Thursday, July 22, 2010

Cover Me Impressed: 'Prairie Rose'

I just finished reading Rob Sheffield's 'Love Is A Mix Tape,' and I give it my highest recommendation. I initially picked it up because of my mutual admiration for the lost art of the personal cassette compilation, but I stuck with it because his telling of a lost love was so beautiful, funny and, ultimately, sad. Here are a few of my favorite lighter lines:

Upon seeing Pavement for the first time:
-- Afterward, we staggered to the parking lot in total silence. When we got to the car, Renee spoke up in a mournful voice: "I don't think The Feelies are ever gonna be good enough again."

-- The spring of 1994 was marked by two key events in rock history: the death of Kurt Cobain and the birth of Zima.

When he was a kid, Sheffield joined student council so he could DJ the dance...
-- I was a regular Dr. Johnny Fever in the body of a Les Nessman.

-- Heidi from Algebra pulled me aside in the hallway and handed me a copy of the Rolling Stones' Hot Rocks. She didn't even crack a smile. "Wild Horses," she told me. "It's a slow dance. The girls like it." She wouldn't let go of the record until I gave her a "Wild Horses" guarantee, and then she disappeared down the hall. It was the only conversation we ever had.

I could go on and on. Just buy the book. Sheffield begins each chapter with a mix-tape cover (complete with song titles) from the time period in his life he is about to describe. One of those songs is Roxy Music's "Prairie Rose," from their 1974 album 'Country Life.' Since I read the book, I think the mix tape in my head has had this song recorded over and over on both sides. I love Big Country's 1984 take, too. I wrote about it last year. I think it is Big Country's best take on another artist's work. I hope you agree.

Roxy Music - Prairie Rose (mp3)
Big Country - Prairie Rose (mp3)

More Cover Me Impressed:
"Come On Eileen"
"Walking On Thin Ice"
Jason Falkner Edition
"True Love Will Find You In The End"
"This Will Be Our Year"
"You're My Favorite Waste of Time"
"The End Of The World"
"(Don't Go Back To)Rockville"
"God Only Knows"
"And Your Bird Can Sing"
"So Sad About Us"
"Walking The Cow"

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