We’re in the high season for new Blues album releases from the old music guard. This week we have new Blues albums from Steve Miller and Tom Petty. On Tuesday, Cyndi Lauper will drop “Memphis Blues” for our listening pleasure. What is is about the Blues that brings us back to the center of our shared experiences? How does music bind us into contextual places that have memeingful resonances? With the release of — Mojo — Tom Petty endeavors to answer those ethereal musical conundrums.
Steve Miller’s “Bingo!” offers two-tiered iTunes pricing and so does Tom Petty’s “Mojo” — you can buy the boring version for $11.99USD.
If, like Steve Miller before him, you want the full Tom Petty experience on Mojo, you have to pony up an extra three dollars for the “Deluxe Version” of the album.
What does Tom offer you for three extra dollars that Steve Miller does not?
First, you get the “iTunes LP Experience” — that’s a funky phrase that means Apple adds some visual ganache to your watching experience while listening to the songs:
You can watch a music video or two.
You can try to read Tom’s handwritten song lyric scribbles.
You can look at images from the band in practice.
We love those Gibson guitars and Fender amps and Gretsch drums!
When you listen to the album, iTunes, Apple presents you with strange screensavers that move, spin and wiggle.
I’m sorry, but Tom Petty deserves better and much more interactivity from iTunes.
The Mojo “Deluxe Version” also gives you two videos — and a “Bonus Song” called “Little Girl Blues” that is merely okay.
I would, however, pay the extra three bucks for the “more better Blues” version just because I like to support any extra effort in The Blues — be it worth the added value or not.
Mojo is a fine album and it lives up to our tempered Tom Petty expectation. Over the last 35 years, Tom has always tried to be challenging and different in his songs and Mojo is no different. We suffer with him. We find joy in the ordinary. We are on a journey of discovery that reveals the very essence of our most basic, musical, beliefs.
My favorite Blues tunes are “Jefferson Jericho Blues” for its wild drums and twangy harmonica; “No Reason to Cry” for its soulful steel guitar and soft harmonics and, finally, “I Should Have Known It” for its ripping Gibson SG P90s hard rock Bluesy growling!
Give Tom Petty’s Mojo a spin — it’s worth your time and the extra three dollars for the Deluxe Version.