Come Get These Memories and the musings of a Music Snob


So let’s just say I do judge people, quite a bit based on what kind of music they listen to. More deeply I judge them on their ability to analyze and pull apart the music they like, be it their emotional attachment to certain songs, performers, albums..etc…weighing that against what the artist might have wanted to accomplish, the context of the era said material was released (or in my fascination with the 1,000s of songs Motown didn’t release during it’s mid 1960’s heyday…what wasn’t released due to circumstance).

Basically, If I know you…and you’ve selected a song in my presence, I probably have spent 90 minutes (or more) later than evening considering why you chose what you did, and I must say at least 73% of the time or not, unless you have a very nicely rounded sense of camp surrounding that I probably am not thinking too highly of your taste in music…

So, what brings me to this…I spent a good 3 hours letting my iPod do the shuffle…and it landed at 12:17am on what remains…like 24 years after realizing what it was…my favorite song of all time

Martha & The Vandellas “Come & Get These Memories”
(R&B#6 Pop#29, 1963).

Martha & The Vandellas first hit record….

It’s a weird song, because in the Martha & The Vandellas canon there isn’t a precursor song or follow up that sounds directly like it ( As you all should know Motown had a habit of trying to squeeze at least 3 hit records from the same sonic pattern. With Martha & The Vandellas they tried to a certain extent with “Heatwave” “Quicksand” and “Live Wire” in the later half of 1963, with “Dancing In the Streets” “Wild One” and “Nowhere to Run” in 1964-65 and “Love Bug” “Honey Chile” and “I Promise to Wait My Love” in 1967-68). It also has less of a Motown feel to it, owning a great deal to Curtis Mayfield and the Impressions records with the full horn section. The glorious way the Piano sends the feeling of whimsy over memories, along with the best 3 part Harmonies any Motown Girl Group laid down up to that point…the old meets the new…in a box in the living room….in more ways than one…

The Andrews Sisters-like 3 part harmonies…then sense of pulling together from 3 pieces to one, to move on to someone(thing New). and not doing the sad sappy thing and boxing up the memories to haunt you…

Altho, not really a danceable song..there is something uplifting and joyous, and very powerful about the statement of not letting memories tie you down to the past…

So, when I feel stuck, or hell, don’t even want to clean…guess what song I cue up on the iPod?

When life gets me down, when the past becomes a burden…I cue the Horn intro and
“Lover, you’ve gone from me and Left behind…..So many Memories”
(Piano and Horn clu-clunka clunk clunk clunk)

And life goes on….

And people wonder why I’m a music snob, why, in my 10 favorite songs of all time you don’t see something that’s been heard 1,001,000 times by the masses…because I look for something that is a part of me, what makes me, myself….

That’s why i’m a music snob, cause a good song is powerful enough to keep you moving even thru the darkest hours…

It shouldn’t make you wanna find a noose and hang yourself…

Here’s to old Lover letters
Here’s to Old Valentine Cards
Hear’s to old Friendship Rings
Here’s to Old Teddybears…that ya won for me…at the State Fair….


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