Friday, 4 April 2014

"Eat your heart out, Temptations!"

Doo wop being on my mind in the last few posts, perhaps now is a good time to remind you of the documentary Life Could Be a Dream, which I have reviewed here. It has been uploaded to yout*be, though who knows how long it will be there, so it's worth having a look. Thanks to the magic of the internet I can even take you to the precise place I mentioned in the review, namely the sequence at the end when lots of singers, including one of the Teenagers and Earl "Speedo" Carroll, have a bash at a couple of Smokey Robinson songs. It's ragged but will bring a smile to your face if you are anything like me.

You could say it's a slightly odd choice - these songs are associated with Motown - but doo wop and soul are, as Kenny Everett would have put it, intertwangled. There is also something odd about hearing these songs performed by what is, in effect, a large choir, not a quartet or a quintet: not much time for subtlety, just a general affirmation that this music is important.

Those of you who haven't just alighted on this blog may be wondering what happened to my plan to do a one hour presentation on doo wop. The answer is that it's ongoing - and the next couple of weeks may actually be an ideal time to do it. So watch this space. Possibly. The trick will be to feel that whatever I have written is a clear and concise intro which also satisfies me. If I do complete it I will put an audio link up.

There are several doo wop-related projects I have on the go, actually. I can't promise that any of them will be completed but as readers of this blog are the ideal audience I'm beginning to realise it would be silly not to have a go.

I don't really have much to add to the review of this documentary. It's not thoroughly satisfying and exhaustive but it certainly gives a taste of the music. Pity the DVD doesn't have lots of extra interview footage; the programme feels like it has been carefully cut down in order to fit a slot. Still, it remains (as far as I know) the nearest to a clear introduction on film.

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