Friday, March 20, 2015

Michael Brown, 1949-2015

I just found out that Michael Brown has passed away.

Some of you know how I feel about The Left Banke's debut. For those who don't, I'll tell you now.

That record never gets filed away. It has been in heavy rotation for most of my rock and roll existence.

It's right there with "Pet Sounds," "Pepper," and "The Who Sell Out."

Are there two songs in pop music as uniquely beautiful as "Walk Away Renee" and "Pretty Ballerina?"

Far ahead of his time, Michael Brown was a pop genius.

Some may have seen this coming, as Brown has not been well. I did not see it coming and I'm truly saddened.

Everyone should own The Left Banke's debut.

Think I'll put it on right now.


rick said...

Wow, thanks for bringing this to our attention. Loved them. "Walk Away Renee" is simply beautiful. I was 11 yrs old when I first heard it on AM radio, and even then I found its lyrics hauntingly sad and profound, and its music just so lovely. Their music is on my ipod and I listen to them over and over again....

hpunch said...

The first STORIES album should also be listened to today.
That album deserves more love than it receives.
He wrote some gems on there as well.

sitarswami said...

I bought three of the singles from the lp before I finally decided to buy the whole(mono) album. At the time I was surprised by how good the whole record was -- and even more so today when I realize MB was only 17 or 18 at the time. The only similar accomplishment is Michael Lloyd's Smoke lp.

A walk in the woods said...

Rest in peace, Michael... you made your mark.

Bruce Kelly said...

Very sad to hear this. Thank you for calling this to my attention. I loved those early singles "Walk Away Renee" and "Pretty Ballerina" through every phase of my musical listening life. And when I heard the "There's Gonna Be A Storm" CD reissue in a used music store (the one in Kenmore Sq. that burned down, I think Planet Records) I couldn't believe that there was more.

How many times did my wife and I listen to "She May Call You Up Tonight" over and over again swept up in how great it is.

At his best and their best Michael Brown and The Left Banke were as good as it gets.

kevinpat said...

Sweet little pop symphonies. Although who doesn't love "Walk Away Renee" and "Pretty Ballerina", my favorite Left Banke song would be "She May Call You Up Tonight". That driving piano and the subtle plead in the vocals…… It's all good. And although his passing is sad, imagine the legacy he left with a handful of songs he wrote as a teen that endure. Godspeed sir. The empty sidewalks on my block are not the same…. Thank you for the sweet post Sal.