Using Bees To Effect Vengeance

I get to be as self-indulgent as I want without wasting anyone's time. Guilt-free solipsism -- excellent!

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Sunday, April 04, 2004
A couple new MP3s of the Time Increment.

First up, a beautifully raunchy live version of Tumbling Dice, from the Stones '73 stop in Brussels (the show's been booted on A Brussels Affair). Keith's rhythm guitar on this track is purest distilled essence of rock'n'roll. It is the dirtiest sound known to man.

Now, I don't know if you know this, but Keith has a reputation as something of a hellraiser. This comes as no surprise after listening to his music. Frank Sinatra also was known to be something less than a beautiful human being, but you'll have a hard time believing it after listening to his sublime interpretation of Can't We Be Friends. This comes from his 1956 LP In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning (probably makes #2 in my list of favorite Sinatra records), and if you've ever been underwhelmed by Sinatra and wondered what all the fuss was about, try listening to this. Then attempt to deny that the man knew how to use timbre, phrasing, and melody to connect squarely and profoundly with an emotion. Listen to how he runs out of air when he sings "she gave me the air". Listen to the slight cracking, and the careful pronunciation of the "t" in "what a bust". This man bears no resemblance whatsoever to the finger-snapping, hoodlum-consorting rake -- I don't know if it was Ava Gardner, or if his goldfish had died that morning...but here we have a man worthy of Bruno Kirby's adulation.

If you're in the mood, do a compare and contrast of Sinatra's version and the joyously swinging version by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong -- two people who saw more hardship than Sinatra ever did, but chose to play it lighthearted. (Thanks to Paul James and Kay Swift for writing such a beautiful song).


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