Tuesday, April 30, 2013

David Uosikkinen's In The Pocket: I Ain't Searchin'

I stumbled on this video a while back, and being a fan of The Hooters, I was intrigued by David Uosikkinen's In The Pocket project of “The Essential Songs of Philadelphia.” One of the songs was In The Pocket’s rendition of The American Dream’s “I Ain’t Searchin’” -- our Tasty Licks Tuesday selection for today.

The original version of “I Ain’t Searchin’” was recorded by the Philadelphia based band in 1970 and was produced by Todd Rundgren. It is said that it was Rundgren’s first attempt at producing a record. The single, which appears to be somewhat of a rarity, was released on the short-lived Ampex Records label as a single. While it wasn’t a national hit, it was favored selection in the City of Brotherly Love.

Nick Jameson, the songwriter and former member of The American Dream, also released a solo version of “I Ain’t Searchin’” in 1977 that appeared on his “Already Free” LP. “In The Pocket’s” rendition of the tune is a little grittier than the older versions of the song. It was recorded on November 6, 2012.

While David Uosikkinen's In The Pocket had a floating lineup, the personnel on this rendition includes Uosikkinen (drums) and Eric Bazilian (vocals, guitar, and harmonica) , Steve Butler (guitar and backup vocals), and singer/songwriter Cliff Hillis (bass and backup vocals). Uosikkinen played in both The Hooters and Smash Palace and is joined by guitarists from both bands: Bazilian from The Hooters and Bulter from Smash Palace.

Eric Bazilian and the author

The tune was recorded live in the studio, and if you pay attention to Eric Bazilian’s gold-top Les Paul, he is playing with a broken string, but that did not deter him from completing the task.  He also is using a dropped D tuning (DADGBE).  Butler, who plays the first lead break on the cut, used standard tuning. I had a chance to meet both Uosikkinen and Bazilian in 1986 and had an opportunity to talk to Eric in depth about his music. Uosikkinen's surname, by the way, is pronounced Wah-sik-in-en.

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