Sunday, August 08, 2010

A Well-Crafted Song

I wanted to hear "At Last" and went to YouYube. I listened to the classic Etta James version and then I listened to the Beyonce version. I found the comments fascinating. There seemed to be a big feud going on about who performed it best. Me? I just love the song.
Oh sure there have been songs that I've argued, "Oh no! That version was better!" But the reality is: a well-crafted song stands on its own and is not dependent upon the performer.
It's odd that people argue over these songs without giving credit to the writers of these songs. The very fact that a song evokes such strong feelings means it's just a very good song. Oh, I know that for many people the strong emotion comes from the song memory being from a certain time and certain circumstances, but a truly great song is just that.
There are some songs that could be performed by anyone in the world with a good singing voice and I would just be happy to hear them, like, "If I loved You," but okay, I hate when people sing "Somewhere over the Rainbow." Why do they even try?
Okay, now I'm not even making any sense. Maybe contradicting myself even. So some songs are about the song, and some songs are about the singer. I guess we sometimes have an association with a certain singer.
And then there are songs that you never particularly cared for until a singer or band that you like performs them. I have one of those. In fact, as far as I can tell, I am the only person in the world that prefers the Aerosmith version of "Come Together" over The Beatles version. But then I also prefer the "Oooga chuka ooga ooga" version (Blue Swede) of "Hooked on a Feeling" over that of the boring original by BJ Thomas.
But if you really want to hear a really well-crafted song performed in two distinct manners you should compare The Temptations "Just My Imagination (Running Away With Me)" with The Rolling Stones version. Two different tempos, one great well-crafted song.


Jazz said...

That's true, unless we're talking Cole Porter, the person who wrote the song rarely gets credit for it.

XUP said...

I don't know anything about music, but I have been wondering what the deal was back in the day with the facial moles? People used to draw them or paste them on their faces. Why were they considered attractive? Nowadays we'd run to the dermatologist and have them checked for melanoma. And removed. Because who wants a big brown spot on their face?

geewits said...

~~Yep. Maybe Rodgers and Hammerstein, too. Oh and I feel terrible that I forgot that Willie Nelson's "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" is actually quite pleasant.

~~I guess that started with Marilyn Monroe, but you'd be surprised how many women actually have that. I have a little brown mole to the left of my chin. But you're right, some women used to draw them on their face. Who knows why?