Monday, November 13, 2017

Remakes Blogfest--Beatles and Bangles

Today, Alex J. Cavanaugh and Heather M. Gardner are hosting the Remakes Blogfest, a chance to discuss the remakes of songs, movies, and TV shows that are equal or better than the original versions. For the full list of participating blogs, please visit Alex's blog using the above link.

I debated about participating in this blog fest for a while before signing up. I'm pretty conservative in my music tastes. I stopped following popular music when I became a devout Beatles fan in 1995, and I tend to imprint on the first version of a song that I hear. However, the Beatles covered quite a few songs on their early albums, so I can discuss a couple of them.

First up is "Twist and Shout." It was originally performed by a group called the Top Notes and was produced by Phil Spector. That version flopped, so I'll post the more familiar Isley Brothers version instead:

It's a pleasant version, perhaps a soulful one (see the comments below the video on YouTube). The Beatles' version, however, is much more intense and rocking. When they recorded it for the Please Please Me album, they saved it for the final song of a twelve-hour recording session, since they knew how hard it would be on John's voice, especially since he was suffering from a cold at the time. John was only able to manage one take, but it was an immortal one. The version I posted below is from the first Ed Sullivan Show appearance. (I didn't see the album version on YouTube.) The sound isn't great, but you can still enjoy John, Paul, and George harmonizing.

The Beatles didn't release the Isley Brothers' "Shout" until Anthology 1, but thankfully they performed it on TV a couple of times. While the original version is great (and probably the one I heard first), the Beatles' cover is also fun. I think the energy both groups put into their versions is comparable.

I could go on with Beatles covers, but I'd like to finish off with "A Hazy Shade of Winter" by both Simon & Garfunkel and the Bangles. As a teen in the 80s, I most likely heard the Bangles' cover before the original. I love the energy the Bangles put into it; plus they also remind me of the heroines of my Season Avatars series. I can see Gwen, Jenna, Ysabel, and Kay performing this song (though they would be dressed more modestly) to welcome winter in Summon the Seasons.

Which versions of these songs do you prefer? Feel free to let me know in the comments.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks for participating in the blogfest!
You can tell how much movies influence me by which versions are familiar and comfortable to me. The Beatles' Twist and Shout was featured in Ferris Bueller, so I like that one best. However, The Isley Brothers' Shout was in Animal House, so that one is more dominate.
And I gave up on most mainstream music years ago. That's why I listen to progressive and European rock.

PT Dilloway said...

I hadn't realized Twist and Shout was a cover but mostly I just heard it in Ferris Bueller.

Shah Wharton said...

I'm a huge fan of Beatles fan and Simon and Garfunkel !! Although I'm not a huge fan of musical remakes some are less offensive than others - Bangles rendition is one example. And T&S is different because I heard it sung first by Beatles so I suppose my head is stuck on that version? All I know is that there's a lot of shouting going on! :)

Michelle Wallace said...

I teach songs by The Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel, as part of my primary school choir repertoire. I just add a bit of ooomph to the songs and the kids love it. They are always amazed to discover that the songs are decades old.

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

Believe it or not, Pat, I've never watched Ferris Bueller.

Shah, I think I heard the Beatles' version of T&S first too.

Michelle, some songs have timeless appeal!

Tamara Narayan said...

I had no idea Hazy Shade of Winter was a remake. Cool. If you can handle it, check out the film Across the Universe for some excellent reinterpretations of Beatles music.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I love that scene in Ferris Bueller with Twist and Shout.

It's been a long time since I heard the Bangles' version of that song. Probably haven't heard it since seeing Less Than Zero.

cleemckenzie said...

Great choices here. What struck me was how young Simon and Garfunkle looked. Wow!

My link didn't work on the Linky. I think it's because I screwed up the path with the switch to my new, cranky blog.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know Twist and Shout was a remake. I wonder which version I've heard.

Heather M. Gardner said...

I forgot about Hazy Shade of Winter!
Great choice!

Thank you for joining our blogfest today!!!

Juneta key said...

I like all the versions for different reasons but tend to lean to the most modern version but I just like that song.

Arlee Bird said...

The early Beatles did a lot of covers, but I guess that was because they were a bar band in those days and that's what bar bands do. One of the stranger covers they did was "My Bonnie" which I always thought was kind of a weird song. We used to sing it in school.

The Beatles drew me to follow pop music as well. They did so much innovative stuff.

Tossing It Out

Diane Burton said...

What fun memories. Love the Isley Brothers and the Beatles. Can't go wrong with them.

Sandra Ulbrich Almazan said...

Alex, I abandoned the Top 40 when I became a Beatles fan.

Tamara, I've heard of that movie but never watched it.

Diane, it's funny how people associate music with different things.

I'll have to stop by your blog, C.

Patricia, it wouldn't surprise me if it was the Beatles' version.

Thanks for hosting the blogfest, Heather!

All the versions have their merits, Juneta!

Lee, the Beatles' version of "My Bonnie" is quite different from the traditional one.

I agree, Diane!

Sharon Himsl said...

These are good remakes, but so are the original artist. Good picks.

Michelle Gregory said...

i'm not a huge Beatles fan, but in this case, i prefer their version.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

In these cases, I think all versions are pretty awesome. I suppose there is one for every mood.

Shannon Lawrence said...

All good choices. Having been born in the late 70s, I would have heard all the remakes first, and those are the ones I prefer, but they're all good.

Nilanjana Bose said...

All great choices here. Both Beatles and S&G beyond spectacular, they made immortal music, love the Isley Brothers too.

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