Let’s Take A Moment Day 378

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

March 2021 Blog

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day. And if this helps anyone else, even better.

Baroque rock had a relatively short window of popularity, lasting only for about 10 years between the mid 1960’s to the early 1970’s. The sound defined rock music with specific orchestral sounds separate from the sole use of strings. Of course it was The Beatles who were thought to start this trend, most notably with the song, “In My Life” .

But in 1966 the genre was specifically attributed to the English group, The Left Banke. The broader sound of their music included the harpsichord in addition to specific brass, woodwind & string arrangements. The group displayed the sound beautifully with their 1966 hit “Walk Away Renee” (Day 143) and today’s song as well.

I called her yesterday, it should have been tomorrow
I could not keep this joy that was inside,
I beg for her to tell me if she really loved me,
Some where a mountain is moving
Afraid it’s moving without me
“.

Left Banke

The Left Banke circa 1965. (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

The Left Banke: “Pretty Ballerina” (1966, written by Michael Brown).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 143

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

Charlie Brown No Music No Life

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are in a serious situation, but I need a break from the gloom, doom and bullying by way of hoarding. Music has always been my refuge and watching those beautiful Italians singing to each other from their balconies reaffirmed my belief that music is the answer. So until the old normal returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day.  And if this helps anyone else, even better.

The Left Banke was one of those groups that burst onto the scene in the mid-1960’s and left an indelible mark on music despite their brief stay.  Best known for two songs, the exquisite “Pretty Ballerina” and today’s pick, the success of same came quickly for the band leading to tension amongst the group members and eventually disbandment.  While they were together, they helped coin a new phrase, baroque rock, which critics felt best described their unique sound and string arrangements.  Today’s song was also done by the Four Tops which is also wonderful.  But the Left Banke’s version, led by the vocals of Steve Martin Caro  who sadly died earlier this year at the age of 71, is in my opinion absolutely gorgeous.

Your name and mine 
inside a heart upon a wall
Still finds a way to haunt me 
though they’re so small“.

Left Bank

The LEft Bank circa 1965.  (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

The Left Banke:  “Walk Away Renee” (1966, written by Michael Brown, Bob Calilli, and Tony Sansone).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 135

Hi everyone.  Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing.  But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?

Thoreau music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are in a serious situation, but I need a break from the gloom, doom and bullying by way of hoarding. Music has always been my refuge and watching those beautiful Italians singing to each other from their balconies reaffirmed my belief that music is the answer. So until the old normal returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day.  And if this helps anyone else, even better.

Time for another mid-week Motown break.  The Four Tops had tremendous success whether they were singing their own Motown originals or covers like “Walk Away Renee” (first recorded by The Left Banke in 1966), “If I Were A Carpenter” (written & recorded by Tim Hardin in 1967) or “River Deep Mountain High” (originally recorded by Ike & Tina Turner in 1966).  The reason they never missed was because Levi Stubbs was as close to perfection as a vocalist could be.  He had a smooth polished vocal as opposed to the impassioned raw emotion of his Temptations counterpoint, David Ruffin.  I often thought of Stubbs singing to be close in style to Sam Cooke’s while Ruffin’s was more like Otis Redding’s.  All four men had incredible iconic voices, just different styles.

Added to Stubbs’ vocals were the harmonious backing sounds by his group members- Abdul “Duke” Fakir, Renaldo “Obie” Benson and Lawrence Payton-along with the music of The Funk Brothers and the historic magical sound of The Four Tops was complete.  All four members stayed together for 44 years, a record unmatched by any other act on the label.  To this day they remain one of Motown’s most beloved and renowned groups and one of my great loves from that era.

All you left is our favorite song
The one we danced to all night long
It used to bring sweet memories
Of a tender love that used to be.” 

Four Tops

The Four Tops circa 1965 (L-to-R) Renaldo “Obie” Benson, Levi Stubbs, Abdul “Duke” Fakir, and Lawrence Payton.  (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

The Four Tops:  “It’s The Same Old Song” ( 1965, written by Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier and Eddie Holland).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.