In February of 1990 came a historic record for the american rock: “Shake Your Money Maker” by the Black Crowes.
The last year had to be one of celebration: the reunion of the band, a tour in which the album was played in full, then things are going to be different, as we know it. Waiting for the tour, re-scheduled for late 2021 and early 2022, here’s the reissue that allows you to ricorstruire the story of a classic.
The ’90s are generally considered to be one of the decades most rock bands in the history of music: the one in which the guitars are in the standings, are passed from MTV and radio stations. But at the beginning of the decade have not yet exploded, not totally at least: the wave from Seattle that will overwhelm all has yet to reach the public at large. The rock that goes in the ranking, is the scene of Los Angeles, led by Guns N’ Roses.
The brothers Robinson, Chris and Rich, they are active since 1984 as Mr.
Crowe’s Garden and coming from Georgia. The state in that period, it is noted for bands like R. E. M. or the B-52’s more than for the southern rock: one of the first to offer a contract to the group, there is Jefferson Holt, then manager of the band of the Stipe, but the brothers refuse. Signs with Def American, and in 1989, after you have changed the name: the fundamental encounter is with George Drakoulias, the right arm of Rick Rubin, the boss of the label.
The album was recorded in 1989: when she goes out at the beginning of the next year, the reviews are now flattering. The band deserves comparisons as the Faces, Aerosmith and especially the Rolling Stones: it is a novelty in that time to hear a band that is reminiscent of that sound, riffs and a hot item, with a instrumentation and impact so vintage.
The popularity begins to grow: the disc comes in at 4th place, selling a million copies in 1990, is a far cry from the hard rock “macho” (also called “cock rock”) and from the’hair metal from los angeles, which marked the end of the ’80s, but it is a return to a genre that is less aggressive. A trend that will be consolidated from a different genre, and complementary to, the grunge in fact, also very far away from the machismo of lower California. At the end of the year, the readers of Rolling Stone state of the Black Crowes ‘ Best New American Band” and at the beginning of 1991, the band deserves the cover of the magazine
In 1992, The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion” makes its debut at first place on the us charts: the Black Crowes are a superstar. And this complicates the internal relations: the subsequent history of the group revolves around the complex relationship between Rich and Chris, around which is home to a variety of musicians.
The band stops and and reformed several times, especially from years zero to ten, with a final break that seems to occur after the tour of 2013.
Is made explicit by Rich Robinson, who speaks in a harsh economic issues and the will of the brother to totally control the name of the band. In this period of time is literally flying through the knives through the press, with the former colleagues who stand to one side or the other, and someone that throws gasoline on the fire (Steve Gorman, who writes a biography, which does not spare anyone).
Rich goes on his way, by the foot of the Magpie Salute, with the former of the band, Marc Ford and Sven Pipien. Chris puts up his Brotherhood, dedicated to the sound, psychedelic, northern California, then shape As the Crow Flies, cover band, the Black Crowes.
At the end of 2019, six years after the last concert, the ad (almost) surprise: the Black Crowes will reform, but there are only two, the brothers Robinson, to start (almost) from scratch and without external interference. A world tour is planned for 2020, dedicated to “Shake Your Money Maker”.
We met with the Robinson brothers in February 2020, shortly before the start of the pandemic, an acoustic showcase in London in anticipation of the tour, which was then postponed. Here they told us in our interview
The date of the Italian band, originally scheduled for Tuesday, November 10, 2020 is rescheduled to Saturday, November 6, 2021, at the Mediolanum Forum in Assago, But in the meantime, on the 26th of February the Black Crowes will release an expanded edition of Shake Your Money Maker”, which is supervised by Chris and Rich Robinson with George Drakoulias: contains the original album remastered, three studio recordings were previously unpublished, two demo of Mr. Crowe’s Garden, and B-sides, plus a concert of the 14 songs recorded in Atlanta, their hometown. This is the tracklist of the version 3CD
CD1: Shake Your Money Maker (2020 Remaster)
Twice As Hard
Could I’ve Been So Blind
Hard To Handle
Thick N’ Thin
“”She Talks To Angels
Stare It Cold –
Mercy, Sweet Moan
CD2: More Money Maker: Unreleased Songs and B-Sides
30 Days In The Hole
Don’t Wake Me
Hard To Handle (With Horns Remix)
Jealous Again (Acoustic Version)
She Talks To Angels (Acoustic Version)
She Talks To Angels (Mr. Crowe’s Garden Demo)
Front Porch Sermon (Mr. Crowes Garden Demo)
CD3: The Homecoming Concert: Atlanta, GA December 1990
Thick N’ Thin,
Twice As Hard
Could’ve Been So Blind
She Talks To Angels
Hard To Handle,
Shake ‘Em On Down,
Words You Throw Away
Stare It Cold