Four-Play (Week #12) A Salute To 71

 

Welcome to my twelfth Internet Blogcast. This week’s program could also be subtitled “Senior Moments”… a nod to the facts that my four featured tracks were transcending the musical charts’ stratosphere during my high school senior year… AND that, at present, I’m considered (by our ageist society) to be a senior citizen.

For you hippies who just happened to be stumbling down life’s highway along with me… oh… say… c1971… this music will stir a few fond where-were-you-when moments… perhaps the lyrics / stringed instruments might even tug a heartstring or two?

For those who are younger (perhaps hippie wannabes?)… be adventurous and give these classics a listen anyway… they really are that good!

Turning now to routine Blogcast housekeeping duties…

Beneath the applicable song titles, below, you’ll find links to three must see / must hear cover versions.

And while we’re on the subject… I’ve gotta give a shout out to the talented YouTube videographers and performers… the sensory stirring sights and sounds you bring to my Blogcast are akin to the cosmic Big Bang redux.

For any of my listeners who may’ve missed previous shows and/or would like to hear encore performances they’re all neatly archived in my music category.

Well, at this point, here’s where I’d usually say…

“Blog response will be akin to Arbitron / Nielsen “radio ratings”… so… if you’ve enjoyed what you’ve heard, click that “Like” Star. Of course, comments are always welcome, too!”

However… since my ratings, to date, do not warrant my continuing, meet me back here… same time… same “station”… for my last Blogcast… you never can tell what you’ll be hearing seven days from now.

Long sigh… that’s about all I’ve got. Since the music speaks for itself… that’s my cue to shut up and deliver the goods…

Who ~ Behind Blue Eyes

Cover Performed by Grace Doty

Moody Blues ~ The Story In Your Eyes

Led Zeppelin ~ Stairway To Heaven

Cover Performed by Jess Greenberg

Cover Performed by Chloé

John Lennon ~ Imagine

 

 

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Musical Compositions “Decomposed”

The above clip aurally sums up a recent plagiarism lawsuit… the case where the estate of Spirit’s guitarist / songwriter, Randy Wolfe (a.k.a. Randy California) had claimed that, in 1971, Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” composers  Robert Plant & Jimmy Page had ripped off the guitar riff to Wolfe’s 1968 instrumental song, “Taurus”. Well, yesterday, a jury settled the matter in favour of Led Zeppelin… and I’m not totally convinced they decided correctly.

In this next clip, guitarist TJR, further showcases these two songs, practically “decomposing” them down to their atomic structure. He also demonstrates the similarities between Zeppelin’s “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” and Beatle George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”.

Of course, forty years ago, Harrison, himself, had been found “guilty” of subconscious plagiarism re his 1970 recording, “My Sweet Lord”… that song being deemed a musical clone of Ronnie Mack’s composition, “He’s So Fine” (recorded by the Chiffons in 1963).

There have been other similar sounding tracks, which have caught my ear, as well, over the years… including “Things We Said Today” released by the Beatles in 1964 and the Hollies’ 1966 track, “Bus Stop”.

 

It was only about a week ago, while I was playing the John Lennon / Paul McCartney composition, “Help”, on my piano, when it suddenly dawned on me that George Harrison had kinda / sorta, “ripped off” his own band mates… had employed the exact same chord progression [A – C#m – F#m – D – G – A] for the bridge to his composition, “Something” (once the key signature shifts from C to A).

 

So… why does this happen? Well, I’d say with our brains, for the most part, all being wired in a similar fashion… with multiple millions of musicians limited to playing within the confines of western music’s 12-note octave, the possible (pleasing) sequences of these notes are not infinite and, as such, whatever plagiarism issues which arise… well… let’s just say that this should not come as any big surprise.