Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Bettye LaVette: Doin' The Best That I Can (Walter Gibbons Remix) [1978]

This is apparently a seminal moment in the history of remixing. (For instance, see this article.) The radically minimalist/cubist approach of the remix is evident from the first listen, but it took me a few listens to actually start to enjoy the song. I think I was thrown at first by the extremely trebly textures (like those insane bell sounds, and the absence of bass in the beginning). But after multiple listens I started to hear the beautiful song behind the spooky emptiness of the sound. This is a great torch song, standing at the emotional crossroads of "I Will Survive", "I'm Coming Out", and a third song (you decide) that's a little despondent ("Don't Get Around Much Anymore", maybe?).

Written Mark Sameth (about whom I can find nothing on the Internet)
Vocal by Bettye LaVette
Remixed by Walter Gibbons

Get it on CD or vinyl.

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