Lawr’s foray into Dion DiMucci led me via YouTube links to this clip of La La Brooks in recent years performing the Crystals’ And Then He Kissed Me, a record she first sang on as a teenager 50 years ago.
This is a fantastic song, half back alley romance and half religious experience, and needless to say (I hope) that’s often the same physical thing.
But what’s funny is watching a woman who is clearly past the moment reveling in it. La La does so brilliantly, and the band does a fine job creating the atmosphere of the original production. But still, it’s an acting job. One she does very well.
But this provokes a question. Not only how much of a song like this is the singer, and how much the song, but also how much is the audience?
If La La was great playing the 15 year old when she was 60, aren’t the theatrics a tribute to her skill? Hell yes.
And yet I wonder how much is her performance and how much the music of our youth really belongs to us because we were young then. Sorry La La.
I wish there was video, but this is so different, mostly because the voice is in the middle of the music and ideas, rather than looking cagily backward. We have changed, too, and can’t keep the same naive viewpoint for 40 years and not end up in trouble with the law.
I’m not saying that rock is only for the young. Heck, most of the young don’t listen to rock these days. I am saying that something is lost (or changes) when we go from young to old. There are compensations, for sure, but you have to admit, everything changes, and only the song remains the same.