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Lovelines...1980?

newvillefan

I Know My First Name Is Stephen
Thread Starter
I don't know about the key point - in this case I think making Karen sing higher on this was to give a more fragile touch to the vocal, which had a purpose for this song. The VOTH vocal is richer for sure, but in this case I don't think that would have been appropriate for what this song needed.
I get that and it does make her vocal a tad more fragile-sounding but will only have added to the argument at the time that the songs were in too high a key. Richard placing her in a lower key almost seems like a dig at the original version.
 

Rumbahbah

Well-Known Member
I get that and it does make her vocal a tad more fragile-sounding but will only have added to the argument at the time that the songs were in too high a key. Richard placing her in a lower key almost seems like a dig at the original version.
You may well be right on it adding to the criticisms re the solo album being in too high a key (although to my ears there aren't all that many tracks on the album on which that criticism seems valid). However, in this particular case, I think that criticism was entirely misplaced - 'Make Believe...' needed to be in a key that wasn't 'in the basement' in order to bring out that aspect of the song. Using a lower key seems to misunderstand what the song is supposed to be saying.
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
I get that and it does make her vocal a tad more fragile-sounding but will only have added to the argument at the time that the songs were in too high a key. Richard placing her in a lower key almost seems like a dig at the original version.
I really liked that about the solo album. Karen had far more range than she given credit for and Phil, Rod, and Bob had no problem exploring that. I think she sounded great in everything except the Javors tunes. They went for a new sound and got it in a myriad of different ways including utilizing higher keys.

Ed
 

Proudofyou

Active Member
the lyrics make no sense in the Ramone track "we've been around again enough to know the score." unless I'm not hearing it correctly, the remake "the game" makes more sense. I would like the lower key and reading with the Ramone orchestrations etc. A hybrid of both.
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
the lyrics make no sense in the Ramone track "we've been around again enough to know the score." unless I'm not hearing it correctly, the remake "the game" makes more sense. I would like the lower key and reading with the Ramone orchestrations etc. A hybrid of both.
I think “around again” is fine. “Game” is unnecessarily explicit.

Ed
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
Why? You can say “I know the game” without it being explicit. It’s the same as saying “I know the score”.
I just like the sound of “again” the way she sings it. It’s a vowel difference and I suspect Richard turned it into “game”. It’s not like he hasn’t changed lyrics before.

Ed
 

newvillefan

I Know My First Name Is Stephen
Thread Starter
It’s not like he hasn’t changed lyrics before.
Karen was also known to request a lyric change on occasion. From Rick Henry’s Online Reader interview with Rob Mounsey:

I was invited to work on Karen's project by Phil Ramone, someone I've worked with for many years (and as recently as last month). I was very young and new to the NYC recording scene. Karen was very smart, very gifted and accomplished, and very nice. She gave me what may have been her greatest compliment–She likened me to her brother Richard. Many of the band members were members of Billy Joel's band–my pal David Brown from Boston, Russell Javors, Doug Stegmeyer, Liberty DeVitto etc. It was funny that the frequent four-letter-words from the musicians upset her... She told us that she really didn't like to hear the "F" word... She really was kind of a "good girl"–very typical of an anorexia sufferer–but she had a sense of humor about herself. I was so happy that she wanted to do my song... The only problem was that it was really a man's song to sing to a woman... The second line was "I was only watching the flower in your hair..." Not being a congenital lyricist I was stumped for a substitute line, and it was Karen who came up with "only trying to memorize you there," which I thought was okay and probably the best thing we would come up with... It was no secret that her brother Richard really didn't like the record... For one thing, he thought that Karen should always sing in her trademark basement register... I was so shocked and sad to hear of Karen's death shortly thereafter... She was really a great, great person and a major talent.
 

Proudofyou

Active Member
but in a game, there is a score.....that was my point. the relationship between "again" and "score". (like in who's keeping count) doesn't make as much sense. hope it's not confusing. I just confused myself writing this.
 

Brian

Well-Known Member
I would like the lower key and reading with the Ramone orchestrations etc. A hybrid of both.
I agree. I like the Richard / Karen version a lot, including the bridge, and Karen’s vocal is superior on Carpenters’ version to the solo version, I believe. The concept of the song on the solo album is fantastic, with just the piano and the vocal. I love the piano arrangement but, unfortunately, the weak link is Karen herself. She sounds weak and nasally. That last note that she holds should be beautiful but it’s a thin vocal sound and she closes the back of her throat and delivers it through her nose, (at least, that’s what it sounds like). This is one of the few songs on the solo album that I almost like and it’s a great shame that Karen falls short in her performance, (in my opinion).
 

A&M Retro

Well-Known Member
I agree. I like the Richard / Karen version a lot, including the bridge, and Karen’s vocal is superior on Carpenters’ version to the solo version, I believe. The concept of the song on the solo album is fantastic, with just the piano and the vocal. I love the piano arrangement but, unfortunately, the weak link is Karen herself. She sounds weak and nasally. That last note that she holds should be beautiful but it’s a thin vocal sound and she closes the back of her throat and delivers it through her nose, (at least, that’s what it sounds like). This is one of the few songs on the solo album that I almost like and it’s a great shame that Karen falls short in her performance, (in my opinion).
I disagree completely! That last line and the perfect tonality as she holds it is one of her best moments EVER!
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
but in a game, there is a score.....that was my point. the relationship between "again" and "score". (like in who's keeping count) doesn't make as much sense. hope it's not confusing. I just confused myself writing this.
Lyrics are not poetry. They can be but they usually aren't. A lyricist also has the responsibility of stringing pleasing vowel sounds together that "sing well". To my ears, "around again enough to know the score" sings less clunky and more pleasing than "around the game enough to know the score". The former just trips off of the tongue. The latter has to be worked for a bit more when singing it.

Further, I know what she's getting at and don't need "game" to inform me. People have used "I know the score" without inserting "game" in front of it for decades. We all know what it means.

Ed
 

newvillefan

I Know My First Name Is Stephen
Thread Starter
People have used "I know the score" without inserting "game" in front of it for decades. We all know what it means.
For me the lyric refers to the dating game. Maybe it means “no strings attached”. So what? It’s a pretty innocent lyric compared to some of the stuff that’s out there today.
 

ThaFunkyFakeTation

Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo
For me the lyric refers to the dating game. Maybe it means “no strings attached”. So what? It’s a pretty innocent lyric compared to some of the stuff that’s out there today.
I don’t think @Proudofyou is debating risqué-ness; I think clarity is what’s being debated. To that end, I find the solo lyric quite clear and, to my ears, it sings better. There’s also absolutely no need for the bridge. It adds nothing either musically or lyrically. I’d be curious to know how the songwriters felt about the request to write that after the fact.

Ed
 
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