Daily Song Study

The Connells – ’74-’75

In songs on November 11, 2011 at 9:30 am

As I’ve mentioned, one of the best parts of working at a record store is sampling the stock. My first record store job was at Sound Warehouse in Fort Worth, and we would take turns picking CDs for the overhead speakers throughout the day. One of the albums that got regular airplay was Ring by a little indie band called The Connells. Oddly, I completely forgot about that record until one day in 2005 when I heard today’s song on an internet radio station, and it was as if I’d just heard it yesterday.

In both songwriting and production, we talk a lot about layers. Here, you can hear each of the layers as it’s introduced, with subtle additions on each successive chorus. However, there is one element without which the track simply would not work as well as it does, and it’s an odd one. Off in the background during the chorus is a synthetic vocal “ahh.” This is something that normally would sound out of place in a little acoustic ditty like this, but for some inexplicable reason it perfectly complements the track.

Production can be that way. You’ll monkey with a track for hours and get nothing but mediocrity, then you discover this one little thing that for whatever reason pulls the whole thing together. It’s not that the song is bad without it. But there’s a difference between a good song and a track that makes people sit up and listen, and sometimes one weird little tick can make that happen. Examples abound, but today’s tune is as good as any.

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  1. This song is exactly what i was in the mood for right now. i always had the notion to make a mix tape featuring songs with numbers and years and make it in numerical order.

  2. Wow. That’s some serious High Fidelity stuff there.

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