• The new Carpenters recording with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra is now available. Use this link to order, and help us out at the same time. Thank you!

Karen 1968 - "And When I Die"

Jokerman

New Member
Thread Starter
Can someone please help with explaining the audio content on the youtube track shown below:


The first 17 seconds appear to be an audience recording and then it abruptly breaks to what then appears to be a better sounding recording of the continued song. Any info on the origination of this recording and if it indeed a combination of two different sources were used? Also, who is singing along with Karen? Thanks!
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
Moderator
The original recording was made by the Cal State University Choir and the other singer is Wanda Freeman. This YouTube version is someone's attempt at adding further instrumentation. The original recording is just the choir and Richard on piano.
 

Jeff

Well-Known Member
I would treasure this tune even more so should RC revamp it in the studio. What a great addition to our 50th anniversary present.
 

Brian

Well-Known Member
I would treasure this tune even more so should RC revamp it in the studio. What a great addition to our 50th anniversary present.
Lol. We might not even be getting a present, yet.

There are certainly a lot of early- and pre-career Carpenters recordings - the Cal State University, Magic Lamp, Joe Osborne's Garage, RCA, Battle of the Bands, Your Navy Presents, Your All American College TV Show and Carpenters' Bathroom tapes(!)

I know the existence of Hollywood Battle of the Bands recordings is not definite but we can depend on Richard to track them down, if they do exist. For our 50th present.
 
Last edited:

Brian

Well-Known Member
I would treasure this tune even more so should RC revamp it in the studio.
Yes, although the instrumentation you hear on this particular clip is not Richard or professionally done, you hear how the original recording could perhaps be improved upon, or, at least, added to, with a little tinkering.
 

Jeff

Well-Known Member
Yes, although the instrumentation you hear on this particular clip is not Richard or professionally done, you hear how the original recording could perhaps be improved upon, or, at least, added to, with a little tinkering.
I know that silly.
 

Jarred

Well-Known Member
Does anyone know possibly why the video(s) of this track have vanished from YouTube? I don't know how many there were but I believe more than one was on there. Possibly two versions. Thankfully years ago I saved an MP3 of one of them go have forever. Does anyone know when the Karen/Wanda recording made its way into online bootleg circles?
 

GDB2LV

Active Member
There is an actual vinyl recording of the Hollywood Battle of the Bands. Quite rare, I’ve seen it for auction on EBay a couple of years ago. I don’t know how much it sold for.
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
Much fun to hear this! She was definitely not fully formed as a vocalist here. She sounds like she's trying to let go but it feels pretty forced. She also has zero soul but that's not the type of singer she was. No shame in it. 'Course, she fixed her issues and became the greatest female pop singer the world has ever known.

Wanda on the other hand, sounds absolutely fantastic here. Wonder if she kept singing. She should have.

Ed
 

CraigGA

Well-Known Member
Much fun to hear this! She was definitely not fully formed as a vocalist here. She sounds like she's trying to let go but it feels pretty forced. She also has zero soul but that's not the type of singer she was. No shame in it. 'Course, she fixed her issues and became the greatest female pop singer the world has ever known

Wanda on the other hand, sounds absolutely fantastic here. Wonder if she kept singing. She should have.

Ed
Wanda had a few minor intonation issues and Karen had none. It is excellent for both of them as very young vocalists in a choir setting. I disagree with your assessment. This recording shows control and restraint and performance oriented, so it’s not as emotional as we are accustomed yet the emotion is served through the vowels in this choral setting. Being judged for its purpose and intent is excellent. It is probably only generally mic’d and the lack of fidelity on it's recorded source is not like anything available today. I bet it was breathtaking when hearing it live!
 

GDB2LV

Active Member
It’s probably one of those 2 mic recordings like we had in high school. They sound quality was poor on the records they made of our big honor choir performances every year in the early 70’s. The company we used was LRS out of Burbank, Ca.
 

Jarred

Well-Known Member
Much fun to hear this! She was definitely not fully formed as a vocalist here. She sounds like she's trying to let go but it feels pretty forced. She also has zero soul but that's not the type of singer she was. No shame in it. 'Course, she fixed her issues and became the greatest female pop singer the world has ever known.

Wanda on the other hand, sounds absolutely fantastic here. Wonder if she kept singing. She should have.

Ed
Zero soul? I hear definite soul inflections in this in her phrasings and it's exhilarating hearing a girl so young already have her vocal gifts blooming and to hear the joy in the tone of recognizing it. Her voice is pretty underdelvoped, but even with that natural limitation there's amazing intonation and presence and she even belts a little! Something Richard's arrangements didnt allow her to do much. Wanda does have a more innate soulful style, but Karen had it in her for sure and you see flashes of it here.
 

GaryAlan

Well-Known Member
Wanda Freeman: "Karen had a nice alto voice. I never really thought anything of it, but it was a very clear voice.
When we did "And When I Die," she really opened up. She really wanted to do that song."
(page 42, Schmidt).
 
Top Bottom