This won't come as a shock to anybody, but one of the nicest perks, if that's the word, of writing here over the last two years is that people have been moved to turn me on to some very cool music I would have never have otherwise heard.
But of all the songs I've been hepped to since NYMary gave me the spare set of keys to the car, as it were, I think this is the one I treasure most (and special thanks to Kid Charlemagne, whose encylopedic knowledge of some of the more obscure byways of pop and rock is a continuing source of amazement to me).
From 1965, please enjoy Los Shakers (a/k/a The Beatles del Rio de la Plata) and their exquisite "Always You."
Los Shakers were in many ways one of the archtypal 60s rock stories -- four kids from Uruguay who saw A Hard Days Night and flipped (like everybody else their age worldwide) and subsequently formed a band. Except they actually got signed by the Beatles parent record label (EMI) and became huge pop stars in South and Latin America (they were considered gods in Argentina, apparently).
Oh, and made absolutely wonderful records that live up to the source of their initial inspirations.
Case in point: "Always You." Seriously -- this is EXACTLY what the Beatles would have sounded like circa the soundtrack to Help if they had grown up South of the Border rather than in Liverpool. In short, as gorgeous a happy/sad pop tune as you'll ever encounter, with every little instrumental and vocal detail simply beyond perfection; I absolutely turn to jelly when that chiming Harrison-esque Rickenbacker twelve-string comes in at the top of the second verse, and I don't care who knows it.
BTW, you can see Los Shakers perform the song (in lower-fi mono) in a club scene from what is apparently a Latin version of an AIP beach party flick over at YouTube HERE.
For more on these guys -- who have credibly reinvented themselves as disciples of Astor Piazzolla since a 2005 reunion tour -- check out their estimable official website.