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"Eric Carmen"...


James

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...the first solo release is a melodic gem, IMHO. Other than possibly MainCourse by the BeeGees, I've yet to hear an album that can rate with it if judged purely by pop/rock melody quality.

"Boats.." is my favorite, but the first album is the melodic masterpiece of your catalog, IMHO.

A song like "My Girl" is never talked about, but is as good an upbeat pop melody as I've ever heard. It's impossible to sit still in the car when that song plays! The album is wall to wall greatness.

Can you talk about the first album some? When were the songs written? What's your opinion of it, and where do you think it stands against other great albums?

We debated once here the meaning of "No Hard Feelings". I felt it was a kind of positive ode to the Raspberries/ denunciation of the business (and has the most powerful ending of any song I've ever heard). Can you talk about that song some?

I know there's too much asked in this post, but thanks in advance for anything you can share..

-James

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And just when I think

That things are goin' right

I get a call from L.A.

Sorry to say "we're changin' your song"

Hey - "My Girl" - GREAT song! Great topic, too. One of my favorite songs off my favorite Eric solo record (sorry, BATC fans!).

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the above quote (from Great Expectations - *another* great song on that record) written about recording "My Girl"? I believe this is detailed somewhat in Marathon Man (the book), but I've always wondered:

- What, specifically did they change (and why)?

- Does the original version exist for us fans to make a comparison?

Anyway, Eric (if you're out there), I LOVED My Girl. Especially the chords at the end of the bridge ("so - in - love - with") - fantastic. Does it actually change keys or just seem like it? ;)

Doug

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Possibly my favorite album of all time and still listen to it often, as recently as yesterday.

So, I have to ask Eric....what did you say duing "Great Expections" during the tap dancing part? It always sounded like "boy, you sound like Lou Reed", but I could never clearly understand it. Any story behind whatever was said?

BTW, if anyone has heard the song "California Role" on the new Brian Wilson album, it could easily fit right in with "Great Expectations" with the Rudy Valee sound.

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I thought the changing my song quote referred to "Hit Record", Eric's ode to the music biz.

Along the same lines, and right around the same time, Billy Joel wrote a scathing song about the music biz on his 3rd album, Streetlife Serenade, I believe around 1974, called The Entertainer.

All the lyrics are great but my favorite in the same spirit of EC about changing my song..

I am the Entertainer
I bring to you my songs
You've heard my latest record
It's been on the radio

Ah it took me years to write it
They were the best years of my life
It was a beautiful song
but it ran too long

If you want to have a hit
you have to make it fit
So they cut it down to 3:05...

It referred to his treatment, and the single on his prior album, Piano Man.

Eric are you familiar with this song.. you'd love every word.. check out this great rare video of The Entertainer live

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I was kind of going for W.C. Fields. "Aww, you sound like little angels...." I think Jimmy told me to say that.

That line WAS about "Hit Record" and the little harmonica break was something my Mom used to play on the piano.

I think the lyric in the bridge was inspired, if I do say so myself. It was Forrest Gump's philosophy, before Forrest Gump!

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"I'd need a lifetime to show her all the love i have to give...and hold her in my heart, for as long as I live".......We'll stick together like the moon and the night time, happy forever I could spend my lifetime....soooooo in looooooove with...."

I would dare anyone who thinks they can sing to try and sing this part accurately....the melody is so complex, yet mysteriously spectacular to the ear...this is as good as Gershwin...something every composer would have loved to have written...the "kind-of-answer-back" sung "We'll stick together..." is so magical...it catapults the song right back into full swing having created a great 15 seconds (or so) of tension .....a musical elastic band......then POW! back into the chorus.... 10 on 10 for this one....

bahoo ++ :blink:

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Jimmy picked it. it never would have occurred to me to do that song.

Oh, and thanks Bahoo... I love it when people actually "get" what I was going for on a song. I thought "My Girl" was the single when we went into the studio. Jimmy Ienner and I really heard that song differently. I wanted the track to be bigger. Jimmy heard it smaller.

I really love that bridge. It was one of those times where I just sat down at the piano and it fell out, fully formed. The first half of the bridge recalls the french horn melody from the intro, which was nicked from Rachmaninoff, but the second half was pure Burt Bacharach. It just "happened."

I'd re-record that song ,someday, but I don't think I could still sing it in the original key.

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Eric Carmen said:

I'd re-record that song ,someday, but I don't think I could still sing it in the original key.

aaaaah if only I could do at age 50 what I used to do at age 25....I wouldn't need Advil! :blink:

John

BTW...the great part of ec's inspiration/work......a tad of Sergei Rachmaninoff, a splash of Burt Bachrach.....and Roger Daltry's vocals whilst channelling Brian Wilson. What an awesome recipe.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I started heavily listening to this record after breaking up with the sweetest, most beautiful woman in the world, and it seemed to really fit the lonely, empty way that I felt in the right spots, while giving me the hope I needed in songs like "Sunrise." No one does bittersweet like you. While I'm thinking about it, "Thanks for that album. It got me through a rough patch."

I'm an easy sell. I read a lot of Fitzgerald, listen to a lot of Raspberries. However, I'd play that album over the spreakers in the uber-psycheldelic record store where I used to work. I'd just take the customers gibes in stride, and go about selling them the recondite, atonal recordings they wanted (I love that music, too). I'm hoping I converted someone.

Even shlocky, ugly noise musicians like myself dig it. That has to signify something about its universality ;) .

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  • 2 weeks later...

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