50: With a little help from my friends – Joe Cocker

25. april 2019

Joe Cockers debutalbum fylder 50. Og min favoritanmelder Robert Christgau var rundhåndet med anmelderroserne, da han omtalte pladen med disse ord:

With a Little Help From My Friends is the major triumph of rock interpretation thus far. Cocker’s material leans to the conventional … but his conception and performance, as well as Denny Cordell’s production, are always audacious. His transformation of “Bye Bye Blackbird” and “A Little Help From My Friends” from light-hearted ditties into wails of human need succeeds perfectly, and his version of ‘Feelin’ Alright’ is not only better than Three Dog Night‘s but better than the original, by Dave Mason and Traffic. If that means Cocker is the best singer in England, well—overlook Mick Jagger and it’s possible, even likely. His voice is very strong, influenced by Ray Charles, and he has no inhibitions about using it. All of his inhibitions came before the fact, in the immense care that went into each track … Cocker’s affection for rock is uniquely personalized. He is gruff and vulgar, perhaps a touch too self-involved, but his steady strength rectifies his excesses. He is the best of the male rock interpreters, as good in his way as Janis Joplin is in hers.


Det har nok heller ikke dæmpet pladesalget, at Cocker optrådte på Woodstockfestivalen og fik et regulært, internationalt gennembrud der.

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