Tuesday, May 17, 2005:

David Griggs

David Griggs -- Peace and Loving Understanding
David Griggs -- Satan James
David Griggs -- Speak

I found these on an LP in my roommates' crates called Time to Listen, a debut compilation from Tallahassee FL-based label Sweetbay Records. There's no information about any of the artists on the record or in the liner notes aside from a photo, a sketch, and what instruments they played; and allmusic.com doesn't know anything about Griggs except that he was a folk singer. He looks to be in his mid-twenties in this photo from 1975.

So anyway. These are by David Griggs. The first one sounds like a bit of classic soul (reminds me a lot of that track on the documentary Weather Underground, during one of the driving scenes--a track which I foolishly forgot to look up in the credits; it sounds very familiar but I can't quite place it). At any rate.

The next two songs are country/rock/folk. Picture if Roy Orbison and Chris Isaak had a baby. Well, but Griggs was born before Isaak. So maybe Griggs and Orbison had a baby, but Isaak ran away from home so he could be forlorn in new digs. (Sure, I like to knock Isaak, but I have a couple of his CDs too.) ... I do think these tracks are good, else I wouldn't post them. "Satan James" has sort of a timeless sound to it, the kind of song it's easy to imagine in a Kenny Rogers film; and "Speak" would be perfect for a period western/comedy honkytonk.

I'm guessing the label went bankrupt (zero hits on Google), but it's a pity we didn't hear more from Griggs. I would have loved to see a career spread out before him and I'm curious what happened.

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Sweetbay Records Was owned and opperated by Burt Norton. He died several years ago and so did Sweetbay.
There was a tribute CD To him from several of the bands that recorded there. Produced in 1997 by Fred Chester. Wish I could say more.

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