Ding dong, the bitch is dead!
Yeah, I’m feeling patriotic this week. Who isn’t? Well, maybe not patriotic like Kate Smith singing “God Bless America” or James Cagney as George M. Cohan belting out “Yankee Doodle Dandy”. But after this week’s activities, why not let that freak flag fly a bit?
So here are Ten Tunes for Americans. Rock out with your face out!
(01) – American Girl (Tom Petty)
(02) – Dancing In The Street (Martha and The Vandellas)
(03) – Celebration (Kool and the Gang)
(04) – Rockin’ In The Free World (Neil Young)
(05) – Get Together (The Youngbloods)
(06) – Pink Houses (John Mellencamp)
(07) – (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right To Party (Beastie Boys)
(08) – People Got To be Free (The Rascals)
(09) – Living In America (James Brown)
(10) – America (Simon and Garfunkel)
Rock music has always drawn upon other influences; one could argue that it’s the perfect intersection between the influences of country, soul and r’n’b. And many of the biggest rock bands have repaid that influence by performing those influential songs on record and in concert. Sometimes those influences were from their peers.
When classic rock was starting to explode in the 60’s, Motown was right there with them on the charts. People often forget to list Smokey Robinson and Holland-Dozier-Holland in the same breath as Brian Wilson, Lennon-McCartney, Paul Simon, Ray Davies, Jagger-Richard and other dominant songwriters. What an amazing amount of creative genius sharing the spotlight in the same short period of time.
So today I’d like to offer Ten Rockin’ Remakes of soul classics from some of my favorite rock bands. Proof positive that great music knows no color.
The Faces: “I’m Losing You” – even hotter live than on record.
Humble Pie: “I Don’t Need No Doctor” – Steve Marriott is The Man.
The Rolling Stones: “Just My Imagination” – from a 2007 live show.
Mitch Ryder: “What Becomes of the Broken Hearted?” – great Jimmy Ruffin tune.
Jeff Beck: “People Get Ready” – when you say “Beck” I think of him first.
The J. Geils Band: “Where Did Our Love Go?” – from the 2009 reunion.
Herman Brood: “My Girl” – Almost unrecognizable in this re-arrangement.
Credence Clearwater Revival: “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” – I guess you’d classify this as swamp soul!
David Bowie: “Knock On Wood” – from the underrated David Live album
The Band: “Baby Don’t You Do It” – Marvin Gaye cover from The Last Waltz