Friday, November 07, 2014

Sleazy Gene


Is there any question about whether Gene Marshall could rise to just about any occasion, and deliver a vocal which matched the subject matter just about perfectly?

Today's lyric, the very directly titled "Girl, What Are You Saving it For?", required a bit of sleaze, particularly on that very title line, and Gene delivers. I must say, as well, that whoever wrote the music and directed the track did a good job of hitting something a bit darker than the typical Preview record, as well. If only they'd skipped those god-awful white-bread backup singers - they ruin the mood.

Do you suppose this song-poet presented his lovely lady with this record, in the hopes that it would be the final piece of the puzzle, in terms of him getting what she was saving?

Upon hearing the opening moments of "Hey! Pretty Girl", one could be forgiven for thinking there's another sexual come-on in this lyric. But that opening guitar gives way to a more standard Preview track, with both the music and vocal sounding like dozens of other Preview discs from this period.

What stands out for me here, actually, is a rare flub from Gene Marshall, between 1:10 and 1:15, where the band modulates up a half-step and Gene holds on to the note he was singing, until well after the chord change is complete. It sticks out both as a moment of bad sounding music and as a truly unusual event in a Gene Marshall performance.



Anonymous said...

Ah, you have to love looking at that label with that great title.....textbook song poem!!

Don't really Gene sleazing it up, it just sounds like he's singing it straight, as he always does, no matter what the lyrics say! Always an earnest effort, giving 100%!

Every Gene performance to my ears is pretty much Gene, whether he's "playing" a teenager ("Young Generation" for instance) or an old guy, whatever. I don't usually hear him "acting" the part. (as opposed to Rodd Keith, who has a million "personas" and voices and styles). I don't mean that as an insult to Gene, not at all, I like that about him! Now that I think about it, most song poem singers are that way to me, they have their set vocal style, Cara usually sounds like Cara, Sammy's Sammy, Norm's Norm, Dick Kent can't help being Dick Kent....Bobbi Boyle, etc

I actually liked the b-side better though the a-side has the better title. The b-side has that bass-intro formula that's on a lot of Gene Marshall records from this period.

The backups didn't kill the mood for me; have heard worse on song poem records, that's for sure!

Thanks for posting it!

Timmy said...

As far as back-up vocals ruining a damn good record, listen to most of Dean Martin's Reprise recordings. He was perhaps the best lead vocalist of the 20th. Century & yet the majority of his releases were completely trashed by the awful out of place back-up singing... Thereby, this doesn't seem as bad.

radioman01 said...

For what it's worth, I actually like the slight dissonance of the flub.