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Category Archives: male vocalist

“Robert Parker Barefootin’ …1966”

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Barefootin'” is a 1965 song performed by Robert Parker. “Barefootin'” was arranged and produced by Wardell Quezergue in 1965. The song reached No. 2 on the U.S. R&B chart and No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100. Parker’s record label claimed the record sold over one million copies.[1] The track also reached #24 in the UK Singles Chart in August 1966.[2]

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“LET IT BE” …..SONG by the Beatles

“LET IT BE” …..SONG by the Beatles

TOWER AND FLIGHTS

Let It Be is a song by The Beatles, released in March 6th 1970 as a single, and as the title track of their album Let It Be. Although credited to Lennon/McCartney it is generally accepted to be a Paul McCartney composition.
The single reached #1 in the U.S., Australia, Italy, Norway and Switzerland and #2 in the UK.

It was the final single released by the Beatles while the band was still active. The song was played in the ending of the song, “The Complete Beatles.”

LET IT BE – (Lyrics)

When I
find myself in times of trouble,
Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom,
let it be
And in my hour of darkness she
is standing right in front of me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be
Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be
Whisper words of wisdom, let…

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“The Hollies – He Ain’t Heavy He’s My Brother”

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He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother” is a popular music ballad written by Bobby Scott and Bob Russell. Originally recorded by Kelly Gordon in 1969, the song became a worldwide hit for The Hollies later that year and again for Neil Diamond in 1970. It has been covered by many artists in subsequent years. The Hollies’ and Rufus Wainwright’s versions of the song were featured in the film Zoolander.

Origin of the song

Scott and Russell had been introduced to each other by Johnny Mercer, at a California nightclub. Although Russell was dying of lymphoma and the pair met in person only three times, they managed to collaborate on the song.

Origin of the title

In 1884, James Wells, Moderator of the United Free Church of Scotland, in his book The Parables of Jesus tells the story of a little girl carrying a big baby boy. Seeing her struggling, someone asked if she wasn’t tired. With surprise she replied, “No, he’s not heavy; he’s my brother.”[3]

In a 1918 publication by Ralph Waldo Trine titled The Higher Powers of Mind and Spirit, he relates the following anecdote: “Do you know that incident in connection with the little Scottish girl? She was trudging along, carrying as best she could a boy younger, but it seemed almost as big as she herself, when one remarked to her how heavy he must be for her to carry, when instantly came the reply: ‘He’s na heavy. He’s mi brither.'”[4]

The first editor of Kiwanis magazine, Roe Fulkerson, published a column in September 1924 carrying the title “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother”, the first use of the phrase exactly as it is rendered in the song title.

In the 1940s, the words, adapted as “He ain’t heavy, Father, he’s my brother”, were taken as a slogan for Boys Town children’s home by founder Father Edward Flanagan.[5]

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 Leon Russell THAT’S WHY I’M SINGING THIS SONG TO YOU”

 Leon Russell THAT’S WHY I’M SINGING THIS SONG TO YOU”

Leon Russell (born Claude Russell Bridges, April 2, 1942) is an American musician and songwriter, who has recorded as a session musician, sideman, and maintained a solo career in music.

Overview


Career

Russell began his musical career at the age of 14 in the nightclubs of Tulsa, Oklahoma. He and his group the Starlighters, which included J.J. Cale, Leo Feathers, Chuck Blackwell and Johnny Williams,[7] were instrumental in creating the style of music known as the Tulsa Sound. After settling in Los Angeles, he studied guitar with James Burton. Known mostly as a session musician early in his career, as a solo artist he has crossed genres to include rock and roll, blues, and gospel music, playing with artists as varied as Jan & Dean, Gary Lewis, George Harrison, Gram Parsons, Delaney Bramlett, Ringo Starr, Doris Day, Elton John, Ray Charles, Eric Clapton, the Byrds, Barbra Streisand, the Beach Boys, the Ventures, Willie Nelson, Badfinger, Tijuana Brass, Frank Sinatra, the Band, Bob Dylan, J.J. Cale, B.B. King,[8] Dave Mason, Glen Campbell, Joe Cocker and the Rolling Stones.[9]

As a first call studio musician in Los Angeles, Russell played on many of the most popular songs of the 1960s, including some by the Byrds, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, Bobby “Boris” Pickett, and Herb Alpert. He can be seen in 1964’s T.A.M.I. Show, playing piano with “the Wrecking Crew” (an informal name for the top L.A. session musicians of the 1960s), sporting short, dark, slicked-back hair, in contrast to his later look.[9] Soon after, he was hired as Snuff Garrett’s assistant/creative developer, playing on numerous #1 singles, including “This Diamond Ring” by Gary Lewis and the Playboys.[4] He wrote or co-wrote two hit songs for Gary Lewis and Playboys: “Everybody Loves a Clown” (which hit the Billboard Top 40 on October 9, 1965, remaining on the chart for eight weeks and rising to number 4) and “She’s Just My Style” (which hit Billboard′s Top 40 on December 18, 1965, and rose to number 3).[10] He played xylophone and bells on the 1966 single “The Joker Went Wild”, sung by Brian Hyland and penned by Bobby Russell (no relation to Leon). He also worked sessions with Dorsey Burnette and Glen Campbell on Campbell’s 1967 album Gentle on My Mind, where he was credited as “Russell Bridges” on piano,[citation needed] and arranged and conducted the 1966 easy listening album Rhapsodies for Young Lovers by the Midnight String Quartet.

In 1969 and 1970, Russell worked as a member of Delaney & Bonnie and Friends, playing guitar and keyboards on their albums and as part of the touring band. Here he met George Harrison and others with whom he would work over the next couple of years.

Russell’s first commercial success as a songwriter came when Joe Cocker recorded the song “Delta Lady” for his 1969 album, Joe Cocker![9] The album, co-produced and arranged by Russell, reached #11 on the Billboard 200.[11] Russell went on to organize—using many of the musicians from Delaney & Bonnie’s band—and perform in the 1970 Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour.[12] “Superstar”, co-written by Russell, was sung by Rita Coolidge on that tour and album. It later proved a success for the Carpenters, Luther Vandross, Sonic Youth and other performers.

During the Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour, Shelter Records released his 1970 solo album Leon Russell, which included the first recording of “A Song for You”. This has become one of his best-known songs, with versions released by more than 40 different artists including the Carpenters, Ray Charles, Peggy Lee, Willie Nelson, Helen Reddy, Whitney Houston, Elkie Brooks, Amy Winehouse, Donny Hathaway, and Christina Aguilera. Both the Carpenters and the Temptations named an album after the song. Also in 1970, Russell played piano on Dave Mason’s album, Alone Together, most notably on the song “Sad and Deep as You”.

In December 1970 “Leon Russell and friends” recorded the “Homewood Sessions”, broadcast as an “unscripted and unrehearsed” one-hour TV special on KCET TV (Los Angeles) and later re-broadcast several times on the Public Broadcasting System.

During the 1960s and early 1970s, Russell owned the Church Recording Studio on 3rd Street (renamed Leon Russell Road in 2010 by The Pearl District Association) in Tulsa. http://thislandpress.com/05/09/2012/the-making-of-leon-russell-road/?page_num=1. His former home on Grand Lake, Oklahoma, contained a dining room table and chairs made from church pews taken out of the church when it was turned into a studio.

In March, 1971, Russell produced some tracks for Bob Dylan, who was experimenting with his sound. The sessions produced the single “Watching the River Flow” and “When I Paint My Masterpiece”, both of which prominently featured Russell’s gospel-flavored piano.

During the summer of 1971, at the invitation of former Delaney & Bonnie band-mate George Harrison, Russell played piano on Badfinger’s third album, Straight Up. The piano part complemented Pete Ham and George Harrison’s dual slide guitars on Badfinger’s “Day After Day”. The Straight Up sessions were interrupted when many of the musicians left for New York City to participate in the Concert For Bangladesh, at which Russell performed a medley of the songs “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” and “Young Blood” and sang a verse on Harrison’s “Beware of Darkness.”[9] Russell (on bass guitar and vocals) and Harrison (on electric guitar and vocals) also backed up Bob Dylan’s set.

A busy year for Russell, 1971 also brought the Shelter release of Leon Russell and the Shelter People and Asylum Choir II (which was co-produced by Marc Benno). That same year, Russell played on recording sessions with B.B. King, Eric Clapton, and Bob Dylan.

Russell helped blues guitarist Freddie King to revive his career by collaborating with him on three of his albums for Shelter during the early 1970s. During those same years, Russell helped himself to a nice share of what was then called the “County and Western” market, recording and performing under the moniker Hank Wilson,[13] and was a regular performer at Gilley’s Club, the Pasadena, Texas, honkytonk made famous in Urban Cowboy.

Russell in 2009

1972 was highlighted by a large-scale concert tour by Russell and his “Shelter People” entourage. A live performance was recorded in California at the Long Beach Arena on August 28, 1972, and was released as the Leon Live album. In November 1972, Billboard cited Russell as a top concert draw and reported the ’72 tour gross at almost $3 million.[4]

Russell’s song, “This Masquerade”, the B-side of his 1972 hit single “Tight Rope”, went on to be recorded by numerous artists, including Helen Reddy and The Carpenters.[14] George Benson’s version of the song reached #10 on the Billboard Hot 100. Leon and then-wife Mary Russell were musical guests on the May 15, 1976, episode of Saturday Night Live in its first season, hosted by Dyan Cannon. In 1976 Russell was Grammy Award nomination for Song of the Year in 1977.[15]

In 1979, Russell and Willie Nelson had a number-one hit on the Billboard country music chart with their duet of “Heartbreak Hotel”. Russell spent the next two years touring with the New Grass Revival, and released two more albums with Paradise before the label folded.[9]

After a number of years of reduced prominence, Russell’s career was rejuvenated when Elton John sought him out for a new project.[16] In November 2009, Russell worked together with John and Bernie Taupin on The Union, a double album record credited equally to both Russell and John. Recorded in February 2010 and produced by T-Bone Burnett,[17] the CD was released on October 19, 2010.[18] The recordings were interrupted in January 2010 by a health scare: Russell was hospitalized and underwent surgery for a brain fluid leak, as well as treatment for heart failure and pneumonia.[19] On April 2, 2011, Russell and John performed together as the musical guests on Saturday Night Live. Rolling Stone placed the album in third place on its list of the 30 Best Albums of 2010.[20] A couple of months later, Russell announced plans for a solo LP, although no specifics were given, and in October 2010 Russell and John embarked on the Union Tour.

Russell’s current[when?] band line-up includes long-time bass player Jackie Wessel, Brandon Holder on drums, multi-instrumentalist Beau Charron, and grandson Payton Goodner on percussion.

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“Werewolves Of London”

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“Werewolves of London” is a rock song composed by LeRoy Marinell, Waddy Wachtel, and Warren Zevon and performed by Zevon. Included on Zevon’s 1978 album Excitable Boy, it featured accompaniment by drummer Mick Fleetwood and bassist John McVie of Fleetwood Mac. The single was released by Asylum Records as catalog number 45472. It entered the American Top 40 charts on April 22, 1978, reaching number 21, and remained in the Top 40 for six weeks.

According to Wachtel, “Werewolves of London” was “the hardest song to get down in the studio I’ve ever worked on.”[1] However, Wachtel “laid down his solo in one take, before he’d even had a chance to partake of the bump of coke and drink he’d placed in front of him.”[2] According to Jackson Browne (who was the producer for the recording), “Werewolves of London” along with “Excitable Boy” were written while work was being done on the album that preceded Excitable Boy but were not included on that album in favor of other songs.[3] The song is in the key of G major, with a three-chord progression that runs throughout.[4]

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“The Beatles: Yesterday”

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Yesterday

” is a song by English rock band

the Beatles

written by Paul McCartney (credited to Lennon–McCartney) first released on the album Help! in the United Kingdom in August 1965.

Yesterday

“, with the B-side “Act Naturally”, was released as a single in the United States in September 1965. While it topped the American chart in October the song also hit the British top 10 in a cover version by Matt Monro. The song also appeared on the UK EP “Yesterday” in March 1966 and the Beatles’ US album Yesterday and Today released in June 1966.

McCartney’s vocal and acoustic guitar, together with a string quartet, essentially made for the first solo performance of the band. It remains popular today with more than 2,200 cover versions[3] and is one of the most covered songs in the history of recorded music.[note 1]”Yesterday” was voted the best song of the 20th century in a 1999 BBC Radio 2 poll of music experts and listeners and was also voted the No. 1 pop song of all time by MTV and Rolling Stone magazine the following year. In 1997, the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI) asserts that it was performed over seven million times in the 20th century alone.

Yesterday

” is a melancholy ballad about the break-up of a relationship. McCartney is the only member of

the Beatles

to appear on the recording. The final recording was so different from other works by the Beatles that the band members vetoed the release of the song as a single in the United Kingdom. However, it was issued as a single in the US in September 1965 and later released as a single in the UK in 1976.

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“Percy Sledge – When a Man Loves a Woman (1966)”

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Percy Tyrone Sledge (November 25, 1940 – April 14, 2015) was an African American R&B, soul, gospel, and traditional pop singer. He is best known for the song “When a Man Loves a Woman”, a No. 1 hit on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B singles charts in 1966. It was awarded a million-selling, Gold-certified disc from the RIAA.

Having previously worked as a hospital orderly in the early 1960s, Sledge achieved his strongest success in the late 1960s and early 1970s with a series of emotional soul songs. In later years, Sledge received the Rhythm and Blues Foundation’s Career Achievement Award. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2005.

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