Ivan Julian: Ten songs, circa 1995

Ivan Julian: Ten songs, circa 1995

PERSONNEL: Not listed

TRACK LISTING:

1. Love Affair
2. Cazalla
3. The Naked Flame
4. Love Is Good
5. Sticky
6. Godiva
7. Can’t Help Myself
9. She Drives Me Wild
10. Cut Me Loose

Guitarist Ivan Julian is a national treasure. A founding member of the seminal punk group Richard Hell and the Voidoids, he has performed with the Isley Brothers, The Clash, Matthew Sweet, The Bongos, Richard Barone, and Shriekback. We met in the late ’80s, when he was in Lovelies with Cyn Sley, and we were close for a time (hear him play sax and bass on one of my Time Or Dirt singles), We kept in touch for many years, although not so much lately, sorry to say. Ivan recently won a bout with cancer, aided by a Who’s Who of New York rock who rallied to help pay medical expenses. I hope I see him again soon.

Ivan’s official solo debut, The Naked Flame, did not appear until 2008, but the title track dates back at least to this tape, which he gave me around the time he was playing with Matthew Sweet. I think (“Godiva” and “Sticky” also stuck around for the decade). The slow, soulful scorcher “Love Is Good,” feedback freakout “Godiva”, and ’70s Stones-inspired funk-rocker ‘Can’t Help Myself” are highlights of a terrific, unjustly forgotten recording.

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