No matter how much you love it, it’s easy to get jaded about music. I love my ’60s and ’70s tunes, but after about the 5000th hearing (not counting the music I hear in my head!) I yearn for fresh tunes. When the new music doesn’t stand up to adolescent memories, one gets jaded.
Occasionally I hear something new in the old stuff. Sometimes it’s the amazing sound that you can hear now on (re-mastered) CDs, a sound that just wasn’t there on the original vinyl pressing. A case in point: Listen to the harmonies on the Beatles’ tune Dr. Roberts from the Revolver CD, especially when they sing Well, well, well, we’re feeling fine.. Stunning. That cut wasn’t even on that album when it came out (it was on a collection of singles).
Sometimes I hear a fresh version, often acoustic, where the artist demonstrates real musicality. Today I heard two of those on a show called Acoustic Café (you can listen to this week’s show on-line at that link). The first was a re-do of CSNs Marrakesh Express by (I think it was) Crosby and Nash. (The YouTube to which I’ve linked is yet another version.)
But the one that really blew me away this morning was by the Wilson sisters, doing (How Do I Get You) Alone. Ann Wilson is still one of the very strongest (and convincing) female voices in pop music. Marvellous stuff.
And lastly, a few weeks ago they played a version of the Beatles’ classic Love Me Do, by Ringo and his All Starr Band. I didn’t realize it, but he related the story that he doesn’t do the drumming on the original. EMI used a studio musician for that one. His version of one of the most overplayed (but still good) songs in the Beatles’ catalogue is surprising innovative and, yes, fresh. If you were never convinced that Ringo had the musical talent of the other Beatles, this might convince you otherwise.