Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by alphanguy, Jan 29, 2016.
That's probably why she later released songs like "Bitter Bad".
I'm not a big fan of Melanie, but I absolutely love Brand New Key. Nobody else that I knew could stand it except for one friend, who was head over heels in love with her. I never understood the raciness of the lyrics until I was a few years older (maybe 1975, 1976?) but I played the heck out of this 45.
This was the first single to be issued in the U.S. on Neighborhood Records (single #NRA-4201) which was set up by her and manager/hubby Peter Schekeryk. And though not mentioned on the label, the arranger for this was Roger Kellaway (the co-writer of the closing theme to the TV series All In The Family). Oddly, in Canada this was put out on her old label, Buddah; this is why, in the US Buddah singles discography, there is no BDA 267.
This song and her cover of The Rolling Stones' "Ruby Tuesday" both made the list of the fifty worst rock and roll singles of all time (at #33 and #32, respectively) in the book The Worst Rock & Roll Records Of All Time. The book noted that she never had another Top 30 hit after this, and closed with this note:
The other oddity? The A side was mono - while the B side was stereo. Go figure.
I don't know - somehow this would have been a perfect fit for "Fresh" radio stations if it were to come out today. Content-wise, there's stuff much worse out today (for reasons I obviously won't get to) than when Ms. Safka put this out. I say this more for the lyrical content than musically, though it did have a vibe akin to the two you mentioned.
And point of disclosure: I have this 45, a CBS Pitman pressing. That should tell you what I think of it . . .
I can take or leave Brand New Key.
Peace Will Come was a much better song that didn't get anywhere near no. 1.
You know... until today, I had no idea Melanie had written or recorded that. I actually like the New Seekers' version of it, and it is the only one I've ever known. I've always loved them anyway.
The Neighborhood label is one of the most beautiful ever made. "Brand New Key" is...well, I wouldn't call it beautiful, but it is cute. Can't believe that got to #1 and "Lay Down" only got to #10, though!
This parody version is more well known in the UK than the original
"Lay Down (Candles In The Rain)" got to #6 on the Billboard chart, and to #3 at Cashbox.
Hence why I abruptly stopped talking about that. I wasn't trying to start a discussion.
Brand New Key is another song I never heard on '70s radio, either early on when others controlled what stations I heard, or later when I had control. It's an OK song, but like others here, I could take it or leave it.
I did see Melanie perform at the "A Day in the Garden" concert at the Bethel NY site of the original Woodstock festival, on Saturday, August 15, 1998. In 1998, there was no performing arts center; at the bottom of the hill, they had put up a temporary stage. I do not remember her playing "Brand New Key" during that set, although she played almost anything else I knew she had done.
The other performers that day were Donovan, Lou Reed, Joni Mitchell, and Pete Townshend. I don't remember if Melanie or Donovan performed first, but the last three performers (in order) were Reed, Mitchell, and Townshend.
I know. I think we can get by with casually mentioning religion/faith without getting into specifics. There's nothing wrong with the topic in and of itself, but there are people who have extremely passionate feelings and opinions about religion and faith which makes them a no-no here. Sometimes, there is no way around it if it relates to music, but we have to tread carefully. With "Imagine", I was worried that someone was going to come in and express strong views against the song for that one opening lyric.
Well... there is a controversial act coming up very soon, that I think will go fine as long as nobody interjects personal argument into it and only discusses it in a historical perspective. I think it will be ok, but we can just remember ahead of time, to keep ourselves "pulled back" somewhat when discussing it.
JCS? Anyway Melanie was good on Lay Down ...BNK was part of my earliest AM radio memories.
No, it can't be that since nothing from that album hit #1 on the singles chart. I'm guessing it's the very next song though I don't consider it polarizing like some other songs we've discussed or will discuss in the future. Bye Bye.
If it's the song I think it is, the artist in question did also have a hit with a song from JCS, although not the song we'll be discussing.
OK, you guys motivated me to look and see what the next #1 song is. From my perspective, there is no controversy at all. There wasn't where I lived. If there was any controversy, it will be mentioned when the song is posted. I am not aware of any.
Well.. we might as well have fair warning, I am referring to Helen Reddy's Grammy speech. We can just remember to tread lightly when that time comes.
Haha, I had forgotten about that. Today it just sounds like an awesome joke, especially for what she won the Grammy for. Maybe we have moved forward a bit after all.
I'm not familiar with her Grammy speech.
She referred to god as "she" when giving thanks for the award. I think it's perfect, it gives the finger to the religious nutters and the misogynists all in one gracious sentence.
I mean it fit perfectly with the theme of the song she won it for right?
Ah! Yeah, that was back in 1972. The world was way different then, but we still have a lot of people around who still think the old way, especially in small-town/rural America.
The song is almost a year away. I thought he was talking about the next #1 single.
Although "Superstar" is not one of my favorites, I agree that Karen gave a great performance on the song. There's another song that might work as a companion to "Superstar": "Road Ode"
I'd consider a song an instrument even if there are vocals as long as they function basically as punctuation within the song. An example I can point to is "One Step Beyond" by Madness, where (after the intro) the only lyrics are the words "One Step Beyond" (although someone pointed out that the words "Let's Go" also appear but like with "One Step Beyond" they basically function as vocal punctuation rather than lyrics)
From what understand, Richard changed the line to "to be with you again" to keep it more in line with the Carpenters image. It had the side effect of making the song more likely to be covered since some performers might have been a bit uncomfortable with the original lyrics.
Karen getting it right the first time doesn't seem to be that unusual considering the song "Trying To Get The Feeling Again." The released version is from a work lead for the song and is likely the first time Karen sang the song (the work lead has a flaw of Karen turning the page as she sings), yet she sings the song perfectly (it is one of my favorite Carpenters songs, fighting for the #2 position with "Goodbye To Love" and "Love Me For What I Am").
The Carpenters were always at their best when Karen sang as though she was alone and casually singing to herself.
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