Thursday, December 7, 2006

TRACK 5: OUT ON THE SIDE


OUT ON THE SIDE by Dillard & Clark.

We auditioned a lot of songs for this mix. The first real serious draft was a playlist of 69 songs, but as we moved songs in and out of the final running order, this one wasn't ever touched. It's fair to say that this song (with a select few others) shaped the whole project.

"Out On The Side" is the opening track from The Fantastic Expedition of Dillard & Clark. Gene Clark, who wrote the song (and, not coincidentally, is an all-time genius and musical superhero), sings the lead.

Well before Clark's vocals come in, in fact from the opening seconds, the song is working. The playing is just masterful. It takes all of two seconds to absorb the listener into the world of the song. Doesn't that organ sound like it's been there all this time and you've just now noticed it? Likewise, Clark's entrance is all slyness and ellipses.

As the track gets going, Clark's heavily-metered vocal is pushed forward in the mix, which is echoed in the pulsating background vocals. The extended coda lets the band stretch out and appreciate the excellent material they have to work with.

The lyrics are cryptic and mysterious—but they sound direct and plainspoken. It's as if the singer is singing in a foreign language that the listener never realized she understood.

If you're hearing it for the first time, we really do hope you go for this song.

LISTEN.
Photo: Blue (and Happy Belated Birthday, Zack!), 1993 (Photo by Jennifer Shook).

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1 comment:

Bill said...

And an on-time Happy Birthday to Greg!