Friday, November 23, 2007

Lady Samantha

Elton's second solo single, released one day after my ninth birthday, is a schizo composition indeed: verses echo Procol Harum's stately organ-and-Hendrix guitar mix, and choruses evoke Bob Dylan's Blonde on Blonde period. The melodies of both, and they are different, are strong.

Bernie's lyrics describe a woman who may or may not be a witch or some other sort of supernatural creature, or so the people of the town say. The singer of the song hedges his bets at the end by telling us

The tales that I told round the fire every night
Are out of proportion and none of them right
She is harmless and empty of anything bad
For she once had something that most of you have


what that "something" is- love, honor, beauty- isn't specified.

An ambiguous lyric married to a uneven composition, and sung by an unknown artist, is rarely a recipe for chart success- and sure enough, this one didn't chart in either country.

5 comments:

Roger Green said...

And another song covered by Three Dog Night, from their second album. Actually, the only version I own.

thom de plume said...

How does their version compare?

Roger Green said...

I've never heard the EJ version; but I'm getting it this week.

Johnny B said...

Hey, let me know what you think...

Michael Crawley said...

Nearly as good as Elton's. The Three Dog Night version was the only one I heard until Rare Masters came out.