Sunday, November 2, 2014

November 2nd, 2014 - Songs For An Organic Raspberry Ale

All right my friends... one more for you tonight from the Meista and something a little more mellow to round out the evening.  As a tribute, I'm pairing "Songs For A Tailor" by the late, great Jack Bruce (who died this past week) and a Samuel Smith's Organic Raspberry Fruit Beer from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)!  Rest in peace Jack!

Okay, so I'm not much of a fruit beer kinda guy, but the Samuel Smith's Organic Raspberry Fruit Beer is pretty damned tasty!  It is brewed with organic wheat, organic raspberry juice, and cellared ale.  And I do love raspberries!  The Samuel Smith's Organic Raspberry pours a very cloudy blood red/maroon color with a frothy, light pink head that displays sustained and intricate lacing.  The nose is an interesting combination of fruit and floral scents.  There are big aromas of a raspberry bush, perfumed soap, and rose tip... for some weird reason I'm reminded of my grandmother's perfume.  The mouthfeel is both crisp and frothy with a rather dry finish... quite refreshing.  The taste is a big blast of tart raspberry with subtle wheat flavors.  If tastes like fresh raspberry juice with just a hint of bready malt and a touch of booziness (although it only measures 5.1% ABV). 

Soon after Cream broke up, singer/songwriter, bassist, and pianist Jack Bruce released his amazing debut solo album, "Songs For A Tailor".  Not as heavy or bluesy as the music of Cream, "Songs For A Tailor"  highlighted more of Bruce's diverse musical influences including jazz, soul, folk, chamber music, and pop.  I found this wonderful album on vinyl about 25 years ago at a old record shop here in SLC.  It has an almost rustic sound that I think goes well with the Samuel Smith's Organic Raspberry.  Along with a huge list of talented musicians, Bruce is joined by George Harrison on guitar on the song "Never Tell Your Mother She's Out of Tune" (he is credited as L'Angelo Misterioso).  The album includes three all-time favorite pop/rock songs of mine: the very jazzy "Never Tell Your Mother She's Out of Tune", the incredibly moving "Theme for an Imaginary Western" (later brilliantly covered by Leslie West's Mountain), and the Donovan-esque "Rope Ladder to the Moon". Two of the tracks ("Weird of Hermiston" and "The Clearout") had originally been written by Bruce and his long time co-writer Peter Brown for  inclusion on Cream's album "Disraeli Gears", but ended up being put aside.  Fortunately, Bruce revisiting these amazing songs after the demise of Cream.  Here's the amazing full track list:
  1. "Never Tell Your Mother She's Out of Tune"
  2. "Theme for an Imaginary Western"
  3. "Tickets to Water Falls"
  4. "Weird of Hermiston"
  5. "Rope Ladder to the Moon"
  6. "The Ministry of Bag"
  7. "He the Richmond"
  8. "Boston Ball Game 1967"
  9. "To Isengard"
  10. "The Clearout"

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