Sunday, June 8, 2008

Just Like Strange Rain

The breezy, blues-rocking "Strange Rain" was the B-side of Elton's third solo single, "It's Me That You Need", from 1969.

It's another searching-for-a-signature-sound attempt, again sounding a lot like Joe Cocker, Baldry or Peter Green-era Fleetwood Mac; i.e., the British Blues Boom sound. As such, it's a success if a bit slight; Caleb Quaye's stinging guitar stands out, as well as Elton's fey Empty Sky-style vocal delivery.

Insofar as the subject matter goes, Taupin's lyrics are trying to emulate the Lysergic-tinged wordsmithing of the late 60's with its mention of colors and rainbows and "strange rain washing his thoughts away". In the Rare Masters booklet notes, he admits as much: "...very much an acid piece, we were trying to be part of the times. I think it was probably influenced by people like Traffic."


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