Categories & Nominations

If you feel the urge to point out a category or hook but not yet the urge to analyze it (or your urge is to see if someone else will try analyzing it), here’s a place.

GREAT SCREAM

1.  Roger Daltrey’s last scream in “Won’t Get Fooled Again” (The Who, Who’s Next, 1971).  –Jonathan Bellman

2. John Lennon’s scream at the beginning of “Revolution” (single version) (The Beatles, 1968). –Howard Pickett

3. Joe Cocker’s scream in “With A Little Help From My Friends” at Woodstock:  “When his sweet-voiced backup singers ask, ‘Do you need anybody?’ Cocker responds … well, it’s hard to describe exactly what he howls. But there’s no happier sound. And no matter how long people get together to listen to music, there won’t be another moment when singer, song and audience merge so completely.” –Josh Tyrangiel, Woodstock: How Does It Sound 40 Years Later?

4. One of my all-time favorite screams is performed by Keith Moon in the middle section of Jeff Beck’s 1966 recording of “Beck’s Bolero” – which also featured Jimmy Page, Nicky Hopkins and John Paul Jones (all prominent session men in those days). —Ron Dempesmeier

GREAT YEAH

1. The “Yeahs” in the first minute of Stevie Wonder’s 1963 “Fingertips” and at 3:36-3:49:  the almost excruciating liberation of a 12-year-old’s pent-up creative energy, a resonant moment for rock. –Matt Smith

GREAT STUTTER

1. Roger Daltrey in “My Generation”; David Bowie in “Changes.” –Andrew Goodwin

GREAT NOTE

1. The first note of Ry Cooder’s guitar part in “Sister Morphine” (The Rolling Stones, Sticky Fingers, 1971).  –Jonathan Bellman

GREAT HUMOROUSLY SUNG LOW NOTE

1. Stevie Wonder, “You Are the Sunshine of My Life” (1973).

EXTREMELY INTRIGUING UNIDENTIFIABLE SOUND IN A PLACE YOU WOULD NOT EXPECT TO ENCOUNTER ONE

1. Rufus and Carla Thomas, “When You Move You Lose” (1965).

TWO INSTRUMENTS SOUNDING UNEXPECTEDLY GREAT TOGETHER

1. Slide bass and saxophone in Morphine, e.g. in “Sheila” (1993).

GREAT FADE-OUT

1. (and fade-in) “Strawberry Fields Forever” (Beatles, 1967). –Bruce Golden

GREAT PAUSE

1. Ball And Chain (live at Winterland) start (Janis Joplin & Big Brother & the Holding Company, 1968).  –Ben Wolfson

GREAT ULULATION

1. “Protestant Preacher” end (Seatrain, Marblehead Messenger, 1971).

2. I’m not sure if this counts as a ululation, but there’s a very neat “Indian”-style war whooping at the start of “Looking For Lewis And Clark” by the Long Ryders (1985).

GREAT GASPING AND WHEEZING

1. Just before the chorus of “Tell Me Something Good” by Rufus (1974).

KILLER STYLE SHIFT

1.  The last shift to doo-wop in “Happiness Is A Warm Gun” by The Beatles.

GREAT CLIMAX

1.  Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Sweet Home Alabama” at 2:38–the itchiest high point of the Strat solo by Ed King.

GREAT GLISSANDI

Alex Ross’s list of “Top Ten Glissandos”

GREAT IN-THE-STUDIO FEELING

1.  The second “Hello It’s Me” (1972) by Todd Rundgren.

GREAT TRIPLET (THREE BEATS IN TWO BEATS)

1.  “(My heart going) boom – boom – boom” in Peter Gabriel’s “Solsbury Hill” (1977).

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About Steve Smith

Professor of Philosophy & Religious Studies and Director of Film Studies at Millsaps College
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2 Responses to Categories & Nominations

  1. ben says:

    The six-second silence in the very beginning (it follows only three seconds of playing) of Janis Joplin + Big Brother and the Holding Company’s performance of “Ball and Chain” from Live at Winterland.

  2. Steve Smith says:

    Amazing! (I put the clip in the original post. They do it this way on Cheap Thrills too.) When does suspense become provocation, or just a stunt? For me this is right on the borderline.

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