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Carpenters fans keep quiet?

Carpenters-in-the-crib

Member
Thread Starter
Since I have joined, I have seen a lot of comments, in a variety of threads, where people had to keep quiet about being a fan back in their youth. I do remember them getting heat for being "squeaky clean". I think most people have stated that they faced backlash while during their high school years. I was in elementary school when they were at their peak. I never experienced this. The parents, teachers, and students all loved the Carpenters. We even had their songs within our school shows. I would like to read more about what others experienced in school, while the Carpenters were in their heyday. Maybe there is a difference between older and younger fans (generational thing) from the 1970's.
 

Mark-T

Well-Known Member
What you've asked in all included in my reason for re-reviewing their albums. I start with Offering / Ticket to Ride here and just completed A Song for You. I lived in SoCal during their heyday, and you're right, it was not easy to be a fan of the Carpenters. But we're a tough bunch! :wink:
 

CarpentersToYou

What I feel has come and gone before...
I think that happens with many artists. Look at poor Nickelback. They topped charts in the early 2000s till someone decided to make a joke out of them and now they are constantly the strange butt of jokes. Doesn't make sense. Music is so subjective.
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
Moderator
I've always hated the snobbishness of some music fans and critics who cannot seem to even hear what they're criticizing. I never really cared about being a 'discovered' to be Carpenters fan - I was long out of school and didn't really care what others thought at that point.

Recently I stumbled on an online thread elsewhere that was trashing Herb Alpert's vocal of "This Guy's In Love With You" as though it was somehow painful to listen to. Yet these same people often praise the likes of Bob Dylan and Rod Stewart, both of whom, to me, sound like they really shouldn't ever get close to a microphone. But that's all subjective. Every artist has their fans and those who dislike them, and I try to never criticize anyone's likes or dislikes.

Those that do like to trash certain artists come off as the real snobs to me.
 

Geographer

Well-Known Member
I've always hated the snobbishness of some music fans and critics who cannot seem to even hear what they're criticizing. I never really cared about being a 'discovered' to be Carpenters fan - I was long out of school and didn't really care what others thought at that point.

Recently I stumbled on an online thread elsewhere that was trashing Herb Alpert's vocal of "This Guy's In Love With You" as though it was somehow painful to listen to. Yet these same people often praise the likes of Bob Dylan and Rod Stewart, both of whom, to me, sound like they really shouldn't ever get close to a microphone. But that's all subjective. Every artist has their fans and those who dislike them, and I try to never criticize anyone's likes or dislikes.

Those that do like to trash certain artists come off as the real snobs to me.
I feel the same way about Rod Stewart. How'd that guy get a recording deal?
 

Mike Blakesley

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Moderator
I guess I never "hid" my Carpenters fan-ness, after all I did have a music store and I frequently played the albums in-store. But early on, as I've stated on the forum before, I was pretty much predisposed to dislike the Carpenters by default, because my sisters liked them (along with the Partridge Family, Donny Osmond and the like) so anything they liked HAD to be bad. But I begrudgingly admitted that I liked the early singles, especially "Close to You" and "Rainy Days and Mondays." By the time A Song For You came out, I was fully hooked, and the duo was so popular by then that nobody even gave it a second thought when they'd hear Carpenters music in the store.
 

Carpe diem

Well-Known Member
Speaking of Rod Stewart, recently I was listening to Reason To Believe from the CTY album on my computer while surfing the web. My wife came by, stuck her head in the door and abruptly said; "I like Rod Stewart's version better, he sings it with such emotion!" I told her to please leave...
 

Kacfan

Member
Anyone read this book? https://www.google.com.au/amp/s/amp.thenational.ae/arts-culture/singing-their-praises-the-power-of-the-human-voice-1.697510

Both rod Stewart’s voice and Karen’s voice are discussed in depth. For rod Stewart “The singing of Rod Stewart, meanwhile – so comforting to the young Coleman that it felt like that of the brother he never had – is “so highly textured, so fibrous that the illusion was sometimes created that he sang chords – not single melodic notes in linear sequence… ”

And on Karen: ‘Throughout the book, Coleman is adept at nailing the essence of his most-cherished singers with a well-turned phrase. The sumptuous voice of tragic ’70s crooner Karen Carpenter “was as warm, open and inclusive as a kindled hearth on a dank afternoon”. ‘
 

Toolman

Simple Man, Simple Dream
Not really a fan of Stewart or, for that matter, Mick Jagger, but they found other ways to carry songs besides carrying tunes. Songwriters like Dylan and Neil Young tend to get a pass on vocals if the material they produce is good enough. I honestly have more trouble warming up to singers who over-emote than those who kind of stumble around their notes.
 

Kacfan

Member
Not really a fan of Stewart or, for that matter, Mick Jagger, but they found other ways to carry songs besides carrying tunes. Songwriters like Dylan and Neil Young tend to get a pass on vocals if the material they produce is good enough. I honestly have more trouble warming up to singers who over-emote than those who kind of stumble around their notes.
Some people seem to only to able to hear / feel emotions when the singer over emotes or screams .
 

Brian

Well-Known Member
Strangely enough, I had Rod Stewart and Tim Hardin CDs, both with “Reason to Believe” on them, at arm’s reach when I read this and had listened to both versions within the last couple of weeks. I like Rod Stewart’s version.

I have some Rod Stewart CDs that I enjoy - ‘Gasoline Alley’ and ‘Atlantic Crossing’, as well as The Faces’ ‘A Nod is as Good as a Wink’. I also bought his latest album, ‘Blood Red Roses’, because I heard a couple of the songs from it on the radio and liked them. I have the ‘Foolish Behaviour’ and ‘Blondes Have More Fun’ CDs but haven’t listened to them as much. I have a few of his compilations. A good one is ‘Just a Rock Singer at Heart’.

I don’t mind Tim Hardin’s version of ‘Reason to Believe’, but it’s nowhere near his best-sounding song on the two CD albums that I have, which are ‘Tim Hardin 1’ and ‘Tim Hardin 2’.

Probably my favourite cover of a Tim Hardin song is Colin Blunstone’s version of ‘Misty Roses’. (You might remember Colin Blunstone’s voice from the two US Number Ones by The Zombies - ‘She’s Not There’ and ‘Time of the Season’ - as well as on ‘The Eagle Will Rise Again’, which was on the US Top 30 album ‘Pyramid’, by The Alan Parsons Project).

I have an affection for Carpenters’ version of ‘Reason to Believe’. It was on the first two albums I ever got, back in the mid-70s - ‘Great Hits of The Carpenters Vol. 2’ and ‘Close to You’.

Related to the original topic of this thread, it would definitely have been cool to like Rod Stewart when I was growing up. In fact, he had forty hit singles and 23 hit albums in the first twenty years of his career, as well as some Top 10 successes with The Faces.

It was definitely not cool to like Carpenters when I was growing up although, mysteriously, their records kept disappearing from record stores all around.

It’s possible to like a whole range of musical styles and a whole range of vocal sounds.
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
Moderator
Though I disparage Rod Stewart because his voice grates on my nerves, I do not disparage those who like him. As I said, taste is a personal thing, and Rod has his fanbase. Just don't ask me to sit through any of his work.

Ironic tale: I've always disliked Rod Stewart, from the first time I heard him. In 2000, I latched onto the Irish sibling group The Corrs and had to have everything in their discography. And as luck would have it, they did a backing track on a Rod Stewart remake of "Ooh-la-la". In order to add it to my collection, I sought out a used copy of the CD so that Mr. Stewart would not get a dime of my money. Needless to say, I don't listen to that track very often, and the rest of the CD, not at all.
 

Toolman

Simple Man, Simple Dream
More on topic, then...I don't recall ever being teased for enjoying Carpenters music until '75 or so. Before then, my friends and family were buying their singles and albums just as I was. Something happened starting in 1975. My friends were gravitating to bands like the Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, ELO. I liked those too, but was still enjoying Carpenters as well. When they saw a Carpenters album in my room, whoa. "You like THEM? WHY??" I don't think it had much to do with the music. It was about growing up, fitting in, trying to adopt a façade of cool. I don't know anyone I was friends with then who doesn't now have a fondness for at least a few of their hits.
 

Brian

Well-Known Member
Generally, Carpenters were ridiculed when I was growing up, if they were mentioned. One of my sisters hated them with a passion and a cousin used to call them Carry-on and Wretched Crapenter. (I must admit, that one always made me smile). My Dad used to imitate the “Calling Occupants” line in the song like a chook cackling - “Cark-a-dark-a-das!” and refer to Carpenters as “Those buggers” -“You’re not listening to THOSE buggers again??” When I was 13, my class was making silk screens and I was going to do a print of the ‘Carpenters’ logo. I remember the art teacher making a snide comment about my choice. And around the same age, class mates were discussing female singers who ‘weren’t bad’ - I think Agnetha from ABBA, Suzi Quatro and maybe Stevie Nicks were mentioned, then Karen was mentioned as someone who was definitely unappealing, after which there were derisive gaffaws. However, after the BBC “Carpenters live at the New London Theatre” special was screened in early 1977, a girl from my class said of Karen the next day, “She’s good on the drums!” after which another girl scoffed at her comment. (Where I grew up, there was only one clear TV station at the time, so people would have had to watch the Carpenters special, if they were going to watch anything).

About eight months after all this, perception of Carpenters seemed to change when “Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft” was released. That was a Top 5 single in the state where I live. Some kids definitely thought it was cool. I remember one boy enthusiastically reciting the DJ’s and Alien’s lines from the beginning of the album version. “Star Wars” and “Close Encounters” were also big around the same time and this may have helped Carpenters seem ‘in’ for a while. Visiting a few houses around the time, I noticed ‘Passage’ albums sitting beside turntables a couple of times. (The album reached Number 11).

Luckily, the “Space Encounters” special was never screened in my area, or that would have catapulted Carpenters to the realms of dagginess very quickly, all over again.
 

Brian

Well-Known Member
Btw, “She’s not bad!” was an Australianism for “She’s sexually desirable”. I just realised that term was probably not used elsewhere. Thought I’d better explain.....
 

Mark-T

Well-Known Member
My family still jokes to some degree- but everyone admits they love her voice. (My wife is kindest of all, though. And she puts up with my love for Olivia too.)
 

Carpe diem

Well-Known Member
Generally, Carpenters were ridiculed when I was growing up, if they were mentioned. One of my sisters hated them with a passion and a cousin used to call them Carry-on and Wretched Crapenter. (I must admit, that one always made me smile). My Dad used to imitate the “Calling Occupants” line in the song like a chook cackling - “Cark-a-dark-a-das!” and refer to Carpenters as “Those buggers” -“You’re not listening to THOSE buggers again??” When I was 13, my class was making silk screens and I was going to do a print of the ‘Carpenters’ logo. I remember the art teacher making a snide comment about my choice. And around the same age, class mates were discussing female singers who ‘weren’t bad’ - I think Agnetha from ABBA, Suzi Quatro and maybe Stevie Nicks were mentioned, then Karen was mentioned as someone who was definitely unappealing, after which there were derisive gaffaws. However, after the BBC “Carpenters live at the New London Theatre” special was screened in early 1977, a girl from my class said of Karen the next day, “She’s good on the drums!” after which another girl scoffed at her comment. (Where I grew up, there was only one clear TV station at the time, so people would have had to watch the Carpenters special, if they were going to watch anything).

About eight months after all this, perception of Carpenters seemed to change when “Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft” was released. That was a Top 5 single in the state where I live. Some kids definitely thought it was cool. I remember one boy enthusiastically reciting the DJ’s and Alien’s lines from the beginning of the album version. “Star Wars” and “Close Encounters” were also big around the same time and this may have helped Carpenters seem ‘in’ for a while. Visiting a few houses around the time, I noticed ‘Passage’ albums sitting beside turntables a couple of times. (The album reached Number 11).

Luckily, the “Space Encounters” special was never screened in my area, or that would have catapulted Carpenters to the realms of dagginess very quickly, all over again.
Oh man! Brian, your story had me rolling with laughter!! "Cark-a-dark-a-das!" and "Those buggers"

But, the ULTIMATE insult has to be "Wretched Crapenter" :biglaugh:
 

Murray

Well-Known Member
Generally, Carpenters were ridiculed when I was growing up, if they were mentioned. One of my sisters hated them with a passion and a cousin used to call them Carry-on and Wretched Crapenter. (I must admit, that one always made me smile).
Ouch! :biglaugh: Your story is hilarious Brian! I can hardly believe that you could only pick up ONE TV station in 1977... I thought we had it bad back then, here in the Canadian prairies, when we could only get TWO stations! :laugh:
 

Brian

Well-Known Member
I hope Richard never reads my post above! I must point out that I idolised Richard as much as I did Karen. The nicknames were all my cousin’s doing. Mind you, his big brother, who was about 16 years older, was a DJ on a community radio station and liked Carpenters. In the mid 70s, I remember that he made his Mum, my Auntie, a Carpenters tape from a record. It was on this that I first heard ‘Eve’, which I love to this day. (My Auntie also liked Carpenters - I remember her saying that Karen had a beautiful voice). So some liked ‘em, some didn’t.
 
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