Monday, February 24, 2014

Your Monday Moment of Words Fail Me: Special Gentlemen, Start Your Air Guitars! Edition

So the other day over at YouTube I chanced across part 1 of a series of video guitar tutorials that original Beach Boys' guitarist David Marks had done at the band's old stomping grounds -- Hawthorne High School. (The whole series is highly recommended, BTW -- entertaining, informative, and if you're a novice guitarist, a terrific teaching tool. But I digress.)

In any case, the big revelation of the video for yours truly was Marks' claim that the Beach Boys stole most of their original guitar sound from a song heretofore unknown to me.

To wit -- this 1958 single by the great Duane Eddy.

Which, as you can hear, they clearly did. (Incidentally, that track also appears on Duane's debut album of the same year -- Have 'Twangy' Guitar, Will Travel. Apart from everything else, 1958 was apparently the Golden Age of Album Titles.)

But later that same day, I stumbled across the real mindblower -- an equally unknown to me collaboration between Duane and The Ventures on an instrumental version of Bobby Fuller's classic "I Fought the Law"...

...which, IMHO, has guitar textures that wouldn't have been out of place on albums by Television.

Seriously, the stuff going on during the song's first bridge might as well be a late night jam session between Tom Verlaine and Richard Lloyd. Okay, not quite that good, but pretty close and quite beautiful.

Have I mentioned that the intertubes are a truly wondrous thing?

BTW, I have no idea whether that track is some kind of a one-off or whether Duane and the Ventures ever did an entire album together; if anybody can enlighten me on this, I'll be their best friend.


Anonymous said...

This was a track from The Ventures' 1998 album "New Depths". The project was an attempt to update the bands' sound and featured numerous guest players.

buzzbabyjesus said...

Nothing like good music made with electric guitars. This track has been mastered beautifully.

buzzbabyjesus said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
This was a track from The Ventures' 1998 album "New Depths".

That explains the sound.


steve simels said...

Well I'll be damned.

Thanks for clearing that up.

Of course, now I have to order the CD...

John Thomson said...

I'd say they stole the lick. As for the sound, Duane played a Guild hollow-body and the BB guitar sound was definitely Fender solid-body. Big difference to my ears. I think the only thing in common was the fact they were playing totally clean with some reverb. Both great sounds but nowhere near the same, imho. Cheers!
PS: It's really hard to read the characters I have to type in to publish. 3rd time?