Big Star – Feel ….Power Pop Friday

Happy Friday Everyone! Hope your week is going well. Lisa from Tao Talk did me an honor by posting an article I wrote on her site about Maria McKee from Lone Justice in her Women Music March series…she has had some great artists! Check it out if you can.

When Big Star comes up, when people think of a member…it’s usually Alex Chilton. That is not a bad thing but on their debut album Chris Bell was just as prevalent as Chilton. This song was off of their debut album named #1 Record. It’s the only album to feature Chris Bell along with Alex Chilton the entire album. They complimented each other perfectly.

After writing a post for Dave’s site about Badfinger (thanks Dave)…a band that I obviously like…I thought I would post about another band that is right up there. I hold Big Star’s music up with The Who, Beatles. and Kinks…they never had the sales but they did have a giant influence. They released this album as their debut in August of 1972. Whenever I write about this band, I always have to stop myself from gushing about them. Was it the mystique of them? Was it the coolness factor of liking a band that not many people know? No and no. It’s about the music. Mystique and coolness wear off and all you are left with is the music…We are fortunate to have 3 albums by Big Star to enjoy.

“Feel” leads off the album with a bang. Feel was written by Chris Bell and Alex Chilton and Bell takes the lead vocal. There are more hooks in this song than in a tackle box. This is what power pop is all about. If I had to introduce someone to power pop, I would ask them to listen to #1 Record by Big Star and Straight Up by Badfinger.

All three are in Rolling Stone’s top 500 albums of all time. For a band that never charted a record that isn’t too bad. When their albums were finally discovered by later bands, they influenced many artists such as The Replacements, REM, The Cars, Cheap Trick, Sloan, Matthew Sweet, KISS, Wilco, Gin Blossoms, and many more. They influenced alternative rock of the 80s and 90s and continue to this day.

Drummer Jody Stephens: “All of a sudden I’m playing with these guys that can write songs that are as engaging to me as the people I’d grown up listening to, so I felt incredibly lucky.” 

Paul Westerberg:  “I never travel far, without a little Big Star,”

Alternate Mix

Feel

Wondering what are you doing?
You’re driving me to ruin
The love that you’ve been stealing

Has given me a feeling

I feel like I’m dying
I’m never gonna live again
You just ain’t been trying
It’s getting very near the end

I feel like I’m dying
I’m never gonna live again
You just ain’t been trying
It’s getting very near the end

Wondering what are you doing?
You’re driving me to ruin
The love that you’ve been stealing
Has given me the feeling

I feel like I’m dying
I’m never gonna live again
You just ain’t been trying
It’s getting very near the end

I feel like I’m dying
I feel like I’m dying

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

21 thoughts on “Big Star – Feel ….Power Pop Friday”

      1. 🙂 I finally finished the last hour of The Beatles series last night. I really like how they put the montage together showing the concert, the young clueless cops standing downstairs, and the street people’s reactions to the concert. I think I saw maybe 2 people say they didn’t like it but all of the rest in favor, but the cops said shut it down because of 30 complaints in a few minutes? Give me a break! Also, did they turn George’s amp off towards the end and he went and turned it back on??

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yes Mal was told by the police to turn it off and George wasn’t having ANY of that.
        I saw a recent review of that policeman…the young one. He was so scared! I feel sorry for him now because he was following orders.

        That is what I saw at the theater…it was wonderful! I’m glad you finished it. I’ve seen it twice so far… they sounded so good for such little rehearsal time…in the cold.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I want to know why Mal let them go up? I think they should have locked the ground level door and barricaded it. But then they would have missed the priceless young cops standing about looking clueless. It showed how much George added to the sound of the group when they did that, and I loved it for that much. John & Paul were in their happiest and best in the clip. I felt sorry for poor Ringo, he looked so cold!

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Oh…they would have LOVED to be arrested…Mal knew this. That would have made a great ending to the movie. The policeman says now…it was a bluff…he said he would have never brought them in.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. A new one to me, fairly catchy like you say. It has a bit of a Brit glam sound to it too – not too far removed from some stuff by Sweet or T-Rex… which also didn’t generally go over big in the U.S., so maybe that adds to the explanation a bit. The photo at the top has a bit of an early-REM look to it… certainly Peter Buck loved Big Star in a big way, so I would guess he’d love that compliment.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This one is a favorite of mine off the first album. As far as what I read…people reacted great to it but…that doesn’t help when the record isn’t in the shops…damn Stax records…they were going down at that time. If Clive Davis wouldn’t have been fired the next year…they would have been distributed…then it would have been a fair test.

      Like

  2. Good tune. It sounds familiar, yet I don’t think I’ve heard it before. It is unmistakably Big Star–there songs sound a lot alike to me–not that that’s a bad thing. I like a lot of bands that are dialed in.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yeah, Chilton was the ‘name’ but Chris Bell wasn’t just there for the ride.
    The Big Star influence still resonates. I recommend, if that’s not being too forward, a listen to the Sons Of Bill ‘Lost In The Cosmos Again (Song For Chris Bell.)’

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Feel free to suggest away…
      I listened to it three times…it’s richly textured and the solo is awesome….the song is worth it if just for the line “You caught it in glimpses but never could catch it, the harder you try It’s still passing you by”….that line alone is great.
      It’s great to see Bell get some love.

      Thanks Obbverse…wonderful song.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Glad you liked it. I like its restraint. It’s hard to find something that is more than banal these days. (Gettin’ older, gettin’ grumpier,) but the odd nuggets are still out there if we dig down…

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: