Much has been written about Paul McCartney’s debut solo album, 1970’s McCartney. Most notably, Paul’s refusal to delay the Apple Records release in order to follow previously planned titles… like The Beatles’ Let it Be. I’ve given this record two spins from two different turntables within the last 12 hours, and though I’ll admit my experience with solo Beatles projects are gravely “less than,” I quite enjoy the playful, often unfinished rawness of McCartney. Certainly not an album that will receive heavy spinning, but a fun journey, if even for its historical significance.
We the jury find the accused, Phillip Harvey Spector, guilty on all counts… of spreading holiday cheer! What was originally dubbed as A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records back in 1963, was re-released in 1972 on Apple Records with 1) a new title, Phil Spector’s Christmas Album, and 2) a new, Christmas-killing cover depicting the legendary producer dressed as a drunken Santa Claus. Personally, I feel Art Carney’s role as loaded Santa in the Twilight Zone episode, The Night of the Meek was a little more convincing, but ol’ gunslinger Phil does a decent job.
These 13 re-imagined Christmas classics by the likes of The Ronettes, The Crystals, Darlene Love and Bob B. Soxx and the Blue Jeans are all produced by Phil Spector (obviously), and make for a fantastic, and well-rounded Christmas album. If you don’t already own it, or its 1963 original, seek it out. One can never have too many quality Christmas songs, even if their producer is a convicted murderer.
I’ve only recently begun collecting solo Beatles’ work, but my father owns just about everything, so for the next week or so, I’ll enjoy perusing through his Beatles-heavy collection and making a well-thought-out checklist.
George Harrison’s Wonderwall Music is next on the platter, but will more than likely NOT yield a post. Busy day over here… off and running!
Back when my only CDs were Gonna Make You Sweat by C+C Music Factory and Please Hammer, Don’t Hurt ‘Em by the illustrious MC Hammer, you can imagine my childish shock upon hearing Maxwell’s Silver Hammer and Polythene Pam for the first time, let alone I Want You (She’s So Heavy). It was the summer of 1992, and all I listened to, all summer, was 1969’s Abbey Road. It was a stern suggestion from my father, and was a crucial, and unforgettable introduction to the boundless universe of planet Beatle.
Needless to say, that summer changed my life. I hit the Beatles accelerator (on my VW Bug… sorry, had to) and have yet to look back.
Thanks for the scholarly advice, dad, and for opening the door to a lifetime of euphoric, and essential music. Happy birthday, Big Guy!
John Lennon is known for many things, and cloning himself and inhabiting two geographical locations at the same time is certainly one of them. Take for example the 1969 release by The Plastic Ono Band, Live Peace in Toronto 1969. Apart from being the first live album recorded by any member of the Beatles, solo or together, Live Peace in Toronto 1969 brought together the monumental talents of John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and Eric Clapton (Eric Clapton performs by courtesy of Atlantic Records).
Ok, all that is well and good… but what about this cloning nonsense you speak of? Take a look at the label. It’s an album of material that was recorded live in Toronto, Ontario, BUT, it was, apparently, also an album that was recorded in England.
Think about that for a moment. Performed in Canada… recorded in England.
Why didn’t they just record it in Canada? A fair and reasonable question. I’ll tell you why. It’s because John Lennon cloned himself and was performing live with Yoko and Mr. Slowhand while simultaneously sitting behind the boards at Apple Corps Ltd back in London. Quite an astounding feat, even for John Lennon, but anything is possible if you Imagine. See what I did there?