Sunday, June 27, 2010

Hollies: The Very Last Day

In 1965, The Hollies released their third album, “Hollies” in the UK on Parlophone, and since Capitol Records had passed on the band for the North American market, Imperial Records were given the opportunity to release their recordings on this continent. “Hear! Here!” was the title for the comparable US album, which was the second by the band to be issued in the US.

Featured on this album was a traditionally inspired gospel song written by Peter Yarrow and Noel Paul Stookey. Peter, Paul, and Mary recorded the song for their third LP, “In the Wind.” The Hollies version of today’s Spiritual Sunday tune was released as a single only in Sweden where it peaked at #1 on the Swedish music charts. Here’s a lip-synched version recorded for the Swedish TV show “Popside.”

Alan Clarke, as usual, is handling the vocal chores on this one. Lead guitarist Tony Hicks can be seen playing a Gibson ES-355 (the giveaway is the selector switch) and Graham Nash has a late model Fender inspired Vox Clubman. If you look closely, you will notice that Tony Hicks has removed the pickup covers from his guitar - this was quite an innovative move in 1966.  If my memory serves me correctly, Klaus Voorman is substituting on bass for this video performance.

One thing that always bothered me about this tune was the inaccuracy of its lyrical content in the line, "And you can preach about the wisdom of Saul." Actually Solomon was the wise guy, not Saul. King Saul did some very asinine things during his reign.  To be more accurate and to keep the rhyme, the line could be changed to "And you can preach about the teachings of Paul."  Not only is this more accurate from a biblical perspective, it marries Old and New Testament characters while keeping the rhyme intact.

The following live cut was recorded in Croatia and shows the strange humor of the band. It appears that only Clarke, Hicks, and Nash are performing on this version. Hicks is sporting a 6-string banjo that is tuned exactly like a guitar.

1 comment:

  1. See also their 1966 live rendition from the German show Beat Club.

    Complete appearance, also including "Look Through Any Window" and "I Can't Let Go."