“I’m Not in Love” is a song by English group 10cc, written by band members Eric Stewart and Graham Gouldman and released in the UK in May 1975.
Eric Stewart came up with the idea for the song after his wife, to whom he had been married for eight years at that point, asked him why he didn’t say “I love you” more often to her. Stewart said, “I had this crazy idea in my mind that repeating those words would somehow degrade the meaning, so I told her, ‘Well, if I say every day “I love you, darling, I love you, blah, blah, blah”, it’s not gonna mean anything eventually’. That statement led me to try to figure out another way of saying it, and the result was that I chose to say ‘I’m not in love with you’, while subtly giving all the reasons throughout the song why I could never let go of this relationship.”
Stewart wrote most of the melody and the lyrics on the guitar before taking it to the studio, where Gouldman offered to help him complete the song. Gouldman suggested some different chords for the melody, and also came up with the intro and the bridge section of the song. Stewart said that the pair spent two or three days writing the song, which at that point had a bossa nova rhythm and used principally guitars, before playing it to Godley and Creme. Stewart recorded a version with the other three members playing the song in the studio on traditional instruments – Creme on guitar, Gouldman on bass and Godley on drums – but Godley and Creme disliked the song, particularly Godley, as Stewart later recalled: “He said, ‘It’s crap’, and I said, ‘Oh right, OK, have you got anything constructive to add to that? Can you suggest anything?’ He said, ‘No. It’s not working, man. It’s just crap, right? Chuck it.’ And we did. We threw it away and we even erased it, so there’s no tape of that bossa nova version.”
Having abandoned “I’m Not in Love”, Stewart and Gouldman turned their attention to the track “Une Nuit A Paris”, which Godley and Creme had been working on and which would later become the opening track on The Original Soundtrack album. However, Stewart noticed that members of staff in the band’s Strawberry Studios were still singing the melody of “I’m Not in Love”, and this convinced him to ask the other members of the group to consider reviving the song. Godley was still sceptical, but came up with a radical idea, telling Stewart, “I tell you what, the only way that song is gonna work is if we totally fuck it up and we do it like nobody has ever recorded a thing before. Let’s not use instruments. Let’s try to do it all with voices.” Although taken aback by the suggestion, Stewart and the others agreed to try Godley’s idea and create “a wall of sound” of vocals that would form the focal point of the record.
“Black Betty” is a 20th-century African-American work song often credited to Huddie “Lead Belly” Ledbetter as the author, though the earliest recordings are not by him. The song was first recorded in the field by US musicologists John and Alan Lomax in December 1933, performed a cappella by the convict James “Iron Head” Baker and a group at Central State Farm, Sugar Land, Texas (a State prison farm). The Lomaxes were recording for the Library of Congress and later field recordings in 1934, 1936, and 1939 also include versions of “Black Betty”.
This version recording from the Library of Congress call number AFC 1939/001 2643b2 on May 10, 1939, performed by Mose “Clear Rock” Platt (vocals) at Hotel Blazilmar, Taylor, Texas.
The origin and meaning of the lyrics are subject to debate. Historically the “Black Betty” of the title may refer to the nickname given to a number of objects: a musket, a bottle of whiskey, a whip, or a penitentiary transfer wagon.
Some sources claim the song is derived from an 18th-century marching cadence about a flint-lock musket with a black painted stock; the “bam-ba-lam” lyric referring to the sound of the gunfire. In the British Army from the early 18th century the standard musket had a walnut stock, and was thus known (by at least 1785) as a ‘Brown Bess’. ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Betty )
In 1934, John A. and Alan Lomax in their book, American Ballads and Folk Songs described the origins of “Black Betty”:
“Black Betty is not another Frankie, nor yet a two-timing woman that a man can moan his blues about. She is the whip that was and is used in some Southern prisons. A convict on the Darrington State Farm in Texas, where, by the way, whipping has been practically discontinued, laughed at Black Betty and mimicked her conversation in the following song.”
Robert Vells, in Life Flows On in Endless Song:Folk Songs and American History, writes:
As late as the 1960s, the vehicle that carried men to prison was known as “Black Betty,” though the same name may have also been used for the whip that so often was laid on the prisoners’ backs, “bam-ba-lam.”
You can download the original WAV file from the U.S. Library of Congress website here and try for yourself to discern the full answers.
Just learned that Placebo ( my favorite band) are coming to Athens, in June, for the Rock Wave Festival. So, today’s music belongs to them..
This is the cover art for Battle for the Sun. The cover art copyright is believed to belong to the record label or the graphic artist(s).
Battle for the Sun is the sixth studio album by English alternative rock band Placebo. It was recorded in Canada in 2008 and released on 8 June 2009 and received a generally favourite reaction from critics. Eddie Fleisher of Alternative Press gave the album 4 and a half out of 5 stars, writing that Battle for the Sun “takes the best elements of their sound and focuses it into a cohesive listening experience … there’s no filler to be found”. The review also notes how Steve Forrest as drummer gives the band a much-needed kick and how Brian Molko’s lyrics are given more clarity.
Frontman Brian Molko said on the concept of the album:
“We’ve made a record about choosing life, about choosing to live, about stepping out of the darkness and into the light. Not necessarily turning your back on the darkness because it’s there, it’s essential; it’s a part of who you are, but more about the choice of standing in the sunlight instead.”