On January 23, 1969, The Beatles recorded “Get Back,” featuring Billy Preston on keyboards. It is the only Beatles song where a non-Beatle musician is given credit on the recording. Billy Preston was highlighted in my October 15 blog post “Cover Me.” A great sessions keyboardist, in addition to The Beatles, he played with the likes of Little Richard, Sam Cooke, Ray Charles, the Everly Brothers, the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, and George Harrison. He also had hits with “Nothing From Nothing” and “With You I’m Born Again,” in addition to writing “You Are So Beautiful.”
Also on this day in 1971 George Harrison became the first Beatle with a No. 1 UK single, with “My Sweet Lord.” I stumbled upon this great performance with Billy Preston on keyboards and vocals, Eric Clapton and George’s son Dhani on guitar, with Ringo and Paul playing along as well. What a gem.
And on this day in 1988 Michael Jackson went to No. 1 on the US singles chart with “The Way You Make Me Feel,” which provides the theme for this week’s blog and playlist, songs featuring the word “Way.” This playlist includes many great classic rock songs.
Some songs featured include:
Santana, performing “Evil Ways” at Woodstock in 1969:
“Can’t Find My Way Home” originally released in 1969 by Blind Faith, supergroup featuring Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker from Cream, and Steve Winwood of Spencer Davis Group and Traffic fame. They only released one album, and this song stands as one of the finest rock balads of the 60s. Clapton and Winwood are featured here performing some 40 years later, along with Derek Trucks, among the greatest slide guitarists in the world. While Winwood is most renowned for his keyboard prowess, he is quite the accomplished guitarist as well.
Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way,” released in 1975, among their signature anthems, along with “Dream On” and “Sweet Emotion.”
“Show Me The Way” showcases Peter Frampton’s talk box skills in 1975. While not the only artist to use the talk box, he was the most prolific, and perhaps the most skilled. “Baby I Love Your Way” appears on the playlist as well. Also check out “Do You Feel Like We Do,” perhaps the epitome of talk box guitar.
Other artists have used the talk box effectively, most notably Joe Walsh, also appearing on this playlist with “Rocky Mountain Way” (1973), and David Gilmour (Pink Floyd) with “Pigs (Three Different Ones)”
“Feeling That Way” (1978), a look into the 70s, with long hair and bell bottoms, great vocals, harmonies, guitar, Journey in their groove…
Fast forward a few years, transitioning into the 80s with “Any Way You Want It” (1980)
And then fully transitioned into the 80s feel, look, and sound with “Separate Ways” (1983):
Appearing even more that the 3 Journey nods is Phil Collins, who appears to have found his way, despite his song title to the contrary with “Can’t Find My Way.” He also has 3 more solo entries including “That’s Just The Way It Is,” “Something Happened On The Way To Heaven,” and “Find A Way To My Heart” as well as a “pseudo” way entry with Genesis in “Throwing It All Away“. This is a powerful video of Phil’s:
Worthy covers of classic rock songs include Run DMC’s cover of Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way” released in 1986.
And Big Mountain’s cover of Frampton’s “Baby I Love Your Way” released in 1994.
“Just The Way It Is, Baby,” the Rembrants’ other big hit appears here. Yes, they have other songs besides “I’ll Be There For You,” the theme song from the hit TV show “Friends.”
From my country counterpart “Way” playlist, this song and video are too beautiful to keep from sharing. Included are clips from the 1999 movie “Notting Hill” with Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant.
A good movie with a great soundtrack, it includes songs “She” by Elvis Costello, “Aint No Sunshine” by Bill Withers, “How Can You Mend A Broken Heart” by Al Green, “Gimme Some Lovin’” by The Spencer Davis Group, “No Matter What” by Boyzone, and “I Do (Cherish You)” by 98 Degrees, among others.
I’ll close the blog with the song I closed the playlist with, “The Way You Look Tonight” by Steve Tyrell. For the longest time this version from “Father Of The Bride” of the classic song made famous by Frank Sinatra, but is now available on Spotify. I love the raspiness of his voice, and it brings back memories of the scene from the movie I love so much, with Steve Martin looking at his newly married daughter, and then to his wife, to the lyrics of “Oh but you’re lovely, with your smile so warm and your cheeks so soft, there is nothing for me but to love you, just the way you look tonight,” it just melts my heart.
So I hope you enjoy the playlists. To quote the Psychedelic Furs, I hope you “Love My WAY.”
I hope that this music and my blog truly serve as a “revival: a new presentation of something old,” a springboard to return to the music of your youth, or perhaps to find artists you want to discover anew. Rediscover the passion of music in your life.
Live in the moment.
Enjoy the moment.
Love the moment.
Listen to the MUSIC!