John Lennon, Mother, Live

Posted in John Lennon, Youtube Favs on September 9th, 2011 by Willie

I’m not ready to leave John’s 1972 concert just yet.  Yesterday I posted about “Come Together,” and in the past I posted the live performance of “Cold Turkey.”   Despite the fact that Yoko only released the inferior afternoon version of the show, as opposed to the superior evening version, there are still incredible worthwhile performances to be had, and John’s performance of “Mother” is one of them.  “Mother” is the unofficial sequel to John’s Beatle song “Julia” from the White Album.  Julia Lennon was struck down by an  drunk driving off duty police officer when he was 17.  Her death was already the 3rd or 4th tragic moment in a young life that was quickly piling up memorable scenes of wretched heartbreak.  By that point, young John already had to deal with the sorted split up between his parents which included an aborted kidnapping, the death of his uncle George, the strict surrogate parenting of his aunt Mimi, the discovery that his mother had another family whom all lived down the road without his knowledge, and the complete abandonment of his father who provided no support and lived in New Zealand.  The death of his mother, who he had just begun a reconciliation with, pushed John over the edge personality wise and hardened his soul.  The song “Mother” is the result of a bunch of soul searching and therapy, and is subsequently a triumph of someone who refused to be swallowed up by sadness, bitterness, and rage.  It’s one of John’s best songs, and one of my favorites too.  BTW, today is the last day to vote me in as CBS’s Best Local NYC Blogger, so, cast me one last vote for all time’s sake!  Thanks.

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My Top 100 Youtube Favorites, a Retrospective, Part 4

Posted in Youtube Favs on June 30th, 2011 by Willie

Sex sells!  I want to thank this “Drunken Angel” above and Tal Wilkenfeld from yesterday for drawing a few extra clicks to my humble little site.  Before anyone accuses me of perversion or lechery or something, I’d like to defend myself a bit by saying this is one of the better lists of rock and roll you are gonna find on the internet.  So, in that spirit, lets close it out right now with clips 24-1 and put this beautiful list to bed once and for all.

#24.  Bob Marley, One Love/People Get Ready – It’s Bob’s version of “All You Need is Love,” and its basically just as good.  Whatever melody making power the Beatles had, Bob had too.

#23.  Bob Dylan, The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll – I wish I had more Dylan on my list, but I couldn’t find too many choice clips of him playing my favorite Dylan songs.  This is an exception, one of the greatest Dylan videos you are gonna find on ole youtube. Read more »

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Paul McCartney, For No One

Posted in Paul McCartney, The Beatles, Youtube Favs on April 4th, 2011 by Willie

In part 28 of my youtube countdown, I present a 40 something Paul McCartney playing his Beatle classic, For No One, from the Revolver album.  There are so many things I love about this performance.  First of all, he’s playing one of his most gorgeous piano ballads on acoustic guitar, and its brilliant.  I love how he musically clears his throat in the first 5 seconds when he starts singing.  There is something very real and charming about that.  I love how he starts his French Horn solo, announces it midway through, and jibbers his way through it.  And lastly, I love every other second of this.  He sings the song absolutely beautifully, providing wonderful little melodic twists not found in the original, and he sings the song with total soul.  This is just one his greatest breakup songs.  A universal anthem for guys who find themselves in the moment when they realize their girlfriends don’t love them anymore.  I’m sure the song has other layered meanings for girls, but for me, I take it quite literally. Ladies, feel free to let me know how you interpret this song. Enjoy.

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The La's, Timeless Melody, and That'll be the Day

Posted in The La's, Youtube Favs on February 22nd, 2011 by Willie

Part 6 of my youtube countdown rolls on, and its a special 2 for Tuesday as I present Liverpool’s second most famous group, The La’s.  The La’s arrived at the forefront of the second British invasion in the early 90s that saw the coming of The Stone Roses, Blur, and Oasis.  The La’s is basically all about Lee Mavers, the lead singer/songwriter.  He possessed an incredibly unique and powerful English voice, an undying passion for 60s rock, and an insatiable heroin habit.  The La’s are your classic one album wonder, producing a wonderful debut with a genuine cult hit single, “There She Goes.”  Then they quickly unraveled, mostly due in part to Lee’s drug abuse, but also in part to Lee’s disgust with the way the record industry was releasing versions of his records that he didn’t approve.

Video 1 is my favorite La’s video, from 1991.  Its from a Canadian music show called Much Music, and it features Mavers and bass player John Power giving a difficult interview, and then performing a beautiful acoustic version of Timeless Melody.  I love how Mavers is mostly silent in the interview, and can barely contain his disgust for the poor interviewer girl.  On a crazier note, I almost feel like Oasis ripped off the Mavers/Power snotty dynamic and used it commercially.  Its a stretch, but part of me wouldn’t be surprised.

Video #2 is the La’s performing the Buddy Holly classic, That’ll Be the Day.  Because The La’s were from Liverpool, it was easy for the press to try and make them as successors to The Beatle legacy, which was kind of unfair and untrue…but for the band to cover Buddy Holly, something the Beatles did a lot, proves that the band shared similar influences with the Fabs.  I LOVE this performance and the coolness it takes for a young modern rock band to play an old hit like this, its just a shame that a video with better quality isn’t available.  Still, this isn’t unwatchable, so enjoy.

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