Wednesday, November 2, 2011

More Live! Pop! Live!

I've been a little brain dead the last few days, recovering from what was really a horrible October. I've been cruising YouTube searching out fun live performances of some classic pop tunes that you never really expect to ever hear live.

My last post had several good examples, but since then I've come up to a few more nice live performances I'm hoping you all enjoy a much as I did.

Not really all that well remembered these days, but in the late 60's and early 70's Melanie, wrote and recorded a several pop hits, including automobile commercial standard, Brand New Key and the wistful, Look What They've Done to my Song, Ma.

But by far my favorite of her songs is her full blown protest anthem, Lay Down (Candles in the Rain).

From 1970, here's alive performance with Melanie and a full gospel choir, making for a fantastic live cut.

Going back just a couple of years from an episode of the old Smother's Brothers Comedy Hour, Bobbie Gentry gives a haunting performance of her immortal ballad Ode to Billie Joe

I've always loved this modern take on the classic style of Appalachia folk music, and with just her quiet guitar  Gentry's performance is both sad and spooky, making for one hell of a take on the song.

Cat Stevens is about as far from esoteric as you can get for musicians from the 70's, but this live performance of Wild World, from a BBC appearance in the mid-70's is really worth a look.

This next song is great to watch not because it's a good performance, but much more because of how it shows off the hubris of success.

This clip from the Midnight Special, features the Starland Vocal Band, doing their hit Afternoon Delight. The performance is slick and professional, and the band plays with a certain, I don't know if this is the right word, but arrogance, that takes away from the simple, pleasant pop ditty they are playing, and makes their status as the ultimate in one hit wonders seem almost fitting.

Okay after all that pop let's finish up with this wonderful performance of Eggs and Sausage followed by an interview with a young and innocent Tom Waits in one of his very first television appearances, as he totally weird out Mike Douglas and his other normal showbiz guests.

It's sort of fun to watch Marvin Hamlish squirming to move as far from Tom as he possibly can during the interview.

Just classic.

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