Bettye LaVette Sings “Salt of the Earth” on “Good Morning, America,” July 6

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Finally found and was able to Vodpod this song. Absolutely stirring rendition, and very apt during these hard times. Because frankly, we have to care enough to do something ourselves, and not give up until it’s done.

“Salt of the Earth” comes from the Rolling Stones’ 1968 album, Beggars’ Banquet. Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, it’s not necessarily a rousing anthem on behalf of working people, it’s rather a cynical observation that takes no sides and provides no answers, while toasting them all the same. Mick Jagger said as much in a 1970 interview. “[…] I’m saying those people haven’t any power and they never will have.”

The last four lyrics, sung twice, provide the tension–and the distance–that these by-now-rich, so-called working-class heroes really possessed for their audience, the year before Altamont closed the Sixties.

And when I search a faceless crowd/
A swirling mass of grey and black and white/
They don’t look real to me/
In fact, they look so strange/

Bettye LaVette added it to her interpretative album of songs popularized by British rock groups, which was released earlier this year. Included in this album is a studio version of her now-legendary performance of The Who’s “Love Reign O’er Me” at the Kennedy Center Honors show. The album is called Interpretations: The British Rock Songbook.

Some of you probably aren’t acquainted with Bettye LaVette. She’s in a class by herself. She’s not one of these manufactured songstresses who need a lot of technology just to get a point across. She defies trends. She’s worth it. Check her out.

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~ by blksista on July 8, 2010.

2 Responses to “Bettye LaVette Sings “Salt of the Earth” on “Good Morning, America,” July 6”

  1. Bettye’s a goddess.


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