The Byrds – Turn, Turn, Turn

ARTIST: The Byrds 220px-TurnTurnTurnCover
TITLE: Turn, Turn, Turn
YEAR RELEASED: 1965
CHART ACTION: #17 US, #11 UK
SINGLES: Turn, Turn, Turn (#1 US, #26 UK), Set You Free This Time (#79), It Won’t Be Wrong (#63)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Lay Down Your Weary Tune, He Was a Friend of Mine, The Times They Are-A Changin’
LINEUP: Jim McGuinn, Gene Clark, David Crosby, Chris Hillman, Michael Clarke
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Buoyed by the hit single, the Byrds release another pretty good album that has a stellar side 1 and weaker side 2.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: I don’t know how a side from 1965 could be better than Side 1 of this album. That includes the Beatles, Dylan, Beach Boys, Stones, you name it. The five tracks are well chosen, well played, well sung, and just feel right together. Gene Clark’s original song is tremendous, the Dylan tune spot on, the title track timeless. McGuinn’s original fantastic, and his re-interpretation of “He Was a Friend of Mine” for JFK poignant.

The second side is weaker – a lot weaker. There’s another fantastic Clark original, and a decent Dylan cover. The other cover doesn’t quite work, the other originals are a step behind, and the ending of “Oh! Susannah” seemingly thrown on there.

The shame is that there was some better material in the can. That includes the B-side “She Don’t Care About Time” which is absolutely fab and gear (to put it in the parlance…)

Still, this is a great one for the collection, especially for folk-rock junkies like me.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: The Byrds, never one for group harmony (even though they harmonized like angels on record), didn’t want so many Gene Clark originals on the album because of royalty imbalance. This made the product weaker.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, you get some of the tracks left off, thankfully.

GRADE: B+ It could have been an A or A+ with some more of the Clark material.

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