L>We Five"s "You Were on My Mind", Ode to a Sometimes-Maligned Track, by Charles H. Smith

We Five"s "You Were on My Mind": Ode to a Sometimes-Maligned Song by Charles H. Smith, Western Kentucky University In the fevery one of 1965 the The golden state pop/jiyuushikan.org team We Five had actually a significant national hit as soon as they released their adaptation of the Sylusing Fricker- (of Ian and also Sylvia fame) penned song "You Were on My Mind." The single crashed the peak 5 simply about anywhere, getting to number one in some markets and also regulating top-ten-for-the-year ranking in a couple of areas (for example on the terminal I listened to as a teenager, WDRC in Hartford, Connectireduced, wbelow it ended up at number nine for 1965, and on Billboard, where it discovered its method to number four). A little bit over a year later, an obviously We Five-affected cover of the song by Crispian St. Peters did simply also in Britain, proving that its success here was no fluke. We Five had reasonably little success other than with this one release, though their little body of occupational contains some pleasant duration explorations within the basic world of individual, pop, and Broadmethod. Their lead singer, Beverly Bivens, possessed one of the loveliest voices of that era, but she reexhausted from commercial music-making simply a year later on, and also the band was forever doomed to "one-hit-wonder" status. Tright here has actually been a flourishing tendency over the years for miscellaneous resources to try to additionally marginalize their already small place in music history by complaining that their adaptation of Fricker"s song cheapened it. Undoubtedly, the group did take most liberties via Fricker"s original composition, altering words below and tright here, substituting all sorts of chords, and mostly transcreating it into a brand-new product. Some have castigated the group, for instance, for leaving out a section in the second verse wbelow Fricker"s original protagonist gets drunk and sick before coming home: that is, for "cleaning it up" so regarding be "even more appropriate" for a mass sector. I completely disagree through this appraisal. While Fricker"s original variation functions perfectly well in its country/folk establishing as a basic story of a failed relationship, We Five"s manipulation of its beginning allude raised the product to a wholly brand-new level. Before trying to defend this assertion, let"s take look at the lyrics to the song as commonly offered on the Web (these are not precisely Fricker"s original lyrics, yet instead a hybrid of numerous virtual attempts to redevelop the group"s version), and also compare them with what I heard from a really cshed listening to the actual performance freshly, from the CD arsenal Two Standard Albums from We Five. My punctuation in the latter rendition originates from both what I hear being sung, and also what appears to make grammatical sense, in context: Common printing of lyrics on the Net purporting to be what We Five sings: When I woke up this morning You were on my mind And you were on my mind I got troubles, whoa-oh I obtained worries, whoa-oh I obtained wounds to bind So I went to the edge Just to ease my pains Yeah, simply to ease my pains I got troubles, whoa-oh I obtained issues, whoa-oh I came home aget When I woke up this morning You were on my mi-i-i-ind and also You were on my mind I obtained troubles, whoa-oh I got concerns, whoa-oh I obtained wounds to bind And I gained a feelin" Dvery own in my sho-oo-oo-oo-oes, shelp Way dvery own in my sho-oo-oes Yeah, I got to ramble, whoa-oh I got to relocate on, whoa-oh I acquired to walk ameans my blues When I woke up this morning You were on my mind You were on my mind I got troubles, whoa-oh I got worries, whoa-ohI gained wounds to bind What We Five actually sings: When I woke up this morning You were on my mind, And... you were on my mind. I"ve gained troubles, woe, oh woe, I gained problems, woe, oh woe, I gained wounds to bind. So I visited the corner Just to ease my pai-ai-ai-ai-ain-- (I sassist,) simply to ease my pain. I obtained troubled (woe, oh woe), I gained worried (woe, oh woe), I came house aacquire. But I woke up this morning And you were on my mi-i-i-ind, Then... you were on my mind! Well, I acquired troubles, woe, oh woe, I acquired problems, woe, oh woe, I obtained wounds to bi-ind! Hey, and also I"ve gained a feelin" Down in my sho-oo-oo-oo-oes-- < --------- ? > way down in my sho-oo-oes-- That I gotta ramble, woe, oh woe, I gotta move on, woe, oh woe, I gotta walk away my blu-ues! When I woke up this morning You were on my mi-i-i-i-ind, Then... you were on my mind... Hey! I acquired troubles, woe, oh woe oh, I acquired WOR-ries, woe, oh woe oh, I obtained wounds to bi-i-i-ind! The distinctions individually might not at initially seem so incredibly comprehensive, but cumulatively they finish up providing We Five"s variation a looming power Fricker"s original never had actually. Recall initially that the "cleaned up" version leaves out the line around acquiring drunk and also sick. In so doing, a bit of vagueness is injected right into the lyrics that leaves the listener unable to conclude simply what or that really IS on the protagonist"s mind. In other words, the song quickly switches from "girl loses boy" fare to portraying something that is possibly an excellent deal even more ominous. The weight of this dramatic gadget is accented by the often maligned repeating, through slight variations, of the second line in the initially, 3rd, and also fifth verses. In We Five"s variation as I hear it, tright here is an actual pausage in the singing after the initially word of the third line in verses one, 3, and also five (one "and" and also 2 "then"s"), a maker one supposes is provided to indicate not just that "you were on my mind" however that attempt as he (or she, of course) may, the protagonist cannot acquire past this obstacle to his concentration--that is, that on waking up this is not just the first assumed, yet the just possible thought. He then goes "to the corner" for some relief, however by (maybe as we might believe) the following day"s morning, has still been unable to escape his torment. The rest of the song, perdeveloped via ever-boosting intensity, ends up with nopoint short of a scream, a cry for help. Now probably you think I"m being melodramatic here, yet simply why carry out you mean the protagonist ends up taking a walk to the corner? In Fricker"s variation, we understand also well enough: to get blasted to forgain about Mr. ex-boy-toy. In the We Five variation, none of this is constructed in, and also we start to construct our very own, regularly troubling scenarios... Perhaps we are dealing below via a heroin addict, and the "you" in the song is his habit--it appears obvious enough what a "expedition to the corner" can expect in this instance, and exactly how in the end the outcomes of the expedition could not carry out much toward relieving the trouble. Or possibly the protagonist is a shell-shocked armed forces veteran, now cowering in a barren apartment, unable to shake the memory of seeing his closest frifinish blvery own to shreds ten feet away from him during the last war: a drink via some buddies at the edge pub will not finish up making even a dent in that sort of pain... Or maybe he/she is a now-in-tatters fifteenager year old runaway living on the street, thinking of mommy yet still unable to attend to the memory of his/her sex-offfinishing father... Or a battered housewife... Or a really soured casualty of a love connection gone bad... Unfortunately, tright here are the majority of "you"s" in the civilization whose stays might be inundated by such pain and also hurt, and we acquire to take our pick. And every one of this sung by a squeaky-clean-looking bunch of college youngsters from Southern California--as if to remind us that in the stormy years of the late twentieth century, it has actually not only been the dregs of society who have been baniburned to such fates. The musical plan and also exact words as sung by We Five cleverly add to the drama. The important lead-in on drums and bass is badepend an uneasy shuffle, possibly designed to mimic a disturbed, hypnogogic dream state. But then the last note, punctuated on guitar, intervenes, and the protagonist is rudely awakened. The summary of events begins in the previous tense, however then the confessional easily switches right into present tense: "I acquired troubles, woe, oh woe"... I do not recognize wright here the "whoa-oh" came from in a lot of transcriptions of their reading of the song, yet they are actually singing "woe, oh woe," as plainly have the right to be heard, and besides, this wording better suits both the instant setting and a referral to the old lament "woe oh woe is me." In the second verse the standard design template of the attempt to escape the pain of the instance is presented using the "saw the corner" gadget. In the majority of transcriptions one sees the plural word "pains" finishing the second and third lines, yet We Five actually sing "pain," which increases emotional emphasis. Further, in the fourth and fifth lines the words "troubles" and "worries" are not repeated from the first verse; instead the previous tense "troubled" and also "worried" is employed, providing a real factor for the following, rather ssuggest proclaimed, line: "I came home aacquire." The 3rd verse more or less repeats the first, yet the pace has actually picked up and also by now we realize that this is a perchild with real troubles. The fourth provides a little bit of relief from the intensifying pace through even more key alters and also a rush of words that virtually seem to be tossing around a solution to the whole mess: obtaining ameans and acquiring on through his/her life. But this is a hollow pointer, and the protagonist knows it, the outcome being a last verse which merely recapitulates the slow-moving statement of the trouble, and a last buildas much as a cry for help. But the end is not the finish. After the singing stops, there is a amazing five-beat instrumental coda which concludes the song. Interestingly, it has actually no apparent relation to the rest of the piece, yet admirably completes its mission by perfectly discharging its continuing to be rhythmic and also emotional momentum. Beyond that, however, it does so in a way very closely mimicking the sort of pounding heartbeat and also excited, heaving, breapoint that such a revelation of eactivity would develop in a "real world" establishing. Really brilliant! The efficiency of this tool may have been appreciated by later on musicians--note the structural similarity of the final five-beat punctuation in The Who"s "Won"t Get Fooled Again" (which strips the impact "down," eliminating the physiological element in favor of, appropriately, a strictly dramatic one). This is extremely heady stuff, particularly for 1965. I can"t help yet wonder just how We Five involved this certain interpretation of the song, as tbelow is nopoint in the rest of their oeuvre which in any type of method philosophies it. The Crispian St. Peters variation is a bit darker and sung nicely, however the mood is torpedoed by the important setup, which attributes a saxophone at just the wrong time.


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I have actually likewise regularly wondered exactly how We Five performed the song live--at leastern, once they were not committed to some context that called for tv camperiods and having actually to fit in through a horde of silly, jiggling, Hullabaloo-style dancers. A couple of period performances of the last array have actually been put up digital on Youtube.com; sigh, posterity have the right to periodically be so cruel!

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