341) The Remains — “Why Do I Cry” (May 26, 1966 live in the studio version)
“Why Do I Cry,” the band’s second A-side (’65) (see also #125), was a hit in the Remains’s home town of Boston. Mark Deming in All Music Guide calls the song “swaggering” while Nuggets says it “demonstrates how the Remains were producing material easily on par with the best British groups of the period.” I think they’re crying about that ball that went through Bill Buckner’s legs, but wait, that was ‘86.
Now that I have brought up a sore subject, I’m gonna double down and post a picture of me getting a champagne shower as I celebrate the Mets winning the ’86 World Series! —
Deming goes on to write that “[a]mong garage rock obsessives, the Remains have long been the stuff of legend,” that “[i]n New England, few bands of the ’60s are remembered with greater awe,” and that “[they] were tougher, smarter, and tighter than the vast majority of their competition . . . . mid-’60s American rock & roll at it’s best,” but that they “had trouble making an impression outside of New England.” The band broke up in ’66 following its inability break through nationally.
As Mike Stax explains in the liner notes to volume 2 of the Garage Beat ’66 comp:
The band was . . . dissatisfied with the sound they were getting in the studio, feeling it captured little of the fire of their legendary live shows. So . . . [s]till geared up from a gig . . . the previous night, the band assembled at the studio on the morning of May 26[, 1966], gulped down some coffee, then proceeded to rip through a full-throttle live set . . . . The highlight of the session was [singer and songwriter Barry] Tashian’s own “Why Do I Cry,” a raucous, high-energy performance that creams the more disciplined rendition they’d done for Epic the previous year. [T]he tape was shelved and more or less forgotten until it was exhumed for release decades later.
I include both versions — you be the judge.
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Here is the ’66 version:
Here is the official ’65 release:
From a March ’69 one-off reunion show at the Boston Tea Party, the city’s leading psychedelic ballroom: