Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks – Where’s The Money?

More Dan Hicks

Where’s The Money?

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A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Pop Hall of Fame.

This live album has White Hot Stamper sound on side two, with sound that is rich, real and musical in ways that we have never heard ANY Dan Hicks record sound. Who knew it could sound like this? Certainly not us. 

The dryness, the flatness, the you-are-so-not-thereness of their studio recordings is nowhere in evidence on this side two, which is as good and probably better than any side we heard in our shootout. It’s not an easy record to find in clean condition in the first place.

Side Two

A+++ White Hot Stamper Good As It Gets sound, so transparent and full of life. The female singers’ voices are so clear, breathy and sweet on this copy, we were a bit taken aback. On a Dan Hicks record? That just never happens!

As we said, rich, real and musical like no other. Hard to fault.

Side One

Easy to fault. This side gets a Plus for clarity — it’s not ridiculously opaque the way so many Dan Hicks records are. But it lacks the richness that side two gets perfectly. This side sounds more like a record of live music, the other side sounds more like live music. 

Musical Style

“The Swinger”, The Oxford American, Nov. 2007, by David Smay:

“Nobody’s ever come up with a proper label for Dan Hicks. That’s partly because he leapt over the vast jazz divide created by bop. Bebop subdivided the rhythm and broke the melody into cubist fragments until swing was something you did between your ears instead of out on the dance floor. But there was a time from the ’20s through the ’40s when swing—“hot rhythm”—rippled through every form of popular music. That’s the music Dan Hicks plays, and there’s no single word for it because it wasn’t limited to any one genre. Django Reinhardt, the Mills Brothers, Spade Cooley, Hank Garland, the Boswell Sisters, Stuff Smith, and Bing Crosby all swung. You can make yourself nutty trying to define what Dan Hicks is. Then again, you could just say: Dan Hicks swings. And while he may be an idler and a roué, nobody’s written ten better songs about breezing down the road than Dan Hicks. And in the rarefied genre of songs about buzzards & bacon grease, well, he’s the master.”

Yahoo Music Biography of Dan Hicks, by Jason Ankeny:

”Throughout his decades-long career, Dan Hicks stood as one of contemporary music’s true eccentrics. While steeped in folk, his acoustic sound knew few musical boundaries, drawing on country, call-and-response vocals, jazz phrasing, and no small amount of humor to create a distinctive, albeit sporadic, body of work which earned him a devoted cult following.”

Dan describing his music in a 7-3-2007 interview before a gig at the Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge, CO (Youtube):

“My music is kind of a blending. We have acoustic instruments. It starts out with kind of a folk music sound, and we add a jazz beat and solos and singing. We have the two girls that sing, and jazz violin, and all that, so it’s kind of light in nature, it’s not loud. And, it’s sort of, in a way, kinda carefree. Most of the songs are, I wouldn’t say funny, but kinda maybe a little humorous. We all like jazz, so we like to play in a jazzy way, with a swing sound you know, so I call it “folk swing”. There are a lot of original tunes that I’ve been writing through the years, so that has its personal touch on it.”

Wikipedia

TRACK LISTING

Side One

I Feel Like Singing
Coast to Coast
News from Up the Street
Where’s the Money?
Caught in the Rain
Shorty Falls in Love

Side Two

By Hook or by Crook
Reelin’ Down
The Buzzard Was Their Friend
Traffic Jam
Is This My Happy Home?
Dig a Little Deeper

AMG Review

Before they could release a second album of their patented good-time hippie acoustic swing, Hicks and his band parted company with Epic records. That their fresh start would be marked by the release of a live set may seem odd at first. But the album does in fact capture a certain intimacy missing from their studio debut. Songs that would remain staples of the Hot Licks repertoire for years to come are found in their most well-known versions here, including the title track, “I Feel Like Singing,” “Shorty Falls in Love,” and “By Hook or By Crook.” The between-song banter even stands up to repeated listenings. It’s not often that can be said about a live recording.

Yahoo Music Biography of Dan Hicks, by Jason Ankeny:

”Throughout his decades-long career, Dan Hicks stood as one of contemporary music’s true eccentrics. While steeped in folk, his acoustic sound knew few musical boundaries, drawing on country, call-and-response vocals, jazz phrasing, and no small amount of humor to create a distinctive, albeit sporadic, body of work which earned him a devoted cult following.”