Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Chris May, Sep 10, 2016.
a comment about the video, I was part of the 70's and NO ONE wore anything like that hideous dress.
Harry: in the MFSL version the liner notes from Richard say it is the single version on the CD, and it obviously is not. Maybe the vocals are, but Tony's guitar additions are not there. Do you know why?
Yes. It's a mistake.
In an interview I saw, Paul Williams said that Richard changed the key of the bridge in 'I Won't Last a Day Without You', ("Touch me and I end up singing...", etc). Paul said that if Richard hadn't done this, he feels Carpenters' version would have been a bigger hit. However, I have versions by Diana Ross, Maureen McGovern, Paul Williams and others who keep the song as originally written and I feel that Richard made the verses, choruses and bridge fit together much more harmoniously. In short, Carpenters' unique and altered arrangement is the best.
Karen's lowest note on this recording is very low, but she sings it with such ease that you don't realise how low it actually is.
I think that Karen's voice sounds incredibly rich and warm in the verses and the bridge but sounds harsh in the choruses. I think it was 'The Untold Story' that revealed that she had laringitis while she was recording the song. Last time I heard 'I Wont Last a Day Without You', I thought that Karen didn't sound too good in the choruses. A bit grating, actually.
I love the stacked vocals at the end of the song, where K&R sing, "Won't last a day without you, without you".
I agree. That phrase sounds clunky on Paul Williams' version but heavenly on Carpenters' version. Then again, most lines sound clunky, the way Paul Williams records them(!) Seeing as Paul Williams is focused upon as the genius out of him and Roger Nichols, I always assumed that he wrote the music for the pair's collaborations. I recently found out that was Roger Nichols. Certainly, the lyrics of their songs are great, but I feel that the music is greater. Maybe Roger Nichols didn't want to be in the lime-light, whereas Paul Williams was more heavily into the entertainment business, as a song writer, recording artist and actor, so was probably happier to step forward for interviews, etc. I'm not negating his contributions, btw. 'We've Only Just Begun', 'Rainy Days and Monday's', 'Let Me Be the One' and 'I Won't Last a Day Without You' are wholly magnificent songs. And I've always loved 'I Kept on Loving You', too - one of the few Richard lead vocals that I like. I love all of the Paul Williams-related Carpenters songs but 'Ordinary Fool' - and 'Ordinary Fool' is even OK. I just don't think it's anything special at all - probably why K&R left it off their albums, initially. But 'I Won't Last a Day Without You' is a classic.
Can't pick one on this 45, both are excellent. The former even got some country crossover airplay!
It's pretty bad. The producers of MYOKOM must of had a "zero" budget for providing any kind of wardrobe for Karen. Looks like something Judy Garland wore in the "Wizard Of Oz".
Have to go with side A, and yes, that dress in the video - probably the worst of all the bad garments they seemed to put her in, early on.
Love this clip.... Love the piano interlude... but that dress!
I'll add - how disappointed I was as a fan to have yet another Song 4 You throwback single released, when the Singles 1969-1973 already sealed the deal on the earlier albums.
Don't get me wrong, I love the song, & agree that it should have been a single - but felt it should have taken the place of It's Going to Take Some Time...
I know they were touring their socks off - but if the label needed a song, someone somehow some way should have convinced TPTB to let these two in the studio for some recording after The Singles 1969-73 went to number one, along with Top Of The World. Quite possibly the largest and most critical mistake made in the grand scheme of things - career-wise.
That clip of Karen singing "It's Impossible" is about the most beautiful thing I ever heard... That was her 1974 self - and it was magnificent.
If they'd recorded those Como songs as full length Carpenters covers we'd have an even richer legacy to look back on. She couldn't have done those songs any more justice than she did and her voice (to say nothing of how hot she looked!) was at its absolute peak when she laid down the pre-recorded vocals for that medley. Why they didn't think to go on and record It's Impossible as a Carpenters track is beyond me.
It's an absolute tragedy there wasn't a 1974 album because I think it would have been bigger than Now And Then and Horizon.
But, I truly believe that the $$ made on the European Tours in 1974, on top of
the $$ coming in from LP The Singles 1969-1973 obviated the need (or desire) for the duo
to record an Album in 1974. They missed the presentation of their American Music Awards
Award due to the Tours; and I do believe a new album, as well as being present at that Show,
would have done wonders for the duo in America.
A 1974 LP would have been a sure-fire hit;
yet, someone decided that it was not a priority.
After all, wasn't an album per year a contract stipulation ? (?).
Perhaps the Live In Japan Album satisfied that stipulation.
Duo on the Cover of The Rolling Stone without an Album in release ? Absurd.
Richard commented in an interview about the
"obscene amount of money they were making on those European Tours"
(Melody Maker) and he commented on the amount that sales of the recordings brought in from overseas.
There's a reason so many different Japanese Pressings (compilations) were done--lots of dough !
In any event, those Como songs--pure Gold !
It's Impossible should have been Possible !
Toss in a Bacharach number and some new compositions by Richard to round it out- amazing.
Is there a reason why Live In Japan wasn't released worldwide in 1974? Given how popular the Carpenters were at the time, it could potentially have sold millions in North America and Europe.
Richard was never happy with either Live album.
But with 74 I think there's a little misnomer going around that the Carpenters didn't record anything in 74. "Carol Of The Bells" from Christmas Portrait was recorded in 74 for the Como special, "Sleep Well Little Children" was recorded for the first time.
My sister had One Love sung at her wedding in Aug of 1972. I was 7 and was ring bearer.
The touring did give them the adoration that kept import sales selling high through the rest of the 70's and probably to today, so they did carry a purpose. If a single had been in the oven while making the Singles LP, maybe it would have helped things. Helen Reddy sang the Paul Williams song You And Me Against the World, but if memory serves it barely made it into the top 10, and Let Me Be The One was still not a single, but I Won't Last A Day Without You just played. Maybe This Masquerade or a summer release of Please Mr. Postman would have been good? Had Trying To Get The Feeling but submitted yet? We can't go back, I think it was just in the cards. Even Only Yesterday, once it reached number 4 just dropped off the charts in a few weeks. It may have done better if there were television appearances for promotion. They had a great run and I do believe had Karen lived, there would have been a movie theme song for her as a solo artist that would have given one more hit. I think it was time for them to explore Movie and TV options separately after the '76 tour while keeping their Las Vegas and Tahoe shows as a team. Had there not been health issues in the way, perhaps what they began with Weintraub would have continued. But we have Christmas Potrait and Passage and beautiful work leads for the '79 album that became others through the years, but possibly would have been released if Richard had not cancelled the '78 tour, so all the different paths may have still been there if time had not run out.
As an aside, since the band never played together after the '78 tour cancellation that it was probably questionable as to the next career step and it is probably why Karen was given encouragement to try a solo album and her commitment to the family kept her interest in it and that same interest in the family shelved it once Richard was well. It's no one's fault, they just ran out of time. I feel that eventually career shifts would have happened once both of them had successful marriages and children. I think it was in Randy's YOM book that Richard said something in the form of Karen would have loved her nieces and nephew and I feel that the love of their family units is where we should focus. There is actually no blame or missed opportunity, it's just life. Even in our own families there are life issues but everyone loves each other regardless. There is a reason in heaven Karen sang with the introspective of a 40 year old at the age of 20 and again I feel that encouragement to focus on the positive is the only way not to focus on the unleveled tragedy that fell upon all of them. Our support in Richard's efforts to support Karen's legacy is our best Offering!
Awesome comment, Craig! And so true.