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Everything posted by PaulMaul

  1. Don't be so gullible! I've heard that Eric actually passed away after the "Side 3" album. The Raspberries knew this would spell curtains for the band, so they used a replacement. Notice on the cover of "Starting Over," Eric's picture is lower than those of the other members, symbolizing his burial. Also, the title of the album "Change of Heart" refers to the failed heart transplant that spelled the end. Come on, the clues are all there....
  2. Speaking of "Someday", I love the lyric: "Someday, when I'm cool". For someone who isn't "cool", that "someday"...well, as we learn in IWTBWY..."Someday's a long time."
  3. Love this song, another perfect pop creation. In the middle part, where it says: "I've been tryin' every trick I know..." it sounds to me like the next line is: "..but she still wants him...." as opposed to she still "walks in," which is the way it appears both on this site and on the new 3-album collection. "Wants him" seems to make more sense and also rhymes better. What's the verdict?
  4. I know you don't have the ability to separate your biases and preferences from an objective assessment, but I never give up hope. So, while Rush is nothing like the Beatles, I like to think this track contains some creative and imaginative (not to mention technically amazing) basslines:
  5. Reading some of these responses, you'd think I'd said the Beatles suck and McCartney is a hack. The Beatles are my favorite band. The only youtube videos I've posted on facebook in the last several months are by the Beatles and the Raspberries. I have immense love and respect for the Beatles and their music. The irony is, in some circles I travel in, I'm the one constantly defending and promoting the Beatles. The only reason this whole controversy began was because I thought a few things were interesting to consider and discuss: a.) what were different strengths musicians/performers/songwriters might or might not possess b.) which musicians had them all While it might seem like a meaningless distinction to some, there is a big difference between writing a part for an instrument and performing it. In classical music, there are extremely accomplished musicians who have never composed anything in their lives. Their strengths lie in aspects of performing: phrasing, technical mastery, whatever else. Granted, in rock music, the distinction is less obvious because so many are filling both roles. Writing an awesome bass part (say) for a song is arguably more important than performing it, as it requires more creativity. AS EC so eloquently pointed out recently, Paul McCartney writing an awesome bass part for "Day Tripper" would not in itself merit a writing credit, so we'd have to include this in arranging, or give it a separate category altogether. However you slice it, it has nothing to do with performing/playing. Paul McCartney, John Lennon and Pete Townshend may in fact, even strictly as performer/players, be top notch. If that's the way the majority feels, so be it. I'm really not interested in turning this into a negative/argument thread, I'm just interested in who people feel meet this lofty criterion.
  6. Scouring the internet for discussions of the "best bass players" solidifies my point. All of the praise Paul McCartney gets has to do with being "innovative," "melodic," etc. These are all attributes of his compositional skills. They have nothing to do with playing. Let's be precise in separating playing from composing.
  7. Sorry, I've lost you. "A good guitar player can learn practically anything." OK, then if you think Lennon is a good guitar player, do you think he could have learned complex classical pieces? I don't. I don't think he had the technical training. I don't understand why it's an insult to suggest that the Beatles weren't great technical players. They were flawless on almost every other level. Why can't Neil Peart be a better drummer than Ringo without it rocking everyone's world? The Beatles didn't need to be the best technical musicians to be arguably the best band ever. I just listened to "Rain." As expected it's a fantastic song. I don't hear anything from Paul that couldn't be duplicated by hundreds of bass players. Sorry, I don't see anything here that qualifies as virtuosity.
  8. Let's see: Guitar Pennywhistle Great Highland Bagpipe Look, it's all in how you define things. To me, if someone is a technically excellent player, then it would be difficult for other players to imitate their performance effectively. That's all I mean by technical excellence. Please, take composing and writing out of it, if you haven't.
  9. Listen, I love the Beatles, and I'm not trying to start an argument. But I hear all the time that Paul is one of the best bass players ever. And I just wonder how that's being concluded? I'm limiting this "tool" to sheer technical excellence on an instrument. Please cite a Beatles song that illustrates excellent technical bass playing by Paul (not writing a bass part, or writing a song). I disagree with you completely, learning a classical piece is exactly the kind of thing that illustrates technical excellence. Forget about songwriting, that's a completely different category. The one wildcard I guess is what you consider "technical excellence." It's obvious to me that Geddy Lee is a better "technical" bass player than Paul McCartney, but I'm sure you will laugh at that, so I'm not sure how to argue.
  10. Billy Joel fits the bill, I think.
  11. I figured many would say that. Of course, it all comes down to opinion, and what you classify as an "excellent player." Obviously, John Lennon would not have been able to play Rachmaninoff. I'm not saying that makes him a bad player, but how exactly are we to judge?
  12. As every baseball fan knows, a "five tool player" is one who has it all: hits for average, hits for power, plays defense, throws runners out, and has speed. Let's call a "five tool player" in music someone who simultaneously excels at: 1. singing 2. writing lyrics 3. writing melodies 4. playing an instrument 5. arranging songs Five tool players in music are pretty rare. We're all a bit biased, but Eric Carmen seems to be one. 1,3 and 4 (piano) are pretty much slam dunks. I would argue that he's at least a very good to great lyricist. And, while not going it alone, I'm pretty sure the buck stops with Eric when it comes to arrangements of his songs (correct me if wrong). Who else is a five tool player? I honestly am having trouble thinking of any. It's debatable, but I don't believe any of the Beatles are technically great players, though they're very good at what they're going for. Pete Townshend, to me, neither a great singer nor a great guitarist. Elton John, not a lyricist. Anybody have someone?
  13. Funny you mention Hall and Oates. I've been reading reviews of "Boats" from when it came out. Every reviewer seems to cite a "Beach Boys influence" on "She Did It." I realize Bruce Johnston was involved with the track, and I'm no Beach Boys expert, but it sounds nothing like the Beach Boys to me. Reminds me much more of the Hall and Oates soul-influenced sound. Do critics all just get together and figure out what they should all say?
  14. I listened to the album again this morning. Someday is definitely fantastic. I actually really liked "Change of Heart" the first time I heard it, which was the solo piano version from the Mike Douglas show. The song is very nice, but the arrangement on the album doesn't do it for me. Does anyone else hear the Celtic feel of the Desperate Fools overture? I used to be a big fan of Celtic Rock (Battlefield Band, Tannahill Weavers, etc.) There's something about the instrumentation on this track that gives me that same feel. EDIT: I just watched the Mike Douglas "Change of Heart" again and I see it's NOT a solo piano version. Is this really just the album track lip-synched, or is it different? Somehow it seems more stripped down than what I remember from the album.
  15. Here's a passage from the Rush song "Marathon." Similar lyrical theme... "You can do a lot in a lifetime If you don't burn out too fast You can make the most of the distance First you need endurance First you've got to last..." I can bring Rush into any thread
  16. I just listened to this song about 15 times on my way to work today. Amazing. Stupendous. Possibly my favorite EC song ever (today at least). In the grand tradition of Eric borrowing from himself, the opening of the song picks up right where the end of "I Can Remember" left off. The vocals kick ass. This is the most like post-Quadrophenia Daltrey I have ever heard Eric sound. All of Daltrey's power and punch with more discipline and precision. This is also one of my favorite of Eric's lyrics. Lyrics are always open to (possibly incorrect) interpretation by the listener, but here's what they say to me. You can spend your life thinking about the meaning of life. What should I be doing, why am I here, why am I unhappy, what should I do about it, etc. We can try our best as introspective beings to answer these questions, but in the end, we have to soldier on. In a sprint, the goal is to finish first. In a marathon, one goal is simply to finish. Fighting through the highs and lows of life, standing bloodied but unbowed, is a victory in itself. If the Who listened to this in 1977, they would have wished they'd done it.
  17. I listened to the "Change of Heart" album for the first time this afternoon. As an album, it's really not my cup of tea. However, I was surprised by how moved I was by the "Desperate Fools" bookends. The opening reminds me simultaneously of a spiritual (note the similarity of the opening lines' melody to "Amazing Grace") and of a Celtic Air. If the violin line was replaced by an Uillean pipe, the melody would be right at home on "Thistle and Shamrock." The song itself is utterly sad, way beyond the schmaltzy sadness of so many other songs. It is laden with regret, disillusionment, and disappointment. I've heard it said that this is Eric's least favorite album. These two tracks seem to underscore that. I think these belong amongst the cream of the EC catalog. Very moving. PS: My favorite version of "Hey Deanie" is still bahoodore's. The tempo he used just seems right to me....
  18. 1. In My Life 2. We Can Work it Out 3. Help 4. Ticket to Ride 5. I'm a Loser 6. No Reply 7. Here, There and Everywhere 8. I Will 9. Penny Lane 10. Got to Get You Into My Life ...but I really need a top 25 to not feel guilty.
  19. Damn, spent the last hour watching the Rush documentary for the 2nd time instead of listening to EC. Old habits die hard!
  20. I got it this afternoon, and just got through reading the cool liner notes. An excellent and thorough summary of Eric's career, both solo and Raspberries, replete with details I had not ever heard (though many others here have, I'm sure). It's an excellent package, and I can't wait until I can listen to the first album thoroughly and post my impressions. My timing is amazingly lucky. I got into the Partridge family right after all the albums (except the last) had been released on CD after 25 years. And this package comes along right as I'm looking for these records. You can't make it up!
  21. Mine should be arriving tomorrow. The eagle has landed! If nothing else, this will get me to stop talking about Rush.
  22. My 3 1/2 year old son (named Eric!) loves the Raspberries. He thinks they are better than the Fresh Beats Band (high praise!). When I told him today is Eric's birthday he insisted I send along his greetings. So from Eric and Eric's Dad, all the best to Eric, whose work has given me immense pleasure during the short time I've known it.
  23. Just checked CD universe and they now have it at August 17, so I guess it was delayed by a couple of weeks. I guess I've waited 35 years, I can wait a few more weeks.
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