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Musings on Songs that Strike a Chord Tonight

Archive for the ‘Bettye LaVette’ Category

Bettye LaVette – Damn Your Eyes

May 29, 2010

Damn Your Eyes

Performed by Bettye LaVette on the album Bettye LaVette in Concert: Let Me Down Easy. Written by Steve Bogard and Barbara Wynick.

This woman can sing, can grab you by the collar, shake you up and make you tremble. A nine minute song with five verses and a chorus, yet it all comes down to the title line, “Damn your eyes.” With Bettye LaVette, one line is enough. With that single, short line she makes us understand that dilemma when the brain knows better, but the heart, the stomach and the groin can’t help themselves. Damn your eyes. She wails, she growls, she stammers, she whispers and she howls. Damn your eyes. How much meaning, how much life she pushes through those three words. Damn your eyes.

Make her the Queen of Soul. Make her the Queen of Heartache. Give her whatever crown she wants. Bettye LaVette climbs into the song and the two – woman and song – are never the same.