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Official Review [Single]: 26. "I BELIEVE YOU"/"B'WANA SHE NO HOME" (2097-S)

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by Chris May, Jan 27, 2018.

Which side is your favorite?

  1. Side A: "I Believe You"

    13 vote(s)
  2. Side B: "B'wana She No Home"

    32 vote(s)
  1. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    I do not play I Believe You
    very often.
    However, I do love that drum break and the congas....
    Now, if only the mix/arrangement were beefier, I'd be sold.....
    Now, if only the "background harmony" did not sound "off" to my ears, I'd be sold....
  2. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    In the Reader's Digest Liner notes, Karen comments on this song, I Believe You:
    "The average Carpenters' chord is tight harmony--four parts.
    On I Believe You or Close To You, it's four. We sing it, then triple each one."

    Now--why is it--to my ears--that the 'harmony' parts on I Believe You
    sound so different than they sound in the song Close To You ?

    Also, does anyone else hear how similar these songs sound--for instance,
    in terms of rhythm, length of instrumental introduction, the manner in which Karen enunciates "you".....
    Was this intentional ? That is, in trying to make the later stay as close to the earlier 'hit' as possible ?
    John Adam likes this.
  3. ThaFunkyFakeTation

    ThaFunkyFakeTation Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo

    To quote Richard, “B’WANA!”

  4. John Adam

    John Adam leis around my neck

    One of the songs I'm really looking forward to hearing on the new RPO collection is "I Believe You." Can't imagine a better song suited for an orchestral arrangement, and Karen's vocals in the year 1978 were excellent! To me this song is the underdog of the album titles, with most folks reacting rather lukewarm to cold on this song. However, I've always liked it for some reason, maybe because of what @GaryAlan posted above.

    I found this radio interview (which many of you have probably listen to in the past) which was new to me. Here Karen talks about "I Believe You" and compares it with "Close To You" which Gary was also making a comparison. His post was also new to me. So I am bringing them together and hopefully it is new to you too! :)

  5. John Adam

    John Adam leis around my neck

    This is Part II, if anyone is interested. (1978)
    Karen quoted as saying: "I must add we have never released anything that we weren't absolutely happy with ourselves, that was the one rule that Richard always lived with, always goes with a gut feeling."

  6. Mark-T

    Mark-T Well-Known Member

    Thank you, John Adam, I had never heard these interviews.
    Jamesj75, GaryAlan and John Adam like this.
  7. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    Nice to hear that interview, again.
    Karen Carpenter(3:01):
    "......We needed to have full control of what we wanted to put and present on television...each one has gotten better..."
    Jamesj75 and John Adam like this.
  8. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

  9. leadmister

    leadmister Well-Known Member

    I guess I had to be one of the minority who went with I Believe You on this particular poll. The "freckled little girl" line doesn't really faze me, and as far as corniness goes, I still consider "sprinkled moon dust in her hair of gold and starlight in her eyes of blue" to be a far worse line, right up there with Elvis's "Bless my soul what's wrong with me, I'm itching like a man in a fuzzy tree."

    As far as B'Wana goes, I just can't hack it. I despise the song, even though it was done very well by our Carpenters and provided a nice, loose, improvisational feel to open up the Passage album. Hmm. Open up the Passage. I like that.

    But 99/100 times that I play Passage, I skip track one side one. For someone who was so serious about getting diction and language right in performances, it baffles me that B'Wana didn't drive KC absolutely crazy. She did seem to have a great deal of fun on the vocals though from the sound of it, so I get it a little bit. But the first time I heard it, I cringed harder than if I was looking directly into the sun or if I was welding without goggles. The cringe factor has diminished with time and it is sometimes tolerable to me now if it happens to show up in my playlists or whatever.

    But wow! What a group of musicians on that album though! That factor alone rates this album highly for me overall, and B'Wana a little higher than it probably should according to my own personal tastes. Different strokes, though, right?
    Nawvish74 likes this.
  10. Mark-T

    Mark-T Well-Known Member

    Funny how we all like/loathe different things. B'wana is the one song I never skip on Passage.
  11. leadmister

    leadmister Well-Known Member

    I know. It makes me laugh when so many people say how much they love B'wana and I'm like, "What? Eww." But if everyone in the world was just like me, what kind of world would this world be?
  12. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member

    I never ever skip it in fact I search for it that’s how much I love it. Karen is so sexy in her delivery..so unlike any Carpenters song. It sounds like a solo cut long before her solo sessions. The rare 45 and album version we discovered recently only adds to the love I have for this song.
  13. leadmister

    leadmister Well-Known Member

    You guys are going to drag me kicking and screaming into living with this song for a while to see if I can acquire more of a taste for it. Fair enough. It's what I did with the solo stuff and ended up loving that.
    Rick-An Ordinary Fool likes this.
  14. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Listen to the 45 or the PASSAGE LP version for a slightly better stereo image.
  15. leadmister

    leadmister Well-Known Member

    For sure. I've got the LP and will indeed do that. Don't have the 45 yet but it is on my list, as I am endeavoring to collect all of the 45's.
    Rick-An Ordinary Fool likes this.
  16. Carpe diem

    Carpe diem Well-Known Member

    B'wana is a delight! I want to see Karen's 350!!:)
  17. ThaFunkyFakeTation

    ThaFunkyFakeTation Ah am so steel een luv weeth yoo

    I kind of agree here. That line, though, I don’t love it, isn’t a deal breaker for me. Pamela Phillips Oland regularly came up with far worse on Richard’s album (“up and down / ring around the roses / you move in close / I come undone”)

    leadmister likes this.
  18. leadmister

    leadmister Well-Known Member

    Don't you steal her chrome!
  19. Rick-An Ordinary Fool

    Rick-An Ordinary Fool Well-Known Member

    See your warming up to it...soon it will be your favorite :laugh:

    Seriously listen to the LP version, better highs and clearer vocals by Karen gone is the muddiness overall.
    leadmister likes this.
  20. leadmister

    leadmister Well-Known Member

    I usually listen to the LP version of Passage anyway, so fortunately all I need to do is stop skipping track one. lol.
  21. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    Quite frankly, it is rather inspired,
    for this 45-single, to have such varying Sides, as
    I Believe You and B'Wana
    are worlds apart musically.
    An interesting 45-Single.
    John Adam likes this.
  22. Jarred

    Jarred Active Member

    Bwana is one of their most fascinating latter day (relatively?) tracks, it's fun and compelling and Karen is at her sexiest here, much more sensual than almost any of her solo tracks. It's an arrangement you can get lost in if the lyrics are silly.
    newvillefan and John Adam like this.

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