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Jake In A Box (The EMI Recordings 1967-1976) *

Album: Jake In A Box (The EMI Recordings 1967-1976) *
# Song Title   Time
1)    Lah-di-Dah
2)    Country Bus
3)    Cactus
4)    Scallywag
5)    Black Swan
6)    Jumble Sale
7)    Little Black Foal
8)    Personal Column
9)    Ulysses
10)    Statues
11)    Last Will & Testament of Jake Thackray
12)    Remember Bethlehem (The Intake School Carol)
13)    Joseph
14)    La di da (Tra la la)
15)    Le Cygne Noir
16)    Country Girl
17)    Family Tree
18)    Sophie
19)    Worried Brown Eyes
20)    On the Shelf
21)    Salvation Army Girl
22)    Blacksmith & The Toffee Maker
23)    Hole
24)    Caroline Diggeby-Pratte
25)    Grandad
26)    Mrs Murphy
27)    One Eyed Isaac
28)    Nurse
29)    Castleford Ladies Magic Circle
30)    Leopold Alcocks (Previously Unreleased)
31)    Policeman's Jig
32)    Shepherdess (Previously Unreleased)
33)    Pass Milord the Rooster Juice (Previously Unreleased)
34)    Vicar's Missus (Previously Unreleased)
35)    Ladies Basic Freedom Polka (Previously Unreleased)
36)    My Roly Poly Girl (Previously Unreleased)
37)    My Pipe My Boots & My Lord (Previously Unreleased)
38)    Kirkstall Road Girl (Previously Unreleased)
39)    Freda (Previously Unreleased)
40)    Lodger (Previously Unreleased)
41)    Bantam Cock
42)    Fine Bay Pony
43)    Singer
44)    Girl With the Fragile Eyes
45)    Go Little Swale
46)    Jolly Captain
47)    Isabel Makes Love on National Monuments
48)    Brother Gorilla (Le Gorille)
49)    Girl in the Window
50)    It Was Only a Gypsy
51)    Old Molly Metcalfe
52)    Sister Josephine
53)    Lullaby
54)    Country Boy
55)    Country Boy (Single) (Previously Unreleased)
56)    Prisoner
57)    On Again! on Again!
58)    To Do With You
59)    Ballad of Billy Kershaw
60)    Rain on the Mountainside
61)    Isabella (Marinette)
62)    I Stayed Off Work Today
63)    Kiss
64)    Poor Sod
65)    Hair of the Widow of Bridlington
66)    Over to Isobel (Je Rejoindrai Ma Belle)
67)    Brigadier
68)    Joseph
69)    Famous People
70)    Gravedigger
71)    Family Grave (Demo)
72)    Little Thomas Haverley
73)    Little Black Foal
74)    Ulysses
75)    Scallywag
76)    Jumble Sale
77)    I've Been Left on the Shelf
78)    Blacksmith & The Toffee Maker
79)    Cactus
80)    Lah-di-Dah
81)    Country Bus
82)    Family Tree
83)    Statues
84)    Last Will & Testament of Jake Thackray
85)    Greasy Joan (One Eyed Isaac) (Previously Unreleased)
86)    Dog
87)    Grandad (Previously Unreleased)
88)    Isabella (Previously Unreleased)
89)    Salvation Army Girl (Previously Unreleased)
90)    Isobel (Previously Unreleased)
91)    Slowly Our Eyes (Previously Unreleased)
92)    Sophie (Previously Unreleased)
93)    KG Girl (The Kirkstall Road Girl) (Previously Unreleased)
94)    Nurse (Previously Unreleased)
95)    Shepherdess (Previously Unreleased)
96)    Remember Bethlehem (Previously Unreleased)
97)    Joseph (Including Bonus Track le Cygne Noir) (Previously
Product Details


Performer Notes
  • It is, perhaps, ironically fitting that the years since Jake Thackray's death have seen his back catalog undergo such a magnificent transition. After all, the man who, on the title track to his very first LP, pleaded with listeners to not plant forget-me-nots on his grave, to use his passing as the excuse for a party, and to never mention his name again, would doubtless have been exasperated to find himself so lionized as he is now. But exasperation of some sort was what powered the best of the songs he wrote in life; of course it should preserve them now that he's gone. Jake in a Box is, quite frankly, astonishing. Of course the four-CD package rounds up the entire four studio LPs (and six singles) he cut for EMI between 1967-1976. But it also adds the next best thing to three previously unheard extra albums: an entire alternate version of the debut Last Will and Testament of Jake Thackray, a second LP's worth of outtakes recorded at that same session, and yet another album's worth of unreleased recordings that might have comprised a new album in 1970. Add a clutch of further studio odds and ends, a couple of super-rare singles from 1967 (the French-language "Lah-Di-Dah" and a most bizarre Christmas effort), and close to 100 songs emerge to tell you more than you would ever want to know about life, the universe, and chickens. The first three discs are arranged in rigid chronology: Last Will, Jake's Progress, Bantam Cock, and On Again! On Again!, interrupted only by period outtakes and oddities. The fourth disc, then, is the collectors' treasure trove; subtitled Early Recordings, it is comprised of Thackray's original voice-and-guitar renditions of the 11 songs that made his first album, plus 14 more recorded at the same sessions -- including early versions of such future delights as "The Blacksmith and the Toffee-Maker," "One Eyed Isaac," "On the Shelf" (delivered here in startling first, not third, person), and more. Anybody with knowledge of Thackray's early years will be aware that many of the songs he performed in later life were already around before he actually released them. But unless someone out there has a secret tape of his long lost radio and TV recordings, nobody has heard them in their original format in years. The accompanying booklet is a well-illustrated delight, matching friend Victor Lewis-Smith's personal recollections of Thackray with some often wry observations on both his songwriting and his attitudes. In the late '70s, it was very fashionable to describe Thackray as a misogynist, basing this on his song's often unflattering portraits of women. What his foes didn't seem to notice is that very few people emerged from a Thackray song in any better shape -- not men, not dogs, not the clergy, not even bantam cocks. And especially not himself. And that, alongside the tunes you can't forget and the lyrics that twist your tongue, is why listeners disobeyed his last will and testament. Once heard, how could anyone forget him? ~ Dave Thompson
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