Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Song: Won
Artist: The Beta Band
Album: Hot Shots II

Sometimes a song you know will pop up somewhere expected and it makes you yearn to hear it again. This often happens in movies or TV or even just out and about in the world. Music fills our lives sometimes when we don’t even know it… while shopping, getting our hair done, or at a bar. It’s there, and just waiting to get into your consciousness. So while it was this that brought a song back to my attention, I am a fan of Harry Nilsson’s “One” which is probably best known in the Three Dog Night version, which you can check out here:

Harry’s version is very similar, with that distinct piano that is both haunting and propulsive:

One of my favorite versions of “One” comes from former Till’ Tuesday member Aimee Mann. Mann’s was featured in the film “Magnolia,” which was written based on her songs. Her “One” served as the opening credits, which you can see here:

I am a huge p.t. anderson fan… well, I should say I’m a big “Boogie Nights” and “Magnolia” fan, I just couldn’t get into both “Punch Drunk Love” and this years highly praised “There Will Be Blood.” Just this opening credits sequence, done very similarly to the “Boogie Nights” open, shows he is a master of the character mosaic… it’s pretty masterful, and Mann’s version of the song almost seems written FOR the movie… though the movie is based on the songs, which is sort of the same thing, though opposite. (I’ve just now confused myself.)

Covering someone else’s song can serve many reasons… for Scotland’s Beta Band, they chose to change the title to “Won” and incorporate some hip hop influences and make the song totally their own. The song was a Japanese and U.S. bonus track on their second full-length album “Hot Shots II.” The Beta Band has since split, but they remain an important, if not criminally unheralded, band from the start of the new millennium. I HIGHLY recommend the compilation “The Three EP’s” which many recognize as their first album. It’s amazing… and you might just know the incredible opening track “Dry The Rain” from this.

“Won” is great though… a great take on a great song. These little random reminders of certain songs always seem like a metaphor for life in general to me. But then again… I think I think about music too much. J


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