Monday, August 29, 2016

A Pair of Period Pieces

I'm featuring the Preview label for the second week in a row, which is unusual for this site, but I realized that it had been far too long since I featured the great Gene Marshall. So here is Gene with a record that, based on its label number, was released in the early '70's, probably 1971, and based on its lyrics, could hardly have been written and recorded at any other time than within a window of three years or so on either side of '71.

On the first side, the writer of "Generation Gap", decries the wide split between her (or, in Gene's rendition, his) children and their peers, and the not-so-old fogie singing the song. While the song starts out like so many complaints of the age did - bemoaning the gap between the generations, then laying on thick all the things that are wrong with the young folk, displaying quite clearly one of the reasons why there was a gap - in this case, the writer/singer turns it around in the end, into something more hopeful.

While all of this is, admittedly, treacle, I remain impressed at the level to which Gene Marshall sings it, with the cry in his voice while expressing the writers frustration, and the catch that sounds like he's about to start crying at a couple of key moments. Masterful.

Download: Gene Marshall - Generation Gap 

On the flip side, we have the deceptively musically upbeat tale of a Vietnam veteran returning home to his fiance, "Put This Ring Upon Your Finger". Everything is bouncing along quite happily, and continues to do so, even after the lyrics tell a different story.

Download: Gene Marshall - Put This Ring Upon Your Finger

1 comment:

Stu Shea said...

Period pieces indeed! Like you, I treasure how Gene Marshall invests so much emotion in his work. And I dig the little weird guitar thingies at the end of "Put this Little Ring." Also, the use of the word "snort" in the A-side is much welcomed.

Thank you!