18 January 2018

18 January 2018 - Fleetwood Mac - Go Your Own Way

If you think Stevie Nicks looks pissed when Lindsey Buckingham sings "Loving you isn't the right thing to do", it's with good reason.  She is the "you" being referenced here.

That look could melt ice.

17 January 2018

17 January 2018 - Fleetwood Mac - Landslide

This is perhaps one of Fleetwood Mac's most recognized songs.   Written by Stevie Nicks before she and Lindsey Buckingham joined Fleetwood Mac, it's really a collaboration between both of them and an extension of the Buckingham Nicks project they did prior to joining the band.  The story goes that the two of them were recording their second album together in the same studio that Fleetwood Mac was recording in during the winter of 1974-1975.  The band heard them and asked them to join, an offer that the commercially unsuccessful duo could not refuse.

This song ended up on the band's 1975 self-titled album, an album getting a reissue this Friday, January 19th, 2017.  "Landslide" was a song about the uncertainty of Nicks's life after the failure of the first Buckingham Nicks album - she was at a crossroads as to whether or not she was going to continue a career in music, her world figuratively crashing around her.  It wasn't a hit song at the time, but did get some radio play as a popular tune, and did eventually chart in a live version in 1998. 

The song itself is sparse yet hauntingly beautiful, with little accompaniment besides a guitar. 

16 January 2018

16 January 2018 - Fleetwood Mac - Don't Stop

Yesterday, we featured a Christine McVie-penned song about a woman struggling in her marriage  Here, we have another Christine McVie-penned song, written after the marriage crumbled and her search for hope for the future which struggling with the depression of the lost relationship.  From the classic 1997 album Rumors, this song was sung by Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie, and is genuinely filled with such hope that it has become an anthem for sunny outlooks. 

This particular song was a big enough deal to get the band together on stage after a decade of acrimony - they recorded some together, but never toured or performed completely - at President Clinton's inaugural celebration.  And it's a great performance!

I promise I'll post a Stevie Nicks song at some point!!!

15 January 2018

15 January 2018 - Fleetwood Mac - Say You Love Me

This is one of Fleetwood Mac's best known songs, and as one with a Christine McVie lead vocal (she wrote the song as well), you know there's a story.

Christine was married to John McVie, the bassist (and frankly the Mac) in the band.  In 1975, their marriage was on the rocks, and she was feeling troubled.  So she wrote a very happy-sounding, sweet-sounding song that was basically begging her husband to tell her that he loved her.

Which might be why she absolutely doesn't look like she's having fun performing the song.

The song didn't work.  They divorced in 1976.  Nevertheless, she stayed with the band until 1998.... their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction.   She still didn't look like she enjoyed performing the song (although Lindsey Buckingham sure was enjoying the banjo).  One other noteworthy aspect of this performance: John McVie is singing backup vocals.

Christine rejoined the band in 2014.  She finally looks like she enjoys her cheerful little ditty.

29 December 2017

29 December 2017 - Transvision Vamp - Baby I Don't Care

Yesterday, readers of Totally Covered were witness to a cover by an artist most of them had never heard of, of a song most of them had never heard of. I can't fix that first part.  But I can fix the 2nd. 

Transvision Vamp are a band that was a relative reliable hitmaker for a few years in the UK. Their only US hit was not this song, but a cover of a Holly and the Italians song.  This song, their biggest UK hit, was the lead single and opening track off their 2nd album, Velveteen, one of my favorites of all time - strongly recommended.

The song itself is pretty standard pop.  However, the combination of a band that has serious chops and a deep pedigree, with ties to bands as diverse as X-Ray Spex and Bush, and a dynamic lead singer that was not only not fearful of the spotlight, but embraced it, makes the song memorable.

Wendy James went on to a semi-successful solo career after the band broke up in 1992.  This is one of their last performances.  Incidentally, I would love to start a campaign to get them to reform, like The Darling Buds  (for which we take far too much credit) and The Primitives (I discuss the unfair comparisons between TV and these two bands in that post) did.

28 December 2017

28 December 2017 - Sia - Cheap Thrills (with and without Sean Paul)

Do you remember that time that Sia was on American Bandstand?

That's because it never happened.  But this lyric video - which somehow became the de facto video for this song, even though there's an official video - did.  And it's a really good lyric video, that even mostly gets the lyrics right.  As a bonus, this video also features a version of this song - which was a hit - featuring Sean Paul...

....but the official video - which actually has Sia in it!!!!!!! - features a Maddie Ziegler-centered dance performance - and Sia!!!!!! Facing forward!!!!!!  - and deserves attention.  Since, you know, the song is about dancing. Without Sean Paul, it is, in my opinion, a better song, but either way, it's catchy.

27 December 2017

27 December 2017 - Kesha ft. The Dap-Kings - Woman

I know that we've been kind of slow posting things on here.  But this lateness is inexcusable - after hers was the best motherf***ing show I saw in 2016! - and I am going to fix that motherf***ing s**t right now.

Kesha's comeback this year was perhaps the best motherf***ing story in music in 2017.  Her 2nd single post-comeback - this empowerment anthem made more poignant by her motherf***ing legal troubles with Sony Music concerning the alleged sexual assault of her by Dr. Luke - is a hell of a "I'm back, you motherf***ing bitches" song.  At any rate, it's clear that she's not going to be f***ing pushed down.

What is missing from this song that was present in her earlier songs is Auto-Tune. Because the woman the pipes and doesn't need motherf***ing Auto-Tune. (Which, if you read Totally Covered, you already know).  Any doubt about that fact should be squashed by the fact that she's keeping up with The Motherf***ing Dap-Kings, who are better known for being the backing band for the late big-piped singers Sharon Motherf***ing Jones and Amy Motherf***ing Winehouse.

And this song has spirit.  Ignoring for the motherf***ing overuse of "motherf***er" in the song.  Kesha starts laughing at about 1:13 in this video.  The song is free and fun, intentionally.  In the artist's words:
"I wanted this song to capture that organic, raw, soulful sound and keep the imperfect moments in the recordings." (Source: Rolling Stone)
 I can say more about this great, fun, exciting song, but I'd rather you just listen to it yourself.  Enjoy.