Tuck & Patti On A Gift Of Love
By Robert Doershuck
Up On The Roof
Patti: "I just love this song. It's one of my favorites -- this and 'Natural Woman.'"
Tuck: "We've talked for years about doing this one."
Patti: "'Up On The Roof' is a love song to people who live in Metropolis. When you get out to the countryside in Japan it's extraordinarily beautiful and peaceful. But in the city, it's really the city. That's why I wanted to do this song for this album."
Can't Stop Falling In Love
Patti: "Obviously you have Elvis standing over you when you when you do this tune [laughs], but the more we listened to it the more ways we could think of doing it. This is such an innocent, sweet song, like something you'd hear at a wedding. Really, it's like a prayer."
Patti: "This song has been known all over Asia for many years. But at the same time it's a song from my childhood. I'll never forget hearing it on Ed Sullivan -- in Japanese. So, yes, we did do this for our Japanese audience, but we have our own history with it too."
Just The Way You Are
Tuck: "I hadn't played this song in years, and when we brought it back for this album I went back at first to my original version, which was fairly heavy on the bass and the groove. But as so often happens on my instrumentals, it might start in one place and then as I get to the heart of the song and the beauty of the lyric and the melody, it finds a new direction."
Patti: "For every singer those high notes that Minnie Riperton sang are like Waterloo [laughs]. But it's so beautiful that you just have to forget about that get into the song for itself."
Tuck: "I hope that this has the side benefit of letting people know that it's okay to sing this song after all. Minnie Riperton had that amazing range, but that doesn't make it any less beautiful a song."
I Was Born To Love You
Patti: "I love Queen, but I never would have thought of doing this song. You listen to Freddie Mercury going full steam ahead and you think, 'There's no way we can recreate that.' But the guys at Pony Canyon were going, 'Hey, I love Queen!' It's a gigantic anthem in Japan. And the more I listened to it, the more I loved it too."
Tuck: "We thought about pulling out that Strat and the Marshall stack -- then we came to our senses [laughs]."
Hold Me Tight and Don't Let Go
Patti: "I've loved this song ever since I first heard Roy Hamilton do it, so I'm thrilled I finally had the chance to do it. Plus I wanted to have a song for people who are breaking up too."
Tuck: "Patti had sung this song a cappella to me for years, but I never heard it on record. When I finally heard that classic piano part I realized that it's easy to play on piano but easier said than done on guitar. It was a wonderful challenge: Every single chord is a position change. I experimented with different tunings, but it didn't get any easier with any of them. We finally settled on a drop E-flat tuning just because of its sonority in the key of A-flat."
Patti: "It's a deceptively simple-sounding song, but what Tuck did to get it down was amazing."
Song For You
Patti: "We hadn't done 'Song For You' in years, but in talking about it now I'm realizing that when you do all these songs that the giants have already done -- Leon Russell did this song, and then Donny Hathaway finished it off -- all you can do is surrender to the tune. If you really love it, as we do this one, you can find a way to make it your own too."
Close To You
Patti: "I've always heard this song as a groove that you could just float over, just like Wave and all those Jobim things where you can take your time and not rush through it. Tuck: "We also wanted Frank to play a piano solo on this one and you can hear why; I love what he does."
Time After Time
Patti: I love the texture that Tuck came up with and that syncopated part...
Tuck: That's the "whoa, Nellie" part [laughs].
Patti: Of course we recorded this on our first album, but it changes all the time as we play it live. There were also lots of requests that we include it on A Gift of Love, so we just went in and did it, without thinking about the version. This is what came out.
On all the great songs of love...
Patti: "One of the sad parts of the pop mentality today is that people are afraid to sing covers even of the best older songs -- or they do them exactly the way they were done before, without taking a different look at the tune..."
Tuck: "...when the fact is that when you do songs like these you become part of an enormous history and family. It's a privilege as much as a pleasure."
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::: back to pressroom :::