Friday, 25 November 2011

Irma Thomas: Wish Someone Would Care / Break-A-Way (1964)

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here is my first music post for a loooong time, and it is special in many other ways, too. first of all this a very big favourite of mine, and also it is the first example of girl pop that i ever posted on twenty flight rock. and telling you why i love this record so much, i will start with the b-side:
i have heard this song thousands of times on the radio sung by tracy ullman (as you may know i was as unfortunate as to be born around that time, the late 20th century). i always wondered how i could like a song from the 80s that much, because except from the blues brothers (1980) i dont let anything from that decade touch my ears (im a weird kind of purist somehow). of course i wasnt surprised at all when i found out that miss ullman covered a 60s song and instantly looked for the record to add it to my collection. in fact its a pretty shame that ullmans version became so popular and this one slipped into obscurity so soon. irma thomas, the ‘soul queen of new orleans‘, who is often associated with singers like aretha franklin or etta james, has an amazing voice and the song is fast, cheering and truly a child of its time. she sings about a lover she cannot leave even though he treats her bad and makes her cry (a thing every woman will know and have experienced several times), nevertheless it is not a sad song but a very uplifting one. it has a catchy chorus that makes one sing along instantly. when i received the parcel with this record from the mailman i took it out and played it four or five times in a row and i still cant get enough. well, i guess if i go on here ill just end up in repeating uselessly how much i love this song, so i will gone on and simply dearly, dearly recommend it to you if you like the early or mid-60s.
the a-side, ‘wish someone would care’, was irma thomas’ one and only hit and went up to #17 in 1964. its a slow, soulful ballad about being alone and the feeling that no one even cares about it (also something every woman or teenage girl will know, very touching to me at least). although this song is more typical for the time and the genre (as i said its less pop and more soul), it still is a real pearl and a nice showcase for irmas strong and capable voice. the piece is a little bit moody, but it doesnt put you down at all – its rather some kind of soothing, audible remedy for heartache. and if it puts you down, next there is the catchy b-side to pick you up again!
while writing this i again cought myself listening to the whole record over and over again, and i hope it will make you just as addicted :-)

 
interesting links:
break-a-way version of tracy ullman
irma thomas’ official website
irma thomas on rateyourmusic
irma thomas on last.fm
 
 

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