Welller Wednesday :: “Tales from the Riverbank”
Rolling Stone Sessions, 2005
Weller Wednesday is here again, that time and space where we Listen to, Learn about, and Play Loudly the Music of Paul Weller, in all his many Musical incarnations. This Week’s Weller Wednesday we are visiting a Live Session with Rolling Stone, from 2005, with a Track that was originally a Song by the Jam, but completely re-worked for this Brilliant Live Session. Let’s have a Listen and see how this reincarnated Jam Song Plays Live from the Rolling Stone Sessions.
“Tales from the Riverbank” (Live, Rolling Stone Sessions, 2015) :: Paul Weller
“Bring you a tale from the pastel fields,
where we ran when we were young.
This is a tale from the water meadows,
trying to spread some hope into your heart.“
“Tales from the Riverbank”, originally by The Jam, appeared as the B-Side to The Jam’s Single, “Absolute Beginners”. The band’s record company at the time – Polydor – later stated that they believed “Tales from the Riverbank” should have been released as the A-Side.
The Song also appeared on the Jam Album, The Jam at the BBC, released in 2002, and on About the Young Idea: The Very Best of The Jam, released in 2015, a Soundtrack to the Documentary Special.
The original Song has been described as a departure from other more politically fueled Songs from The Jam, and more an ode to Weller’s childhood. It has even been referred to as a eulogy to his childhood, specifically the countryside of his childhood.
“Tales from the Riverbank” :: The Jam
There is definitely a haunting quality to the original version, one that does fit well in the idea of eulogizing a past life. This makes the updated/cover version of the Song, featured above in the Live recording from Rolling Stone, all the more unique.
This is a complete reworking of the original Song, one that seems to have nostalgia and hope weaved into it, something that seems missing from the original. You can also hear the age in this re-telling, not in his Voice, or Guitar, but in the Sentiments released. There feels like more Story here than before, Story that Time has added to.
Paul Weller is known for his Amazing Cover Versions of Songs, especially Live. This one is special as it is a Cover of his own penned Song, in the form of a re-interpretation.
This Acoustic Live recording, with Paul Weller backed by Steve Craddock from Ocean Colour Scene, is Gorgeous. It showcases Weller as the Gifted Songwriter that he is, pulling the focus in completely with the re-arrangement, the Lyrics, and his Vocals. His Guitar work here is Stellar, as well.