Lovely Recordings Hosted by Jon Daniels

I just found your site and love this feature and wanted to share a few of my own. Here goes:

The Asylum Street Spankers: Mercurial (Yellow Dog Records, 2004)
An old girlfriend of mine was working for a company in Texas and I would constantly ask her to bring me back any interesting local music she encountered. One trip she came back with a CD from the Asylum Street Spankers, an Austin band, called Spanks for the Memories. I was hooked. Think western swing with a wry sense of humor, cool fun songwriting, and astonishing musicianship.

This was around the year 2000 and I became an avid fan. Sadly the band never quite hit it big and disbanded a few years ago out of frustration. I chose this album, Mercurial because its just fantastic; tight and well played and essentially live. The heart of the band was Christina Marrs, one of the best voices you've never heard, mean saw player too, and Wammo. Not really sure what to say about Wammo, a bit of a mercurial character himself.

Recorded by Brian Beattie live to a vintage 2-track tape machine at Mercury Hall, a refurbished wooden church in south Austin. No overdubs, no tricks, just real music played by one of the best line-ups in Spankers' history: Christina, Wammo, Stanley, Korey, Shane, Nevada and Paul.
The cover of "Dance This Mess Around" on this album has fooled many of my friends thinking it was the B52s.

Available from Bandcamp

J Roddy Walston and the Business: J Roddy Walston and the Business (Vagrant, 2010)
A band out of Baltimore, my birthplace, but a town I never spent much time in. I live in DC now. Not as much to say about this album which was released in 2010 other than when I heard it I couldn't really say that it sounded like anything I'd ever head before. It's unfailingly great from beginning to end, excellent song-writing and J Roddy's voice is just something you need to hear for yourself. I guess there are comparisons to be made to Leon Russell, Queen, and some others. It's kinda rockabilly, kind of Americana and just off the charts fun. Please listen to this record.

Available from Tidal

Phish: Halloween 2014 10/31/14 MGM Grand Arena Las Vegas (Phish, 2014)
Ok I get it—everyone hates Phish right? But when's the last time you listened? Or caught the band live? Thought so. Look, I am obviously a fan, 78 shows and counting, but I feel like I have a decent ear for music and reasonably good taste. The band has broken up twice, its current 3.0 run started in 2009. Improvement has been steady since 2009, and the band seemed to really hit a peak in 2014.

This Halloween show was something else, but first some context. The band has a long but sporadic tradition of playing in "costume" on Halloween, that is covering an entire album by another band. This started in 1994 with The White Album, other albums include Quadrophenia, Remain In Light, Loaded, Exile On Main Street, classic rock all the way. In 2013 the band pulled a fast one and debuted their new album Wingsuit.

Anticipation was high in 2014 for a return to classic albums and the band sort of obliged reaching waaaaaay back to 1954 for Chilling and Thrilling Sounds of the Haunted House. Huh? This Disney release is essentially a series of "scary" stories with narration and sound effects. No music. Phish composed all original music to the accompaniment of the narration and sound effect tracks. It was stunningly unexpected and ended up being totally magical! The show, atypical for Phish and drew universal raves in the media. I was at the show myself of course but I urge you to give it a listen; it's first rate musicianship, fun, and super creative.

Available on

Well there are my Lovely Recordings. I hope you find at least one recording of the three to enjoy.

About me: I became an audiophile when I finally could afford a stereo back in 1999. I'm currently using all tubed amplification from Deja Vu Audio and streaming Tidal and my own music library via an Auralic Aries Mini and Yamamoto DAC.

Thanks for taking the time to read this and I hope you enjoy the music Cheers

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weirdo12's picture

He meant Fuego. It's a great album. Checkout this video for the song called The Line. Look up the story of Darius Washington, Jr.

Wingsuit is killer tune too.

jond's picture

Fuego was actually being called Wingsuit. But you are correct the album name was eventually changed to Fuego.

Rusty's picture

Sometime during the Bathtub Gin at Big Cypress, my life was saved by rock and roll. And while my Phish pursuits and audio passions often remain in separate boxes, having a home audio rig helps in getting people over for Couch Tour these days. We had a crew here for Halloween 2014, and the night will never be forgotten.

lestes's picture

nice selections here, save Phish. There are some bands that just strike a dissonant cord and this is one of them for me. Mind you I believe they are perfectly valid, just not for me. The other two are new to me and I am enjoying them. Cheers

jond's picture

Glad to hear you like the Spankers and Jroddy! And thanks I didn't want this whole thread turning into a referendum on Phish. :)

BrooklynNick's picture

If we are having a referendum on Phish, I vote that they stay in the EU.

I was there in person on 10-31-2014. It truly was a magical night and the recording holds up pretty well.