Flying; A Beatles’ One-Off

The Beatles: Way, Way Back In The Days When Everything Was Fun.

Flying (composers: Lennon/McCartney/Harrison/Starkey) is one of those tunes that I really don’t know what to do with. I have always enjoyed it when I did listen but, I never really craved it; I never really had to listen to it.

Originally titled Aerial Tour Instrumental, the tune kind of meanders through a 12 bar form without much tension which, for me, is really the charm. I feel that Flying probably sums up the mood they were in at the exact moment they laid it down; then, they probably got silly, because they could! Time, money etc. was simply not an issue so what the hay!

Let’s go back to 1967. If The Beatles’ Flying turns you on, by all means, take it home…

 

Personnel As Determined: John Lennon mellotron, organ, sound effects, vocals; Paul McCartney bass, guitar vocals; George Harrison guitar, vocals; Ringo Starr drums, maracas, sound effects, vocals.


As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.

2120 South Michigan Avenue; A Rolling Stones’ One-Off

The Early Stones: It Was About Their R&B Sensibilities For Me

The Rolling Stones2120 South Michigan Avenue (composed by *Nanker Phelge) was an instrumental very near and dear to my British Invasion heart. I never bought into their “bad boy” image; I bought into their sincere love for American Blues and R&B. I also grew to love the product that resulted from that sincere imitation.

The Stones‘ performance on 2120 South Michigan Avenue begins with a classic Bill Wyman bass groove. In those days, we really couldn’t be sure if the dirt on the bass tone was “hot” distortion or an intentional effect; whatever, it was great! And of course, nobody could kick the tune off with a one shot pickup like Charlie Watts.

The rest was a loosey, goosey meandering that really goes nowhere except to one’s musical sentiment; in this case, back to 1964. If you try hard enough, you can envision all of the Stones (Brian Jones included) doing what they loved, in a very exciting time for commercial musical endeavour…

Personnel As Determined: Mick Jagger percussion; Keith Richards guitar; Brian Jones harmonica; Bill Wyman bass; Charlie Watts drums; Ian Stewart organ.

*From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

Bill Wyman explained the origins of the name in his 2002 book, Rolling With The StonesWhen the Stones cut “Stoned”—or “Stones,” according to early misprinted pressings—as the B-side to “I Wanna Be Your Man” Brian Jones suggested crediting it to Nanker/Phelge. The entire band would share writing royalties. Phelge came from Edith Grove flatmate Jimmy Phelge, while a Nanker was a revolting face that band members, Brian in particular, would pull.

Thus anything credited to Nanker Phelge refers to a Mick Jagger/Brian Jones/Keith Richards/Charlie Watts/Bill Wyman collaborative composition. The ASCAP files for the very earliest Nanker Phelge compositions also list early Rolling Stones member Ian Stewart (also known as “the sixth Stone”) as a co-author covered by the pseudonym.

As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.

You Turn Me On; An Ian Whitcomb One-Off

Whoa… what we have here is, the one-off’s one-off! Ian Whitcomb certainly made the most of this one! He wrote You Turn Me On (The Turn On Song) during the height of the tune in, turn on and drop out era. Coming from a total musical background, he definitely knew exactly what he was doing and never took himself seriously (except business-wise obviously) for a second. Still going today, he is, very successfully, leading a resurgence of the ukulele.

When it comes to 3-chord structures, it simply doesn’t get much better! This tune really has it all going. Sign of the time, good shtick, AND the playing is great! I love the rhythm section’s interaction, especially the drummer, with the very erratic vocal (apparently Ian was a founding member of Bluesville [credited as band on record],Dublin’s first rhythm and blues band),

Soooo, tune in, turn on, drop out and click on Ian Whitcomb‘s You Turn Me On (The Turn On Song) as we go back to 1965…

Personnel As Determined: Ian Whitcomb vocal, piano.

As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.

Tobacco Road; A Nashville Teens One-Off

Notice The “Demonstration Copy Not For Sale” On The Label. I Used To Love Collecting These.

The Nashville Teens’ (I still love the name) version of Tobacco Road is the one I am really connected to. Written by John D. Loudermilk, the tune is a mega standard; it’s the tune that the Nashville Teens are remembered for.

The Nashville Teens: “The British Group With The American Name”.

First off, that boom boom m’boom hollowed out bass throb is killer. Then add the walking bass line to the chorus and you’ve got me a groovin’! The rocky piano and those great vocals help to compile this effort into the great one-off it is. Thanks to the great producer Mickie Most, the Teens‘ performance of Tobacco Road will be duly noted!

When you click on this one, you are stomping back to 1964 and revisiting a very class(ic)(y) offering from the mighty British Invasion…

Personnel As Determined: Sharp & Ray Phillips vocals; John Hawken piano; Mick Dunford guitar; Pete Shannon Harris bass; Dave Maine drums.

As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.

Have I The Right?; A Honeycombs One-Off

Ah Yes, Those Great British Import 45s That Had The Built-In Cookies!

The freshness of this song’s over all production enters your ears like an aural vision of the group’s name. Synonymous; especially when you know the name was formed from the drummer’s name Honey Lantree. That’s right, a GIRL drummer in 1964! I was 12 years old and I loved her. I am not sure if I loved her because she was a girl or because she played a 5 piece drum kit, unusual for the times, but…

Have I The Right? written by Ken Howard and Alan Blaikley (who went on to manage them), sold over a million and unfortunately was followed by only moderate success. That line-up folded in 1966; but what a ride!

Those Crazy Honeycombs (with that 5 piece drum kit)!

I love Denis D’Ell‘s lead vocal. It sounds like he just sucked on an ultra heavy breath mint! When you add that trebly, fast tremolo of the guitars stinging its way through the incessant pounding of Honey‘s drumming, you get this very interesting sonic toe tapper (I have even read that the whole effort was just ever so slightly sped up).

 ‘Nuff said. Click on and let this tune, with Honey Lantree at the helm, pound it’s way into those 1964 memories of yore…

Personnel As Determined: Denis D’Ell lead singer; Martin Murray rhythm guitar; Alan Ward lead guitar; John Lantree bass guitar; Honey (Ann Margot) Lantree drums.

As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.

What I Am; An Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians One-Off

Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians back In The Day

Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians Back In The Day

I love this definitely, one of a kind, one-off. What I Am is an organic ramble that feels and sounds, well… right. Written by Edie Brickell and Kenny Withrow, the single (from the album Shooting Rubber Bands At The Stars) was rated 77 out of VH1‘s top 100 one-hit wonders of all time.

Cover Art: Edie Brickell

Cover Art: Edie Brickell

Listen to her phrasing; it almost goes out of tune at points without actually doing so. I never get sick of her performance on this cut.

So sit back, dig on and groove as Edie Brickell screams at you without raising her voice…

Personnel As Deternined: Edie Brickell vocals; Kenny Withrow guitar; Brad Houser bass; Chris Whitten drums.

As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.

Zanzibar; A Billy Joel One-Off

I love everything about Billy Joel‘s work. His tune-smithing, playing and vocal abilities are truly American treasures. 52nd Street is definitely my fave Joel album and definitely because of its inclusion of Zanzibar.

Billy Joel’s composition and arrangement of Zanzibar was ambitious, bold AND very singular in approach. A real stand alone not only because of its unusual form but also, its jazz flavor.

I have heard live versions since and although I have enjoyed them memory music-wise, none emit the energy of the original album’s session. I believe the players, Billy Joel‘s time of life/career along with producer Phil Ramone, in combination, created the magic of the album’s cut.

So, point, click and enjoy the marvelous team effort that came together for this classic Billy Joel offering…

Personnel As Determined: Billy Joel vocal, piano; Doug Stegmeyer bass; Liberty DeVitto drums; Steve Khan guitar; Freddie Hubbard flugelhorn, trumpet; Mike Mainieri vibraphone, marimba;

As far as the creative side of my musical persona is concerned, I am the sum total of what I have experienced musically. The emotion, the energy and the memories of music collected in my ear have shaped who I am as a composer, player and dreamer.