Friday, May 27, 2005

Download Expired

Okay here's the first song on my MP3 Blog.

The reason I decided to post this is that after watching the second episode of the BBC series Soul Deep on Sam Cooke I couldn't quite believe I hadn't realised how fantastic it was before.

It's now in the running for my fave soul tune of all time, and I think the reason is that soul music seems to reflect on the emotions of the person (and people) making it more than any other popular musical form of the 20th century, and A Change Is Gonna Come is everything that soul music could and should be. In a time when most songwriters (though they may be writing good stuff) can't seem to write about anything truly meaningful, a song like this reminds us just how amazing music really can be.

How Cooke manages to channel the pain of his race into one song I really don't know, but the song seems to be a culmination of everything that every song of the time should have been shouting about. I think you can probably see a straight long from the slave spiritual straight through to this song, and it's just as affecting. With a lot of the mindless music coming out of Black America in the last 10 years it's nice to have someone actually singing about his situation in a constructive and passionate way. God knows there's still enough equality between Black and white in America to make songs like this worth singing, and it would be nice to see a few more people trying.

Some things to notice: the INCREDIBLE orchestral backing, the (amazing) voice, those lyrics. so relaly, just about everything.

Here's some info I nicked from another site:

Written by: Cooke
Produced by: Hugo Peretti, Luigi Creatore
Released: Dec. '64 on RCA
Charts: 7 weeks
Top spot: No. 31

In 1963, Sam Cooke -- America's first great soul singer and one of the most successful pop acts in the nation, with eighteen Top Thirty hits since 1957 -- heard a song that profoundly inspired and disturbed him: Bob Dylan's "Blowin' in the Wind." What struck Cooke was the challenge implicit in Dylan's anthem. "Jeez," Cooke mused at the time, "a white boy writing a song like that?"

Cooke's response, "A Change Is Gonna Come," recorded on January 30th, 1964, with a sumptuous orchestral arrangement by Rene Hall, was more personal: in its first-person language and the experiences that preceded its creation. On October 8th, 1963, while on tour in the South, Cooke and members of his entourage were arrested in Shreveport, Louisiana, for disturbing the peace after they tried to register at a white motel -- an incident reflected in the song's third verse. And Cooke's mourning for his eighteen-month-old son, Vincent, who died that June in a drowning accident, resonates in the final verse: "There have been times that I thought/I couldn't last for long."

On December 11th, 1964, nearly a year after he recorded the song, Cooke was fatally shot at a Los Angeles motel. Two weeks later, "A Change Is Gonna Come" was released as a single -- Cooke's farewell address and final hit.

Anyway hope you enjoy the song if you haven't heard it, and if you have you should just take the time to listen to it one more time and marvel at how fucking fantastic it all is. Wow.


Anonymous Anne Nonimus said...


Hi from Niagara Falls, Canada.

Hope you'll have fun with your new 'music' blog.

I'm enjoying your first pick even as I write. I checked your profile and noticed you picked 'Mulholland Drive' as one of your fave flicks.

Are you the one who actually got that movie?

Anne Nonimus

12:31 pm, May 28, 2005  
Blogger Jamie Summers said...

hey there. glad you liked the song.

mulholland seems amazingly confusing at first but if you watch it a few times it's not so hard. the best way to think about it is that most of the first half is an idealised dream of going to hollywood and succeeding, but as the film goes on it starts to be interrupted every now and then, and then totally replaced by the reality which is that she totally failed. of course as with any lynch there are bits that don't fit in with that interpretation but i think it works quite well.

5:36 pm, May 28, 2005  
Anonymous smeghead said...

Found your site while lurking around DiS. How good is Sam Cooke! Have you heard the Live at the Harlem Square Club record?

3:21 am, January 06, 2007  
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3:13 am, February 01, 2007  

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