December 31, 2007

Snob trap / Fireworks

One of my dad's favourite tapes in our family car used to be a rather uninspiredly titled Golden Oldies cassette. The child that was me in 1988 actually liked quite a lot of the music on that particular tape. But some of the songs were really too old-fashioned, too boring. Like track one of side B: Deep purple by Nino Tempo & April Stevens. No skipping ahead in those days, so I had to listen to it quite a lot. It never grew on me.

Fast forward ten years or so to 1998, when Rose Melberg (Tiger Trap, The Softies, Go Sailor) released her beautiful solo debut album Portola. Track one was a pretty cover version of the very same Deep purple. How I love that song!


The lyrics are unchanged, even the spoken word part is copied exactly word for word. Both versions last 2 minutes and 40 seconds. The only notable difference in the intrumentation is that the original's got some quietly subtle harmonica, drums and piano added, but the overall atmosphere is the same.

Do I really love Rose Melberg's voice so much that it changes a song that ruined an otherwise very enjoyable music cassette into a song of beauty that I can enjoy time and again? Well, apparently. But, no.

It's New Year's Eve. Tomorrow will be 2008. It's only 8:20 PM but outside the fireworks are banging loudly and frequently already. When I peek through the curtains some beautiful colours show in the sky. It's pretty but it breaks my heart, too. I miss my girlfriend.

"When the deep purple falls
Over sleepy garden walls
And the stars begin to twinkle
In the night
In the mist of a memory
You wander on back to me
Breathing my name
With a sigh..."

Rose Melberg's cover version might be almost identical to Nino and April's, but my mind hears a different, new song. It's a completely different memory. It belongs to a different me, a me to whom those words mean just a bit more than only lalala. A song is never just a song.

Two remarks to end this post:
1. Hadn't Rose Melberg made so many other pretty (mostly original) songs, like the beautiful Cast Away The Clouds, would I have still loved this cover so much? Who can tell?
2. Before writing this post I listened to the original version a couple of times, for the first time in ages. It's really not bad! So I added it to the file below.

I'm writing like a sentimental grandma. I'll try to be cool in 2008.

Download (Mediafire)
1. Rose Melberg - Deep purple
2. Rose Melberg - Cast away the clouds
3. Nino Tempo & April Stevens - Deep purple

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