Dear Readers, another great week! Mike at Alittlebitoutoffocus, Susan, Claire, Anne and Fran and Bobby Freelove all got 30 out of 30, Liz got 27 and FEARN got 23, mainly for muddling up chickens and gibbons :-). But a most creditable performance from everybody, and thank you for playing. Let’s see what my fiendish imagination can come up with on Saturday….
1)E) – Rockin’ Robin, most famously by Michael Jackson and The Jackson Five but originally sung by Bobby Day in 1958. I’m not sure if I don’t prefer the Bobby Day version, have a listen and see what you think. I really enjoyed the jiving going on as well, it reminded me of Mum and Dad rock and rolling when I was a child. Rockin’ Robin has also been covered by an extraordinary range of artists, including McFly and The Hollies. Here’s Michael Jackson doing his stuff for comparison.
2) I) Skyline Pigeon by Elton John. A bit of a tearjerker, this one. It’s that line about the ‘aching metal ring’ that gets me every time. See what you think.
3) J) ‘Blackbird’ by The Beatles. Paul McCartney originally said that it was composed during a meditation retreat in India, but subsequently said that it was inspired by the Civil Rights movement during rising racial tensions in the US in 1968. Whichever it was, the guitar accompaniment was inspired by Bach’s Bourrée in E Minor, which McCartney and George Harrison tried to learn as a ‘show-off’ piece. There are many, many covers including this one by Eddie Vedder which has much to commend it, but there is something about the simplicity of the original that I think is pretty much unbeatable.
4) F) ‘When Doves Cry’ by Prince. Don’t be telling me about any cover versions, peeps! (Though it’s been done by Ginuwine and The Be Good Tanyas to name but two). Prince is the Man as far as I’m concerned. Case closed.
5) A) ‘Fly Like An Eagle’ by The Steve Miller Band in 1977. Have a listen – it sounds like the quintessence of dreamy laidback 70’s songs, at least until you get to the bit about children with no shoes (for whom the answer seems to be ‘fly like an eagle. Very helpful).
6) B) Sparrows Will Sing by Marianne Faithfull. I’ve always been fond of Marianne Faithfull, though it would be a bit of a push to call her a great singer. She can certainly put a song across though.
7) D) ‘Do The Funky Chicken’ by Rufus Thomas from 1972. Just the thing to shake up those lockdown blues.
8) G) ‘Snowbird’ by Anne Murray from 1970. Don’t you love the way that you can hear every single word? It has been recorded by about twenty other people, let me know if you have a favourite!
9) H) ‘Skylark’ originally recorded by Hoagy Carmichael in 1941. Goodness, what a romantic song! Just about right for Valentine’s Day. Also recorded by Ella Fitzgerald, and this is also swoonworthy. Sigh.
10) C) ‘Mockingbird (Hush Little Baby)’. This is a traditional song, recorded about 3 billion times, so whoever you said is fine by me! Amongst those who’ve recorded it are Carly Simon and James Taylor, (with a great deal of enthusiasm, at least judging by this live performance) and Aretha Franklin, who makes everything that she sings sound new.