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Today on Ecléctico you're listening to the title track from Gene Clark's lost-then-later-rediscovered country rock album from 1974. Clark was a founding member of the 1960s folk-rock band The Byrds, which he left a couple of years into their most successful run to start a solo career that is full of legend and influence, but very little commercial or popular recognition.
You'll go deeper with an excerpt from and a link to an essay by David Bennun on The Quietus. Most people credit Byrds bandmate Gram Parsons with "creating a kind of Cosmic American Music, which would seamlessly incorporate the country songs he so adored with the sounds and styles that abounded from sea to shining sea," writes Bennun. "But Gene Clark actually went and did it."
"No Other" by Gene Clark
1974 | Singer, musician, songwriter, and founding member of folk-rock band The Byrds
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‘No Other’, the song, sounds crazily ambitious even now. It makes you think of Sly & The Family Stone, which is something only Sly Stone has done before. Heavy tub-thumping. A wah-wah grind to sharpen butcher's knives on. A bass riff to break them with. And they told you this guy was a country singer. No wonder he never sold any records. People must have heard his name and figured they were in for 40 minutes of dying dogs, absentee girlfriends and drowned sorrows. Who was to know the man's head was exploding with visionary pop ideals? You're thinking, show me the pop singer who could even begin to think of something halfway up the garden path to ‘Strength Of Strings’, which might read like duff verse in print but, on record, soars as a song with such a title rightfully should. You can't call a song that and then dish out anything less than sublime majesty. Clark knew this. You can tell.