Friday, January 24, 2014

And when the night is cloudy, there is still a light that shines on me (The Beatles) #118

Aretha Franklin Let It Be/ Don't Play That Song (Atlantic, AK 3851, 1970)

Aretha's version was actually released before the Beatles one (in January 1970) but as great as Aretha is, her version is inevitably eclipsed by the fabs.

On paper she should do the business right? Her gospel voice perfectly which suits the content, her fantastic vocal style, Tom Dowd, Arif Mardin and Jerry Wexler are all on board.

The fabs on the other hand were in comparative disarray. The 1969 Get Back sessions are of legend: Macca telling George what to play, Yoko on board, George Martin not, John distracted, Ringo bored shitless.

And yet, and yet - on the album version in particular, The Beatles kick ass!!

Hidden gem: Aretha performs with the Dixie Flyers for the B side. For me it's the better side with a sympathetic backing, some nice gospel piano and Aretha in fine voice. It's a good song and a lovely B side.

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