Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Cry, Baby

Erma Franklin

Songs, man. Sometimes you have to pull the car right over onto the side of the road and just let a song finish tossing your heart around like a tired old played-out sock that somebody flushed into the ocean. Since the breakup, I have done a pretty good job of holding it together by a)not having a car and b) not having an iPod. However, I still have my moments.

Masculinity may be mutating faster than the poles are melting, but it still stands that the only way straight dudes can cry is alone, with a soundtrack. I think. We don't actually talk about it, ever.

Janis Joplin's "Cry, Baby" and "Piece of My Heart" used to straight-up negate my whole entire drivers' license, just reducing me to a big hairy heap covered in salt water. I say "used to," because I have since discovered that Janis was covering those songs. When I hear the originals, it is all that I can do not to throw my window open and shout "JANIS JOPLIN WAS A BULLSHITTER!" and then call in sick to work.

Here are the original tracks:

Cry Baby, by Garnet Mimms
Piece of My Heart, by Erma Franklin

As it turns out, Soft Cell was covering "Tainted Love," too. Their version is so different as to be incomparable to the original, but ain't it just the damnedest thing that that, too was an incredible soul song?

Here it is:

Tainted Love, by Gloria Jones

What do you think? Do these tracks not completely blow your mind? Or am I alone here, a guy with his computer in the dark, a guy that once again has stayed up way past his bedtime?


At 2:27 PM, Blogger K said...

You are not alone.

Thanks for the comment, I studied it a bit, but not sure if that helped or hurt my writing. You?

Sorry about your breakup--damn songs sometimes only serve to make it worse...

At 11:41 PM, Anonymous fanny said...

i love this post.
it is the virtual equivalent of when you would burst into my room and politely but firmly assert that whatever i was doing was not nearly as important as what you were about to tell me/show me/play for me. sometimes i was amused. sometimes i was terrified. sometimes i was even annoyed, but i miss those days, and i'll take the enthusiastic simmermonian interruption in whatever form i can get.
oh, and the songs are fucking kick-ass too.

At 1:01 PM, Anonymous Mo Townes said...

Didja know that Erma is Aretha's sister?

At 4:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

this post is sweet Jeff. Thanks for the hot mp3s.

Kinda makes ya wonder... "Was Janis really all that, or was she just the female Joe Cocker?" Not dissing Cocker or Janis, but there's definitely a parallel between the two, with the cover songs and all.

and Dusty Springfield also did a strong, classy cover of "Piece of My Heart" that you'd dig.


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