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Keith, Rodd

Black Phoenix Blues

Roaratorio

No one in the shady, quick-buck backwater of the music industry known as the “send us your lyrics” demo mill possessed an array of talents as distinctively individual as RODD KEITH. The genius of his gifts as a singer, composer and arranger was destined to remain a well-kept secret during his lifetime by virtue of the complete disregard—verging on invisibility—in which song-poem records were held. He was a commercial musician in the most literal sense of the word, but within those confines, displayed an oddball, personal vision that frequently transcended the work-for-hire nature of his music. Dating from 1966 to 1974, the sixteen previously unreissued songs on the third Roaratorio collection of Keith’s vast output showcase the scope of his work: the should’ve-been-a-hit “You And I”; the elegant exotica of “I Love Lovely Chinese Gal”; the history lesson of “The Explosion Of Holden 22 Mine”; the harrowing psycho-killer musings of the title track; “I’m Proud To Be A Hippie From Mississippi,” the stoner’s answer to Merle Haggard’s “Okie From Muskogee”; the lo-fi “The Game Of Love” (which, in the tradition of Keith’s infamous “I’m Just The Other Woman,” prompted the dissatisfied customer to request a more conventional re-take); the disturbingly desperate “Sing My Death Note,” which was discovered on one of Keith’s private reels; and the unclassifiable WTF-ery of “Abidin’ Tuh The Rule.” Artwork by JOSH JOURNEY-HEINZ, liner notes from noted blues guitarist and one of Keith’s musical and personal compadres from the early 1970s DEBBIE DAVIES, download coupon.

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