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Everything posted by PaulMaul

  1. This thread illustrates that music is very subjective, no matter how analytical critics and reviewers try to be. It's true I never heard a Raspberries song until 2007, so obviously I'm coming at this from a very different perspective than those who were on the case in 1972. No matter how you slice it, if Kansas produces a 9 minute song with multiple parts, which is well conceived, melodic, and beautifully played, it will be self-indulgent, bombastic and overblown. If Eric does the same, those negatives all become positives. I guess it's just human nature. If you love an artist, they can do little wrong, and if you decide you don't like an artist, they can do little right. C'est la vie!
  2. I can already see this going the way of my comments on Paul McCartney. I hope this doesn't turn into me thinking it's a bad song. I like it in many ways, it just doesn't hang together as well for me as it does for, well, everyone else here.
  3. Don't worry, I love Starting Over. As a matter of fact, the only reason I even consider it noteworthy when I find an EC song in any way flawed is because for the most part they are almost preternaturally perfect.
  4. When I recently listed my Raspberries/EC Top 20 and didn't include this song, there were a couple of incredulous reactions. I want to explain why it's not one of my favorites, because I like discussing music. Obviously, I intend no disrespect in anything I say here. It's just my honest take. SHORT VERSION: in my opinion, the song is much longer than it needs to be. As a result, it is less focused and less coherent than I believe it could have been had it been streamlined. DETAILS: I think the first 30 seconds of piano intro are unnecessary. The song could jump right into the first verse. I also think the piano interludes between verses are unnecessary padding, and slow the song down. After the second verse, there are actually two repeats of the interlude. I think one would be enough to transition into the second part of the song. So this first part could be 1:10 shorter with no loss to me. The second part is my favorite part of the song, and everything is A-OK with me right up through "every time I think of you and him together I break down and cry." I would pretty much end the song there, maybe with a fade-out. The part that begins around 5:50 was great when re-worked into "Marathon Man", but seems unrelated to the rest of the song. The part that begins around 6:30 would have made a nice piece of a Renaissance song, but again seems unrelated to the rest. The last minute of fadeout seems over-long too. I think this song would be among my absolute favorites at around 4:40. At 8 minutes, it just seems too long and frankly, seems to have some of the attributes of progressive rock songs that many around here deride. Differing opinions welcomed.
  5. I love Mar. Modern celebs could sure learn a thing or two from her classy behavior towards fans and admirers. Much like Eric Carmen, no matter how she might feel that day or what's going on in her personal life, she always comes off as patient, respectful and sincerely grateful to her fans.
  6. Fantastic post! I almost feel like I was right there with you. And the Bay City Rollers! The only band so cool they were on a Wacky Packages wrapper!
  7. "Me and my brother borrowed money from mother, we knew what we had to do... We went downstairs past the barber and gymnasium and got our arms tatooed."
  8. I just looked at the Raspberries Top 10 list I posted a year ago, and I had "I Can Remember" at #7 (above Starting Over, Overnight Sensation and Go All The Way). I wouldn't rate it as high now, but arguably I might like it enough for it to displace something in the 15-20 range of the list.
  9. Nope, I listened to it. I know it's a common favorite, just like "Boats", but neither of them is that high on my list. That's why these discussions are interesting. There are parts of "I Can Remember" that I like, but the total package doesn't work for me as much as it does for some others. Diff'rent Strokes.
  10. This has been in the works for 6 months. I've been considering my choices carefully. And (cue the drumroll)....here it is! My top 20 favorite songs from both the Raspberries and the EC solo catalog...in reverse order. In many cases I can't explain my preferences. It's just my gut feeling about what I like best. Since posting my 'berries top 10, I've done a few revisions, so this list takes precedence. Without further ado: 20. Nowhere to Hide -- the only one of the "core 5" piano songs from "Boats" that I really like 19. That's Rock 'n' Roll -- one of the catchiest choruses ever! 18. Overnight Sensation (Hit Record) 17. Ecstacy 16. Cruisin' Music -- love the backing vocals! 15. She Did It -- I'm surprised that I like this song as much as I do, as it's not really of a genre I would generally go for. But it just sounds so great! 14. All By Myself -- kind of surprised it's this low, could be burnout 13. Go All The Way -- I've never been as high on this as most. But I still love it! 12. I Saw the Light -- I love the simplicity of the ascending run in the chorus. 11. Desperate Fools - truly an underappreciated (not by you all, of course) gem 10. Starting Over 9. My Girl -- I think this may be the most melodically interesting EC song, and the chorus is fantastic. Possibly the most impressive backing vocals in the catalog 8. Marathon Man -- I like it more than most for some reason -- very powerful, my favorite song on "Boats" 7. Someday -- fanastic wall of sound! Not crazy about the "Change of Heart" album, but the few songs I like, I love! 6. I Want to Be With You 5. Tonight 4. Nobody Knows 3. Sunrise -- Most of the top of my list is 'berries dominated, but I love this song. Absolutely a triumph. The moment in the introduction "when the sun rises" is breathtaking. 2. If You Change Your Mind -- some of the most creative guitar parts in the catalog, and brilliantly played too! 1. Let's Pretend -- my favorite EC melody, my favorite EC vocal performance, my favorite EC song, period! There you have it.
  11. Here's how it works: Let's say on the first day of the season the Yanks play the Sox, and the Yanks win. The Yanks are 1-0 and the Sox 0-1. In this case Boston is 1 game back. In baseball, that means they have lost one more game and won one fewer. If the next day, the Yankees lose and the Red Sox don't play, the Yankees are 1-1 and the Sox are still 0-1. Now the Sox are only 1/2 game back, because they have won one fewer game, but have the same number of losses. That's how it works, not saying it makes perfect sense.
  12. While I can't say that any Non-Eric Raspberries song is among my favorites, "Might As Well" is definitely my favorite by Wally.
  13. Look no further! Here's a nice Harry Lucey story complete with a nice instrumental score!
  14. Hah! No, the truth is it takes me a long time to process new music. I put "Third Day" in my car and I've been slowly listening to it. There are a few tracks I liked on the first couple of listens ("Oh No Not Susan") but I usually need to listen to the whole album at least 5 or 6 times before I really like anything. The same thing happened to me with the first EC solo album. It's now one of my all-time favorites, but still the first couple of times through I had to force myself to listen, because it's so much easier to listen to the familiar. I'll get to all of them eventually. Not sure whether ELO will ever be among my all-time faves as a band, but I'll give them a chance!
  15. I've been an Archie fan since I was about 10 years old. Over the years I amassed hundreds of the Archie "digest" collections. Since the stories from the '40's through the '70's are uncredited, I never knew who the creators were. However, in my opinion, three artistic giants are almost entirely responsible for all the quality Archie output from the '50's through the '70's: Harry Lucey on Archie, Samm Schwartz on Jughead and Dan DeCarlo on Betty and Veronica. Lucey in particular is my favorite. He sure had a way of drawing those girls!
  16. I haven't gotten around to pulling the trigger yet but it's on my to do list!
  17. The subject of the re-make of "The Great Gatsby" came up on the facebook page of one of my elementary school buddies, so naturally I threw in an unsolicited plug for "Boats." This person has no connection to EC fandom, but this was her reply: "Yes, Eric Carmen was quite the romantic mush and quite dreamy too! He wrote some of my favorite songs." So there you have it, another positive review!
  18. Just curious, is there anyway of purchasing the HTML version but being able to read it in a web-based way, rather than having to download it to a single computer? It would be nice to be able to read it from home, work, or wherever. I ask because it looked like there is a login feature on smashwords. Or is that jut for account management?
  19. Yeah, that's exactly my question. They really don't sound like normal backing vocals, it's very hard to pick out the individual vocal lines. Very unique.
  20. Not sure if this is a mockup or what, but if legit it would be worth about as much as the rest of the stuff on earth combined.
  21. Just about! And what I'm proudest of is that they're all in nice condition like these. It's taken a lot of wheeling and dealing and time. I still need a 4th series box, that's the only one I haven't found in nice enough shape yet. The crazy part is, some of these display boxes are likely 10 times rarer than Action Comics #1, but the demand is so much lower that the prices are tolerable, if not cheap.... Sometimes I feel bad that I put so much effort into collecting what amounts to garbage....but I get a real kick out of it, so I guess that's all that matters!
  22. Do you detect a pattern here?
  23. Is payment by money order acceptable?
  24. I just popped in the first Angel CD on my way to the supermarket. I haven't listened to it in probably 20 years. I do like it a lot, though the way the keyboards are used makes it seem a bit dated. One thing I never noticed is how the band Triumph owes their career to this album. I've never heard any band borrow another band's sound so completely. Even though Angel never really hit it BIG, they should be given their due as very influential in many ways. Their look obviously foreshadows hair bands of the '80's. I hear rumblings of what Journey would do a couple of years later with Steve Perry in some of this album. They really deserve credit.
  25. For fans of the hard rock band Angel (and I know there are several here), BGO records (the same company that recently released Eric Carmen's first three solo albums in one package) released a couple of years ago a similar package containing the first two Angel albums. It's really nice, with lots of historical liner notes. It's on Amazon for only $15 or so. A real bargain, pick it up! EDIT: I now see there's a similar package with the 3rd and 4th Angel albums, also available for only $15. Here's what they look like:
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