Thursday, March 27, 2014

"Chapel of Love" - The Dixie Cups (1964)

Your eyes are not deceiving you; that’s the wrong record cover for the song you’re listening to. But the reason I posted it has nothing to do with the obvious error. Rather, I have posted this simply because it may be the best stereo version of this song I have ever heard.

Take it out to the car and listen to it with the sound up and the windows closed tightly. The hi-hat is right there, the bass is thumping and the vocals are out front. The whole car; as well as your body; seems to react to it.  I don’t know if this has been re-mastered but the quality is overwhelming.

Now, think about the first time that you ever heard this song. Most likely it was on a transistor radio, or in the car on a dashboard speaker. Both very low quality. But your reaction was the same; you simply couldn’t help but respond to this song.

Now, try this little experiment. You’re in the car. One of your favorite songs is playing. Turn the bass down to zero and do the same with the treble. Now listen. It’s still pretty good.  That’s when I want you to turn off the rear speakers. Then turn the balance to one side only. This is how you used to listen to most music; on one speaker with almost no tone controls. And the music was really good!

Over the years this has become kind of a test for me whenever I listen to new music. I subject it to the single speaker, six transistor, and dashboard car radio speaker test. You know what? When I did that with this version of “Chapel of Love” I ended up singing along even louder than when listening to it in stereo surround sound. Or maybe I could just hear myself better. 

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