Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by song4u, Sep 11, 2012.
Incidentally, We Five were an A&M act during the pre-Carpenters era.
There are several threads on We Five here on the Corner. Just do a title search for We Five to see these older discussions.
Could be an effect of the way the mics were set up for the TV performance. On the record, Bev's voice predominates all the way through.
Yes, I noticed they presented the song in different ways in different performances.
As someone once commented to me on the difference in the two versions, Carpenters version seemed too "perfect" for the subject matter of the song.
Emmylou Harris did a Duets album. What if Karen's solo album was allowed to be released, have even "moderate" sales, and then she followed it up with a similar album as Emmylou's? How great would it have been for Karen to do a duet with someone like Freddy Mercury or David Bowie?! Just the contrasts in styles would create such a buzz, it would be guaranteed to sell a million copies.
I'm a country music (and, Def Lepard) fan...so,
here again, Shania Twain:
NEW AGAIN: SHANIA TWAIN By ALISON POWELL
New Again: Shania Twain
".....her voice, which has the clarity and warmth of Karen Carpenter's,
with a dynamic sound crafted by famed Def Lepard producer Robert John "Mutt" Lange...."
TWAIN: " Yes, I did. I've always listened to Elton John, Stevie Wonder, and the Mamas and the Papas.
A big influence of mine, you know, were the carpenters."
On our trip home from the eclipse viewing, I was struck by Shania Twain's voice and how it sometimes had that Karen Carpenter fluidity about it. One other singer also reminded me again of how much she could sound a little Karen-like was Susan Jacks of The Poppy Family.
Very nice vocal!
The Poppy Family is actually very similar to Carpenters in many respects.
- 1 - Susan Jacks was the wife of Terry Jacks, so they were husband and wife, not brother and sister.
- 2 - Susan did most of the lead vocals with a few by Terry, and her voice compares very favorably with Karen's.
- 3 - They got their start in the late 60s but came to popularity on the early 70s.
- 4 - They have a bit of an "image" problem, even though their music is quite good.
- - a - Their big hit was "Which Way You Goin' Billy?" which has the unfortunate use of the name "Billy". Another '70s act used "Billy" in their often-ridiculed hit, "Billy, Don't Be A Hero." The Poppy Family's song has nothing to do with that.
- - b - The name "Poppy Family" is often confused with The Partridge Family, another scorned '70s group.
- - c - They essentially only did two albums and then divorced. Terry Jacks went on to record one of those notorious 70s songs, "Seasons In The Sun" which was a hit but didn't raise his stock any over the years.
- 5 - They are largely forgotten now (except in their native Canada) and their two albums have never fully made it to CD in their original form. Terry remixed a bunch of their tracks for a compilation called A GOOD THING LOST 1969-1973.
- 6 - A late '80s comp called GREATEST HITS was actually released on A&M Records in Canada on CD and LP.
Got "A Good Thing Lost" The Poppy Family (1996 compilation) except it does not have the song "No Good To Cry" (from late 1971) though. Matt Clark Sanford, MI
Going to see "Liv On" featuring Olivia Newton - John, Beth Nielsen Chapman & Amy Sky at the Midland Center For The Arts in Midland, Michigan on Friday, October 13. Matt Clark Sanford, MI
"No Good To Cry" is on that A&M compilation. An LP is currently on eBay:
Bought the CD "A Good Thing Lost" in 1996 but the A&M compilation does not have that song though. Matt Clark Sanford, MI
A GOOD THING LOST does not have "No Good To Cry" and was not on A&M.
The A&M Canada Comp was called GREATEST HITS and DOES contain "No Good To Cry".
Anyone who doubts the brilliance of Carpenters' Postman can listen to this version:
Boone Family 1974
Sounds like The Nolans. Yes, I prefer Carpenters' version, (just a LITTLE), over this one.
Sounds very early 60s. It's nice but I love the Carps version.
I'm obviously under-exaggerating, in case you didn't notice.
Lots of love for Marilyn McCoo on this thread. First time I had seen this, Marilyn/Paul Williams duet including Rainy Days & Mondays. She incorporates One Less Bell... very nicely into the mix. Paul has a very unique vocal style to say the least, I could swear he's singing "hang on around".
Thanks for this post, that's an enjoyable watch.
As for the "hang on around" he does it twice, so it is intentional. There's a number of possible reasons; just a speech eccentricity he has, or some singers learn to "tweak" vowel sounds when singing because it is an easier way to reach a note or removes some shrillness, etc. For me personally, it is much easier to sing the word "on" at a high note, than the word "in".
I always enjoy Marilyn McCoo's singing. She always comes across as a nice person and classy, too, although, of course, you never see the real person on specials like this.
She made a couple of disappointing albums in the 80's, when you consider the potential she possessed to produce wonderful recordings, considering her vocal ability. I even thought that she could have mastered some much better material than she was given to record in the 70s with her husband Billy Davis Jnr on their duo albums.
About Paul Williams' inflections, I agree with David A. It's easier to sing an 'on' sound at a higher pitch than an 'en' sound. It's a rounder sound. Your voice isn't as likely to crack, if it's an untrained and unpractised voice. However, even for a bass like me, the pitch that Paul Williams is singing at that point isn't particularly high.
Thanks for this, Carpe Diem.
From Bermuda, Heather Nova "Paper Cup" (from 1998 "Siren") (also played in a "Dawson's Creek" TV episode back then): Matt Clark Sanford, MI
I did have another thought about this. A few of the words in 'Rainy Days and Mondays' were paraphrased from something Paul Williams' Mum said one day, (about talking to herself and feeling old), according to an interview with him on one of the Carpenters documentaries. Maybe 'hang on around' was something else she used to say. (You know, along the lines of 'barby-chew' for 'barbecue'). He's very deliberate in the way he sings it, but it doesn't sound like any accent I've ever heard. I believe his Mum died shortly after Carpenters' version of 'Rainy Days and Mondays' was released, btw.