Friday, October 12, 2007

Song of the Day: The Beatles and Aerosmith - Come Together

The Beatles - Come Together
from the album Abbey Road

Aerosmith - Come Together
this cut was from the soundtrack album Armageddon, but I suggest getting the AWESOME collection Pandora's Box

I was inspired recently to compare music that was either covered or sampled by more than one band or performer from a couple of sources. One such source was myself, actually *stops to flash cheesy smile* when I made mention of Sweet Jane and Sharon as recent Songs of the Day. I talk about this a lot with people - the effect that one musician will have on another and the differences between covers of songs. I thought about it again the other night when I was out seeing Chris Bergson and he did a rendition of both a Jimi Hendrix tune and a Bob Dylan song that had such a unique spin - and totally worked, beautifully.

Even more recently, however, was when I started checking out the blog Soul Sides on a daily basis, and grooving to Oliver Wang's "Who Flipped It Better?" series. He's putting into music blog what I sit over cocktails and talk about with a myriad of people...and I love his choices. He'll put up two hip-hop bands that both sampled an acid jazz/funk tune - and he'll put up for grabs the question: Who Flipped It Better? He'll put out the tunes for both songs PLUS the original cut that they're sampling - a recent post he had up was concerning a Lou Donaldson sample. Awesomeness. What gets me is that THAT was the kind of shit I was playing when I had my actual radio show in St. Louis named Voodoo Jive - hence, the name of this blog (for those who have scratched their heads and been like "What's this chick's trip with the Hawkins' name?"). I need to get back to that...and I will. But I have such a wide array of musical tastes that I have music blog ADD.

But for now, I want to focus on our Song of the Day, which is what I've been listening to a lot, especially at work.

I'm going to throw this out there...and some people are going to flip out...but I my opinion is that it's a really tough call as to which version is better of this song. Is that like the ultimate "I can't make up my damn mind" answer, or what?

Not really. Here's why.

You have The Beatles version, which is the original, of course, and there is this laid-back quality to it that makes it so amazing. Being their last recorded album (and, arguably, their best - there, I said it) they had reached a point in their craft where they didn't have too work to hard to get the sound that they wanted. The song is a minimalist song in and of itself, but it's something that hits you hard because of just that. I feel stoned when I listen to it. Maybe that's just from association, but I digress...

Then there's the Aerosmith version. Now, dig this: this was the first version that I ever heard. My sister, Danae, took me to see the Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band movie with The Bee Gees and Peter Frampton when I was a kid in '78. It wasn't until after I had seen the movie in the theater that I heard the Beatles' original version. In the movie, Aerosmith did the cover of this song - they were "the bad guys" (and they were so hot). So, to say that I have an affinity towards their version is an understatement, but I'm not enough of a moron to not realize that The Beatles' version is a genius. I do think, though, that Aerosmith's version is sexier - and to me...something has to be said for sexier. They did a great job covering the song, bottom line.

I'd be interested to hear what anybody else thinks about this...

Here's a bizarre thought: if we have to compare the sexiness of the two songs (maybe I'll start my own gig "Who Sexed It Better?" - just kidding) - because they both are, actually, I think I'd look at it this way:

The Beatles' version - I'm on top ('cause those cats are so laid back)

Aerosmith's version - They're on top, and they just took my virginity.

Either way, it's a win-win. Heh.


Blogger Finn said...

Aerosmith was my intro to this song too -- I loved that Sgt. Pepper album. The movie was weird, no? But God I loved Barry Gibb.

Anyway, I agree with what you're saying. Aerosmith made it hot and dirty, the Beatles made it mellow and cool. Excellent observations.

9:52 AM  
Blogger Pendullum said...

The Beatles was my first intro to the song....
And ofcoursea great deal of my adolecent time was spent proving Paul was dead...

I too remember Aerosmith being the badguys and capturing Strawberry Fields ands singingt his while PeterFrampton tried to rescue her... And I still can not get that campy image out of my head...

11:26 AM  

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