Friday, March 13, 2009

Rock of Ages: Creedence Clearwater Revival - "Ramble Tamble" (1970)

Creedence to me is one of the single greatest rock entities to come from the USA in the late 60's. Most acts that I truly love are Brit Invasion bands, but CCR stood high as creators of truly perfect pop music that was not compromised by it's signature sound. In 1970, the released two stellar albums and hit their peak with Cosmo's Factory. The album housed such hits as "Run Through the Jungle," "Up Around the Bend" and "Lookin' Out My Back Door." This was all on one record as well as other smash hits. It also houses the most raucously jamtastic, yet utterly fantastic epic "Ramble Tamble." The track kicks the album off in a high gear stomp. The verse parts are some of John Fogerty's finest guitar slinging with a fast guitar riff that changes and swoops around the boogie beat of the ryhthm section and the fairly simple, but infectious guitar. Fogerty screams and howls about the hardships in life, the bills on cars and houses and his entire life, but he gives the simple advice in "Move/Down the Road/I go." He just goes with the flow.

Tough times never sounded so good. The mid section of the song is a fairly simple arpeggio guitar riff that slowly builds into a simple yet affective guitar howl reminiscent of Clapton's "slow hand" or even David Gilmour's calculated guitar mastery. It's grittier than both, but CCR's sound asks for a country grit that works perfectly. The long midsection breakdown is a jam that has very strict definition. In fact, I don't think it's a jam at all, but just a long winded build. "Ramble Tamble" is a perfect first track to an album. It engages and gets you ready for more rock and will amaze you. It is truly an amazing song for a band known for short pop hits. A sweeping jam epic that never gets old in it's long run-time, "Ramble Tamble" is one of those overlooked albm cuts from a band that had so many huge hits in just a short existence on the rock scene.

Up Next: Nick Drake's haunting elegy

1 comment:

race baker said...

I dig your taste. Probably my favorite CCR song. My old band used to incorporate that middle section into one of our jams.