Monday, December 10, 2012

Dylan Cover #65 The Byrds- "Spanish Harlem Incident"

Continuing our Monday's Dylan Cover Series, each December we spice it up a little.  This year we are going to look at a band that gained it's fame by covering Dylan right out of the gate, The Byrds.  The next cover to be examined is "Spanish Harlem Incident". 

Thoughts on Original:
Easily one of my favorite early songs of Dylan's career, I love the sing-song playing of this tune and it's hints of his musical repertoire opening up.  "OnTheCliffsOfYourWildCatCharmsI'mRiding" combined is such a sweet phrase and played out it is fantastic.  You can see a young Bob becoming infatuated with a woman he saw, being inspired to write a tune that is filled with primal lust and sexiness.  A song I have always wanted to learn to lay and cover...but that is for another post...    

Thoughts on Cover Band:
The band had a few phases that were truly innovative and from afar it feels like they really pushed other bands to expand or rather re-root their pallets. It could be questioned would bands like The Band, put out Music from Big Pink without The Byrds success, or would the Grateful Dead have felt Workingman's Dead and American Beauty were paths they could try in the studio if not for The Byrds? Doubtful.  Yet I am not sure they get the credit they probably deserved.  Anyway...more next week.   
Thoughts on Cover:
Quick with a popping snare drum that never gets to weighted down and adds huge ups to the semi chorus.  Annunciation by delicate vocals both in the stanzas and semi chorus, words like swallowed get the punch and deepness that is needed.  Really a magic version of a magic tune.
Grade: A+  

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