Sounds For Sunday: Get Happy!! The Originals

by Simon

I managed to forget Sounds For Sunday last week. Not quite sure how.

Anyway, I’m on a Costello kick this week: primarily with The Attractions because they were superb. I’m never sure which album is my favourite of those years, at the moment Trust is actually up there. But along with Blood And Chocolate, Get Happy!! is my most listened to Costello album. Loads of songs, mostly played at high energy and filled with soul influences.

Hmm. Motown grooves played with punk energy and topped with snarled vocals singing intelligent lyrics. Weller as always was keeping watch I think, but this album really did show the way for a lot of bands in the early 80s. And what an album, Costello wrote better songs probably, and The Attractions played better elsewhere, but there’s something about Get Happy!! that is just so direct and powerful. And some great choices of covers. Sam And Dave’s I Can’t Stand Up For Falling Down was a ballad and beautiful with it, and there is a Costello version in the same style, but somewhere along the way he sped it up. I Stand Accused was by Jerry Butler originally. Now I don’t seem to have it, even after some searching. What I do have is an lovely Al Green version. Again it’s a ballad, which is a huge contrast to Costello’s extremely speedy version. On the other hand Costello’s version of Betty Everett’s Getting Mighty Crowded is quite faithful to the original, with a great vocal, and the Attractions powering on like Booker T & The MGs on speed. It’s very Mod with a capital M. (It also ended up on a b-side at the time rather than on the album but we’ll forget about that for the moment…)

Get Happy!!

Sam & Dave – I Can’t Stand Up
Al Green – I Stand Accused
Betty Everett – Getting Mighty Crowded