Perfectly Good Guitar

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John Hiatt - Perfectly Good Guitar

Barnes and Noble. It is a black hardcover book with a glossy full jacket wrap. I say beautiful from an artists stand point. It has a simple layout on the cover, five really fantastic photos, all taken by Chuck himself. The title nessled in mid-jacket in sans serif uppercase, with minimal graphic additions. The layout artist should be commended. Another interesting design element is how the focus of the cover really highlights the photos by giving the black bits of the cover more of a satin or matte finish. This book itself really is a piece of art.

JOHN HIATT : Perfectly Good Guitar lyrics

The inside of the book is every bit as good looking. The pages are broken up into 3rds. That copy is always on the most left of the left pages and right of the right pages. This simple design contributes not only to the beauty of the design but also enhances readability. A Perfectly Good Guitar avoids these readability issues while still retaining its artistic elements we as readers benefited from their expert experience. While black and red are aesthetically pleasing together, this color combination can be tricky to do well. A Perfectly Good Guitar nails this perfectly.

Chuck Holley is responsible for each of the photographs in the book, and they are meticulously worked so they have a feel of candidness to them capturing the essence of each artist. Holley knows the secret for capturing truly beautiful photos of his subjuects and the book is litered with some of the most fantastic and intimate photos that will inspire you to go pick up a camera and create some of your own fantastic moments.

The designer chooses the type face, the size of the type, the color of the ink used, how photos are cropped and the paper used.

In my first meeting with Lindsay, we discussed some of the qualities I like in a book. I realize photographs must be cropped to fit within the parameters of the design. I told her if she had to crop a photograph in a way which interfered with my intent, we would have to discuss options. If necessary, I would re-crop the photo to fit with her design. My photographs and her design have to fit hand-in-hand. Wide critical acclaim and burgeoning success as the songwriter's songwriter over the years his tunes have been performed by dozens of artists as disparate as Bob Dylan and Conway Twitty, Bonnie Raitt and Paula Abdul, Aaron Neville and Iggy Pop had dovetailed nicely with the arching message of those albums -- that after many a rocky detour Hiatt had managed to find some measure of serenity and peace.

As an additional kick, Hiatt's experience recording and touring with fellow legends Ry Cooder, Nick Lowe and Jim Keltner as the group Little Village a notion inspired by their success together on his bring the family LP had unleashed a creative ferment. I got really energized by the whole experience. It really shook a lot loose. After that, it was definitely time to play with some youngsters. Hiatt had been making' 'funny little demos" in his home studio, "and buying really cheap guitars" to drive home a raw kind of sound.

With the new band, it made for instant chemistry. And it's not easy to do that. A lot of guys can't get the knucklehead thing, if you know what I mean," Hiatt smiles. Modesty aside, the trademarks of Hiatt's previous records -- terse, evocative lyricism at once gripping and poetic; melodic, deceptively simple song craft; and riding above it all, a rich, emotionally expressive voice that can rip it up like an wheeler or tug softly at your heart like a lonely blue yodel-- remain very much in evidence.

Hiatt cuts loose on the aptly titled' 'Something Wild" with a ferocity to match the version recorded a few years ago by Iggy Pop, then brings the lights low for' 'Blue Telescope", an ode to romance and remorse. There's also a good-natured tribute to a "Perfectly Good Guitar"; the colorfully twisted tale of the "Wreck of the Barbie Ferrari" featuring an uncredited debut by "Ravi Oli" on sitar , and "Old Habits, " a sad, cautionary blues song about a woman caught in the throes of an abusive relationship.

Bu t at the same time, I felt this funny kind of fatigue. Now I'm more ready to rock than I ever was! So this stuff is a lot less personal than before, but in a funny way I think it has more emotional impact. Maybe because it is less personal. Does that make any sense? You can decide that one. As for Hiatt, he still has one thing left to do.

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Artists covered by tour: Perfectly Good Guitar

And I don't want to be rejected by the other guy in the house. Bob Dylan and Conway Twitty? Nick Lowe and Willie Nelson? Buddy Guy and Ronnie Milsap? Long a favorite of critics, Hiatt has undergone a transformation from angry '70s new waver to tasteful roots rocker, all the while turning out songs that other musicians have lined up to cover.

Wallace paired Hiatt with young musicians like guitarist Michael Ward of the Los Angeles-based School of Fish to create a revitalized sound. Hiatt's writing on the new record continues to exhibit his trademark humor, personal insights, and slightly-off-kilter storytelling.

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While not as introspective as recent albums, "Perfectly Good Guitar" continues to explore the mystical relationship between love, emotion, and what happens when we imperfect human beings give ourselves the opportunity to experience such lofty feelings. While the focus of albums like "Bring the Family" expressed affirmation of the value of love and relationships, this time out Hiatt explores the apparent dichotomy of love and freedom, either in celebration "Something Wild," "Buffalo River Home," "When You Hold Me Tight" , longing "Blue Telescope" , or loss and betrayal "Angel," "The Wreck of the Barbie Ferrari".

His ability to address these issues without becoming maudlin is a tribute to Hiatt's ability to write true to his experience and to the musicians, who play it like they mean it. After 30 years of writing and 20 of recording, Hiatt's popularity is reaching an all-time high. Jay Hipps: So how's the tour going? John Hiatt: The tour is going great. It seems like it's been going forever, but it's going great. We've been out since September, not straight through but 3 weeks out, a week home, that sort of thing.

JH: Was this planned originally? I was under the impression that the tour ended December 18 in Nashville? Hiatt: No, we were always planning to go right through the new year. This leg ends April 2nd, I think.


  • "Perfectly Good Guitar" Album Lyrics.
  • A Foggy Day;
  • Perfectly Good Guitar lyrics;
  • A Perfectly Good Guitar, by Chuck Holley.
  • Artists covered by tour: Perfectly Good Guitar.
  • JOHN HIATT lyrics : "Perfectly Good Guitar"?

We ended a leg December 18th, and then we came out again -- we had about two weeks off for Christmas and then we started back in the Northeast in January. And we've covered the Northeast and the Midwest and Texas and now we're up in Colorado and we're going out west. We knock it on the head April 2nd and then we're starting up again in May for two or three weeks. And then we're going back to Europe in June and then we're coming back out the end of July with Jackson Browne, we're going to do a shed tour.

That's six weeks. And then we're going to knock it on the head-if we live that long laughs. JH: So that's when you wrap the whole thing up? That sounds like a pretty strenuous schedule. Hiatt: It's basically a full year of touring, which I committed myself to when we made the plans to work this record. I was real charged up about the music and felt real re-energized about what I was doing creatively and it had been four years since I'd toured solo.

So I figured it was important to get back out and play, play for the folks. And the show's been going great, and the audiences are ever-growing-we're selling out shows everywhere, so it's really been great, really been encouraging to me. Hiatt: Ah yes. JH: That was a lot of fun Hiatt: We've since changed the band a little bit, we've pared it down to a four piece, which seems to work much better.

JH: The third guitar player is not around? Hiatt: Yes, Corky James is no longer with us. It works, it gives it a little bit more air. The three guitar thing is something I've always loved, but it's very difficult to pull off.


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  4. I think Moby Grape was probably the last band that did it well. And look where it got them!

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    JH: Yeah, hasn't done much for them. When was the last time you heard them on the radio? So did Ravi Oli leave a disciple there? So he was a surrogate Mr. Oli, bless his heart. But he's still there in spirit.

    More by John Hiatt

    Ravi is ever-present. JH: So it sounds like you're pretty pleased with how things are going. I've heard that you're hoping to do a live album from this tour.