Posts

Quick Guide for New ATCW Group Members

Related Links Bootlegs here  In 2013, the group began uploading audio files of concerts to the Live Music Archive.  The Chris Whitley Collection now hosts over 50 downloadable bootlegs. Blog posts and other goodies here  The ATCW blog, a companion to the ATCW FB group, provides "articles" on various CW topics, hosts content (e.g., rare … Continue reading Quick Guide for New ATCW Group Members

“Mustard”: Chris Whitley’s Iconic National Guitar

For Chris Whitley fans, his seen-better-days National Triolian is the stuff of legends, an icon that immediately elicits images and sounds from Chris' musical career.  A handful of fans even have personal memories of this icon; alas, I am not one of these lucky few, but I've been blessed by their sharing those stories. For … Continue reading “Mustard”: Chris Whitley’s Iconic National Guitar

A Chart of Chris Whitley’s Tunings

  Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers commented that "[s]ome of the world's coolest music happens when instruments fall into the hands of people who don't know -- or don't care -- what they're supposed to do with them."  Chris Whitley didn't know, nor did he especially care, how he was supposed to play a steel guitar.  As … Continue reading A Chart of Chris Whitley’s Tunings

In His Own Words: Chris Whitley on Songwriting

One of the questions someone interviewing a songwriter invariably asks is "How do you come up with ideas for songs?"  Here, in the master's own words, are some of his responses. "Chris Whitley Interviewed:  The Law Man Living with the Lore," Graham Reid, Elsewhere 1991 "I love that rural blues thing, it's like an idea … Continue reading In His Own Words: Chris Whitley on Songwriting

Living with the Law: A brilliant debut, but the kiss of death?

Stories vary regarding how Chris came to meet Daniel Lanois, who was instrumental in getting Chris a recording contract and supported him during the recording process.  Did they meet when Chris was playing a NYC gig at Mondo Cane? One Sunday morning when Chris joined a friend on a photo shoot in a NYC park? … Continue reading Living with the Law: A brilliant debut, but the kiss of death?

On Being Baptized in the Church of Chris Whitley

  This morning, I began looking for a specific comment Chris Whitley had made about how living in Europe, and specifically Dresden, had shaped his personal/musical philosophy. Because I have amassed what must be hundreds of pages of Whitley interviews, reviews, and articles, this search entailed an hours' long descent into all things Chris Whitley, … Continue reading On Being Baptized in the Church of Chris Whitley

Some Rare Bootlegs – One Original and A Few Covers

"As a producer, I'm really interested in interpretation," Street continues. "But most people don't even begin to put their own personalities into their music. Chris, though, has gone all the way through the blues and out the other side. He's really the only guy around who has that thing that Jimi Hendrix and Robert Johnson … Continue reading Some Rare Bootlegs – One Original and A Few Covers

Expenses and Revenues of a Representative Record Contract

Excerpt from Steve Albini, "The Problem with Music." The Baffler No. 5, December 1993 These figures are representative of amounts that appear in record contracts daily. There’s no need to skew the figures to make the scenario look bad, since real-life examples more than abound. Advance: $250,000 Manager’s cut: $37,500Legal fees: $10,000 Recording Budget: $150,000Producer’s … Continue reading Expenses and Revenues of a Representative Record Contract

More Heat-Seekers than Heat: Understanding Chris’s ‘Success’

In the United States, the top one percent of the population has over 15 times more wealth than the bottom 50 percent, as of late 2020:  "According to the latest Fed data, the top 1% of Americans have a combined net worth of $34.2 trillion (or 30.4% of all household wealth in the U.S.), while … Continue reading More Heat-Seekers than Heat: Understanding Chris’s ‘Success’

Mystery Gig: 1995-06-20

Here's an 11-song set whose origins are unclear.  I think that I might have downloaded it from one of those monster bootleg sites, e.g., Wolfgang's or the Concert Archives.  Both of those sites are notoriously lacking in reliable data, so it's possible that the date is wrong.  Further, there's no venue provided.  But it's clearly … Continue reading Mystery Gig: 1995-06-20

1995-08-04 Deer Creek Music Center (Indiana)

Here's a short set from Chris's Din tour stops for the H.O.R.D.E. tour at Deer Park Music Center in Noblesville, IN.  I think that we've finally sorted this out; it was formerly mislabeled as 1995-06-06. The person at the soundboard must have liked electric guitar front-center-everywhere! - Chris's guitar really stands out.  Enjoy!    

Long Way Around: An Anthology 1991 – 2001

In the liner notes for this anthology, Bradley Bambarger wrote "The most compelling, communicative music resonates with a 'cry,' whether it embodies a wail of pain and despair or the not-so-dissimilar shouts of spiritual elation and sexual healing.  ... [E]nduring music often echoes the real, remembered or empathetic cry of the listener.  Chris Whitley's music … Continue reading Long Way Around: An Anthology 1991 – 2001

Reiter In Media

  Reiter In was recorded as a band featuring Chris Whitley & "The Bastard Club":  Heiko Schramm – bass guitar and backing vocals; Brian Geltner – drums, vibes, acoustic guitar, and backing vocals; Tim Beattie – harmonica, lap steel, and backing vocals; Kenny Siegal – baritone guitar, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, and backing vocals; Sean … Continue reading Reiter In Media

A Few Iterations of Clear Blue Sky

Looking for something else today, I stumbled across Danny Kadar's 2015 ATCW group post, commemorating what would have been Chris's 55th birthday and sharing a SoundCloud playlist that contained a demo version of "Clear Blue Sky".  This 1996 version of CBS was recorded at Blue Moon Racing, the Vermont property owned by Chris's dad and … Continue reading A Few Iterations of Clear Blue Sky

at the Rob Wasserman Trios Event 1994-03-26

In March 1994, Chris appeared at the Rex Foundation benefit concert at the Beacon Theater, with a busload of fellow musicians:Rob WassermanBruce HornsbyVictoria WilliamsChris WhitleyBob WeirJohn Wesley HardingMatt HaimovitzJimmy ScottDavid SanbornGeorge RessiliMichael BracklerLou Reed Although mostly unrelated to our man Chris, the Rex Foundation has an interesting story, as captured in these sentences from the … Continue reading at the Rob Wasserman Trios Event 1994-03-26