Duane's solo in "Layla" hurts my ears.

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by MarvStrat13, Apr 13, 2017.

  1. Boris Bubbanov

    Boris Bubbanov Member

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    I think Layla has been overplayed, and so there's now a tendency to be overly judgmental of it perhaps. It never comes close to bringing tears to my eyes anymore.

    I think if Duane had lived long and somehow had done lots of solos in their very vein, and the airwaves had been saturated with slight variations of this, we'd have burned out on this approach. But this is ONE song, one recording and I think Allman's part conveys precisely what is called for in the circumstances. I found, of the guitar parts Duane recorded over time, a lot of variety, and so I am satisfied he gave the engineer and producer what they asked for. The guitar part is meant to be unsettled, and overwelling with passion - it would seem wrong for it to be muted and more pitch perfect.

    +

    Compare this to Jerry Garcia. Jerry, sadly, tended to be pitchy more often than not, in this range. Many songs, many many different recordings, conveying all sorts of moods and themes. Not just one recording. I was slow to notice since the Dead got much less airplay, but the more I listened to Grateful Dead recordings, the worse it got for me and yet, the worst thing is now that other guitarists are playing Jerry's parts. And they have "fixed" them as to pitch and suddenly I am really enjoying the new renditions.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2018
  2. Papanate

    Papanate Member

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    I don't hear bashing - I hear people being critical of the playing. And
    that's malarky to say that only 'qualified' people are allowed to critique
    musicians. Music is for people - not in spite of them.

    And there is a lot of social pressure here to agree that Layla is this miracle
    once in a lifetime tract. For some it's a defining moment - for others it's
    a painful listen. And that says nothing at all about the validity of either
    opinion.
     
  3. DRS

    DRS Member

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    I read that the band had scored some really strong drugs and was as high as a kite during the Layla sessions. I much prefer ABB over Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs as I think Layla . . . could have been so much more if the band had not been wasted.
     
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  4. GTRJoe

    GTRJoe Supporting Member

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    Agreed!
     
  5. Gspspinone

    Gspspinone Supporting Member

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    I concur with the OP, I'm a big fan of EC and DA/ABB but I could never wrap my head around people waxing poetic about Layla...just based on the tones, way too piercing and tinny to me.
     
  6. aiq

    aiq Supporting Member

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    A little clam here and there but to me supports the "grafting the piano on with pitch shifting" argument. Still a beautiful track on the whole.

    Back when I had the old cassette Porta Studio I bounced tracks like a maniac. Sometimes a "wrong" thing did not reveal itself until it was buried with three other things on track two. Not even the speed knob would help.

    Duane sounded bad on Push Push? I would say there has never been a flute recorded in tune in the history of recording.
     
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  7. Hari Seldon

    Hari Seldon Member

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    With a little creative language you can define everything as perfect...
     
  8. Boris Bubbanov

    Boris Bubbanov Member

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    It is NOT perfect.

    But it shouldn't be different than it is, except it is too long.
     
  9. GulfportBound

    GulfportBound Member

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    No, he didn't. The song was written by Billy Myles, an R&B songwriter of the 1950s whose credits also include the Mello Kings's doo-wop hit "Tonight, Tonight" and Jackie Wilson's "(You Were Made for) All My Love," which won Myles a BMI songwriting award in 1960.
     
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  10. ELmiguel

    ELmiguel Member

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    I should have said that Freddie King had a hit with it before Clapton recorded it, my mistake
     
  11. IGuitUpIGuitDown

    IGuitUpIGuitDown Member

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    I also have a guitarist friend who covers his ears when the song is played anywhere.

    I prefer the main song to the coda.
    Others don't.
    Neither is bad.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2018
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  12. fast ricky love

    fast ricky love Silver Supporting Member

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    Wow, I consider it to be a masterwork from beginning to end.
     
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  13. misterturtlehead

    misterturtlehead Member

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    I have never really liked the two record set Layla And Other Assorted Love Songs. Music To Eat by the Hampton Grease Band, however, is a two record set I like a lot. And of all of the cats playing the rock musics on electric guitar at that time Glenn Phillips is on the top of the mountain.
     
  14. Strato62

    Strato62 Member

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    Duane was my reason for picking up the guitar and learning to play. This was not one of his best efforts for reasons we may never know. But whatever...it was a long time ago so why worry about it?
     
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  15. fishleehooker

    fishleehooker Supporting Member

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    I like listening to Lightning Hopkins and all kinds of stuff that is out of tune for whatever reason. I honestly think, to some degree, there is no such thing. But for some people it hurts. Welp...not me.
     
  16. cnardone

    cnardone Member

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    This album, as a whole is why I picked up the guitar. I love it and would not change a thing.

    A lot comment about the unplugged version being soft. Clapton said that "Layla" was just a little dittty until DA go a hold of it. The lick is DA's (I understand DA borrowed it from Albert King). I wounder if the unplugged version is a little closer to how EC originally heard it in his head.

    DA so completely and totally transformed that band that they had to take the single of "Tell The Truth" back after DA joined.

     
  17. Kennybeeinfl

    Kennybeeinfl Member

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    The slide on the end or the first part of the song is cool. On the long piano coda it sounds like out of tune meandering. As far as the sound quality of the whole album is concerned l read that someone spilled a liquid(coffee?) On the master tape! They spent hours carefully cleaning it off with q-tips and some kind of cleaner. Might have been Tom Dowd who told the story. Anyway that has alot to do with the less than stellar fidelity.
     
  18. jiml

    jiml Supporting Member

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    I think people just need to experience it for what it was, a mess:

    Everyone was "smacked out"
    Nothing was progressing until Duane showed up
    People were recording their own material, eating up studio time
    Clapton was a mess
    Dowd did the best he could with what he had

    I really think the recording fits the environment in which it was created.

    My band covers a few songs on Layla (Why Does Love Have to Be So Sad?, and Bell Bottom Blues). The "perfectionist" other guitar player is having fits trying to figure out parts. Last week I said, "just let it go, and play the parts", the recording is such a mess trying to figure out who was playing what and when.
     
  19. Kennybeeinfl

    Kennybeeinfl Member

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    Side one is more more of an indication of Clapton's vision of what the band should be. Its my favorite side. Just the 4 of them. No DA. No jamming. Not a fan of Duane's slide playing on this record. Love it with the ABB. His straight playing was fine. All the guitars on side 1 are EC.
     
  20. jiml

    jiml Supporting Member

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    Yet Clapton himself lauded Duane's participation and how he got everyone in that band fired up....
     

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