Van Morrison

Van Morrison, Van the Man, as he is affectionately known, seems to have been on the go for ever. His own unique style, makes him stand out.

In the 1960s, Van Morrison was front man for Them, who were one of the big names along with The Who and the Rolling Stones. Them had huge hits with the rock anthems, 'Here Comes the Night' and 'Baby Please Don't Go'.

Van Morrison then went solo, and had huge hits with 'Gloria', 'Brown Eyed Girl', to name but two. Brown Eyed Girl has also been released as the title of a compilation album. Originally released in the US on the Bang record label as a single, a compilation of the same name has been released in the UK.

Van Morrison has his own unique style, blues, rock, jazz.

Some of the early albums have been re-released, and can usually be found in bargain basements bins. These are poorly recorded, poor performances, and not worth having.

Recommended albums: Into the Music, No Guru, No Method, No Teacher, Avalon Sunset, Hymns to the Silence, Too Long in Exile, A Night in San Francisco, The Healing Game, Down the Road, What's Wrong With This Picture (Blue Note, 2003).

Van Morrison often has guests on his albums, and in return often guests for other people. He was a guest on some of the late John Lee Hooker albums, and guested on the Tom Jones Reload album (not that many familiar with the old Tom Jones would recognise the new style, although the Jones voice is still there).

It takes only a few bars of 'Sometimes We Cry' on the Tom Jones Reload album to be instantly recognisable as Van Morrison. This duo, by Tom and Van, is one of the best performances by Van Morrison.

Van Morrison is one of the many guests on the Roger Waters (ex-Pink Floyd) 1990 live performance of The Wall in Berlin.

The influence of John Lee Hooker on Van Morrison is very strong, and they often guested on each other's albums. John Lee Hooker and Van Morrison perform the classic 'Gloria' together on Too Long in Exile. Van and John Lee perform together on 'Dimples', the second track on Face To Face (I think the last album John Lee recorded, released posthumously in 2003).

(c) Keith Parkins 2005 -- January 2005 rev 0