Let's start this blog off (at the time of writing) newest addition to the collection: Flat Duo Jet's magnificent low-fi live record: Safari.
As many contemporary Dexter Romweber fans I discovered Dexter via Jack White who mentions him in a number of interviews. This album is a series of live performances from all over the U.S recorded between 1984 to 1987. Whoever has the complete recordings of these performances...
Some performances on this record are legendary. "The Lonesome Road" is one of them. The song is a traditional, but when searching for the lyrics it would seem that Dexter bases the song on "The Lonesome Road" but add a few lines of his own. That is until the janitor at the Chapel Hill Planetarium finds him in the lavatory 🚽 where he's playing and tells him that he has to go and play some place else such as an empty class room.
I would give my right arm to be taking a 💩 at the Chapel Hill Planetarium at the same time at Dexter was playing that. It is really Dexter in his prime with his haunting vocals and the lonely reverb from the public restroom.
Another hauntingly beautiful track is "My Love is True".
I don't know what it is with many of Dexter's songs but for many of them the first time I hear them I think "This got to be a cover". But many trusted sources such as Discogs claims that it's not.
"Jungle Drums" is a piano bashing boogie woogie which you might have heard in Dexter's newer band with his sister, Sara, the band Dexter Romweber Duo. The first track on "Is that you in the blue" is a guitar version of the same song. The piano version sounds like something that Jerry Lee could have played.
The final track I want to highlight is "Cry Baby". According to Discogs this is a Fireballs cover. To me the lyrics are too different to be the case and Dexter also mixes a little bit of Buddy Holly into the last 30 seconds, starting with: "Well I want you, to be near me". Or at least a modified version as he adds the latter part about "travelling to California". Just a testament to Dexter's gigantic repertoire and a knowledge of the old classics which are just unprecedented.
Another version of the Buddy Holly part if this song is present in an obscure Youtube clip titled "Flat Duo Jets early 80s", (which I think is from an MTV program in the 80s) Dexter plays in front of his Mausoleum a hauntingly beautiful version Buddy Holly's "Girl on my mind". Both versions are great although you can really feel the pain in the Mausoleum version.
For the record I used "haunting" 3 times in this post. I will try to do better next time.