always my favorite
3. Conspiracy, studio - they played the single on the radio in my town, and I was primarily fascinated by the organ solo. So I bought Amorica, which was my first Crowes record.
4. Hot Burrito #1 1-19-97. Subtlety, thy name was Ed.
5. Nasty Boogie Woogie / Sloppy Drunk, 97 tour. They at last took off the man's restrictor plate, so to speak.
6. "He was a Friend of Mine", '96 Bullet Sound Studios session.
7. Under a Mountain, Three Snakes, 0:00-0:04. The best 4 seconds of any Crowes record.
8. Off the exquisite self-titled Bulldog record: "New York, New Girl", "Shelter,", "South Dakota Sad Eye", and particularly "Just a Knife in the Back."

I could never begin to list all the sublime Thorn and Black Moon Jam organ swipes I used to listen for and pull out of my headphones. Frankly, if the man ever played a bad note for the Crowes, or had a clumsy moment, or overplayed, I didn't hear it.

I also seem to recall there was some good stuff with Robert Bradley's band, and I was never smart enough to unearth the right James Cotton records.

I'd love to hear your favorites.

I've been on this board forever and through the long, colorful and frustrating history of the personnel I've never been motivated to make such a post. But Ed was the real deal.


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