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Words and Errata

cover songs

It’s all about the story – Part Deux

31 Days of Brannan – Day 29

 

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Today’s Playlist – The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia

 

Okay, I’ll admit it, I’ll come clean  –  I am a HUGE Jay fan. Epic Japanese fan girl type of fan (not like I’ve hidden it at all – I mean, really.

31 days of talking about the same damned guy? I mean, even this hubby of mine has got to be a bit suspicious with me rambling on and on about some musician that lives on the other side of the country. But he’s (the hubby, that is) my number one – so no worries there.)

So yeah, Jay fan. BIG TIME. So you’d think that would be the confession, right? Not something terribly surprising given the month-long blogfest on him. But no, that’s not the admission. It’s not. In fact, given all of that – of all that I’ve written, collected, blogged about, you’d THINK that I’d be so Jay’d out that I’d know his shit fairly well. That I’d have his YouTube channel memorized so I could pick out my favorite video of the day and click on it blindfolded, right? Yeah, you’d think… only, well, I haven’t and, uh, I couldn’t.  I know, I know. Japanese fan girls would be kicking my ass for letting down the corp or the group or the cult of fan girls everywhere, huh?

I mean, Japanese fan girls are notorious for being the epitome of fans. They are some serious ball-busting hard core fandom. Cause when those girls gush about something there is nothing on the planet that can stop that vag-laden bullet train from splashing their love goo all over the object of their desire.

Okay, so maybe I am not a fan girl. For one I’m not a girl. So yeah, I lose on that score already. Though I suppose being gay might get me an honorable mention, no?  Perhaps not.

So the whole reason why I am rambling on about this like I am was that about a week or so ago (in my infancy of writing about all things Jay related) I included a clip of Jay doing one of his ‘story’ songs. In it I compared his work to other such classic ‘story’ songs of pop music’s past. One of them was Vicki Lawrence’s The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia (she was the first to score with this song, Jay – not country goddess protector of Nashville – Reba). So you’d think back then I woulda played this little ditty as a comparative. Yeah, that’d be the obvious choice. Only I hadn’t ever clicked this particular video on his channel yet. I know, I know – what kind of rabid fan can you be if you’ll watch his 6+ minute video of him at a supposed haunted church and yet not even listen to the video I’ve included here.

So you can imagine my embarrassment when I did click it tonight and found the title: Jayba McEntire tests out a new digital camera by sangin’ ’bout murder.

I saw that and thought: oh no, it can’t be…  But you see, I knew it was. Country singers have been covering that song since it hit the pop charts back in ’73. So if Reba was the version that Jay was riffing off of, and it was a song about murder – well, there could only be one real possibility.

[Cue: Face-Palm moment]

So yeah, not so good with the whole I am a fan girl (or honorable mention) sort of fan when it comes to Jay. It’s embarrassing. Sorta negates my whole 31 Days of Brannan uber-fest that I’ve had going on here, right? I can be such the fucktard when I’m not looking out for myself – sorta like now.

Oooops. Sorry bout that.

So anyway, sang your lil’ ol’ heart out Jayba! And give ’em what fer…

(BTW, from a musical standpoint, very interesting chord choices for the chorus – don’t know if that was Reba’s rendition of it that he was doing or something he came up with himself. Not quite what I’ve ever heard whenever someone else sang the song.)  – Just sayin’…

ONLY 2 DAYS LEFT TIL SAN FRANCISCO! I can’t fucking wait!

N-Joy! – Or should I say – N-Jay! (Okay, that sounded better in my head when I first thought of it.)

 


 

The Always, Then & Now Tour…

Please check out his site with links for his upcoming shows. I am definitely a late comer to the Brannan bandwagon whenever he pulls through my city. But now that I am going this year, I am making it a goal never to miss when he swings through town. I hope you take advantage of the opportunity as well. Also be sure to check out his web store at the following link.

Jay's Website - jaybrannan.com
Jay’s Website – jaybrannan.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Using Both Hands

31 Days of Brannan – Day 27

 

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Today’s Playlist –  Both Hands (Ani DiFranco Cover)

 

This is a song that Jay has recorded (quite brilliantly, I might add) on his 80 Days of Jay album. This is a rather simple cover but it is beautifully rendered as he is performing it in a stairwell that has some lovely acoustics going on.

I searched out Ani’s original and while it was good I always find Jay’s work a bit more introspective, and reflective – well that and his crystal clear voice that works so well with the acoustics of the nondescript setting.

On balance, the recorded version of it is quite a lovely piece of overdubbed multi-tracking studio work. If you haven’t purchased that album you really should consider it. I only wished he had recorded some of the other songs he’s translated or uploaded to his youtube channel. He seems to do foreign songs quite well and I would like to see more of these types of recordings because we Americans seem to be obsessed with our own shit and miss  a huge collection of international songwriters and songs that are out there. Sure we can search them out as well, but I find it a lovely little surprise when Jay finds one and decides to put his own spin on it.

Anyway – didn’t mean to ramble so much. Enjoy this acoustic version of Ani DIFranco’s Both Hands and seek out the recorded version which is a little slice of brilliant.

 


 

The Always, Then & Now Tour…

Please check out his site with links for his upcoming shows. I am definitely a late comer to the Brannan bandwagon whenever he pulls through my city. But now that I am going this year, I am making it a goal never to miss when he swings through town. I hope you take advantage of the opportunity as well. Also be sure to check out his web store at the following link.

Jay's Website - jaybrannan.com
Jay’s Website – jaybrannan.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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More cover work…

31 Days of Brannan – Day 20

 

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Today’s Playlist – Someone That I Used To Know  (Gotye Cover)

 

So one of the things I love about Jay is his willingness to explore his own spin on someone else’s work. He did with Nicki Manaj’s Super Bass. Which was really quite cool (even if I am not a Manaj fan I got what he was going for).

So here he goes with a huge hit from that seemingly one-hit wonder (did he ever have another hit? I can’t recall)  Gotye. Personally, I sort of like his version better. He ended up recording it on his Around the World in Eighty Jays album. It was actually my favorite on that album. Not that the original wasn’t good. It definitely has a hell of a hook. It’s infectious, it’s got a good beat (I’ll refrain from saying and it’s easy to dance to – apologies to Dick Clark) and instantly memorable.

Yet, under Jay’s capable hands it sort of takes on a new life. More reflective (which I guess was the point).

He’s done a few of these covers. This one is definitely one of my favorites.

So I’ll stop blabbing about it. Just sit back and let the guy do what he does best… create a little magic all his own.

 


 

The Always, Then & Now Tour…

Please check out his site with links for his upcoming shows. I am definitely a late comer to the Brannan bandwagon whenever he pulls through my city. But now that I am going this year, I am making it a goal never to miss when he swings through town. I hope you take advantage of the opportunity as well. Also be sure to check out his web store at the following link.

Jay's Website - jaybrannan.com
Jay’s Website – jaybrannan.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Leaving on a jet plane…

31 Days of Brannan – Day 16

 

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Today’s Playlist – Leaving On A Jet Plane

As Jay embarks on his tour this week… I was drawn to this one more than any other from his youtube channel.

I never heard the version that Jay is riffing off of. Not to say that whatever version that Jay is using to put his own spin on it isn’t good. I like this rendition of this classic song – this evocative moment he calls upon. But my memory of this song is long reaching. As I approach the half-centennial mark in my life (yeah, you NEVER think you’ll write those words about yourself – EVER…), I have so many renditions of this song that play right along with Jay’s plaintive and emotive posting on his youtube channel.

Good songwriting never grows old or wears out it’s welcome. This song is definitely in that pantheon of classic tunes. Instantly memorable, even if you’ve never had the benefit of hearing it before.

I could expound upon the memories this song evokes for me, from the time I was a child and watched it being performed my Peter, Paul and Mary (though penned by John Denver back in ’66) on some TV variety show later on in that decade. I could talk about that. I could also remember how this song was one of my family’s traveling songs. Songs we played on an 8-track (yes, you read that right) tape player. Along with a classic Dionne Warwick tape of Valley of the Dolls (still one of my all time classic LPs of the era), Sergio Mendes and Brasil ’66, and the Fifth Dimension. This was a very classic era of pop song writing.

I know I could wax poetically about that era of writing. How very little writing of this era even remotely matches the hooks, the arrangements or the prose of that emotionally charged part of our past.

I could write about all of that…and quite a bit more.

But I won’t.

Why?

Simple: Jay does it all so beautifully in this posting. It’s plaintive, it’s emotive, it carries all the history and sentimentality for older guys like me. It’s the simplicity of it that grips the heart and dares you to let go.

So, I’ll just leave it at this. Do what you do so well, Mr. Brannan.

…and I’ll keep on remembering my days long past. Thank you for bringing them back, like faded photos in an album I keep in my head – that can only be opened with my heart.

Brilliant.


 

The Always, Then & Now Tour…

Please check out his site with links for his upcoming shows. I am definitely a late comer to the Brannan bandwagon whenever he pulls through my city. But now that I am going this year, I am making it a goal never to miss when he swings through town. I hope you take advantage of the opportunity as well. Also be sure to check out his web store at the following link.

Jay's Website - jaybrannan.com
Jay’s Website – jaybrannan.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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