Hard to believe this one is almost 25 years old. I was a huge fan of Sinead O’Connor’s first album “The Lion and the Cobra” from 1987 and when I heard this track in the early months of 1990, I was completely knocked out and knew it was an instant classic. Despite what I felt at the time, the surrounding album “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got,” was not as good as “Lion and the Cobra,” but it still was quite good. Prince originally wrote this song for a band called The Family, whose version I have not been able to track down. The video is also a classic.
Here is the earliest known recorded version of Tim Buckley’s enduring and classic ballad. It’s quite different than the version that was eventually recorded for Buckley’s 1970’s “Starsailor” album. The version here (performed for “The Monkees” TV show in 1968) is more of a straight-ahead ballad, instead of the bizarre and heartbreaking version that appears on “Starsailor” that sounds like it was recorded by someone really ready to cast themselves on the rocks in despair. A great and underrated song that keeps gaining more resonance as the years continue. In just the last few years, Robert Plant, Bryan Ferry, and Sinead O’Connor have all done covers. The most famous cover, by This Mortal Coil, has already been posted on Dave’s Strange World.
The stunning opener from O’Connor’s debut album “The Lion and the Cobra.” It’s the song that hooked me when someone played this album in the record store I was hanging out in during the winter of 1987-1988. Even 25 years later, it still puts chills up my spine.