gone wrong gone right

burt on sax

THIS WEEK: covers where I clearly hadn’t heard or paid attention to the original enough but came out well anyway.

SONGS:  The Heaps covering the Hold Steady’s “Citrus” and Steely Dan’s “Dirty Work” (at Mike’s request, I swear!)

Ever since our pleasantly disastrous (and unrecorded) butchering of “I Shot the Sheriff”, doing covers half-cocked has been a Heaps tradition.  Usually this is because someone brings me a song I’ve never heard and asks me to sing it and I do (since this is basically what I do with Mike’s new songs anyway), but in our first case here, I‘m the one who insisted we play this song.  Here’s the classic Heaps playing the Hold Steady’s “Citrus”:


I loved the original version but just didn’t listen to it enough beforehand to play it faithfully (or instruct others in how to do so), and in retrospect, I wouldn’t have been able to do those little arpeggios while singing anyway.  Our version is less subtle, but I think the violin and flute make up for it.

Before the next song,

WHAT’S GOOD (non-exhaustive)?: A tasty drink that Erin and I came up with a while back called “The Soviet Georgia” using vodka and TJ’s peach juice.  Garbo in the 1926 silent “Flesh and the Devil.”  This disturbing poster for a middling thriller aptly described by one Netflix reviewer as “basically a camp variation of ‘Of Mice and Men'”; sure, the poster gives away a lot, but then again, I don’t know if I would have watched it without it.

BONUS: Last year, after our “Return of the Living Heaps” show, the classic Heaps line-up had a reunion (titled “A Casual Encounter”) when Vernon was in town; Jesse, Ben, and Matt were invited but were away.  Anyway, each Heap was allowed to bring 3 or 4 songs they wanted us to play and we would.  Well, Mike chose Steely Dan’s “Dirty Work”:

In retrospect, our version is shockingly close to the original, considering I had never (consciously) heard the original before.  I like our instrumentation better.  In fact, this is one of my favorite violin and melodica tracks ever.  If only it wasn’t Steely Dan.  Sigh.


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