Monday, January 30, 2006

Time Is On My Side

Hey Googlers: so I'm the #1 search result when you search the terms "bandleader winding." It's always nice to be number one at something. But why, on today of all days, are so many of you searching "bandleader winding?" It's sending my traffic to the moon, and while I'm thrilled, I'm really curious. Please let me know in the comments section -- I'm dying to know what's up.

Originally uploaded by chinese_fashion.
Everybody knows that the Stones are the greatest band in rock music, hands-down. Their ability to write songs of universal joy, sadness, and badassery is almost incomprehensible, considering that they started out as a couple of privileged, possibly prissy ponces from England.

The Rolling Stones' ability to write astonishing rock songs is only exceeded by their ability to cover even more astounding songs by actual black people and brand them forever in the public consciousness. Case in point: Time Is On My Side, a rock radio staple since the Stones covered it in 1964.

Charlie Watts and the boys (you never read that phrase, do you) may have thought that they were covering Irma Thomas's rendition of the tune, released a month or so prior. However, Thomas herself was covering a tune orginally released in October 1963 by Kai Winding and his Orchestra.

Winding was a bandleader and trombone player extraordinaire. You don't usually think the of the trombone as a buttery, elegant, tear-jerking instrument, especially in the hands of a cracker like the vanilla pillar you see on the right, above, next to a young Miles Davis. And it's not, at least on this track.


Winding's trombone would etch a cosmic pattern kissed by silver-tongued angels straight onto your eardrums if it were not for The Enchanters' soaring, ecstatic vocals. The lead singer (whose name I can't find at the moment) teeters on the brink of screaming in righteous, ecstatic agony without ever quite slipping into a maudlin trench of self-pity. The lyrics themselves are incredibly minimal, simply "Time is on my side ... you'll come running back to me."

The song doesn't need anything else. Winding's trombone provides the melody that Ron Wood and his gang of louts smeared over with words in their more famous release.

I've listened to this song at least fifteen times today, and it has not stopped sending tiny electric ripples over the surface of my skin. As I recline here at my desk, alone, on the sixteenth listening, I feel the same way I did at the first: I am exhilarated and sweetly exhausted, as though I'm laughing after a tremendous cry and resolving that things will be different as the tear-tracks fade into the rest of my face. The world is brighter, like a particularly nasty storm has just moved away and the sunlight seems so sweet. Wilson Pickett's version of the same song plays immediately after and it feels like a tepid exercise from a brokedown hack.

Males are not allowed to cry in contemporary American cultures, and I think that's exactly why the obsessive love of pop music is largely the dominion of dudes: it allows us to feel what our culture does not. We don't have the necessary emotional safety valve that women have, and so we bottle everything up, drink too much and fall in love with pop music. I'm not saying it's healthy or good, but it's gotten us this far.

So after all that hot balloon juice, here's the song itself:

Time Is On My Side, by Kai Winding and The Enchanters

This song will be available for seven days, or until 25 people download it, whichever comes first. If you do go to download it and it's no longer there, please leave me a message in the comments section. This will both let me know that it's time to re-upload it, and give me some idea of how many people are actually paying attention out there...


At 5:38 PM, Blogger Listmaker said...

i love it all. keep it up.

At 8:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

no time is on your side, please reload

At 9:53 PM, Blogger chickenwhee said...

I've just gotten into a big debate with a Stones-fan-friend who does not believe they aren't the original. I have the Irma Thomas version, but not this one - I wonder if you would repost this?
Thanks for your consideration.

At 11:03 AM, Blogger Uri DeYoung said...

Please repost! All these years, I thought that Irma Thomas did the original.

At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Bandleader winding" is a clue in today's crossword in the Seattle Times and possibly some other papers. Thanks for the help!

At 2:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

bandleader Winding is the clue today on the crossword of The Daily Express here in Trinidad, West Indies. I didn't know who you are but now I will!

At 2:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also clue in Chicago's Redeye

At 11:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kansas City Star crossword puzzle for September 28, 2006, fourth clue under across is "Bandleader Winding"; helluva stumper! Appreciate the enlightenment!

At 10:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

it's in todays crossword

At 2:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clue in Dallas crossword. Glad we could get you stats up

At 9:41 PM, Blogger Simon said...

hi, would luv if you could upload the song again - thanks

At 10:23 AM, Blogger John said...

Just stumbled across this, and I'm embarrassed that this is the first I've learned about this version of the song (I've been hunting down original versions for thirty years). So I'm two years late, but if you ever upload it again it would be great!


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home