Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Wailers

Nuggets The Waylors were Waylon Jennings’ backup band at some point, and of course The Wailers were Bob Marley’s band. These Wailers were neither.

These Wailers were from the northwest, Washington to be exact, where there was some kind of proto-garage band culture going on. The Kingsmen were probably the best know product of that environment. A few decades later we had Nirvana.

The Wailers were never like super-famous or anything. Tall Cool One was their most successful single, but it was atypical, being an instrumental. I don’t remember where I picked that one up; the other one came from a Rhino Nuggets collection.

The Wailers:

Tall Cool One – Alcohol consumption was always up front and centre in country music, not so in rock and roll, though R & B had the occasional One Mint Julep and the like. Then there was the odd exception like The Fireballs’ Bottle Of Wine. And then there was Tall Cool One, which was an instrumental, so we don’t know what it was about. Could have been about the sax player’s girlfriend, or about the piano man himself, or about the tree outside the studio. This was a hit in the summer of 1959, and again in the summer of 1964, but it was never very big either time. I have a cover by The Ventures.
Hang Up – The singer delivers the lyrics with such intensity that it sounds like he may have apoplexy right then and there. Can’t understand much of what he says though.
You Weren’t Using Your Head – Just another song of heartbreak and revenge, with just slightly less rancour than Hang Up.

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