02 03 Stop Loving Everything: Dream Covers #3425: The Del Shannon Dream Tribute Album. 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Dream Covers #3425: The Del Shannon Dream Tribute Album.

Shearwater will cover Tim Buckley's "Phantasmagoria in Two."

Tim Buckley - Phantasmagoria in Two

Cat Power will cover "Thinkin' It Over" by Charles Westover, better known as Del Shannon, who dropped one album under the name his parents gave him, in 1968, entitled The Further Adventures of Charles Westhover.

Del Shannon/Charles Westover - "Thinkin' It Over"

Fans of Shannon's earlier work might be a bit surprised by this (very hard to find - and I've looked) album. Although Shannon's biggest hit, "Runaway," despite being appropriated by teen culture of its early sixties time and later marked by baby-boomer nostalgia by the likes of George Lucas, carried a darkness in its major-to-minor structure. It begins better than any other rock and roll song I can recall. Shannon's voice owned not a little bit of the yearning and howl slightly sublimated in the likes of Hank Williams. No surprise, either, that Shannon later dropped a superb Hank Williams covers album.

His early singles are also often as good as "Runaway," or close, like the Smithereens-dream-cover "Stranger in Town" or the best Dion song not by Dion, "Little Town Flirt." There might as well be a dream-tribute record -- "Keep Searchin' (We'll Follow the Sun) would shine in the Pixies' hands (see the second youtube video down below at the left). "So Long Baby?" Grinderman.

But more about the Westover album. "Silver Birch" bests the (then-still-nascent?) Zombies at their own game. "I Think I Love You" wouldn't blink anyone's eye halfway through a Love album, and I mean the Love albums that rock. "Colour Flashing Hair" should have been a huge classic. Instead, we got Donovan.

Sadly, Shannon killed himself in 1990 after sad tours of the oldies circuit and a couple comeback attempts. He should have been the Petty Wilbury, not Petty.


Charles Westover/Del Shannon - I Think I Love You

Charles Westover/Del Shannon - Silver Birch

Come to think of it, Shearwater could do a bitchin' "Runaway."

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