Sunday, February 25, 2007

Baby Let Me Hold Your Hand

Song: Baby Let Me Hold Your Hand
Artist: Hoagy Lands
Bert Russell / Wes Farrell
Year : 1964
Album/Single: Atlantic # 2217

Cobra's Version
Song: Baby Let Me Hold Your Hand
Released: January 18, 2005

I have not found out much about Hoagy Lands. Born in New Jersey in 1936, he was 28 when
today's selection was released. It was the flip side to what is considered his finest release - "Baby Come On Home" (having heard both sides I much prefer today's selection - the B-side). Hoagy recorded sides for many different labels but this was the only one released on Atlantic. Not sure why it's his only Atlantic release, since he often was produced by Bert Berns, and Berns did a lot of work for Atlantic (he took over as lead producer and songwriter from Jerry Lieber / Mike Stoller in 1963).

Which brings us to the next point. Not only did Bert Berns produce the song, he also co-wrote it. His middle name is "Russell" and often used the
alias of "Bert Russell" for his song writing credits. But then again, Bert Berns didn't really write it (very Led Zepplinish of him to take credit, however). It was 'adapted' from a folk-blues song covered by Bob Dylan eponymous first album, credited to Eric Von Schmidt, Dave Von Ronk & the Reverend Gary Davis. Eric Von Schmidt claims to have nicked it from a Blind Boy Fuller song called "Baby, Let Me Lay It On You". Who knows where he got it from. Maybe he wrote . . . somebody had to! As far as the Cobra's version is concerned, however, it is obviously a take on the Hoagy Lands version.

The song was also covered by the Animals in 1964. They changed the name - "Baby Let Me Take You Home" - and lyrics a bit. They also blues'd it up a lot, skipping the a cappella intro. I suspect it was out of the range of the growl of Eric Burdon vocals. They did add a very cool 'bump & grind' in the middle, however.

I've seen a lot of pretty girls
In my time
I never really paid them any mind

And baby when I saw you

Somehow I knew

That you were the loving kind

Baby, let me hold your hand
Baby, let me hold your hand

Let me feel it right there

and I'll take you anywhere

If you only let me hold your hand

(Oh, my hand is right there
if you take me anywhere
you know, baby you can hold my hand)

Baby, let me be your man
Baby, let me be your man
Let me hold you real tight
Let me love you all night
I just want to be you man (that's all, baby)

(You can hold me real tight

You can love me all night
Oh yeah, you can be my man)

Now I want you to listen to me (looky here):

Now I want you to be
a full time love
'Cause the kind of love I got for you

is really strong

Now these arms are made
for just your size
So get home, baby,
where you belong

Now you know I don't mind
(??? unintelligible) when a kings a leave flirt
(??? unintelligible)
Every man has to go through some of that

But I'm here to let you know
personally, baby
exactly where it's at

Baby, let me take you home
Baby, let me take you home
Oh, the walk will do you good
You know'll talk the way I should

(Oh you talk the way you should
and the walk will do me good
Come baby, you can take me home)

Come home, baby (Come home, baby)
Come home, baby (Come home, baby)
Come home, baby (Come home, baby) . . .

Now, if you try to follow these lyrics with the Cobra's version you'll get lost. Not only do they change the gender, but they reworked the lyrics quite a bit, to their advantage. To me, the most interesting part of the Hoagy Lands version is the guitar intro after the a cappella intro. Reminds me of Jackie De Shannon's "When You Walk In The Room". But since I can play the guitar, what the hell do I know.

It is one of two songs on "Baby" with "baby" in the title ("Baby Help Me"). Must be where they came up with the title . . .

Download it now:
Hoagy Lands - Baby Let Me Hold Your Hand - 1964 - Atlantic # 2217
Available on - nothing! I paid a guy $3.00 to rip it from his vinyl copy.

Bonus - Download it now:

The Animals - Baby Let Me Take You Home - 1964 - The Animals
Available on "The Complete Animals"

Extra Bonus - Download it now:

Bob Dylan - Baby Let Me Follow You Down - 1962 - Bob Dylan
Available on "Bob Dylan"

Buy "Baby" by the Detroit Cobras

No comments: