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MJ

Jimmy Ienner re: Berries Live

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MJ   

I was reading Overnight Sensation for the 20th time and the interview on Page 152 where Jimmy Ienner when asked if he ever got to see the Raspberries perform live was "yes and I was never satisfied, because I just didn't feel that they came up to their records."...... then he says "I really never felt the personality come to life as much as it was postruing and I was never a fan of them live." This really perplexes me as from what I have seen live, via old tv/video footage and the special edition broadcast from Germany... I have always thought they kick ass live, and the studio albums were kind of sanitized.... Now I never got to see them live out on the road in the 70's - can some of you give me your opinions of what you saw live and your opinions? P.S. On the special edition I saw someone in the front row during that Edgewater Park gig and they had a pretty damn big movie camera.... do we know who that was and can we get a copy of it??? LMAO.....

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MJ   

Oh and as I am asking questions - I might as well throw this one out - who is the blonde guy who plays the melotron and the horns on Don Kirshner's R.C. and then he's in the footage outside buying the red hat with Wally out on the street? I never see his name mentioned - just curious.....

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MAM   

Well, I realize that Mr. Ienner has WAY more bunches of experience and clout and whathaveyou in this business than I do, but in MY opinion he didn't do Raspberries justice on their recordings. I saw them many times live and you were right, they did kick ass, big time. The personalities definately came through in live performances. Just look at the live clip of Party's Over from the Kirshner show, THAT'S rock n roll in my book. As much as I cherish every album and every song, I would have loved to have had someone else record them. Others have expressed the same sentiments in the past. The original recordings have no power. Of course the songs do, but those in charge of making the recordings wimped out in my opinion. Thank god for the LOSS release. As stated before, it's the first time we've had a chance to hear/feel the power of the bass & drums. The records never properly represented Raspberries. Recordings should be a good representation of the band, not the other way around. Side 3 came close, but was still weak from massive compression/limiting.

Again, just my 2.75 cents worth.

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marvin   
MJ said:

Oh and as I am asking questions - I might as well throw this one out - who is the blonde guy who plays the melotron and the horns on Don Kirshner's R.C. and then he's in the footage outside buying the red hat with Wally out on the street? I never see his name mentioned - just curious...

Pretty sure that's Opie.

Marv

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GP   

Well said MAM. Great songs, great performances but something got lost in the translation at the recording studio level. I've always wondered why the albums didn't sound much better sonically. It's a shame. I am glad we have the new live CD. Who would have thought a live album would sound so much better than studio recordings. My hats off to Mark Linett!

I think Mr Ienner's ego probably couldn't let himself give his stamp of approval to the boys live performances since he didn't have a hand in it.

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darlene   

I had always heard that one of the reasons he loved Raspberries instantly was their fantastic energy, electricity and playfulness in live performances. Was I dreaming that???

:) --Darlene

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MJ   

Yes it seems he was making contradictory statements lol. P.S. I found a website with Opie Smith on it - boy has he changed lol.

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ronno57   

MJ, The blonde guy on the mellotron was Scott McCarl, the Raspberries bass player at the time. The song was "Starting Over" and Wally Bryson played the bass on that song.

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I'm not surprised that Wally can play bass -- but I never knew him to do so w/ the band. I knew that Eric was credited w/ playing bass on the 1st album. I'm sure many of them can play multiple instruments.

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marvin   

Opie's last name is O'Brien.

I had the chance to meet him at the 1st reunion show, and he's certainly full of great stories, and an interesting person.

Marv

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Opie was amazing on the "Side 3" tour when I saw him play in 1973 (mellotron and sax, as I recall).

Opie and Wally Bryson recorded the original version (different from The Raspberries "Refreshed" mix) of Wally's "When Is Your Dream" in 1993 on the CD "Yellow Pills, Volume 1" --- they recorded as "Wallop" on that album. It remains one of my all-time favorite tracks because Wally sounds so much like a "#9 Dream" John Lennon on the lead vocals.

Don Krider :)

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Bill C   

Ok, my two cents. I consider myself one of the biggest fans of Raspberries, and Eric. All that aside, Maybe the recorded sound of Raspberries was intended to reflect the sound of the sixties that Raspberries tried to keep alive. Maybe Mr. Ienner thought, at the time, this was the sound they were looking for. Listening to the live CD, I love the low end and fullness of the sound, but, listen to the Bay City Rollers stuff that Ienner produced, Ienner was trying to create AM hits. That was his thing. I think, if Raspberries had a different producer they would've had a better chance at bridging that AM/FM gap. I remember friends of mine back in the 70's not liking the "weak sound" of the recordings. It was all about the low end at that time. As far as not liking them live. He may have been looking for a broader appeal from the band. Did he say he didn't like the sound live? Or did he say he didn't like the way they played the crowd? If the goal from Ienner's standpoint was to get an appeal like the Beatles or something like that. He needed outgoing, fun loving, always smiling....Hard Day's Night attitudes. I never saw the 'berries live back then, but I think Ienner had an idea what he was trying to create, the problem was, The Beatles couldn't be recreated.

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MJ   

Oooh Don - now I have more to listen to with you giving me that tidbit about Wallop lol!

Yes I did wonder myself Bill C if he meant the quality of the sound system live or if he just meant their actual playing the instruments poorly (which I personally find it impossible to imagine lol). I guess we won't know unless Mr. Ienner gives another interview and tells us what he meant lol.

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