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Rob Mounsey Discusses Working with Karen Carpenter

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Sabar, Nov 28, 2017.

  1. Sabar

    Sabar New Member Thread Starter

    I came across this interview with Rob Mounsey, discussing what it was like to work with Karen on the solo record. The segment begins at 1:07:10.

  2. Sabar

    Sabar New Member Thread Starter

    Here's a transcript.

    Jazz trombonist Michael Davis interviews Rob Mounsey in October 2016 on his YouTube show, Bone2Pick. The topic is: What was it like to work with Karen Carpenter? [The discussion of Karen begins at 1:07:08.]

    MD: And the last name…This one I didn’t know that you had worked with her; maybe you could talk a little bit about working with Karen Carpenter.

    RM: Oh, yeah. Well, I worked a lot with Phil Ramone on that last record that she made right before she died. She was a great person; everybody loved her. She was funny. We were talking about this before. She’s funny because she was kind of “the good girl” from Downey, California. When the musicians cursed, she sort of blanched a little bit: “Oh please. Those words bother me.”

    But, great, great person. Extremely smart. Great musician. Very good drummer, which not everyone knows. She didn’t really know she could sing. I mean, she was a drummer, and she discovered that she could sing, and she had that great, really low, buttery voice, and people just realized that they loved it. Nate King Cole, you know, he was a piano player, and he found out: “Oh, I guess I can sing.” I think Diana Krall has a little bit of that. I really like her playing a lot, and I love her singing too.

    MD: Another person [Diana Krall] that you’ve done a lot of work with.

    RM: A little bit; not a lot, a little—a little. She’s great too; and she came at the singing-part sideways, and so did Karen.

    Richard [Carpenter] did not like that record, and the record went on the shelf for twenty years—over twenty years. Nobody heard it for twenty years. When it was finally released, decades after she died, it was stylistically—I think—dated. But she recorded a song of mine. I haven’t been a song writer that much. There’s a song called, Guess I Just Lost My Head, which is an early song. I was about twenty-four, and she recorded my song; she liked it.

    MD: Very cool.
  3. newvillefan

    newvillefan Well-Known Member

    Great interview, thanks for posting!

    Always great to hear from people who worked with her and especially anyone associated with the little-known solo episode.
    Sabar and Jamesj75 like this.
  4. CraigGA

    CraigGA Well-Known Member

    From what we have read, she is remembered for the very thing she hoped people would remember her for: valued as a strong musician. It is highly complimentary and he was just stating it as a matter of fact with succinct verbiage. I always liked Guess I Just Lost My Head as being one of my favorites and now I have another reason for liking it.
  5. Interesting that he mentions Nat King Cole, my favorite male voice, having similarly stumbled onto his singing talent as did Karen, my favorite female voice. Ah, what I would give to have heard those two perform a duet together!
  6. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    Now THAT would have been "unforgettable!"
  7. JayJayVA

    JayJayVA Member

    He also did the arrangement for Madonna's "Crazy For You".
    ThaFunkyFakeTation likes this.

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