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Thread: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

  1. #131
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    This may be a bit lengthy, but hopefully you find some reason to stick with it.

    In the song American Pie Don McLean talks about the day “the music died”. Of course he is referencing the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens & The Big Bopper. That was 1959. So if 1959 was the year the music died, then was 1964 the year the music was reborn?

    If nothing else 1964 was certainly the year of the tidal wave known as The British Invasion. It was just getting started & the music scene, radio, TV, the Billboard Charts would never look back.

    Let’s take a brief look at one famous week on the Billboard Hot 100 Charts…April 4th 1964.

    On this particular week we saw that:

    The Beatles had singles at 79, 68, 65, 58, 46, 41, & 31.
    The Dave Clark Five had singles at 48, & 10.
    The Searchers sat at #15

    There was a song called We Love You Beatles by The Carefrees at #42.
    And a song called A Letter To The Beatles by The Four Preps sitting at #85.

    And we had yet to hear from The Rolling Stones, Herman’s Hermits, The Kinks, The Animals, Gerry & The Pacemeakers, The Zombies, Peter and Gordon, or Chad & Jeremy all of whom will debut before 1964 is over. Then there were Petula Clark, The Hollies, The Yardbirds, and Freddie & The Dreamers who will make their chart debuts within the next year.

    But April 4th 1964 is famous for one more thing. That was the week that The Beatles accomplished something that had never happened before & has never happened since. They had all of the Top 5 positions on The Hot 100, and here are the songs that occupied those spots.

    5) Please, Please Me
    This song debuted back in February & went to #3, this week it fell from 4 to 5.
    This was a John Lennon composition.
    John, who was a big Roy Orbison fan, wrote this in the style of Orbison's overly-dramatic singing. Beatles producer George Martin suggested it would sound better sped up. In 2006, Martin told The Observer Music Monthly, "The songs the Beatles first gave me were crap. This was 1962 and they played a dreadful version of 'Please Please Me' as a Roy Orbison-style ballad. But I signed them because they made me feel good to be with them, and if they could convey that on a stage then everyone in the audience would feel good, too. Then we worked for ages on their new version of 'Please Please Me,' and I said: 'Gentlemen, you're going to have your first #1.'"

    John was partly inspired by a line from a Bing Crosby song that read, "Please lend a little ear to my pleas." He recalled: "I remember the day I wrote it, I heard Roy Orbison doing "Only The Lonely", or something. And I was also always intrigued by the words to a Bing Crosby song that went, 'Please lend a little ear to my pleas'. The double use of the word 'please'. So it was a combination of Roy Orbison and Bing Crosby."

    This song was a part of their 1st UK album, entitled Please, Please Me. They recorded the entire album in a bit over 12 hours.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOcMkI7KVS4

    4) I Want To Hold Your Hand
    This one came on the scene in early January. It went all the way to #1, stayed there for 7 weeks & was the #1 biggest single of the year. This week it had fallen from 2 to 4. The song is in The Grammy Hall OF Fame.

    This was the first Beatles song to catch on in America. In 1963, the Beatles became stars in England, but couldn't break through in the US. They couldn't get a major label to distribute their singles in America, so songs like "Love Me Do" and "She Loves You" were issued on small labels and flopped, even though they were hits in England. By February 1964, America finally took notice of The Beatles and bought this single in droves, giving them their first US hit. It sold better in the first 10 days of release in the US than any other British single, and remains the best-selling Beatles single in the United States, moving over 12 million copies.

    Paul had recently moved into 57 Wimpole Street, London, where he was lodging as a guest of Dr Richard and Margaret Asher, and whose daughter, actress Jane Asher, had become his girlfriend after their meeting earlier in the year (Jane’s brother was Peter of Peter & Gordon & Paul would write their hit single A World Without Love). This location briefly became Lennon and McCartney's new writing base, where they sat at the piano and composed 'I Want to Hold Your Hand'
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2rkW0Tu3H8

    3) She Loves You
    This one also first hit the charts in January. It also went to #1 & spent 2 weeks there coming in as the 9th biggest hit of the year. This week it fell out of the #1 spot that it had held for the last two weeks.

    John & Paul were inspired to write this after a concert at the Majestic Ballroom in Newcastle when they were part of a tour with Roy Orbison and Gerry & the Pacemakers. Says McCartney, "There was a Bobby Rydell song out at the time 'Forget Him' and, as often happens, you think of one song when you write another. We were in a van up in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. I'd planned an answering song where a couple of us would sing 'She loves you' and the other ones would answer 'Yeah Yeah.' We decided that was a crummy idea but at least we then had the idea of a song called She Loves You. So we sat in the hotel bedroom for a few hours and wrote it; John and I, sitting on twin beds with guitars."
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoF-7VMMihA

    2) Twist & Shout
    This one had been on the scene for just a few weeks & was still climbing. Last week it was at #3, but right here at #2 was going to be the peak for the song.

    This one was written by Phil Medley & Bert Russell & had previously been a hit for The Isley Brothers in 1962.

    This was also a part of the Please Please Me album & the very last song they recorded that day. John takes the lead vocal even though he was suffering from a major head cold & after 12 hours of solid singing all the guys had sore throats, John's, in particular, was almost completely gone so they had to get it right the first time. John sucked a couple throat lozenges, had a gargle with milk and away we went."
    They tried a 2nd take of the song, but John’s voice was so spent that what you got on the record was the 1st take & an incredible vocal indeed.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xnI4E3IURvk

    1) Can’t Buy Me Love
    This song had debuted just last week at #27 & jumped all the way to #1 in just 2 weeks. It will top the charts for 5 weeks & land as the 2nd biggest single of the year.

    This one was written by Paul. Paul takes the lead vocals & after 3 takes with John & George singing backup, the decision was made that no other vocals were needed, so it became the first song for them to be done with just one voice.

    The song was recorded on January 29, 1964 in Paris, although when The Beatles returned to Britain, George Harrison decided to overdub another lead guitar part.
    The song became their 3rd consecutive US #1 hit single, ("I Want to Hold Your Hand" was replaced at number one by "She Loves You" which was in turn replaced by "Can't Buy Me Love").
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uxha1IUsSPI

    And Beatlemania was on the way. Just check out the reaction of the crowds in all of these LIVE performances. Crowd reactions, screaming, screeching & the inability to hear themselves was perhaps the #1 factor in their decision to stop touring all together & become strictly a studio band.

  2. #132
    FORT Fogey Miss Scarlet's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Now you've gotten to the timeline I remember from when it happened. Excellent background info. I didn't know any of that.
    After playing the link for Twist & Shout, I was curious what the original recording sounded like, since John had a major cold, so I located it on the right side. You could definitely hear the hoarseness & creakiness & strain in his voice, but I think it actually added to the sound of the song. Added to the emotion of it. He really did put everything he had into the song. I can see why his voice was spent afterwards.

    Funny, but I never realized that Paul was the only one singing on Can't Buy Me Love. You learn something new every day.
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  3. #133
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Glad you found some new stuff Miss Scarlett. I was going to post the original Twist & Shout, but I figured since all the others were performance videos, this one should be too. John making that comment about the rich people just rattling their jewelry has gone down in Beatles lore & been discussed many times. It was a pretty ballsy thing to do, ya gotta admit.

    As I said before, sometimes the background history is almost as good, or at least as interesting as the music itself.
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  4. #134
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Quote Originally Posted by Miss Scarlet View Post
    Now you've gotten to the timeline I remember from when it happened. Excellent background info. I didn't know any of that.
    After playing the link for Twist & Shout, I was curious what the original recording sounded like, since John had a major cold, so I located it on the right side. You could definitely hear the hoarseness & creakiness & strain in his voice, but I think it actually added to the sound of the song. Added to the emotion of it. He really did put everything he had into the song. I can see why his voice was spent afterwards.

    Funny, but I never realized that Paul was the only one singing on Can't Buy Me Love. You learn something new every day.
    I don't know if you have ever heard of Mark Lewisohn or not, but he is what many call the ultimate Beatles historian. He is the only guy to my knowledge that has ever been allowed to listen to the entire recording history of the Beatles. He has listened to every session, every take & has written a book about it with all the details of the decisions made in the studio. But above & beyond all that he is THE GUY that knows the bands history. I know there have been many books written about the band, but there are none quite like his.

    This is the 1st of a 3 part expose that tells the entire history of the band. This book begins with the family arrivals in Liverpool going all the way back to when each family 1st stepped foot in the town, & it continues up until Dec. 31, 1962. The band has yet to hit the US shores, Please, Please Me has just been released & they are really beginning to gain a following. I absolutely guarantee a wonderful & insightful read if you are interested.

    He is at the moment working on part 2 & hasn't decided just yet when that volume will end, but I am waiting mostly impatiently for it to hit the stands. Anywho, I just though maybe someone would be interested in it. You will learn things you never knew about all 4 of the guys....well all 6 of the guys if you want to include George Martin & Brian Epstein.
    Attached Images Attached Images
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  5. #135
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Maybe you will find this interesting & then again maybe you won't. Both of these singles hit the Billboard Pop Charts on November 10, 1958. They are both by artists that were around back then & trying to achieve stardom, but that true stardom would evade both of them until the early 70's, 1972 to be exact.

    White Bucks & Saddle Shoes – Bobby Pedrick Jr.

    This one was written by song writers Doc Pomus & Mort Shuman. This was the 1st hit single for Bobbie & it will stay on the charts for just 4 weeks & peak at #74. He was just 12 at the time of this song.

    Bobbie Pedrick was born under the name of Robert John Pedrick in Brooklyn. He never had a Top 40 hit single until 1972 when he changed his name to Robert John & hit with The Lion Sleeps Tonight. We won’t see him on the charts again under any name at all until 1968.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4pNrbayCkt8

    Almost In Your Arms – Johnny Nash
    This one will also get 4 weeks on the charts but it falls just short of the song above as it peaks at #78. The song was written by Robert Evans & Jay Livingston & this was the only version to chart.

    Johnny formed JAD Records with his manager Danny Sims in 1965 and signed acts like The Cowsills, a group from Rhode Island who scored their first hit with "The Rain, The Park And Other Things" (after moving on to MGM).

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOtxH7YcHsE
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  6. #136
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    I reckon I'll just continue talking to myself but here is a debut song that perhaps some will like.

    The song debuted at #83 on December 8, 1958:

    The Diary – Neil Sedaka

    After seeing some success as a songwriter for the hit single Stupid Cupid by Connie Francis, Neil now gets the chance to do his own stuff & it is going to be a pretty nice success for him. The song sticks around for 15 weeks & peaks at #14 in February 1959. Neil Co – wrote the song with Howard Greenfield who was another of the Brill Building staff of writers.

    This was his first hit, and one of the first successes for the brand new record label Aldon Music. Greenfield and Sedaka originally agreed to write this song for the 1950s doo-wop group Little Anthony and the Imperials.

    Neil got to debut the song himself on the TV show American Bandstand. He was 19 at the time of this record.

    Rich Podolsky's book Don Kirshner: The Man with the Golden Ear tells the story behind this hit. Earlier, when Sedaka and Greenfield were working with Connie Francis on her hit "Stupid Cupid," Connie became distracted and began scribbling in her diary. Howard Greenfield began teasing her about it, wanting to sneak a peek, but Connie refused. Greenfield went home from the sessions with the idea for the song in his head.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nchmuKfTYXg
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  7. #137
    FORT Fogey Miss Scarlet's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Gotta love Neil Sedaka.
    I really enjoyed the slide show that went with this clip. If anyone else is a fan, make sure to click on this one. It's well worth it.

    Did Little Anthony and The Imperials ever record this one? I'd like to hear their version too.
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  8. #138
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Quote Originally Posted by Miss Scarlet View Post
    Gotta love Neil Sedaka.
    I really enjoyed the slide show that went with this clip. If anyone else is a fan, make sure to click on this one. It's well worth it.

    Did Little Anthony and The Imperials ever record this one? I'd like to hear their version too.
    Actually they did record the song. They released it as a single in 1958 as well but it failed to hit the Hot 100, it didn't even chat on the R&B Chart. Here is their version & I must say I don't like it nearly as much as Neil.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fKAZm3-rL4

  9. #139
    FORT Fogey Miss Scarlet's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    Quote Originally Posted by razorbacker View Post
    Actually they did record the song. They released it as a single in 1958 as well but it failed to hit the Hot 100, it didn't even chat on the R&B Chart. Here is their version & I must say I don't like it nearly as much as Neil.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fKAZm3-rL4
    Me neither. Neil had a bit of a fun lilt in his voice that added to all his songs.
    "Success is getting what you want; Happiness is wanting what you get."

  10. #140
    FORT Fogey razorbacker's Avatar
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    Re: Rediscovering Classics / Music Memories

    There were some pretty big artists debuting on the Pop Charts at the end of 1958 & here is one that 1st appeared on December 15. The song debuted at #80.

    Try Me – James Brown

    This song will chart 3 separate times with this one getting the highest placement even though it peaks at #48. Jimmy Hughes will get to 65 in 1964 & James Brown re - releases it in 1965 & falls out at 63. James wrote the song himself & this was his 1st charting single, it hits #2 on the R&B Chart.

    This was the 11th single released by James, but just the 1st one to hit the Hot 100 & just the 2nd one to land on the R&B Charts. He won’t have his 1st Top 40 on the Pop Charts until 1960.

    At 16, James was caught and convicted of stealing and landed in reform school for three years. While incarcerated, he met Bobby Byrd, leader of a gospel group that performed at the prison. After his release, Brown tried his hand at semi-pro boxing and baseball. A career-ending leg injury inspired him to pursue music fulltime. He joined Byrd in 1952, in a group that sang gospel in and around Toccoa, Georgia called the Gospel Starlighters. One night, Byrd and Brown attended a rhythm & blues revue that included Hank Ballard and Fats Domino, whose performances lured them into the realm of secular music. Eventually, the Starlighters evolved into a rhythm and blues outfit. They were originally known as the Avons, then the Flames and became a tightly knit ensemble that showcased their abundant talents as singers, dancers and multi-instrumentalists.

    What made him succeed where hundreds of others failed was his superhuman determination, working the chitlin circuit to death, sharpening his band, and keeping an eye on new trends. He was on the verge of being dropped from King in late 1958 when his perseverance finally paid off, as "Try Me" became an R&B (and small pop) hit, and several follow-ups established him as a regular visitor to the R&B charts.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X55yoSRRHHI

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