Sunday, March 2, 2008


I'm spending this morning working through this stack of loose seven inches that we got from my future father in-law last year. At the time I think my stereo was out of commission, so I couldn't listen to any records. They got shelved to the side and I put off digging through them for a while. Not all of it is exactly gold, some stuff is terribly dated, or just terrible. Like, say, I can't fucking stand the Stone Poneys. Bands with poor grammar only get a pass when they're excellent. Sorry, Linda Rondstat. There has been a few pieces of gold scattered about, though. Like an excellent lite-rock cover of "The Letter" by The Arbors. They slow the song down with a latin-tinged loping acoustic folk guitar and smooth, sedate vocals. Halfway through the song, it drops everything and starts with some ELO style harmonizing then stumbles back into it's original setting.

And speaking of The Box Tops, there was an excellent late period 45 of theirs that sounded like a lost Big Star session. Until I dug into The Box Tops further than "The Letter" I couldn't make a connection between The gruff urgent man behind that song and the much smoother voice behind Big Star.

Let's see, what else is there, a condensed version of the theme for "The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly". Sam The Sham and The Pharaohs, "Wooly Bully" which I always forget how great and fun that song is. It was a disappointment to hear the b-side being such a blatant rewrite of the a-side. Either that or maybe Sam The Sham just didn't have any writing chops. I was hoping that he'd be more along the lines of Screamin' Jay Hawkins, whose discography is filled with things even more fantastic than his one hit.

Right now I'm listening to this fantastic Supremes song called "Put Yourself In My Place", which I think might have finally sold me on The Supremes. I've spent years on the fence about this group, at first, rejecting the group outright because of how smooth they were. Especially when I first got into soul music. I've always preferred the grittier soul music, Otis Redding over Marvin Gaye, etc. But man, just on a basic level of song, The Supremes' songs were built like The Colosseum, simple but huge, impressive, and enduring.

I'll post more about the songs as I listen to them, at this point, I've covered everything I've listened to this morning, so I'll return with more soon. I'm also going to try posting some of these songs online so you can download them.


Cangrejero said...

And speaking of The Box Tops, there was an excellent late period 45 of theirs that sounded like a lost Big Star session

Interesting. I've got a 45 from Big Star which sounds like a lost Box Tops session. "September Gurls live" b/w "The Letter"

Toothpaste Jones said...

ooh ooh ooh! that sounds awesome! think you could put those on to the computer and get 'em to me? I'll put up the b-side "I See Only Sunshine" (a Chilton original no less) in a bit.

Cangrejero said...

No problem, here's the link!

I was a bit mistaken earlier: It's "The Letter" live and a rehearsal take of "September Gurls" not the other way around.