ELLEN FOLEY - Spirit Of St. Louis
This is often known as the 'lost Clash album', seeing that it's basically performed by the Clash, with Ellen singing. Mick and Joe wrote half the songs, providing an interesting and quite an enjoyable listen. Her first big break was singing the duet with Meat Loaf on "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" from the 1977 album "Bat Out of Hell", produced by Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson. Throughout her singing career, she has recorded songs by the Rolling Stones, Robert Palmer, and Graham Parker among others. She can be heard on The Clash album "Sandinista!" in the song "Hitsville UK".
After the recording sessions for the Clash's Sandinista LP were completed, the Sandinista band, consisting of Mick Jones, Micky Gallagher, Norman Watt-Roy, Topper Headon, Tymon Dogg, Paul Simonon, Joe Strummer, and Gary Barnacle went to work on tracks for this Ellen Foley solo album, titled "The Spirit Of St. Louis". Joe, Mick, and Tymon wrote a number of new tracks for the project, displaying a Jacques Brel influence, and other 50s French pop writers, suitable to Ellen's Glam-Rock singing style. Accordions, flutes and strings make their entrance while images of cafés, legionnaires, bicycles, and other European flavors fly about. Mick Jones, who was dating Ellen Foley at the time, really threw himself into the project, which represents some of his best playing of the 1980s, and many of the original songs are top-flight. "The Shuttered Palace" and "Theatre Of Cruelty" could have been good Linda Ronstadt or ABBA songs. Tymon's "Beautiful Waste Of Time" could have worked for Dionne Warwick between some 1960s Bacharach-David numbers. And two songs, "Torchlight" and "MPH" really would have been at home on a Clash record. "Torchlight" is a classic Joe-Mick call and response track that you can just imagine some South American arm of the Spartacist League adopting it as their anthem. And "MPH" would be a great Clampdown-like rocker if sung by Joe and Mick. Ellen's own Siouxsie-like "Phases Of Travel" is well-written, and Mick uses some great flange guitar on it.
Ellen Foley met Mick Jones in 1980, and became a part of the Clash entourage for almost two years. She wouldn't tour with the Clash, but she appeared with them in the King Of Comedy movie (1981), and guested on their albums. The Clash's hit song "Should I Stay or Should I Go" from the "Combat Rock" album was about the turbulent relationship she shared with Mick. Ellen later found brief TV fame on Night Court in the mid 1980s, and continued with her acting by working in several Hollywood films including: "Fatal Attraction"; "Married To The Mob"; "Cocktail"; "Tootsie"; "King Of Comedy"; and others. Selections on this seldom seen LP are: The Shuttered Palace; Torchlight; Beautiful Waste Of Time; The Death Of The Psychoanalyst Of Salvador Dali; M.P.H.; My Legionnaire; Theatre Of Cruelty; How Glad I Am; Phases Of Travel; Game Of A Man; Indestructible; and, In The Killing Hour. Recorded and mixed by Bill Price. Assisted by Jeremy Green. Produced by Mick Jones at Wessex Studios, London. This is an original 1981 pressing on EPIC RECORDS' CLEVELAND INTERNATIONAL Series (NJE-36984), with the original insert. The record jacket shows some minor color rubbing, but appears in overall Excellent condition. The stock Cleveland International record labels appear bright & clean, while the playing surfaces are overall beautiful near MINT!
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