Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Hoist up the John B's sail...

Isn't Napster great ?
For £10 a month I can get to do this...
I can sit here tonight and listen to at least five different versions of The Beach Boys singing "Sloop John B".

See, the thing with searching Napster for The Beach Boys is that all you get is loads of compilations of "Greatest Hits", the Beach Boys must have more greatest hits compilations than any other artist in world history, aided and abetted no doubt by the fact that their entire back catalogue was flogged off early in their career by Murry Wilson their manager.

But appearing on Napster at the moment is a huge anniversary album release "The Pet Sounds Sessions, a 40th Anniversary" upon which are dozens of unreleased versions of such tracks as Sloop John B sung in different styles and by the different brothers/cousins.

OK you've got to be a geek to listen to stuff like that, the sort of person who would buy the Beatles Anthology series.
(Holds hand up)

So, we have "Sloop John B (the stereo mix)" the one that everyone knows, remastered in 96, you've heard it a million times.

"Sloop John B (Carl sings first verse)" does what it says on the label - Carl Wilson (died of lung cancer in 96) sings the first verse and makes it a much softer introduction, its not as good as the "original" and you see why they dumped it, especially the strange line "I feel so break up, I wanna go home" which is changed in the "original" to "broke up" of course...

Fook off, I'm not a geek.

"Sloop John B (Brian sings lead throughout)" is better than Carls version but he still sings "break up", maybe it was a groovy word in 1966, there aren't as many backing vocals on this version and maybe Brian recorded it during their dinner break without the others knowing.

"Sloop John B (Stack-o-vocals)" are all the backing harmonies that are missing off Brians version, maybe the others just said they were going for dinner but in fact sneaked into the next door studio and recorded the harmonies without Brian, not knowing that he was next door recording the whole song on his own anyway - this is a good version in a wierd sort of acapella stylee.

"Sloop John B (Stereo backing track)" is just the instruments, all ready for your own kareoke interpretation, so I kareoke'd along to this one having heard the song about forty fekking times by now - what actually happened of course is that while Brian was recording the song on his own thinking the others were out to lunch and while the others were recording the harmonies thinking that Brian was out to lunch, the real musicians in the studio sat down and did the job that they were getting paid a daily rate for and then buggered off to the pub to count the loot.


I'm in for a long night, theres a lot more of this stuff to go at, including eight versions of "Surfin Safari".

We come on the sloop John B
My grandfather and me
Around nassau town we did roam
Drinking all night
Got into a fight
Well I feel so broke up
I want to go home

So hoist up the John Bs sail
See how the mainsail sets
Call for the captain ashore
Let me go home, let me go home
I wanna go home, yeah yeah
Well I feel so broke up
I wanna go home

The first mate he got drunk
And broke in the capns trunk
The constable had to come and take him away
Sheriff John Stone
Why dont you leave me alone, yeah yeah
Well I feel so broke up I wanna go home

So hoist up the John Bs sail
See how the mainsail sets
Call for the captain ashore
Let me go home, let me go home
I wanna go home, let me go home
Why dont you let me go home
(hoist up the John Bs sail)
Hoist up the John B
I feel so broke up I wanna go home
Let me go home

The poor cook he caught the fits
And threw away all my grits
And then he took and he ate up all of my corn
Let me go home
Why dont they let me go home
This is the worst trip Ive ever been on

So hoist up the John Bs sail
See how the mainsail sets
Call for the captain ashore
Let me go home, let me go home
I wanna go home, let me go home
Why dont you let me go home


Sloop John B - The Beach Boys 1966

1 comment:

Melva said...

Good for people to know.