“Artificial Energy” (The Byrds Cover)

Originally posted 2008-10-02 21:44:25. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jeff Copperthite:

Oh yeah – I get to bring in my favorite day to one of the cooler songs I know.

That’s right, it’s Thumpin’ Thursday® – naturally trademarked by yours truly.  I’m dedicated to bringing you not only every TT that I have left in the year, but in 2009 I hope you can count on your Thursdays every week to always be a Thumpin’ one.

And to go right along to that theme, I have a great tune from The Byrds tonight.  From their album “The Notorious Byrd Brothers” is a song introduced to me by (who else) Jim Fusco.  It’s the first track of the album and it’s a great album starter called “Artificial Energy”.  The song has an awesome horn part that overlays the entire song.  This album and song were recorded in 1967 – over 40 years ago.  A stereo version of the song is noted by having the horns loud enough to cause distortion that was still atypical to a record.

The album this comes from is one i’d like to hear.  I’ve read that it is one of their best albums, if somewhat short.

I also wanted to bring this song to the sessions to remind Jim of his days at Wesleyan University.  I hope your roommate was a Byrds’ fan man.

That does it for me tonight – but rest assured!  Tomorrow you will get to hear another song by myself, and then i’ll be back for another fantastic session on Sunday as well.  Chris will jump in Saturday to give me a break, but you can count on a session a day all the way through ’08.

I hope you enjoy today’s session!

Editor’s Note: Unfortunately, Jeff’s acoustic cover song music videos are no longer on YouTube, but we decided to keep his cover song blog posts up.  We figured these music blog entries would be good for posterity’s sake and because Jeff always gave such insightful posts each Session.  We hope to see Jeff’s impressive catalog of acoustic rock songs here on the Laptop Sessions cover songs and original music blog again in the future.  But, for now, please make sure to check-out hundreds of other acoustic cover songs from all of your favorite bands here on the Laptop Sessions music blog!

“I’ll Feel A Whole Lot Better” (Byrds Cover)

Originally posted 2008-01-06 22:48:00. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Here on the Laptop Sessions, I give you my favorite song of all time: “I’ll Feel A Whole Lot Better” by the Byrds. Gene Clark, the writer of this song, wrote MANY great songs over his career, and you’ll be hearing a lot of them on the Laptop Sessions in the months to come. But, this song is just PERFECT to me, and here’s why:

It’s got everything I love in a song. It’s got a great guitar sound (courtesy of Roger (Jim) McGuinn), a cool riff, great words, chorus harmonies, and a killer jangly guitar solo. I love everything about this tune and hopefully I’ve done this song justice.

Of course, in order for me to give the song the respect it deserves, I recruited Chris Moore ( http://www.youtube.com/user/chrismooremusic ) to help me with harmonies and rhythm guitar.

So, I hope everyone enjoys this version. I’ll be playing one of my other favorite songs in the next couple weeks, so stay tuned!


“Set You Free This Time” (Byrds Cover)

Originally posted 2008-03-11 19:59:35. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Chris Moore:

Well, after all the fun we had last time, the boys of The Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs music video blog are back for another Triple Tuesday Special on LaptopSessions.com. Jeff, the innovator for this event, called me up this weekend and I couldn’t resist!

Here’s my version of a great Byrds tune, “Set You Free This Time.” It’s from their 1965 album Turn! Turn! Turn! and it’s another Gene Clark original. He’s such an underrated songwriter, and I like him more and more every time I listen to his material. And “Set You Free This Time” is such a great song, it deserves to have all three of us give it a shot. The song is very introspective- I wonder if he was writing it about a specific someone, or if it’s just a feeling he had (or was thinking about). For 1965, it was pretty innovative- pop music really didn’t take that turn (turn, turn) until a little while later. Gene Clark always struck me as the same kind of guy that played the lead songwriter (Jimmy) in “That Thing You Do”. He wrote these sad, introspective songs. Then, they were turned into pop hits. But some were just meant to be slow and sad. I’m sure Gene Clark fought with his producers, as well. This song was featured on the second and last Byrds album Gene would appear on (in the 60s, at least).

Jim and Jeff posted their versions below mine so you’ll be able to take your pick…or, hopefully, listen to all three!

As a side note, I would like to thank everyone who frequents my videos. Just yesterday, I accepted my 50th subscriber on YouTube (who, of course, received a coupon, as promised by Jim), and today I’m up to 55. I really appreciate your watching and especially commenting both here and on YouTube!

I hope you’ll continue to check out LaptopSessions.com as we update the site with new videos every day in 2008!





“The Girl With No Name” (Byrds Cover)

Originally posted 2008-04-24 13:42:11. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Okay, really obscure territory here on the music blog.

When my family was getting into the music of the Byrds back in 2000, we really went head-first and listened to every album they made throughout the 60s. Some were better than others because you could tell they were doing a lot of growing up, musically. Plus, many of their later-60s songs were very drug-tinged.

After Gene Clark left the band in late ’65 or early ’66, the band came out with one of their worst efforts, “5D”. I still liked most of the songs, but the playing was sloppy and they were high as a kite.

When we got to the superb “Younger Than Yesterday” LP (on Jim Fusco’s list of “Albums You Should Listen To”), I instantly gravitated to the songs of young Chris Hillman, bassist for the band. He is an amazing bass player, mostly because he was an accomplished mandolin and guitar player, so he took his soloing skills over to the bass for the Byrds.

I love his voice- it’s just so natural. There’s no weird accent. He doesn’t say the words in an odd way. He just sounds good, you know?  His voice is nice and clear and I was happy that he was getting a chance to write more music for the Byrds.  And, like in most bands, the songwriter usually sings his own original songs, so I was happier the more we listened to Byrds songs.

He wrote some of my absolute favorites: “Thoughts and Words”, “Have You Seen Her Face”, and “Time Between”, just to name a few. I plan on doing all of them in the future.

But for now, I give you this song off of “Younger Than Yesterday”, “The Girl With No Name”. It was a lot of fun to play and is a very short song. It’s funny that such a sweet sounding song was probably still influenced by drugs.  I’m just guessing here, but “The girl who had no name” could mean a couple things: For starters, maybe this lady lived on one of those hippie communes where they said, “Hey man, why do I need to be labeled with a name?  Can’t I just BE?”  That’s a possibility.  The other possibility, to me, could be that Hillman just didn’t bother asking for a name.  Whether he was under the influence of something that impaired his judgement at the time is something only he can attest to.

I think the Byrds are a great band to do acoustic cover song versions of.  Their songs had an interesting style.  You could almost tell that they wrote their original songs on acoustic guitar and then found a way to translate them into the psychedelic sound of the time.  “The Girl With No Name” is pretty straight-forward, so my acoustic version here for the music blog stays true to the original.  That’s another reason why I love doing the Laptop Sessions video blog.  In addition to reimagining popular songs acoustically, I like taking obscure songs and playing them for the world.  They’re great songs and they deserve some fresh attention.

I’m gearing up for next week’s big “#1 Week”, in which (other than Original Wednesday) we’ll be playing only cover songs that hit Number One on the Billboard charts.  Stay tuned for other great specialty weeks of cover song music videos coming soon, too!