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Blender magazine, July 2006


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The July 2006 issue of Blender magazine has the story of Raspberries "Go All The Way" with interviews with Wally Bryson and Eric Carmen about the song. They use a cool 1972 "Fresh" outtake photo which looks like Wally has just cracked the other guys up in the photo shoot.

The issue just hit newstands (I saw it at Borders, and at Barnes & Noble, which strangely had both the June and July issues on the newstand). Make sure you grab the July issue with The Pussycat Dolls on the cover (it's got a cover price of $3.99 and the article on Raspberries is one full page on page 56).

Also quoted about the song is Fountain Of Wayne ("Stacy's Mom") singer-songwriter Adam Schlesinger (Oscar nominee for the theme song to the Tom Hanks film "That Thing You Do").

The magazine's website is at http://www.blender.com (though as I post this they only have last month's issue showing).

Don smile

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I picked up a copy, and I think Blender's piece on "Go All The Way" was terrific in every way. Last month it was "Don't Worry Baby" and this month "Go All The Way." featured under the banner "The Greatest Songs Ever/ Blender explores the finest tunes in history." They even got Adam Schlesinger to comment on it. It's kind of a shame Wally felt the need to tell them he thought the song was "trite" and "after the intro, the verse sounded like a Bing Crosby song.' Oh well, at least the folks at Blender "got it!" ec

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Hmmm...interesting comment by Wally, although I think the Bing Crosby reference is a bit bizarre.

The very first time I heard GATW, I was totally taken aback....here's this heavy guitar intro, followed by what sounded to me like the Left Banke in the verse, followed by a chorus with harmonies that sounded like a cross between the Beach Boys and Byrds....and, of course, this was nothing like what was being played on the radio at the time (or had been played in what, 4-5 years?...and even then, not in a combination like this!).

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Eric asked, "What was your take on it, Don? How did the interviews sound?"

Eric,

I thought the article was very positive and very complimentary of "Go All The Way." I think writer Johnny Black did a fine job for Blender (although I disagree with him calling "All By Myself" a "cheese ballad").

I suspect that Wally's comment that the song sounded "trite" and that the verse sounded like Bing Crosby was just another way of saying the song sounded "threadbare" before Shelly Yakus put it through the limiter. That's just my take on it. It kind of matches your comment in the article that "the mixer gave it all the energy it had been lacking."

Like anything on the internet or in print, it's hard to judge how something was said in an interview when you're only reading the words that were spoken.

I think Adam Schlesinger's comments are a major kudo to "Go All The Way" and to you as a songwriter. You can be very proud of that song and of Blender choosing it as one of the "greatest songs ever."

I like everything about "Go All The Way" --- the song structure is brilliant and having the girl beg the guy for some action instead of the other way around was an inspired concept.

Don smile

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The Wally comment is reflective (it would seem to me, and Eric knows this better than anyone - at least that would be my assumption) of his insecurity (jealousy?) or whatever it is that he seems to wear like a heavy cloak as it relates to the Raspberries and their music. While all four members were critical components, let's face it, there was only one star.

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Don, I really wish I could embrace your take on Wally's comments, but "trite" is not a word I would ever associate with the "sound" of a recording. "Thin" or "tinny" or "gutless" or "lame" might refer to the sound, but"trite" would refer to "content." One of the most difficult things in the world is to hear a finished record in your head, and then have to try to explain it to your bandmates, and then try to achieve it in the studio. Wally never really liked the song, which is one reason why all the nonsense about him "co-writing" it seemed so disingenuous. It's pretty sad when thirty-four years after the song became our biggest hit (and the most successful record Wally ever played on) he can't make himself say something nice about it. Not even in an interview for Blender. ec

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Even if it isn't one of Wally's favorite songs, you'd think that he'd appreciate it as a guitarist, just for the killer intro, that one great fill, the use of the 12 string toward the end, etc. One of my all-time favorite Raspberries videos is with the "Starting Over" band playing GALW (Don Kirshner's, maybe?), Eric guitarless at the mike, and Wally playing the song on one guitar (and I think it's the Flying V, not the doubleneck). It's a hard sucker to nail properly on just one axe.....

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I have always thought of Go All The Way as an example of a rarely successful combination of power (ie. The Who) and a captivating melody (ie. Beach Boys). Cole Porter did it with "I've Got You Under My Skin" and "Night and Day" using brass instead of guitar for the power and world class melodies (listen to the Sinatra performed Nelson Riddle arranged versions). Songs like these just don't go away because they reach us so deeply. So, 34 years later, Blender rightfully recognizes Eric's similar masterpiece as many others have. Wally's comment was just, well, Wally. Oh yea, that's my first post. I've been lurking for years.

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No way should that song be even listed in the same sentence with Bing Crosby. It's only my opinion but EC's vocals are far superior to anything of Bings. I love that song and it's the first song I ever heard by the Raspberries and it will be etched in my mind forever and it's EC's vocals that stick in my mind. Trite is a harsh word I think. I hope that the comments don't hurt EC because I think "Go all the way" is as classic as anything the Beatles, the Stones or Elvis have ever done.

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This is a selfish reaction but I suddenly feel concerned that those 10 concerts were once in a lifetime experiences. I really enjoyed my fantasy that old grievances were resolved and I would see more "Raspberries" concerts and maybe new product someday soon.

Well-I really think (?) I understand your reaction Eric.That song was a gift-to be enjoyed. And it's truly "The gift that keeps on giving".

"Thank you for the music".-Ira.

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I'm so glad I got to see the reunion tour. I loved seeing all the guys together and singing their hearts out. It may have been a limited tour, but was a fantasy for all of us.

I love all the Raspberrie songs and am really looking forward to Eric's solo concert.

Good to have a magazine recognize the Raspberries talent, and put it among some of the great artists.

Congratulations!! happy

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Wally has a point in the short mellow throwback pop verse. But that adds to the intended contrast of a rock song influenced by classical music and old pop melodies, that Eric is famous for composing...And makes the song stand out as different and cool after all these years...Duh :rolleyes:

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The fact that GATW was the biggest hit proves that it's anything but trite, and the Bing Crosby thing is lost on me completely.

Congratulations on the great coverage in "Blender!" GATW is indeed "classic" and exemplifies the signature sound of Raspberries (which, by the way, is pretty evident in the guitar licks in BonJovi's newest hit, "Who Says You Can't Go Home?").

smile --Darlene

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Eric,

Without starting an argument, why don't you ask Wally why he said that and without defending anything let it go. Then quote us the dialogue, unedited.

My take? For a 50 something year old guy, this teeage sex stuff may BE "trite" in retrospect.

Eric, you were there when you wrote it, if he didn't like it, do you think he would have put all of HIS creativity into the guitar for that song? He would have saved that riff for something HE wrote and not given it to you.

How DID you decide on that rockin' intro when you knew how mellow the rest of the song was?

Zucco

A curious songwriter

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Oh, Raspberries! Since we're talking about Crosby (whom I like):

From the 1997 album "Bing Crosby with Al Jolson and Judy Garland," their rendition of "All By Myself" (don't get excited, this is the Irving Berlin song, whose lyrics are at http://www.sing365.com/music/lyric.nsf/A...8256970000E1389 ) is one of the music clips at http://www.emusic.com/album/10861/10861223.html or you can hear the clip at http://www.emusic.com/samples/m3u/song/10861223/13349811.m3u

And none of them sound like Eric...

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For anyone who hasn't read the article, Wally's comments (his only quotes in the article) come just before a discussion of how the song was put through the limiter to make the song as we now know it:

"I thought the song was trite. After the power of the intro, the verse sounded like a Bing Crosby song. It was almost left off the album. Jimmy, Eric and I were at our wits' end."

That's the total extent of commentary by Wally that Blender published. Then the article goes to how the song was put through the limiter to improve it.

For me, it echoes comments on page 88 of Bernie and Ken's book "Marathon Man" which says of "Go All The Way" (and the fact that the first album was recorded twice):

"Everyone, including Jimmy Ienner, was unhappy with most of the initial takes on this track. Each take was deemed too flat, too vanilla."

In the book, it quotes Eric as saying:

"What sticks out in my mind most is begging to keep 'Go All The Way' off the album because I was so disappointed with how it turned out."

In the book, producer Jimmy Ienner is quoted as saying of "Go All The Way" (page 91):

"I was exceptionally dissatisified because the song to me was a still-born bastard. It was a ballad, it wasn't uptempo, it was something that I felt was too drastic and had no heart - no soul. I felt it needed something to thread it. We worked at that around the clock."

In the book, it then tells us that feeding the song through the Roger Mayer limiter to compress the sound finally got the song you hear today.

My thought about Wally's comments was that they may have been part of a much longer interview that got taken out of context, or Wally may have elaborated in the interview that the song was great after going through the limiter, but his comments weren't published in the article.

Those were my thoughts. Like Billy Joel said, "I may be wrong, but I may be right."

Eric, I appreciate your comments and if I read in print Wally's published comments, they would upset me too. I imagine you'll be asking Wally what he meant.

My "defense" of Wally is only because I don't know how his comments were said and what comments he may have made that didn't make it into print.

It would have been great if the Blender writer had gotten both Eric and Wally in one room and done the interview (Eric turns to Wally, "What do you mean, 'trite'?").

I believe this band can overcome anything (I've believed that for more than three decades, and I won't stop now). All I know is, when Eric and Wally record together, there's a magic there that few bands ever come close to.

Don smile

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