Hollyh, it's late, and although I'm not Rick Nelson, I need to get on home; as in bed, so I didn't give your blog anything but a cursory look. But, what I saw was fantastic! What taste! It's funny, I saw your comment about a Ten Years After album. I just picked up The Essential Ten Years After at a local thrift for a couple of bucks, figuring I'd heard some good things about them and particularly Alvin Lee; so why not?! It's fantastic; almost a mixture of prog playing, blues, and roots rock; if that's possible LOL! I'll probably have to check something else out by them.
I'm not sure myself on the chronology of 'The Hard Way' and 'Cruel to Be Kind'. I knew the song was 'birthed' while Lowe was in Brinsley but I'm not quite sure when Ray wrote 'The Hard Way'. I saw the quote from Ian Gomm posted on an amazon review by a huge Lowe fan. I'll look into that further.
I do know that 'What's So Funny ('Bout Peace Love and Understanding) was written and performed by Lowe in Brinsley Schwarz but most people associate the song with Sir McManus. I'm more partial to the Costello version myself because it is more rocking and more anthemic.
Thanks for the welcome mat! It's good to be here. My brother directed me here!