Thursday, January 27, 2011

Bobbi Blake

This is the week I get to offer up a more substantial thanks to a reader/poster named Sammy, who let me know of all the broken links which I've slowly been fixing (and there are eight more at the end of this post). He's a big fan of Bobbi Blake, and has pointed out a glaring hole in the collection of songs I've posted over the course of 25 months - no Bobbi Blake! I'll rectify that today, and in the near future.

The absence of the lovely-voiced Ms. Blake is less because of any dislike on my part for her singing (although, to be fair, my tastes in female vocals on song-poems run closer to the 1950's style heard on records by such singers as Betty Jayne and Cara Stewart). The main reason is that she did most of her work for MSR, a label whose general sound (with major exceptions) doesn't do all that much for me.

But I never intended this site to just be about my taste - if I'm not posting something from a segment of the song poem world that you like or love, by all means let me know, through a comment to a post.

Today, though, two MSR 45's which are major exceptions to my apathy for that label, at least on their respective A-sides. Best of the four Bobbi's to be heard today is probably the one which goes by the unlikely title of "Rochester New York Blues". I dunno, those words don't seem to have much in common with each other, or with the musical style heard on this platter. However, what is there is suitably odd and interesting. There's a nice soulful band performance, with some great organ fills during the vocal, but when the solo section hits, the weirdness begins, as it sounds to me like a carnival has come to town. On top of it all is a first rate vocal.

The flip side is the downright turgid "Beggar of Love", which features that unfortunate string keyboard which is the biggest reason for my dislike of many MSR singles.

Picking up the pace, though, is the a-side of the second record I'm featuring today, a driving rocker with a forceful vocal (and in which those synth strings are thankfully buried), "Run My Son", a plea to the writers child to follow the straight and narrow. The sudden fade makes me wonder if there was an error further towards what was supposed to be a longer fade.

Finishing out the set is "A Woman", another bland ballad, with one of those song-killing spoken sections. But getting two good songs out of two song-poem 45's is certainly far above the average.

Thanks again to Sammy - hope this is a good start at a pay back. Here are eight more posts that have had files repaired:

Ballad of Justice Blind
Eleven Weeks In
Coffee Break
My First Song Poem
Randy Rudolph
Phil Carroll
Great Moments in Marriage
Song Poem or Not?

By the way, the comments to that last post - Song Poem or Not? - indicate strongly that the answer is "or not". But still, it's a fairly amazing record.


Sammy Reed said...

Finally - a blog dedicated to The Grand Lady of Song-Poems! (Okay, that's what I call her, anyway. I know this sort of thing is kindof subjective.)
Anyway, I have got quite a few Bobbi Blake records myself, and have put them on YouTube. I also made "The Bobbi Blake Tribute Playlist"
with the Bobbi Blakes I have as well as those posted by others.
Anyway, thanks a LOT again for this blog! And for fixing the songs that had problems!

Sammy Reed said...

You know, it's not exactly true that you had "no Bobbi Blake" in your blogs. I'm pretty sure that Bobbi Boyle, who you have in one of your blogs, was "artist later known as" Bobbi Blake!

Dan said...

Oh geez, of all the places Bobbi Blake had to croon about, my hometown of Rochester, NY!Great stuff as always!!!! Thanks!