rickie lee jones: pirates

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Poll Closing Date: Friday, 15 December 2017 00:00 (in 4 hours)

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the best album of all time

We Belong Together
Living It Up
Skeletons
Woody and Dutch on the Slow Train to Peking
Pirates (So Long Lonely Avenue)
A Lucky Guy
Traces of Western Slopes
The Returns


ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Saturday, 25 November 2017 22:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I am very familiar with the s/t and The Magazine, but somehow never heard this one. Will give it a go.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Saturday, 25 November 2017 23:07 (two weeks ago) Permalink

damn, enjoy yourself camaraderie

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Saturday, 25 November 2017 23:16 (two weeks ago) Permalink

anyway i am probably going to vote for the title track but i am also always totally spellbound by “traces of western slopes”

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Saturday, 25 November 2017 23:17 (two weeks ago) Permalink

this album is perfect and it's pretty hard to pick. "skeletons" is probably her best lyric ever, and a song of profound power, but starting here & for two more albums her music does this thing where as the band gathers steam the power of the music seems to deepen every couple of measures -- usually leading into a chorus -- and then when the chorus hits it's this huge, profound release: "we belong together" is one of the greatest examples of this, but so's the resolve on the title track here - when she hits the note on "long," my heart breaks into a thousand pieces, and has for decades -- following on "you'll get the chance to make it / and nothing's gonna stop you / you'll just reach right out and take it / and you'll say:" -- like, LCD Soundsystem spent about half their career's worth of energy chasing that kind of moment. (not to say they didn't approach it plenty of times imo but ymmv.) "A Lucky Guy" may or may not get the shine it deserves in this poll, it's great. but the ones to beat are the first four, and it's very hard to pick between them - they flow seamlessly, shockingly, with a confidence that's hard to imagine.

the person who made this album was 27 years old.

she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Saturday, 25 November 2017 23:44 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I've never heard this record. Curious about how jazzy it is, as that is what put me off of the s/t (though I love "On Saturday Afternoons in 1963").

iCloudius (cryptosicko), Saturday, 25 November 2017 23:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink

it was not jazzy enough for the critics who'd gone ape over the jazziness of the s/t iirc

she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Sunday, 26 November 2017 00:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink

the way the drums come in on we belong together is so huge, like Bonham sitting in we Steely Dan

Universal LULU Nation (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Sunday, 26 November 2017 01:17 (two weeks ago) Permalink

"They speak fluently blonde" never fails to crack me up

campreverb, Sunday, 26 November 2017 02:04 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Yeah the first time I heard the beat drop on "We Belong Together" my jaw exploded

J. Sam, Sunday, 26 November 2017 02:50 (two weeks ago) Permalink

steve gadd based god

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Sunday, 26 November 2017 02:57 (two weeks ago) Permalink

obv i’ve loved his work for years but hearing this record earlier this year solidified him as my absolute favorite drummer ever. the beat in “pirates,” jesus christ

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Sunday, 26 November 2017 02:59 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Best album ever.

I could vote for basically any of these songs in a heartbeat.

Tim F, Sunday, 26 November 2017 04:44 (two weeks ago) Permalink

i’ll probably never do it but it’d be cool to one day make something as beautiful as “we belong together”

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Sunday, 26 November 2017 05:27 (two weeks ago) Permalink

So much of the album, but that song in particular, has this sense of emotional extremity and striving that leaves me temporarily feeling very ambivalent about my general stability.

I mean have always had that kind of relationship to a lot of music, but Pirates is probably the exemplar.

Tim F, Sunday, 26 November 2017 05:39 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I fucking love this album...sounds so right this time of year...really tough to pick a fave...probably between the title track and traces...will have to stew on that one for a while...

X-Prince Protégé (sonnyboy), Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:16 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I love that moment late in A Lucky Guy where she cries a while and wakes up and it's a new day.

that's not my post, Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:25 (two weeks ago) Permalink

This got played at record club the other week. I wasn't overly struck but it was first contact. Didn't realise it was such an ILM fave.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:32 (two weeks ago) Permalink

never heard this album which makes me feel that needs a course correction. "we belong together" absolutely blows me away tho

In a slipshod style (Ross), Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:45 (two weeks ago) Permalink

i will be listening to this album soon as all the good music opinion havers love it

k3vin k., Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:45 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Oh god just listened again and the slow sad section of “pirates” always completely kills me. It’s almost as if the temperature drops all around you while it plays.

Tim F, Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:47 (two weeks ago) Permalink

^^^^

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:51 (two weeks ago) Permalink

when i first heard that song it was like “oh sweet this is the straight up steely dan jam of the record....oh wait...oh my god....”

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Sunday, 26 November 2017 06:52 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I've never heard this record. Curious about how jazzy it is, as that is what put me off of the s/t (though I love "On Saturday Afternoons in 1963").

There's not much in the boho jazzy vein of "Chuck E" or "Danny's" except for "Woody & Dutch on the Slow Train to Peking" (which is a syncopated joy).

Hideous Lump, Sunday, 26 November 2017 07:19 (two weeks ago) Permalink

TS: Pirates vs. The Blue Nile Hats

I'd just have to shoot myself.

Hideous Lump, Sunday, 26 November 2017 07:22 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I kind of mentally cross-associated the two records even before I knew that they'd worked together.

Tim F, Sunday, 26 November 2017 11:20 (two weeks ago) Permalink

For such an expansive and exploratory record this is also remarkably tight and well-structured, even the sequencing is perfect, like the way "Woody and Dutch" sort of spins itself into being as this carefree jam after the heartbreak of "Skeletons".

Tim F, Sunday, 26 November 2017 11:22 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I voted "Skeletons." I discovered this album in September and it sounds even better in November.

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 26 November 2017 12:07 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I had never heard of this album before today and wow it's great

the drums on We Belong Together! all the shifts in Living It Up!

ufo, Sunday, 26 November 2017 17:35 (two weeks ago) Permalink

This got played at record club the other week. I wasn't overly struck but it was first contact. Didn't realise it was such an ILM fave.

I was the guy who took it to record club...I am overly struck, especially by We Belong Together.

https://devonrecordclub.com/2017/11/27/rickie-lee-jones-pirates-round-104-toms-selection/

yugi ex, Monday, 27 November 2017 20:19 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Traces Of Western Slopes for me...kinda like Laura Nyro’s mentally unstable sister...just glorious and completely unique

X-Prince Protégé (sonnyboy), Monday, 27 November 2017 22:09 (two weeks ago) Permalink

had to vote for We Belong Together, the best song of all time

flopson, Monday, 27 November 2017 22:32 (two weeks ago) Permalink

love this album.

Some kids like watching Saturday cartoons
Some girls listen to records all day in their rooms
But what do birds leave behind,
of the wings that they came with
If a son's in a tree building model planes?
Skeletons,
Skeletons.

nicky lo-fi, Thursday, 30 November 2017 16:00 (two weeks ago) Permalink

voted for Living it Up but the first five songs are all pretty fantastic

ufo, Thursday, 30 November 2017 17:16 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Having lived with this album for a few months, I'm wondering how critic fans thought Pirates was anything but an advance from its predecessor?

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 30 November 2017 17:34 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I think Big Concept weariness was settling in. feel like after Tusk everybody was very down on ambition generally speaking unless it was Springsteen, who could do no wrong.

she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Thursday, 30 November 2017 18:55 (two weeks ago) Permalink

great album, first thing ever heard by rickie lee was woody & dutch, friend in college in 87 played it for me, loved it, got pirates and 1st album, cld vote for many selections but we belong together won out for me

H in Addis, Thursday, 30 November 2017 19:32 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Ugh sometimes reading this board is like that clown college Simpsons episode. Homers driving down the freeway and checking the billboards finding out what to buy next, then he gets to the clown college and is like "no way I'm interested in that!" but then it just nags at him and he's like hell no until it's all he can think about and he runs out of the house to become a clown. Well today I ran outta here like "I'm going to buy PIRATES by Rickie Lee Jones and you're not gonna stop me!!" Never expected myself to say that. Ugh of course it's great, dammit Brad. I also bought SOLACE by Sarah McLachlan today, it's great. This goddamned board, really.

omar little, Friday, 1 December 2017 01:42 (one week ago) Permalink

This is her best. I hate to be the kind of dork that votes for Side 1/Track 1, but it is what it is.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Friday, 1 December 2017 02:22 (one week ago) Permalink

Finally got around to listening to this. The lyric of "Skeletons" utterly blindsided me.

iCloudius (cryptosicko), Saturday, 2 December 2017 15:20 (one week ago) Permalink

Like, on the whole this is still boho-jazz enough that I get antsy a few times, but as a lyricist, she's impeccable. A few of these songs could be Raymond Carver stories.

iCloudius (cryptosicko), Saturday, 2 December 2017 15:43 (one week ago) Permalink

so this is amazing

what's with it not being available on standard streaming services? label issue?

k3vin k., Saturday, 2 December 2017 20:18 (one week ago) Permalink

It's on Spotify.

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 2 December 2017 20:20 (one week ago) Permalink

i'm not seeing it -- songs are on youtube, though. can you post a spottily link?

k3vin k., Saturday, 2 December 2017 20:21 (one week ago) Permalink

ty, but still not working for me, maybe it's premium-only? i am poor

k3vin k., Saturday, 2 December 2017 20:57 (one week ago) Permalink

Huh. I don't pay for Premium -- shit's free.

morning wood truancy (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 2 December 2017 20:59 (one week ago) Permalink

I've been listening to it on Spotify all weekend, and I'm one of those cheapskates who doesn't pay.

And can I just say "holy shit!" about this lyric:

Eddie's got one crazy eye
That turns him into a cartoon
When a pretty girl comes by
And there's nothin' here to do anymore
He sits on the stoop all day
Like there's something he's waiting for
Cunt-finger Louie picks up Eddie in the alley
He's got all those guys with him
From that town where they all look like Frankie Valli
They speak fluently blonde
From her legs to her cigarette
And Louie told Eddie that he'd fix him up
But he ain't come back yet

iCloudius (cryptosicko), Saturday, 2 December 2017 22:37 (one week ago) Permalink

Yeah “Living It Up” is such a masterpiece, simultaneously breezy, funny and devastating.

Tim F, Sunday, 3 December 2017 04:56 (one week ago) Permalink

I just remembered that I was very close to nominating this for Jordan’s listening thread.

I went with Hats instead lol.

Tim F, Sunday, 3 December 2017 04:58 (one week ago) Permalink

I've the piano melody line from Living It Up in my head for a few days. It's a friendly presence. Happy for it to stay for a while.

that's not my post, Sunday, 3 December 2017 05:57 (one week ago) Permalink

The best songs on this album are damn near the best pop songs that anyone has written, at any time. Living It Up (my vote), Pirates, A Lucky Guy. Impossibly gorgeous songs, all of them.
But I remember Woody and Dutch being a real turkey, and thought the other big epic of the album was too ambitious for her own good. I'm listening to Traces of the Western Slopes again now, and it is a lot better than I remember (the self-harmony bits are taking me most of the way there), but it'll take a while to come around to the idea of this song being a successful experiment, and not just a weak Aja imitation.

ascai, Sunday, 3 December 2017 06:10 (one week ago) Permalink

think i'm going for "living it up" -- it's like a walk through life, so many feelings in six minutes

k3vin k., Sunday, 3 December 2017 19:32 (one week ago) Permalink

I struggled to find a favourite album for 1981 before I heard Pirates.

aphoristical, Sunday, 3 December 2017 19:53 (one week ago) Permalink

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Thursday, 14 December 2017 00:01 (nineteen hours ago) Permalink


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