Classic Albums: Jean Lee And The Yellow Dog by Ed Kuepper

Right, so now we go back to Australia today for the next post on my Classic Albums list. I’m going to try sometime different for today and the next couple of days. I’m going to focus on just one songwriter but it’s over a very long time frame, Ed Kuepper has been going for now for four decades.

So today is part one with just one of his solo albums which this is from the 2000’s. Then we skip the 90’s because I bang on about way too much and then go to his band from the 80’s for part two and finally the 70’s with yet another band for part three. If you know his work and the bands he’s been in you’ll know what bands I’m talking about but can you guess what albums I’ll pick out? I’m seeing him play live Saturday night and some people did seem to like my kind-of special week of The Triffids I had a couple of weeks ago so I’ll try this now over this weekend, OK?

To me Ed Kuepper should be a household name but he’s not so I’m guess you could be a fan coming here or you might not know him at all so over the next three days or so hopefully I’ll known a bit better and if you know him maybe you can tell me something I don’t know? So we are starting about ten years ago and then working backwards but hopefully it does work like this, it’s the first time I’m doing it like this mostly I try mix it up for each post/album but of this set. Ed I think needs to go over three pages plus he’s done so much stuff over his career that I think it’s justified to do it like this. He’s popped up in other pages I’ve done here on my blog thingy but the rest of this weekend will be over load of Kuepper.

Ed’s been doing solo albums since the mid to late 80’s so to say the least alot came before this one in 2007. Jean Lee and the Yellow Dog album is one I want pick out to start with and highlight, I might just have to include another solo album at a later date. It’s a totally beautiful album, words do fail me but I guess I that the point of this blog to try and write something about some of and all of my fave albums in the end hopefully?

So I better say something informative instead of not saying much at all. So the above video clip is a filmic introduction to the concept album of Jean Lee and the Yellow Dog and is based on the events leading up to the 1951 hangings. It’s Ed Kuepper’s That Depends instrumental which different to the album version, it was Judi Dransfield-Kuepper’s filming and artistic direction the video clip and was shown at the album launch in 2007 so that’s what the website says.

Jean Lee was the last woman to be hung by 1950’s Australian capital punishment and this is a concept album which a loosely based in and around those facts so says in the liner notes on album too. The facts are something like this: Lee was involved in various crimes including a murder and from what I remember she taken the blame for it, thinking they will not hang a woman but they did but just before/after the real murder told they it was him not her so in the end they hung him too, I better double check thes before posting this.

Concept albums get a bad rap almost all of the time but this is brilliant idea using this kind-of history. I visited the jail house where they hung her, it’s now a tourist attraction in Melbourne. It’s the same place where Aussie most famous bushranger Ned Kelly was hung too. So now you can buy a t-shirt with him on it where he was killed! Another fun fact I learn there is that back then most of the hangman were in the jail for other crimes and was common knowledge then to the point of some guys loved going the job so much they would steal something and get caught doing it at the time of a hanging was going to take place so they could do the job. Anyway I’m getting way off the point now.

So it’s credited to Ed Kuepper & the Kowalski Collective but it’s the one and only album as a group. Being fair for the rest of the the players on it are: Jeffrey Wegener on drums who was the Laughing Clowns drummer so a little more about him tomorrow, Peter Oxley on bass, Sir Alfonso on keys and percussion. Dirty Three/Bad Seeds Warren Ellis playing his violin makes a cameo on Miracles, The Saints Chris Bailey does vocals on That Depends Pt 3 but more about him in a couple of days too. Jane Elliott plays cello on the first, ninth and eleventh songs, Dobro and banjo player John Willsteed is on Real To Me [1],  Finding You the second last track is a cover which was written by The Go-Betweens guys and the original can be found on the very last album by them called Ocean Apart. Then ending the record with tiny instrumental Ambient Place so that’s it. Please have a listen if you haven’t yet, thank you!

Jean Lee And The Yellow Dog track listing and times:

1. Hang Jean Lee – 4:18
2. Miracles – 4:31
3. That Depends Pt 3 – 6:41
4. Daddy’s Girl – 3:37
5. Skinny Jean – 6:46
6. Yellow Dog – 6:23
7. Demolition – 3:39
8. Shame  – 4:37
9. Real To Me [1] – 3:05
10. Real To Me [2] – 3:29
11. Finding You – 3:28
12. Ambient Place – 0:56


All my Classic Albums posts are linked below, off course it’s a work in progress:

Tales From The Australian Underground – Volume 1 & 2 by Various Artists

Station To Station by David Bowie

Unplugged In New York by Nirvana

Rust In Peace by Megadeth

Gunfighter Ballads And Trail Songs by Marty Robbins

Henry’s Dream by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

Whatever You Love, You Are by Dirty Three

Gala Mill by The Drones

Black Monk Time by The Monks

Ex Tropical by Lost Animal

Work (Work, Work) by HTRK

In The Wee Small Hours by Frank Sinatra

The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn by Pink Floyd

Songs Of Love And Hate by Leonard Cohen

Warm Leatherette by Grace Jones

The White House by The Dead C

Silence Is Sexy by Einstürzende Neubauten

Lulu by Lou Reed & Metallica

Kaira by Toumani Diabaté

Kings Of The Wild Frontier by Adam And The Ants

Drowning In The Fountain Of Youth by Dan Kelly And The Alpha Males

Aerial by Kate Bush

The Future by Leonard Cohen

Rock For Light by Bad Brains

Last Splash by The Breeders

Sex by The Necks

Emergency Ward by Nina Simone

Paradise by My Disco

Batman by Prince

Sings Christmas Carols by Mark Kozelek

What Are Rock Stars Doing Today by Magic Dirt

Love Of Life by Swans

Big Name, No Blankets by Warumpi Band

Blue Valentine by Tom Waits

In The Pines by The Triffids

Where Joy Kills Sorrow by Various Artists

TV Sky by The Young Gods

King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime by Faith No More

Jean Lee And The Yellow Dog by Ed Kuepper

So, this was the reason I started this blog. The idea is simply to write page/post about one of my fave album each that I consider a classic album. Please leave your own comments below about each album because I would love to hear what everyone think and has to say about them? Cheers!


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