Thursday, February 22, 2007


Ronnie Spector: Try Some, Buy Some b/w Tandoori Chicken [1971]

Try Some, Buy Some written by George Harrison
Orchestral Arrangement by J. Barham

Tandoori Chicken written by George Harrison & Phil Spector

Produced by Phil Spector & George Harrison

Weirdly enough, on the exact day that Mike posted the original version of a song from David Bowie's Reality LP, my 45 of the original version of another song from Bowie's Reality arrived in the mail. (In other words, we didn't plan this.)

Here are some notes on "Try Some, Buy Some" from Nicholas Pegg's The Complete David Bowie:

George Harrison originally wrote "Try Some, Buy Some" for the ex-Ronettes vocalist Ronnie Spector, whose version was released as a single in April 1971, inexplicably failing to chart on either side of the Atlantic. "At that time," Bowie recalled, "it was the only single by a solo artist that actually had all four Beatles on it. The Beatles had kind of disbanded, but they all loved Ronnie, and it was George Harrison producing it, so they all crept in at different times to put parts on it." Bowie had already paid tribute to the single many years earlier when he included it in the choice of records he played on BBC Radio 1's Star Special back in 1979. On that occasion he described Ronnie Spector's recording as "absolutely incredible", remarking that it "made me fall in love with the singer... my heart went straight out to her." He also recalled that the track was co-produced by the singer's then husband Phil Spector: "I may be wrong but I think it's the last single he ever made, because he was so depressed that it didn't do anything, that nobody bought it."

I don't have time right now to verify the historical accuracy of anything David says in the quotes above. Maybe somebody else can?

I do want to note that "Try Some, Buy Some" features some knotty harmonic/melodic content on the "Not a thing did I know..." part. I dig it, but it may also explain why this single was not a huge chart-buster...

5 comments:

Mike said...

You will think that is especially strange when you see what I was going to post this evening...

wardo said...

While I hate to ever disagree with David Bowie, I think he's a bit mixed up here. Ronnie's single was indeed produced by George Harrison (and Phil Spector), but George is the only Beatle on it. (Jim Gordon's on drums.) There is a hideous hotel jam session from around this time featuring Phil, John Lennon and Ringo, during which "Tandoori Chicken" is attempted, but that's not this.

Still, up till now I'd only heard George's version of the A-side, which uses the same track but with his own vocal instead of Ronnie's. Thanks for sharing!

Emmett said...

Hey Wardo, thanks for clarifying that. I had a hunch that Bowie was totally wrong but I wanted to let the experts weigh in instead of doing the research myself. Now, was this really Phil Spector's last single?

Anonymous said...

you should re-post this...i can't find it anywhere.

matthew said...

that would be amazing if you could repost this - i've searched all over the internets and it's nowhere to be found.