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Is Lennon's (Just Like) Starting Over An Homage to EC?


susie b

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Is Lennon's (Just Like) Starting Over An Homage to EC's Starting Over?
 
Darlene & I have been tossing this question around for a couple of weeks, and we thought that today, the 34th anniversary of John's death, would be a good day to present the topic.
 
From Darlene's research, we conclude that it is both highly possible & probable that John did tip his musical hat to Eric.

Genius is always quick to recognize genius!
 
What are your thoughts?????

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Lyrically speaking, the themes are similar, if not inspired...musically, not so much.  I remember when this album was released, and John said something to the effect that he just wanted to do a nice little rock n' roll record.  I really like John's tune, but Eric's Starting Over is still my favorite!

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I really don't think so.

The lyrics say different things to me. In my interpretation, Eric's is about someone who's been burned by love who's ready to take a chance again, while John's is about two people who have been together forever and are renewing their relationship to the point that it's new again.

In my interpretation.

I love 'em both, though. But like Kirk, I like Eric's better. The message, the music — and hey, it has the "f" word. It was 19-fuffing-74, and it has the "f" word! That's fuffing awesome! :D

Cheryl

P.S. Thanks, Kirk. That has been the handiest word.

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Interesting idea! Also John loved the Raspberries, and Eric even bumped into John once - literally.

However, the two songs only share a similar name. The beginning of E.'s song is Lennon-esque/If I Fell as a statement beginng tune (which also includes the F from cheeky E. ;).) IIF was Lennon's first ballad.

As Kirk said, John wrote a little rock song - but not for Eric.

Cayenne

p.s.  The memorial in Strawberry Fields, Central Park, NY "Imagine" is a beautiful and lasting testiment to how much the world continues to miss John.    But we will always have his music.

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Cheryl said,

"The lyrics say different things to me. In my interpretation, Eric's is about someone who's been burned by love who's ready to take a chance again, while John's is about two people who have been together forever and are renewing their relationship to the point that it's new again."

Starting Over lyrics:

Starting Over
(Eric Carmen)

Used to feel so fuckin' optimistic
Till she said goodbye
Never thought a love like ours would die

Told myself I'd never love another
All I want is friends
But when we met I felt it all again

Though I am starting over under cloudy skies
I say hello to love
I'm seeing through different eyes
And if I had the chance to make one wish
And know it would come true
I'd start all over with you

Every evening I would watch the sunset
End another day
Let the nighttime wash my blues away

Buried my romantic inclination
Deep inside of me
Till I fell for you immoderately

Though I am starting over under cloudy skies
I say hello to love
I'm seeing through different eyes
And if I had the chance to make one wish
And know it would come true
I'd start all over with you

I remember all the good times
And the bad times spent together
Why remember all the old times
When the new times look much better

Much better

Though I am starting over under cloudy skies
I say hello to love
I'm seeing through different eyes
And if I had the chance to make one wish
And know it would come true
I'd start all over with you

With you

I still see a parallel between the two songs...it's not just a fresh start at new love for Eric, he is lamenting the excess baggage he brought into the new relationship, wishing he could start over with her, not looking back, without old feelings haunting his new relationship.  Eric wants a do-over, John wants a new spark...they're both looking to make love new again.

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I agree with the somewhat parallel interpretation of the songs concerning love Kirk, but keep in mind both songs were written some time ago.  I think we can all relate a bit to feelings expressed within each song.

Eric's styling is more of a tip of the hat to The Beatles (British Invasion) than John's song is to Eric.  Although clearly John recognized the genius of Eric and the Rs, as he is wearing a Raspberries' tee shirt!  

(Thanks to May Pang for releasing the great photo of John with the very cool Rs' tee!!)

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Hi Kids,

I'd like to do one big post, however with the iPad, that isn't necessarily possible without losing a lot of information.  While we are on the subject of JL and EC, this interview is wonderful.  

Excerpt of Ken Sharp's 2001 interview with Eric. 

Ken --

According to Jimmy lenner, he (JL) had something to do with "Overnight Sensation" in terms of when it was mixed.

Eric --

I wasn't there. Jimmy maintains that John came by and loved the record and said let me help you with the mix or something. Next thing I heard about it was (I went) to, a luncheon in New York where they were honoring Rick Sklar, I guess it was WABC Radio, and he was like the one completely uncorruptable program director in the country, and—John was, there in his pilgrim period attire, with May Pang, and he sat on the dais, and afterwards, I'd had all these things in my head about what I would say to him when I finally would actually meet him, and—I stuck out my hand and before I could say a word, John said, "Love your record. Ringo and I are gonna do promotion." And I was rendered kind of speechless, and I said, "I like your records, too." The kind of stuff I was gonna say was if not for you, there would be no me. But before I could say anything, he just kind of knocked me out. That was a pretty wonderful moment in my life. The teacher recognizes the student.

Eric's last paragraph is magic, right?  WOW!  <3

and --

Dear Dar,

What does your research concerning this topic say?   I have my views but am open to yours.

:mellow:

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Hi everyone! I just went back and verified that John did indeed drop into the studio while the album was being recorded. (I think he was in the studio next door or something) and Eric literally bumped into him with a door. :o  John was, by all accounts, a Raspberries fan, and that's not surprising, since Raspberries was made up of "musician's musicians," and garnered respect, praise and awe from so many famous talented and established artists. Artistry and genius DO recognize artistry and genius--INSTANTLY in fact. I think that's why Eric and Wally "just knew" they were musical soulmates the first time they met and heard each other.

I'm not saying John based his song on "Starting Over," but I think he loved the music (what truly gifted musician WOULDN"T love the world class melodies and harmonies in that album?!) and it often happens that an artist will even subconsciously pay homage in some way to something he heard (or saw) and loved at one time or another, especially in a recording studio, and give a nod to it.  There IS that old situation where good old Todd Rundgren was hanging around the studio a lot while Raspberries recorded one of their albums and came out with a song strikingly similar, like right out of THEIR song!

What I AM saying is that a) John totally respected Raspberries, especially Eric, who was literally its driving force, and  as a tip of the hat to him he may well have thought "I like the title and the idea of this song" and filed it in memory for future use for a song of his own. I can't help but believe that's how it went down.  For me, it's just too big a coincidence that John would have been not only present at some of the recording of that album but also offered to mix and praised the music to Eric.  I do think his title was a tip of the hat to Eric.

By the way, John's title was SUPPOSED to be "Starting Over."  That's EXACTLY what he titled his song--verbatim! That's pretty "fuffin'" fantastic, in my opinion! The only reason he added the additional words in parentheses was that some country singer had just had a hit entitled "Starting Over" and John didn't want it to look like he was taking that title, nor did he want anyone to confuse the two songs.

Susie, my girl,  this is a TERRIFIC post! As John would probably say, "Well done!" :P

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I always found the Todd Rundgren story interesting.

There is no musical similarity whatsoever between the two "I Saw The Light"s, just the common title, which several other songs also share.

On the other hand, the beginning of "It Wouldn't Have Made any Difference" is certainly similar to "I Can Remember." On the other hand, "Starting Over" is even more similar to both "Tiny Dancer" and "Jungleland", one of which came before and one after. There are only so many guitar and piano riffs under the sun.

What makes me doubt that any real thievery took place is that by all accounts, the Todd album was mostly recorded and written in LA, with only the final vocals being done at the Record Plant. So it's kind of hard to see how fundamental features of any of the Todd songs could have still been unfinished in NY. Here's an interesting read about the recording of Something/Anything:

http://www.bmi.com/news/entry/Tips_from_the_Top_The_Making_of_Todd_Rundgrens_SomethingAnything

It's interesting how Todd and Eric were in such a similar musical place in 1972, and how they went in such completely different directions by only a few years later. I love both of them.

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PM,

Thanks for more background on TR.  I will always enjoy hearing HIM and ISTL from Todd R. 

Agree with what you're saying about only so many guitar and piano riffs under the sun.  Writing musicians must dream variations of many former compositions and beautiful music they've heard over time.

(GATW is the best song with guitar riff though... ;))

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Small tangent here ---

I and many others have fallen victim to "Misheard Lyrics" in songs, but has anyone else had a "Misheard Artist" thing happen??? :o

Until a few months ago when I was looking up Todd Rundgren songs on the internet, I had thought it was Carole King who sang "I Saw The Light" !!  --- oops, sorry Todd.  :blink:

:::::::back to the regularly scheduled thread:::::::

AnneNR

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M.E., I hope Eric see's your question...in the meantime, I'll through this out there.  Have you listened to the live version of Starting Over from 'Essential'?  I believe that this version is closer to Eric's vision for the song.  Jimmy Ienner buried Eric's beautiful piano part under the strings on the original album.  You can clearly hear his piano on the live version.  I'm sure there is more to it, but I specifically remember Eric referencing the violins overblown production from past musings on the song.

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