High School Yearbook Photo

"More than a place, the Shady Dell was and will forever remain a state of mind." - Shady Del Knight

"More than a place, the Shady Dell was and will forever remain a state of mind." - Shady Del Knight

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Perfect Storms: The 10 Most Exciting Records...Ever! (Part 10)

It's time to resume the countdown of The Most Exciting records by UK artists.

14. “I Want to Hold Your Hand” – Beatles (January 1964)

I was on the junior varsity basketball team. My primary responsibility was keeping the bench warm for the guys who actually got to play. I didn't mind being banished to the far end of the bench because that's where the cheerleading section began. With a sweet smelling spectator enthusiasm facilitator (the new p.c. term for cheerleader) sitting just inches away, I quickly forgot all about my basketball jones.

One night in particular is burned into my memory. Our team was returning by bus to D-town from an away game. The cheerleaders, who always accompanied the players, occupied the last few rows of the bus. I could hear the girls gabbing, laughing, and listening to WSBA on a transistor radio. Suddenly, the entire cheerleading squad erupted in screams and began to sing along to "I Want To Hold Your Hand,"
a new record by a new band from Liverpool, England called the Beatles.

These were not ordinary screams emanating from the back of the bus. It was the shout heard round the world! There was so much electricity in the air that it made my hair stand on end. The squeals of unbridled excitement coming from the cheer girls were even more frantic, more urgent than those that greeted Elvis when he exploded onto the scene the previous decade. That night on the bus, that pivotal moment in history, heralded the start of a phenomenon that would transform pop music and pop culture. The Beatles.

"I Want to Hold Your Hand" and many other Beatles songs blitzed the U.S. chart at the start of 1964. Beatlemania quickly circumnavigated the globe spawning many imitators. The British Invasion was underway. A multitude of mop top acts from the UK, some mounting a worthy challenge to the Beatles' supremacy, began their assault on the American record charts. The Beatles made it hard for copycat acts to keep up because they kept changing, growing, exploring and innovating. There's a word for that: exciting!

13. "Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey" – Beatles (November 1968)

From the Beatles' two disc White Album, one of the most over-the-top recordings the lads from Liverpool ever made. Penned by John Lennon, "Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey" is the longest title in the Beatles' catalog. From beginning to end it's 100% pure adrenaline!

12. “Let’s Spend the Night Together” – Rolling Stones (February 1967)

The melodic, melancholy "Ruby Tuesday" was originally designated as the B side of this Stones single. It emerged as the A side, however, when controversy began to swirl around "Let’s Spend the Night Together." Many radio stations considered the sexual implications too hot to handle and refused to play the song. For that reason, "Let’s Spend the Night Together," one of the greatest Stones classics, fell short of the Billboard top 50.

When the Stones were invited to The Ed Sullivan Show and made known their intention to perform their notorious song "Let's Spend the Night Together," Ed and his nervous censors demanded that Mick Jagger change the lyrics to “let’s spend some time together,” a G-rated invitation more befitting bible beating balladeer Pat Boone.

Dell rats were never keen on censorship. Raised on jukebox gems like "Hanky Panky" and "Baby, Let Me Bang Your Box," Dellions were not the least bit offended by the original titillating lyrics to "Let's Spend the Night Together." The provocative theme and driving beat made "Night" a 2-to-1 favorite over "Ruby Tuesday" for dancing and romancing in the Dell barn.

While "Let's Spend the Night Together" stalled less than halfway up the Billboard chart, "Ruby Tuesday" soared unencumbered to the top.

The success of "Ruby Tuesday" had some critics crying
“sell out.” Detractors and skeptics accused the Stones of abandoning their raw roots to capitalize on the mushrooming psychedelic craze and keep pace with the trendy music of the Beatles, Kinks and Dylan. Most Rolling Stones fans, myself included, rather enjoyed that trippy psychedelic phase of the Stones’ career.

11. “Do You Love Me” – Dave Clark Five (May 1964)

The Contours scored a big hit with "Do You Love Me," but here's a case where the cover is better than the original.

"Do You Love Me" is my favorite song by the Dave Clark Five and easily one of the most exciting records to be released during the early months of the British Invasion.

The top 10 British beat semifinalists emerge in Part 11.
Don't miss it!

Have a Shady day!

No comments:

Post a Comment

You talkin' to me?