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Wednesday, 28 December 2016

Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!: Day 363 - Dion (#2)

Déjà Nu - Dion
Ace Records (UK) / Collectables (US)
Released 2000
Déjà Nu (US Version)

1. Shu Bop (The Lost Track)
2. Hug My Radiator
3. In New York City
4. Ride With You
5. Book Of Dreams (Bruce Springsteen)
6. If You Wanna Rock & Roll
7. Makin' My Heart Go Boom
8. You Move Me
9. Every Day (That I'm With You)
10. Hey Suzy
11. I Can Laugh At It Now
12. If I Should Fall Behind (Bruce Springsteen)*

* Was not included on the UK Release

New Masters - Dion
Released 2003

 1. Behind Susan's Eyes*
2. Ruby Baby
3. Lovers Who Wander
4. Blue Suede Shoes**
5. A Teenager In Love
6. I Wonder Why
7. Stand By Me**
8. Where Or When
9. Love Came To Me
10. Runaway**
11. Drip Drop
12. Rockin' Pneumonia And Boogie-Woogie Flu**/I Wanna Get Close To You
13. Donna The Prima Donna
14. Blue Monday**
15. Runaround Sue
16. The Wanderer
17. Abraham, Martin And John (Acoustic Version)**
18. Come Heal This Land*

* New Song
** Cover Version
Dion DiMucci had not released a brand new studio album since 1989's Yo Frankie (well, apart from a Previously Unreleased Album called Fire In The Night that was released in Germany and then a Christmas album in 1993 on The Right Stuff label - Rock N' Roll Christmas) so in the year 2000 a brand new album was a source of great expectation. 
Remember, Dion was 61 years old when Déjà Nu was released. From the off the album sounds exactly like what you'd expect a Dion DiMucci album to sound like - Rock and Roll mixed with some Doo Wop with Shu Bop (The Lost Track) and Hug My Radiator. Then there's one of his great odes to New York City and then back to the Rock and Roll with Ride With You (he would later rework the song for his 2016 album New York Is My Home). That's followed by the first of two Bruce Springsteen Covers, Book of Dreams which he pulls off brilliantly I think, though it's If I Should Fall Behind reimagined as a Doo Wop classic that really is the standout of the two. My favourite track besides If I Should Fall Behind, is probably Ever Day (That I'm With You).

The second album I posted above, New Masters, followed three years later and is a wonderful collection of covers and revisiting some of the classic songs from his extensive catalogue. At aged 64 he was still in fine voice and paying tribute to some great Rock and Roll tunes like Blue Seude Shoes, Runaway, Blue Monday and Stand By Me. This would be a theme he would revisit in 2008 with his Heroes: Giants of Early Guitar Rock album.
The versions of some of his classic tunes sees them getting a real overhaul with added verses, brand new instrumentation and transforming them into really fresh performances. 
The addition of the song Come Heal This Land at the end seems very out of place because it's a song written by Worship Leader Robin Mark and whilst a very unsual choice of song it should be remembered that Dion DiMucci is actually quite a spiritual man and so in one sense it's not such a mystery that the song is included. He had previously released Gospel orientated albums (for example Seasons in 1984).
 Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!
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