Monday, October 15, 2018

Dylan Cover #346 Bettye LaVette "Ain't Talkin'" Live

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a live cover by Bettye LeVette playing "Ain't Talkin'" Live

This month we are doing another special focus in RtBE's Dylan Covers series. In the past we have highlighted The ByrdsCoulson-Dean-McGuiness-FlintThe HolliesJoan OsbourneMountain and more. Now the spotlight shines on Bettye LaVette and her recently released Things Have Changed covers album.

Thoughts on Original:
The closer on Dylan's excellent Modern Times (old Glide Star Structure, would be 10 now) is a haunting work of minimalist accompaniment. The clipped tone of his vocal delivery sound so pissed off, rather than distant he seems engaged and frustrated. Live the song takes on a otherworldly feel and has been the highlight of some of his sets as the mood turns on a dime from a soft love song to an instant sense of dread. These words in others hands may convey different messages, but in Dylan's the cold reality burns through.


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
RtBE first became aware of Bettye LaVette while watching The American Epic Sessions on PBS and were semi shocked to learn that until the last decade or so LaVette only had minor success in the industry. She is a powerhouse singer and can turn a phrase with the best of them, using Gospel, R&B, Soul and Funky backings to croon her way forward.

Thoughts on Cover:
Mixing it up as we reach the half way point on our monthly focus on Ms. LaVette, we are using a live version of her covering the Bard. We choose "Ain't Talking" live because her band and her vocals add more to the scene than Dylan's original. LaVette's warm vocals add a different tone, the lyrics make it clear she is pissed, but sense of hopelessness isn't present. The band sounds locked in and grooving as LaVette traverses the lyrical passages with grace and ease.

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