Eric Clapton - Danny Boy ♧
30 day music challenge
Day 29: A song that you remember from your childhood.
I have an older sister who used to sing and play guitar, and was into the whole folk movement thing. I remember her singing songs like House of the Rising Sun, made famous by The Animals, but also done by a stupendous folk singer named Odetta. Sometimes our dad would get into the act and join my sister for songs like Swing Low Sweet Chariot, which, since we lived in New Haven, we often heard sung by the Yale Whiffenpoofs. (It has since occurred to me how odd it is to hear a bunch of upper class white boys in tuxedos singing what used to be called a “Negro spiritual,” but I do like Eric Clapton’s version.) My sister’s other greatest hits included songs like Gordon Lightfoot’s Early Morning Rain, Pete Seeger’s If I Had A Hammer, and lots of Judy Collins and Peter, Paul & Mary. My other sister was into people like John Denver and Glen Campbell. Not quite my cup of tea, but I can’t deny that Rocky Mountain High and many of John Denver’s other songs are great, and Glen Campbell’s cover of Jimmy Webb’s Wichita Lineman is actually quite lovely. She was also a huge Burt Bacharach fan, and had lots of Dionne Warwick and Dusty Springfield records. I remember a bunch of old 45s she had too, like Blood, Sweat & Tears’ cover of Laura Nyro’s And When I Die, The Foundations’ Baby Now That I Found You, lots of Beatles and Herman’s Hermits, and since it’s October, I’ll confess we had a 45 of Monster Mash by Bobby “Boris” Pickett. It might be worth cleaning out a closet or two to see if one of us can dig that one up again.
30 day music challenge
Day 15: A song that has been covered by another artist.
I was going to go with Brandon Boyd’s vast improvement on Elvis Costello’s Alison, but with all the chatter about Timelapse Consortium during the past couple of days, I thought something progressive would be appropriate. So here’s early Yes with a brilliant cover of Paul Simon’s America. My other idea was to focus just on the tons of great covers of Bob Dylan’s work, my favorites being Rage Against the Machine’s version of Maggie’s Farm, The Dead Weather’s New Pony, Eric Clapton’s Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door, The Pretenders’ Forever Young, and the Band’s I Shall Be Released. Probably the most famous take on the latter was done by Joe Cocker, and of all the bazillions of Beatles covers, I think the best is his version of With A Little Help From My Friends. Then there’s Linda Ronstadt, who pretty much did nothing but covers, many of them great, but none better than her version of Neil Young’s Birds. (She covered Alison too, by the way.) I could go on and on forever with this, but I’ll just mention three more: the Chili Peppers’ cover of Stevie Wonder’s Higher Ground, Chris Cornell’s cover of Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean, and the Foo Fighters’ cover of Arcade Fire’s Keep the Car Running.
30 day music challenge
Day 8: A song about drugs or alcohol.
Oh, The Needle and the Damage Done by Neil Young, but there are many others, like Drugs or Me by Jimmy Eat World, Heroin by The Velvet Underground, Cocaine by Eric Clapton, Cocaine by Jackson Browne, Mother’s Little Helper by The Rolling Stones, Hold Me Down by The Gin Blossoms, Rehab by Amy Winehouse, Trip Like I Do by The Crystal Method (I like the Filter version better), and oh yeah, We’re Smokin’ the Herb Again by Incubus. There are also a lot of songs that are arguably about drugs, but there are differing opinions, like White Rabbit by Jefferson Airplane, Eight Miles High by The Byrds, Hurdy Gurdy Man by Donovan, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds by The Beatles, and Mr. Tambourine Man by Bob Dylan. (I may be wrong, but I’d always heard they used to pass around the LSD-laced sugar cubes in a tambourine.) Steely Dan’s Kid Charlemagne is supposed to be about famed LSD supplier Owlsley Stanley, and Arlo Guthrie hopes to dodge the authorities in Coming Into Los Angeles. Less serious fare includes I Drink Alone and One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer by George Thorogood, Smoke Two Joints by Sublime, Twigs and Seeds by Jesse Winchester, Shanty by Jonathan Edwards, One Toke Over the Line by Brewer & Shipley, The No No Song by Ringo Starr, and for all you Parrotheads out there, there’s Margaritaville, and the ever popular Why Don’t We Get Drunk and Screw? by Jimmy Buffett.
Eric Clapton - Easy Now
A sexy little song for a Sunday afternoon.
Eric Clapton - Danny Boy
For St. Patrick’s Day. ♧
Cream - Crossroads
Nothing good on the alt stations, so I switched to classic vinyl and this was playing. I’d forgotten its greatness.