Friday, March 18, 2011

Misplaced Songs - 3/18/11 - "Waterfall"

This edition of Misplaced Songs has so much stuff in its life there's no room for it to grow.

James is an English band that's been together since the 80s. They had worldwide success with songs such as "Sit Down" and what I believe is their best song "Laid." They disappeared for a while after their lead singer left the band in 2001. They found a new lead singer and revived the band in 2007. In 2008 they released an album titled Hey Ma and it included this song, "Waterfall."

"Waterfall" starts out somewhat subdued with the singer in a low register while the drums, horns and guitars suggest something more vibrant. The singer laments how his life is cluttered with things that take away from his enjoyment of the simple beauty of nature. The singer would like nothing more than to give up his possessions and enjoy life.  Sometime after he sings about burning down his house his voice frees and he shows more emotion. Finally after diiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiving, he's free to be exuberant while under the waterfall.

I've always enjoyed songs that start somewhat subdued but then built to a much more enjoyable climax. This is certainly one of those. At first listen, I want the singer to wake up. Fortunately he does, somewhat joyously.

I don't believe this song was ever released as a single. Instead I heard it as the backdrop to an episode of "How I Met Your Mother" as Ted achieved something I don't remember anymore. It stuck in my head so I consulted Mr. Google searching for "Under the waterfall." I was happy to find a song by James. Now I've got a song that I frequently replay.  That's both cool and clear but not really cold.

I embedded two videos below. One is a fan video which has a studio version of the song and the other is a live performance which I believe features a man in a dress playing a horn.

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