Musical coincidences # 345

December 10, 2012

This coincidence is quick ‘n’ easy but the post will be long-winded. Sorry about that.

I was over at the illustrious Powerpopaholic blog (Hi, Aaron!) which is now even more illustrious courtesy of a new review of my beloved Peelgreems‘ album, Big Adventure. (Thanks, Aaron!)

Anyway, the reason I’m mentioning Powerpopaholic is that Aaron also reviewed Men Of La Mancha, an EP by a band called The Mockers.

One of the songs, “Que Vida“, begins with this little melody:

The Mockers – “Que Vida (2012) (excerpt)

Link

That instantly reminded me of:

Cheap Trick – “Don’t Be Cruel (1988) (excerpt)

Link

As well as the original:

Elvis Presley – “Don’t Be Cruel (1956) (excerpt)

Link

Here are the full versions:

The Mockers – “Que Vida (2012)

Cheap Trick – “Don’t Be Cruel (1988)

Link

Elvis Presley – “Don’t Be Cruel (1956)

Link

By the way, that little melody was also used by a band called Middle Brother, and that coincidence was featured in a previous Musical coincidence.

Déjà vu, baby.


Song of the day: Elvis Presley – "Too Much"

November 1, 2012

Today’s song is here as the result of me changing the station on the radio in the car. I wasn’t keen on the default station that promised “All The Hits, From The Eighties To The Eighties, Not Forgetting The Eighties!”. So as I sat there thinking “I’ve already heard all these songs plenty of times”, I noticed my hand moving instinctively and swiftly towards the dial. The next thing I knew, I was listening to a station playing stuff from the Fifties. That was much better.

One of the songs I heard was Elvis Presley‘s “Too Much“, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. But me enjoying it wasn’t enough of a reason for me to put it on the blog.

No, what prompted me to bother you with an Elvis Presley song is the guitar solo by Scotty Moore.

I’d heard the song a couple of times before, but this was the first time I’d paid attention to the solo, and I was floored. I was dumbfounded by the notes Scotty played. They were so unusual that I wasn’t sure if he chose the notes, or the notes chose him. For me, the solo is like free-form jazz in that there aren’t any recognisable scales used (well, none that I could recognise), and the notes are all over the place. I loved it.

So, please enjoy the rockabilly-from-another-universe guitar solo by Scotty Moore, ably backed by his singer at the time:

(Preliminary Information: Before the guitar solo starts properly at 1:29 there’s an introductory riff from 1:21-1:28. But after that, things get weird…)

Elvis Presley – “Too Much (1957)

And here’s the original:

Bernard Hardison – “Too Much (1955)


Musical coincidences # 133

October 14, 2011

I’m not entirely sure that today’s coincidence is actually coincidental, because it sounds to me like it may have been deliberate.

Here are The Wellingtons with the start of song from their latest album, In Transit:

The Wellingtons – “I Just Wanna Love You Girl” (2011) (excerpt)

Link

And here’s something very familiar to a few million music fans:

Elvis Presley – “See See Rider (1974) (excerpt)

Link

Here are the full versions:

The Wellingtons – “I Just Wanna Love You Girl” (2011)

Link

Elvis Presley – “See See Rider (1974)

Link


Musical coincidences # 90

March 7, 2011

Today’s coincidence is the result of another visit to a blog, this time at Popdose. A post there reviewed an album by a new group called Middle Brother. The song from the album that was highlighted there (and spoken highly of) is “Me Me Me”. The opening vocal melody in the verse reminded me of an Elvis Presley ditty.

Here’s the Middle Brother melody:

Middle Brother – “Me Me Me” (2011) (excerpt)

Link

And here’s what it reminded me of:

Cheap Trick – “Don’t Be Cruel (1988) (excerpt)

Link

Or if you want to go to the source:

Elvis Presley – “Don’t Be Cruel (1956) (excerpt)

Link

And now for the full versions:

Middle Brother – “Me Me Me” (2011)

Link

Cheap Trick – “Don’t Be Cruel (1988)

Link

Elvis Presley – “Don’t Be Cruel (1956)

Link

Middle Brother official website
Middle Brother on MySpace

Cheap Trick official website
Cheap Trick on MySpace

Elvis is everywhere


Frank’s Faves on Fridays

July 16, 2010

Terry Black – “Baby’s Gone” (1966)

Link
I liked this a lot, but I kept thinking it would sound much better sung by a girl (as in “a girl singer from the 60’s”), because I reckon it’d make a great torch song. Why can’t I find any cover versions of this sung by a girl? Grrr. (Or maybe that should be Grrrl.*)

The Move – “Curly (1969)

Link
I honestly don’t know how to respond to either “Curly” or The Move. I know that I’m supposed to absolutely adore it because it’s by The Move, and I’m supposed to love The Move even more. (One music critic I like, George Starostin, goes into paroxysms when talking about Roy Wood and The Move: “Wood was, no doubt about it, one of the most brilliant musical geniuses of his epoch” etc) However, I like the song. I like The Move. I like Roy Wood, but I don’t actually think the band (or Roy) were all that revolutionary. Sure, their instrumentation was occasionally odd (you can thank Roy’s imagination for that), but to me that’s irrelevant – what matters to me, as always, is the song itself. “Curly” is pleasant, but I don’t think it’s the work of brilliant musical geniuses. (Or maybe the plural of that is “genii”.) For me, I’ll describe “Curly” in a word that has the unfortunate habit of damning with faint praise: it’s “pleasant”.

The Coasters – “Shake ‘Em Up And Let ‘Em Roll” (1968)

Link
I hadn’t heard this before. I didn’t mind it, but I can imagine The Band doing a cracking version of this song.

Gene Vincent – “Lotta Lovin'” (1957)

Link
One Elvis clone. I’d always thought that Gene Vincent was Gene: Leather-Clad Individualist. This song, however, throws that notion out the window. Unfortunately for Gene, “Lotta Lovin'” reminds me of one of my favourite Elvis songs, “Stuck On You” (1960):

Link
(I’ve never been much of an Elvis fan, but everything – and I mean every single thing – about “Stuck On You” is utterly, completely, and totally irresistible to me. And Elvis’s singing in the middle eight makes my brain perform cartwheels.)

Bonus instrumental:

The T-Bones – “No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach Is In)” (1965)

Link
Groovy. I like it a lot. (Update: I’ve heard it a few more times now. I’ve also found out that it was originally an ad for Alka-Seltzer. I now officially Love This Song.)

(*Sorry about that.)