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Monday, November 15, 2010

242. "Return of the Grievous Angel" by Gram Parsons


Purely by accident, the second Byrd-related post in as many days.

Gram is, I believe, the only musical artist, and in fact probably one of the very few actually good-looking humans, to whom I've been said to bear a physical resemblance. I wouldn't even dare to throw that out there if I hadn't heard it from a few independent sources. I'm holding on to it since, as the title of the blog suggests, I have for some time now been older than Gram ever lived to be, sadly.

As I go along writing about all of the songs I bashed out in the first part of the Lightning Round, it strikes me that trying to quantify why I chose these particular songs to commit to memory and adopt into my repertoire is turning out to be futile. They're all great songs, but there are millions of great songs, often right next to these on their original albums, which are easily just as great and yet for some reason never leapt out and said "Learn me!" at any point in time. That's certainly what happened with this one, around the time I went from a casual Gram fan to a more involved listener. My attachment was further cemented when, at some point early in the building of Skates & Rays, I popped this one out at a rehearsal, and Cliff, whom I didn't then know incredibly well, turned out to have a pretty good memory of the words and vocal feel for the Emmylou part. I think that was one of the key moments in my process of trying to become a frontperson dude guy, and in fretting about whether my last-ditch effort to create one last band before chucking it, when I truly felt, "You know... this might work out after all".

Personnel: Rex

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