Slade – Gudbuy T’Jane

This is another song I heard for the first time on the 2006 Britsih show Life On Mars. Slade never really broke America until the 80s with Run Runaway and Oh My My. Quiet Riot covered the Slade songs Cum On Feel The Noize and Mama, Weer All Crazee Now and had hits in the 1980s.

“Gudbuy T’Jane” was Slade’s follow up to their hit single “Mama Weer All Crazee Now.” In his autobiography Who’s Crazee Now?, guitarist and lead vocalist Noddy Holder explained the inspiration for the song.

Jane was the co-host of a TV chat show in San Francisco whom Slade met on their US tour. They wrote the song in about half an hour, “one of the easiest songs we ever recorded.” The line, “Got a kick from her ’40s trip boots” is a reference to her kicking Holder up the backside when the band was having a laugh at her expense.

Jane had bought a pair of platform shoes which she called her “’40s trip boots,” and somehow managed to lose them. “She thought they were original ’40s shoes and she told us that she had paid a fortune for them,” he said. “She was a real loony, a typical San Francisco hippy.”

The song peaked at #2 in the UK and #68 in the Billboard 100 in 1972.

 

From Songfacts

Jim Lee came up with the title; Holder wanted to call it “Hullo T’Jane,” which doesn’t have the same ring to it. They recorded it in two takes, and, backed by the typically misspelled “I Won’t Let It ‘Appen Agen,” it was released on Polydor and went on to become a monster hit. The single was produced by Chas Chandler.

There was a second track on the A-side: “Take Me Bak ‘Ome.” The sheet music credits “Gudbuy T’Jane”: “Words and Music by Neville Holder and James Lea.” >>

This was kept off the UK #1 spot by Chuck Berry’s live recording of “My Ding-a-Ling.” Coincidentally, Slade was present at the Coventry gig where Berry’s hit was recorded.

Jim Lea recalled the story of the song to Classic Rock magazine: “I’d been round to Nod’s house and played ‘Gudbuy T’Jane’ to him, lyrics and all. He said, ‘S’alright.’ He was always very phlegmatic, had dodgy adenoids.”

“We had some time left at the end of the recording, so we put it down very quickly. Nod said he’d done something with the words on the train down. He started singing, ‘Hello to Jane, hello to Jane.’ I was mortified. He told me he thought that was a bit more optimistic – f–king hell. But with all of them, I knew when we were writing a hit.”

Gudbuy T’Jane

Goodbye to Jane, goodbye to Jane
She’s a dark horse see if she can
Goodbye to Jane, goodbye to Jane
Painted up like a fancy young man
She’s a queen,
Can’t you see what I mean, she’s a queen,
See, see, she’s a queen
And I know she’s alright, alright, alright, alright

I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, you’re so young

I said goodbye to Jane, goodbye to Jane
Get a kick from her forties tip boots
Goodbye to Jane, goodbye to Jane
Has them made to match up to her suits
She’s a queen,
Can’t you see what I mean, she’s a queen,
See, see, she’s a queen
And I know she’s alright, alright, alright, alright

I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, you’re so young

I said goodbye to Jane, goodbye to Jane
Like a dark horse see how she ran
Goodbye to Jane, goodbye to Jane
Spits on me ’cause she knows that she can
She’s a queen,
Can’t you see what I mean, she’s a queen,
See, see, see, she’s a queen
And I know she’s alright, alright, alright, alright

I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, you’re so young
I say you’re so young, she’s alright, alright, alright, alright
I say she’s so young, so young, alright, alright
I say you’re so young …

 

 

Joe Walsh – Life’s Been Good

This song peaked at #12 in the Billboard 100 in 1978. Walsh lived this song out. He hung out with fellow stars such as Keith Moon. He said that Keith showed him the ropes of hotel destruction and Walsh was quite accomplished in that art.

The song was on his 4th album But Seriously, Folks… and it peaked at #8 in the Billboard Album Charts in 1978. This is Joe’s highest-charting song.

Joe Walsh: “I wanted to make a statement involving satire and humor, kind of poking fun at the incredibly silly lifestyle that someone in my position is faced with – in other words, I do have a really nice house, but I’m on the road so much that when I come home from a tour, it’s really hard to feel that I even live here. It’s not necessarily me, I think it paraphrases anyone in my position, and I think that’s why a lot of people related to it, but basically, that’s the story of any rock star – I say that humbly – anyone in my position. I thought that was a valid statement because it is a strange lifestyle – I’ve been around the world in concerts, and people say ‘What was Japan like?’, but I don’t know. It’s got a nice airport, you know… so it was kind of an overall statement.”

 

From Songfacts

This is a humorous look at the spoils of fame and fortune associated with being a rock star. Walsh pokes fun at the lifestyle of wealth and fame and the spoiled mentality – how it’s not me that’s changed, but everyone else.

Walsh lived up to this song, indulging in the hedonism he sang about long after it was released. “I started believing I was who everybody thought I was, which was a crazy rock star,” he told Rolling Stone in 2017. “It took me away from my craft. Me and a lot of the guys I ran with, we were party monsters. It was a real challenge just to stay alive.”

This is the last song on the the album. On the original recording from this album, the music fades away into silence. Then, about 30 seconds later, there is a really funny secret message from Joe Walsh which says “Wha-oh…here comes a flock of wanh-wanhs!”, followed by a chorale of “wannh”, “wanh” “wahn” (collectively sounding like a bunch of ducks or sheep). >>

The cover of the But Seriously Folks album shows Walsh eating a meal… under water. In the same BBC interview, he said: “I had to do that a couple of times, but I did go down to the bottom of the pool, and almost drowned… but it was fun. Not at the time, but it was fun to do. We weighted everything down, but it was very involved and it took a long time, and I was real proud of it. As long as you have access to art, or visually presenting something with your record, I would like to use that, pursue it and try to make it an integral part of the music. It was hard to do, but when I look at it, I can’t believe it either, I can’t believe I was stupid enough to do that, but I was proud of it. I won’t be repeating it, I can assure you!”

In 1979, Walsh announced his campaign for President of the United States, promising “Free gas for everyone” if he won (he didn’t). 

A famous line in this song, “My Maserati does 185,” was used as the title to a 2005 episode of the TV series Entourage.

Joe did this to explain how he wrote it

Life’s Been Good

I have a mansion but forget the price
Ain’t never been there, they tell me it’s nice
I live in hotels, tear out the walls
I have accountants, pay for it all

They say I’m crazy but I have a have a good time
I’m just looking for clues at the scene of the crime
Life’s been good to me so far

My Maseratti does one-eighty-five
I lost my license, now I don’t drive
I have a limo, ride in the back
I lock the doors in case I’m attacked

I’m making records, my fans they can’t wait
They write me letters, tell me I’m great
So I got me an office, gold records on the wall
Just leave a message, maybe I’ll call

Lucky I’m sane after all I’ve been through
(Everybody say I’m cool, he’s cool)
I can’t complain but sometimes I still do
Life’s been good to me so far

I go to parties sometimes until four
It’s hard to leave when you can’t find the door
It’s tough to handle this fortune and fame
Everybody’s so different, I haven’t changed

They say I’m lazy but it takes all my time
(Everybody say oh yeah, oh yeah)
I keep on goin’ guess I’ll never know why
Life’s been good to me so far

Hall and Oates – Sara Smile

I liked Hall and Oates until the early 80s when they started to use more of a formula.

Daryl Hall wrote this for his collaborator/girlfriend Sara Allen. She contributed to many of the duo’s hit singles, including “You Make My Dreams”, “Private Eyes”, “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)”, and “Maneater”.

They never got married, but Daryl and Sara were together for about 28 years before they broke up in 2001. In Entertainment Weekly October 16, 2009, Hall listed this as one of their favorite songs and explained: “That was a postcard to Sara Allen, who was my partner for many, many years, a ‘having a great time, wish you were here,’ kind of thing. I cannot tell you how many girls have told me they were named for it!”

Sara’s sister, Janna Allen, co-wrote their hit “Kiss On My List.” Janna died of leukemia in 1993 at age 36.

Sara Smile peaked at #4 in the Billboard 100 in 1976.

 

From Songfacts

The album’s cover photo by Mick Jagger’s makeup designer Pierre LaRoche is a glitzy shot of Hall and Oates in heavy makeup. John Oates talked about the eye-catching image in Nick Tosches’ biography Dangerous Dances: “We decided that if we were going to put our faces on an album cover for the first time we wanted to do it in a big way. Pierre said, in that French accent of his, ‘I will immortalize you!’ And he just did. To this day it’s the only album cover that people ask us about.”

David Bowie said that LaRoche was the best makeup artist he ever worked with.

According to Barry Rudolph, who was an engineer on the session, Hall sang his vocal live with the band. The only edit they made was to punch in over the word “Sara” in the beginning of the second chorus. With the backing vocals, Hall was trying to get them to sound like the doo-wop group The Dells.

In 2009, the country singer Jimmy Wayne recorded an updated version of this song with Hall & Oates. Wayne got his first record deal because of this tune after the Dreamworks executive Scott Borchetta heard him sing it, and it has been part of his concert repertoire ever since. Wayne said in publicity materials: “Over 13 years ago, I picked a Hall & Oates Greatest Hits CD out of a bargain box that sat outside the department store in the old Gaston Mall in Gastonia, North Carolina. I listened to the CD on my way home and I heard ‘Sara Smile’ for the first time. I began singing this song long before I knew how to play it on guitar, and I just felt like it was as if the song was written for me.”

The Jimmy Wayne updated version was Hall & Oates’ debut on the Hot Country Songs chart.

This song was performed on the episode “Tom, Sarah and Usher” of the Adult Swim show The Boondocks. In the episode, Tom DuBois starts to sing the song to his wife, when Usher comes in and sings the song a lot better. 

Tommy Mottola, who would later become chairman of Sony Music and marry Mariah Carey, was Hall & Oates’ manager at the time. He had some experience as a musician (recording as “T.D. Valentine”) and is credited for playing keyboards on the Daryl Hall And John Oates album.

Chris Bond produced this track with Hall & Oates. According to Scott Edwards, who played bass on this song, much of its success is attributable to Bond. Says Edwards: “Chris Bond was the real impetus behind ‘Sara Smile,’ ‘Rich Girl,’ ‘She’s Gone’ for Hall & Oates. But he was never given the accolades he deserved. He’s the one in my mind that was really responsible for their success. They may have written the lyrics and the chords and all that, but Chris was the one who figured out the production and the projection of it. He was a really good arranger and he wrote out note for note. He knew exactly how long he wanted you to let a note ring, how to hit it, how to release it. He was a good guitar player, but he played all the instruments. So he was one person who really could write out everything and it would be great.” (Here’s our full Scott Edwards interview.)

As you can imagine, this is a tough song for Sara Allen to hear, and since it still shows up on many playlists she can’t always avoid it. Daryl Hall explained to American Songwriter: “When that song comes on, the reality hits that we’re not together anymore, so it’s a very poignant and hard thing for her to deal with. I can still sing that song today and feel real about it – and always will – because emotions don’t change even though circumstances change.”

This song has been performed a number of times on Daryl Hall’s show Live From Daryl’s House. Jimmy Wayne, Rumor, Monte Montgomery and Smokey Robinson have all done the song with Hall on the program. One artist who did not was Train, whose lead singer Pat Monahan asked Hall how he hit the high notes. “That surprised me,” Hall said in our 2015 interview. “Because Pat has a higher voice than me. Pat Monahan could sing that song in his sleep.”

Sara Smile

Baby hair with a woman’s eyes
I can feel you watching in the night
All alone with me and we’re waiting for the sunlight
When I feel cold, you warm me
And when I feel I can’t go on, you come and hold me
It’s you and me forever

Sara smile
Won’t you smile a while for me, Sara

If you feel like leaving, you know you can go
But why don’t you stay until tomorrow?
If you want to be free, you know, all you got to do is say so
And when you feel cold, I’ll warm you
And when you feel you can’t go on, I’ll come and hold you
It’s you and me forever

Sara smile
Won’t you smile a while for me, Sara
Sara smile
Won’t you smile a while for me, Sara

Smile
Won’t you smile a while for me, Sara
Oh smile a while, won’t you laugh Sara
Make me feel like a man not keeping me crazy crazy
Smile a while

Staple Singers – Respect Yourself

The last time I saw Bob Dylan, Mavis Staples opened up the show. She gave a great performance and just knowing the history she represented was incredible. I remember the song “I’ll Take You There” when I was a kid but didn’t really start listening to the Staple Singers until I saw them on the Last Waltz playing The Weight.

This song peaked at #2 in the Billboard 100 in 1971.

The first two Stax albums The Staple Singers recorded were with Steve Cropper of the Stax house band, but by August 1971, when they recorded “Respect Yourself,” they were working with the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section at their studios in Alabama.

At this time, the Staple Singers were recording what they called “message music,” and ads for the Be Altitude: Respect Yourself album billed it as “The message that rock music is still looking for.”

 

From Songfacts

The Staple Singers signed with the Memphis Soul label Stax Records in 1968, where they found success after languishing at Epic. “Respect Yourself” was written by the Stax songwriter Mack Rice and one of their artists, Luther Ingram, who is best known for his song “(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don’t Want to Be Right.” They wrote the song after a discussion where Ingram said to Rice, “Black folk need to respect themselves.” Rice decided to turn the idea into a song, and quickly cut a demo. He didn’t think it was right for The Staple Singers, but Stax vice-president Al Bell did, stating, “I heard that lyric and I heard that melody and I said, ‘that’s it. This is the song I’ve been waiting on.'”

They slowed down the tempo of Rice’s demo and did a lot of experimenting in the studio. Terry Manning, who engineered the session, said: “It was kind of like all or nothing. We consciously put majors and minors together and rock and blues together. It was a lot of elements trying to fuse together, purposely putting little high tinklely sounds to catch kids’ ears, and just seeing if it would work.”

In the liner notes to the 2011 remaster of the Be Altitude: Respect Yourself album, Stax biographer Rob Bowman points out some of the things to listen for in this song:

Roger Hawkins using the rim of his snare and a wet-to-dry sound on the hi-hat.
A fuzzed electric guitar line that gets louder as the song fades out at the end. This was supposed to have a subliminal effect on the listener.
Mavis Staples blasting into the words “big ole man” at the end of the second verse.
The scat singing on two 4-bar sections, which was written as horn lines. On the demo, Mack Rice did the scatting to show where the horns would be, but The Staples sang it anyway, and the results were so good they decided to leave it in.

A cover version was a #5 hit in the US for Bruce Willis in 1987. He was the first white male solo act to hit the Top 5 with a record on the Motown label, and only the second white male solo act – after R. Dean Taylor’s “Indiana Wants Me” – to be so successful for the Motown Corportation.

The very first Soul Train dance line was to this song. The show went on the air in 1971, but the famous segment where dancers showed off their moves grooving down the line didn’t start until five episodes in, when host/creator Don Cornelius realized the dancers were the big draw.

Respect Yourself

If you disrespect anybody that you run in to
How in the world do you think anybody’s s’posed to respect you
If you don’t give a heck ’bout the man with the bible in his hand, y’all
Just get out the way, and let the gentleman do his thing
You the kind of gentleman that want everything your way, yeah
Take the sheet off your face, boy, it’s a brand new day

Respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself
If you don’t respect yourself
Ain’t nobody gonna give a good cahoot, na na na na
Respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself

If you’re walking ’round think’n that the world owes you something ’cause you’re here
You goin’ out the world backwards like you did when you first come here yeah
Keep talkin’ bout the president, won’t stop air pollution
Put your hand on your mouth when you cough, that’ll help the solution
Oh, you cuss around women and you don’t even know their names, no
Then you’re dumb enough to think that’ll make you a big ol’ man

Respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself
If you don’t respect yourself
Ain’t nobody gonna give a good cahoot, na na na na
Respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself

Respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself, respect yourself
Respect yourself, yeah yeah respect yourself, respect yourself yeah, respect yourself
You oughta you oughta respect yourself yeah, respect yourself

Circle Of Fear

This anthology supernatural series ran from 1972-1973. Like most of these types of series, it flowed from the original Twilight Zone. It wasn’t as smart (hardly anything is) but it was entertaining. It involved satanic cults, ghosts, killer dogs, twin turmoil, and so much more. And while some of the stories come off as simplistic (most really don’t have a twist), they all have something to offer… an intriguing plot or an interesting performance. It’s as I said, a solid batch of stories.

It was originally called “Ghost Story” and Winston Essex (Sebastian Cabot) opened each episode by taking the audience into his spooky old mansion and introducing the plot, which could range from a vampire preying on college students to a ghost haunting a house to an old man using voodoo against his own family. On January 5, 1973, the series changed its title to “Circle of Fear“, the Essex character was no longer part of the show, and the stories didn’t always feature supernatural themes.

It’s been sadly forgotten…if you like the supernatural it’s worth a watch.

 

Ronnie Lane – How Come?

The bassist and songwriter for British bands the Small Faces and the Faces, Lane gave it all up for a curious solo career: he ran away and formed a circus. After he quit the Faces he released this single.

Ronnie started his own folk-country band named “Slim Chance” and released a surprise hit single “How Come?” in 1974 and it went to #11 in the UK. Ronnie had a unique idea of touring. His tour was called “The Passing Show” which toured the countryside with a circus tent and included a ringmaster and clowns.

During the recording of the album “Rough Mix” with Pete Townshend… Lane was diagnosed with was Multiple Sclerosis. He still toured with Eric Clapton and others afterward and released an album in 1979 called “See Me.”

Ronnie Lane died of Pneumonia while in the final stages of Multiple Sclerosis in 1997

How Come?

How come when I cut the ace of hearts
You always draw the ace of spades?
How’s it when your best friend
Brings you lillies on your birthday?

How come, how come?
Well, I ain’t superstitious, but
Well, these things I’ve seen
How come, how come?
I ain’t a superstitious fella, but it worries me

How come when the local clergy calls
He tells me that you shouldn’t wear black
And what kind of bread are you gonna bake
With that hemlock in your spice rack?

How come, how come?
Well, I ain’t superstitious, but
Well, these things I’ve seen
How come, how come?
I ain’t a superstitious fella, but it worries me

The spider’s run, the cobweb’s gone
Did you eat it when the moon was new?
I drowned your cat, what do you say about that?
I’ve even broken up your broom
How come, how come?
Well, I ain’t superstitious, but
Well, these things I’ve seen
How come, how come?
I ain’t a superstitious fella, but it worries me
How come, how come?
Well, I ain’t superstitious, but
Well, these things I’ve seen
How come, how come?
I ain’t a superstitious fella, but it worries me

 

The Rubinoos – I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend ….Powerpop Friday

The Rubinoos are an American power pop band that formed in 1970 in Berkeley, California. Their only chart hit was a cover of Tommy James “I Think We’re Alone Now” in 1977.

This song was released in 1979 from the album “Back To The Drawing Board.” They had a resurgence in popularity because of the below claim.

Avril  Lavigne had a song called Girlfriend…The writers of The Rubinoos song sued Lavigne in 2007 over the similarities. Avril responded with this statement: “I had never heard this song in my life and their claim is based on five words! All songs share similar lyrics and emotions. As humans we speak one language. Let it be crystal clear that I have not ripped anyone off or done anything wrong.”

The Rubinoos made a statement afterward: “We are satisfied that any similarities between the two songs resulted from Avril and Luke’s use of certain common and widely used lyrics. We therefore completely exonerate Avril and Luke from any wrongdoing of any kind in connection with the claims made by us in our lawsuit.”

They released a new album in 2019 called From Home.

I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend

Sitting here so close, together
So far we’re just friends, but I’m wondering whether
I, am I just imagining
You, or do you really have a thing for me
Like I think I see when I see you smile
And the smile’s for me, I wanna tell you…Hey, You, I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend
Trying to say I wanna be your number one
Hey, You, I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend
Gonna make you love me before I’m done late at night when I, when I can’t sleep
Picture in my mind, I see you and me
I, I’m telling you what I wanna be
You, you’re saying you’re in love with me
And oh, it feels so good in a dream
That I know in life it’s just got to be
I wanna tell you……Gonna make you love me, yeah I’m
Gonna make you love me, yeah I’m
Gonna make you love me, before I’m done

I, am I just imagining
You, or do you really have a thing for me
Like I think I see when I see you smile
And the smile’s for me, I wanna tell you…
Hey, You, I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend
Trying to say I wanna be your number one
Hey, You, I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend
Gonna make you love me, yeah I’m
Gonna make you love me, yeah I’m
Gonna make you love me before I’m done