WARREN ZEVON Preludes: Rare And Unreleased Recordings (2007) + Sentimental Hygiene (1987)

Preludes: Rare And Unreleased Recordings (Complete) (2007)
Sadly, The Last Word

When first issued, in the aftermath of Warren Zevon’s overlong Death Watch Tour, Preludes had a lot of fans panting for one last taste from an old friend. Zevon had a way of winning hearts and inspiring loyalty, despite his often caustic view of humanity… something to do with his renegade drinker’s attitude, no doubt. But, I can safely say that I’ve never seen an audience so gleefully shout every word to every song like they have the few times I’ve seen Zevon live. When it’s just him, a piano and fans, he barely has to open his mouth, the crowd does all the work for him. This tribute (of sorts) was put together by his son from a cache of unreleased tapes. Unfortunately, the concept was stretched thin when adding a bunch of interview segments to necessitate a two disc package that barely tops 86 minutes. Dumb. (But then… I cluelessly neglected to combine it all into a single download, so who am I to talk?) If all the music was gold, the producers could be forgiven. But there are also a handful of sonically challenged demos along with the aforementioned chat, making this package easy to bitch about. Still, there are a few wonderful unreleased moments that fans will enjoy. Fairly cheap @ Amazon. JUST ADDED: There’s also a Limited Collector’s Edition version with three bonus tracks, “Workin’ Man’s Pay,” “Frozen Notes” and “Some Kind Of Rider” – which 3410 just kindly donated to complete this post (the first two tracks are better than most of the album). Many thanks.

Empty Hearted Town (3:07)
Steady Rain (4:20)
Join Me In L.A. (2:31)
Hasten Down The Wind (2:33)
Werewolves Of London (3:38)
Tule’s Blues (3:03)
The French Inhaler (3:33)
Going All The Way (2:19)
Poor Poor Pitiful Me (3:11)
Studebaker (2:27)
Accidentally Like A Martyr (3:06)
Carmelita (3:58)
I Used To Ride So High (2:45)
Stop Rainin’ Lord (2:13)
The Rosarita Beach Cafe (4:10)
Desperados Under The Eaves (3:44)
I Was In The House When The House Burned Down (3:03)
“Warren Speaks On Songwriting And The Early Days Of His Career” (7:15)
“Musings On Mortality, Song Noir And The King Of Rock N’ Roll” (5:09)
“A Chat About Producers And The Stark Sounds On The Album Life’ll Kill Ya” (5:10)
Back In The High Life (3:11)
“Warren’s Take On Winwood’s Classic And Warren’s Inspirations” (3:59)
“Talk Of TV, Movies, Acting And Performing” (5:15)
Don’t Let Us Get Sick (Solo Acoustic) (Recorded Live 12/3/1999 At Austin City Limits Studios) (3:10)

JUST ADDED! Bonus Tracks
Workin’ Man’s Pay
Frozen Notes
Some Kind Of Rider


Sentimental Hygiene (1987)
One Of Zevon’s More Rewarding LPs

Most fans gravitate to his early material. You know… the Werewolf stuff. But, my favorite Zevon has always been Sentimental Hygiene, a hard-hitting album recorded with pals REM (and friends like Dylan, Henley, Young and, fortunately, only a few L.A. guys) that includes his best mid-career compositional work. This was recorded at about the same time as Zevon and REM’s Hindu Love Gods album (HERE, along with their rare debut 45, an after hours jam session consisting of old blues tunes and a winning cover of Prince’s “Raspberry Beret”). In fact, the reason Sentimental Hygiene resonates with so much power and enthusiasm is probably because of REMs delicious simplicity, rare for Zevon albums as he usually utilized L.A.’s finest when in the studio. “Boom Boom Mancini” is a monster. So simplistic, even awkward in a way, but powerful nonetheless. “Even A Dog Can Shake Hands” is Zevon’s indictment of record industry denizens. The synths don’t wear as well in the ’10s, but if you like your Zevon wound up tight and rockin’ the house, this is a good one to get. Ripped from the original 1987/1990 CD release. Amazon‘s got the ’03 remaster.

Sentimental Hygiene (5:06)
Boom Boom Mancini (4:55)
The Factory (2:45)
Trouble Waiting To Happen (3:33)
Reconsider Me (3:10)
Detox Mansion (3:16)
Bad Karma (3:15)
Even A Dog Can Shake Hands (3:26)
The Heartache (3:19)
Leave My Monkey Alone (4:12)


  • Willard
    December 16, 2011 - 10:12 | Permalink

    Find it all HERE

  • Craig Morooney
    December 16, 2011 - 10:29 | Permalink

    Outstanding! Thank you.

  • J.D. Hughes
    December 16, 2011 - 14:09 | Permalink

    Awesome. Zevon is truly missed. Enjoy every sandwich.

  • pete
    December 16, 2011 - 14:24 | Permalink

    Thanks. I feel like mourning today, in honor of someone I actively disliked and might have become and maybe should have tried to (Hitchens, my exact contemporary at Oxford), and Zevon’s the right guy for that kind of conflicted emotion.

    • Willard
      December 16, 2011 - 14:50 | Permalink

      Hitchens was one of a kind. I often disliked him and disagreed with him, too. But, I always read him… and I always enjoyed him. Nice connection.

  • shadoobie
    December 16, 2011 - 15:25 | Permalink

    Another great post. Haven’t heard this in ages. I’m looking forward to it. Your comment on the LA session guys is spot on. I can think of a couple of other “rockers” whose music became a little too slick for my taste. Maybe it was the times….or the music industry….or listening to the Clash

    • Willard
      December 16, 2011 - 16:19 | Permalink

      …or all the above.

  • Bob
    December 16, 2011 - 15:52 | Permalink

    1. Hitchens is in heaven now, God rest his soul.

    2. Did Zevon’s fans actually turn his concerts into vast singalongs? That would have kept me away.

    • Willard
      December 16, 2011 - 16:27 | Permalink

      Drunken singalongs. He never instigated them, though, or played to them. It wasn’t a device for him. Nothing but total fan love. I wonder what he might have been able to hear coming from the cheap seats. By the time “Werewolves” rolls around, though, I don’t think Zevon had much say in the matter… with the “Aaooooo‘”s and the “HA!‘”s (sounding like a roomful of drunken Germans saluting the demand to meet one’s tailor). WZ may have gritted his teeth every night, who knows. Fans, however, just can’t seem to help themselves.

    • Willard
      December 16, 2011 - 16:35 | Permalink

      We should pitch in for some t-shirts…

      I’m With Hitch
      Fuck This World

      There might be a sales opportunity, if aimed squarely at the suicidal, Atheist set (the kind of girl that turned Woody Allen down in an Art gallery in one of his early funny movies). Personally? I’m with Hitch, fuck this world.

  • Anonymous
    December 16, 2011 - 17:37 | Permalink

    Zevon kept his persona intact to a greater extent than many others managed in the same LA studiosphere. Thanks, Willard. I’ve never heard this (Hygiene) one.

    • Willard
      December 17, 2011 - 07:30 | Permalink

      It’s a bit different from his early stuff, but – as with most Zevon – it’s better LOUD.

  • pete
    December 17, 2011 - 12:40 | Permalink

    “It will happen to all of us, that at some point you get tapped on the shoulder and told, not just that the party’s over, but slightly worse: the party’s going on — but you have to leave. And it’s going on without you. That’s the reflection that I think most upsets people about their demise. All right, then, because it might make us feel better, let’s pretend the opposite. Instead, you’ll get tapped on the shoulder and told, Great news: this party’s going on forever – and you can’t leave. You’ve got to stay; the boss says so. And he also insists that you have a good time.”
    —Christopher Hitchens, 1949–2011

  • Tom
    December 17, 2011 - 16:37 | Permalink

    There is an amazing and family-approved archive of live Zevon to explore at:
    I have downloaded several shows I was actually at – including a Roxy show from 1983 where I heard myself yelling out for “Never Too Late For Love” at one point. He just looked at me and shook his head “no.”

    • Willard
      December 17, 2011 - 18:37 | Permalink

      Very cool. Thanks for the tip.

  • Ace K
    December 18, 2011 - 21:13 | Permalink

    I got the Preludes album (I’m old enough to use that word), and your commentary is right that it is not great. But if you are this deep into Zevon, then you’re more than happy to have every little bit that you can.

    Speaking of which, I would really like to hear any live recordings of Zevon with the Everly Brothers, esp. if they included any Zevon tracks.

    Great site (duh).

    Ace K.

  • eric b
    December 19, 2011 - 23:47 | Permalink

    Love Boom Boom Mancini. It is, indeed, a monster. Saw Zevon alone (him, not me) with a piano outside in St. Louis among a couple hundred drunken undergraduates in the early ’90s. Not the best venue or audience for him, but, sure enough, plenty of singing-along in Werewolves.

  • courtney
    December 20, 2011 - 16:21 | Permalink

    Thanks for this, and if you haven’t read Crystal’s memoir of life with the werewolf, do so. A great rock and roll tell-all. Best enjoyed, interestingly enough, with a sandwich…

  • Leon
    December 20, 2011 - 21:20 | Permalink

    YES! I have Sentimental Hygiene on vinyl and have long wanted to put it on my iPod… thanks Willard!

  • Tony
    December 28, 2011 - 08:31 | Permalink

    Thank you for this and all of the great music and thoughts this past year.
    Happy New Year, Captain.

  • B
    January 5, 2013 - 21:26 | Permalink

    This is great man, thanks so much. Prelude’s was the only one I was missing in 320. I have ripped every other album @ 320 myself; if you are interested in links just let me know. Cheers!

  • John Birk
    February 2, 2013 - 14:56 | Permalink

    Just wondering, but has anyone else noticed that he sounds remarkably the same in concert as he does on the records? It’s almost indistinguishable to me. A good testament to what a strong singer he is/was.

  • Willard
    October 7, 2013 - 11:45 | Permalink

    Cool, thanks. Always want to know about issues. MEGA is especially finicky, and usually the best recourse is a different browser. I’m just glad I don’t need to re-up it.

  • Anonymous
    January 17, 2014 - 14:44 | Permalink

    many tanx! all 4 files downloaded and extracted ok. I now use Opera for Mega, rather than Firefox.

  • Lionel
    April 16, 2014 - 14:31 | Permalink


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