I decided to do a series of posts about certain songs that . . . just do something to my insides. I don’t know if I can adequately put into words the feeling I’m given by these songs, but I’m going to do my best. Music is an important part of my life, and can generate such an array of emotions and there are so many musicians and songs that I love. These songs, though, are the ones that make my soul flourish. They cause an internal and beyond reaction, a sensation that makes my heart well-up and about burst. It’s an agreeable feeling, mixed with an ache, but one that I know will be soothed. . .some day. If you reference back to my post, Please Step On My Toes, you’ll get a bit of an understanding of the context of these songs for me. I have a play list of these songs, and I’ll go through them one by one, in no particular order.
First up, “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love,” written by Dorothy Fields and Jimmy McHugh in 1928. Like most older songs, there are quite a few covers and versions. The one that gets me right in the essence of my being is from 1947 from Django Reinhardt with Freddie Taylor on vocals. For anyone who may not know Django Reinhardt, he was a French guitarist most prominent in the 1930s and 1940s.
He is absolutely brilliant, and the tone and tempo he sets on this particular track is a bolt of ethereal comfort that travels straight to the core. On this track, and many others, he worked with the violinist Stephane Grappelly. They made such wonderful music together, it hurts. Grappelly’s solo injects an already colorful song with that much more beauty. I love the way Freddie Taylor’s voice and delivery complements so well with Reinhardt’s playing, on all their pairings, but particularly this one. It creates an especially vibrant marriage of serenity and fervor here.
Foremost, there’s always the want of dancing to these songs, but I always imagine them as my soundtrack in life, for example, as I’m riding my beach cruiser along the beach as the sun sets. (Oh, the cheese! It’s delicious!) Often they do provide that soundtrack, if only for my ears through iPod and earphones. The imagined scene, with the song floating over it, looks a lovely scene. . .that is until I would hit a rock or bump and go crashing into the curb. Because we all know that is more likely to happen than the “movie perfect” scene.
Other versions worth mentioning, that give a beautiful feeling as well, Dean Martin’s from 1956, Louis Armstrong’s from 1942, and Peggy Lee’s from 1952. These three versions have the same lilt but with a bit more swing. I’m of the redundant nature to have each version of this song on the same play list, and really any of the songs I will write about. That’s how much I love them, and each holds its own merits while staying true to the original lyrics and meaning of the song.
So, try and dance with me to any version of the song, and you’ll get no complaints from me, I’ll gladly let you step on my toes.