Tough Calls


One of the many, many tasks I have for the day is going through my iTunes and deleting songs that seemed like a good idea at the time, but, in retrospect, not so much. Especially with the wife on her way home and my chores undone.

Here’s my dilemma, I have a couple of different versions of the same song.  Here are a few examples

Like A Rolling Stone

Bob Dylan–I like the organ bit, courtesy of Al Kooper.   It is, after all, the “classic” version.

The Rolling Stones–Better energy.  I like the cultural inevitability of the Stones singing a song with their name in it.  Like,  ‘Hey, Hey We’re The Monkees’.

Lonesome Town

Ricky Nelson–So melancholy.  Without a doubt one of his best.  I make no apologies about liking Ricky Nelson.

Paul McCartney–Better vocal.  It is tough to not like a McCartney cover version of anything.  I make no apologies for liking Paul McCartney.

Jambalaya (On the Bayou)

Hank Williams–It’s Hank.

John Fogerty and the Blue Ridge Rangers–Like Creedence, but without all the intense hatred.

Van Morrison and Linda Gail Lewis--Great piano and vocals.

Memories Are Made of This

Dean Martin–Usually the definitive version. Lampooned in ‘The Hudsucker Proxy’.

Johnny Cash–Low key and lo-fi.  Full of regret, this version brings a whole new meaning to the song.

Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out 

Derek & The Dominos–From Clapton’s best record.   Blistering guitar work.

Louis Jordan–Two minutes shorter.  Captures the atmosphere of the smoky clubs of the 1940’s.

Return To Me

Chris Isaak–Chris is at his best when depressed sounding.

Dean Martin–Makes me hungry for pasta.  Used in a great opening to a passable David Duchovny romantic comedy.

That’s Life 

Frank Sinatra–Nobody crosses Mr. Sinatra.  The inflections are almost Phil Hartman-esque.  Or the other way around.

Van Morrison–I like this arrangement better.

The Weight

The Band–As seen on cell phone commercials and Angelina Jolie star-making performances.
The Band (with The Staple Singers)— I love me some Staple Singers.

Twistin’ The Night Away

Sam Cooke–As seen in ‘Animal House’.

Rod Stewart–Who am I kidding.  This isn’t even close.  Although, early ’70’s/Faces era is the only Rod I like.

While My Guitar Gently Weeps

The Beatles–George Harrison’s masterwork.  Clapton guitar solo.

Eric Clapton & Paul McCartney–From the Concert for George.  Touching ukulele intro on first verse. Clapton guitar solo.

I’m about 150 songs too heavy to fit on my antique iPod.  Getting superfluous songs off would be a good start.


6 Responses to “Tough Calls”

  1. sistasmiff Says:

    Rick Nelson…totally underrated as an artist and as a contributor to the Country/Rock movement of the early 70’s. Not to mention he was perhaps one of the most beautiful creatures ever.

  2. Charles Nelson Barkley Says:

    Delete Sinatra and you’ll be fitted with a new pair of cement shoes to let you stroll along the bottom of the Cumberland.

  3. Scott Smith Says:

    Any song that has Levon AND Mavis is a keeper. Track down her version of “Hard Times” on a Stephen Foster tribute from a few years ago. Breathtaking!

  4. Katherine Coble Says:

    The more important question is….

    do you believe Van had the much-disputed affair with LGLewis?

  5. Sarcastro Says:

    Whatever it was between them, I’m pretty sure that the mental image it suggests is uglier than any accusations could possibly suggest.

  6. Scott Smith Says:

    By the way, if you ever have the opportunity to hear Cher’s version of Like a Rolling Stone, pass it up.

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