Jim Croce Singles: ILXor, could you help me place this POLL?

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love this guy's voice and the overall vibe of his songs. almost like a folkie version of Bill Withers in that i catch such sincerity and regular-guyness coming out of the speaker. obviously this a discography cut short by tragedy, although croce had also indicated just before his death that he was tired of the music biz and ready to chill out for a while. so bizarre and sad to contemplate that only the 1972 songs plus "One Less Set Of Footsteps" and "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" were released as singles during his lifetime.

Poll Results

OptionVotes
"Operator (That's Not The Way It Feels" (1972) 10
"I Got A Name" (1973) 5
"Time In A Bottle" (1973) 4
"Mississippi Lady" (1976) 2
"One Less Set Of Footsteps" (1973) 1
"I'll Have to Say I Love You In A Song" (1974) 1
"Bad, Bad Leroy Brown" (1973) 0
"It Doesn't Have To Be That Way" (1973) 0
"Workin' at the Car Wash Blues" (1974) 0
"Chain Gang Medley" (1975) 0
"You Don't Mess Around With Jim" (1972) 0


Good morning, how are you, I'm (Doctor Casino), Thursday, 20 June 2019 17:00 (one month ago) link

I have heard of two of these songs before, one of them via critique by Peter David in his CBG column in the 1990s

quelle sprocket damage (sic), Thursday, 20 June 2019 17:08 (one month ago) link

Just dropping in to vote for "Time in a Bottle" because I've always considered it an emotionally evocative song, to the point where it almost makes me want to cry. It's such a beautiful, wistful song and I've loved it almost all my life.

Dee the (Summer-Hating) Lurker (deethelurker), Thursday, 20 June 2019 19:20 (one month ago) link

^^^

Οὖτις, Thursday, 20 June 2019 19:22 (one month ago) link

the switch to major key for the descending "cuz there never seems to be enough time/to do the things you want to do once you find them" section is like damn, son

Οὖτις, Thursday, 20 June 2019 19:23 (one month ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtS4cBjCxhA

Morrie Antoilette (Old Lunch), Thursday, 20 June 2019 19:25 (one month ago) link

"One Less Set of Footsteps" for me.

Now is as good a time as any to post this video of a set from TV. Saw this on Chicago's Soundstage many years ago.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_m6l_pJKaU

War in I Rock (I M Losted), Thursday, 20 June 2019 20:33 (one month ago) link

Wonderful oeuvre. Operator for me. Never fails to make me tear up. Especially the final "You can keep the dime" line. (Obviously love the thread title).

gjoon1, Thursday, 20 June 2019 22:21 (one month ago) link

yeah i've really fallen in love with that song in the past six months or so. it's so heart-on-its-sleeve in its portrayal of a guy not quite admitting how totally broken up and wistful and lost he is. a few years on and having gotten over it a little he might be the protagonist of "still crazy after all these years," but right now it's all too much and life as a twentysomething in the early 70s is proving very confusing. something about the songwriting always surprises me, too; i can never quite remember what line is coming up and how it swings around to the chorus. maybe it's his really conversational delivery, makes it feel like a guy talking more than a song... but then it lands with the incredible evocative hook of "...that it just wasn't real... but that's not the way it feels." poor guy.

Good morning, how are you, I'm (Doctor Casino), Thursday, 20 June 2019 23:51 (one month ago) link

it's "I Got A Name" for my. Incredible riff & coda, amazing development, great harmonies, lead vocal right in the pocket...just a spectacular tune

^Agree, and featured in a fine Jeff Bridges car-racing movie.

My best friend has been busy with his kids for the last 20 years, and whenever he has to postpone plans with me, I reflexively say, "We'll get together then, Dad."

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Friday, 21 June 2019 00:36 (one month ago) link

"Time In A Bottle" + Lightfoot's "If You Could Read My Mind" are some serious dads driving around in their datsuns genre.

Yerac, Friday, 21 June 2019 00:39 (one month ago) link

^ Can confirm. Dad had a Datsun and 2 8-tracks: Best of Lightfoot (UA Years) & Best of Croce.

Nobody (including me) is gonna vote for the Car Wash Blues, but I wanna say a word in its favour. Similar charming goofy slinkiness to Jug Band Music by the Lovin’ Spoonful.

“no matter how smooth I talked, they wouldn’t listen to the fact that I’s a genius — the man said ‘we got all that we can use’”

Una Palooka Dronka (hardcore dilettante), Friday, 21 June 2019 01:48 (one month ago) link

My dad preferred "Operator", tbh with you. Though the '70s songs he tended to go for were more along the lines of Gilbert O'Sullivan's "Alone Again (Naturally)" and "Theme from 'Shaft'" by Isaac Hayes, and I'm pretty sure he didn't like a single Gordon Lightfoot song.

Dee the (Summer-Hating) Lurker (deethelurker), Friday, 21 June 2019 02:44 (one month ago) link

It's too bad there's no "Lover's Cross" on this list. That's another favorite of mine.

War in I Rock (I M Losted), Friday, 21 June 2019 11:41 (one month ago) link

Yeah, in hindsight I might have done well to just poll the '74 Greatest Hits, seems like that might be his definitive document.

Good morning, how are you, I'm (Doctor Casino), Friday, 21 June 2019 17:59 (one month ago) link

Thanks for running the poll. Nice to spend some time again with these songs. Voting for Operator.

that's not my post, Saturday, 22 June 2019 07:27 (one month ago) link

Operator for me, amazing song

buzza, Saturday, 22 June 2019 07:59 (one month ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Wednesday, 3 July 2019 00:01 (two weeks ago) link

Been listening to the GH on and off over the past week, and despite the considerable charms of "I Got A Name" and "You Don't Mess Around With Jim," this is so "Operator" for me.

I know "Time in a Bottle" is a big signature AM gold type song but it's never really clicked to me. Feels like a reversion to, like, the first couple Simon & Garfunkel records - the delivery feels somehow more affected and "I'm reading you a poem I wrote" than I get off those others.

Good morning, how are you, I'm (Doctor Casino), Wednesday, 3 July 2019 00:05 (two weeks ago) link

But I think I'd probably feel differently if I'd gotten to know it at the time, or grown up with it maybe.

Good morning, how are you, I'm (Doctor Casino), Wednesday, 3 July 2019 00:07 (two weeks ago) link

time in a bottle veers a little too much into dan fogelberg territory imo

buzza, Wednesday, 3 July 2019 04:33 (two weeks ago) link

"the switch to major key for the descending "cuz there never seems to be enough time/to do the things you want to do once you find them" section is like damn, son

― Οὖτις"

^^^ altho i do like this part a lot

buzza, Wednesday, 3 July 2019 04:35 (two weeks ago) link

"I'll Have to Say I Love You In A Song" for me....

I knew about (and have long owned on vinyl) that early album he made with his wife, but only recently learned he recorded an album even before that, way back in 1966. Anyone heard it? Any good?

Lee626, Wednesday, 3 July 2019 04:57 (two weeks ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Thursday, 4 July 2019 00:01 (two weeks ago) link

great results. kinda surprised at zero votes for either of the tough-guy brawl story songs, but hard to compete against the brilliant songwriting up at the top there.

Good morning, how are you, I'm (Doctor Casino), Thursday, 4 July 2019 00:40 (two weeks ago) link

"Operator" must be inscrutable for some younger listeners.... do modern mobile phones even have operators? Do landlines even have them anymore? Pay phones are largely a thing of the past too, so no dime to keep (inflation had already driven that up to a quarter by the time I was a kid), but i'm guessing they're well known from old films and TV.

Lee626, Thursday, 4 July 2019 00:46 (two weeks ago) link

"Time In A Bottle" + Lightfoot's "If You Could Read My Mind" are some serious dads driving around in their datsuns genre.

As part of a family with a Datsun in the seventies and early 80s, can confirm. We were all fans, pretty much.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 4 July 2019 02:45 (two weeks ago) link

Of Croce, specifcally, nothing against Gordon.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 4 July 2019 02:45 (two weeks ago) link


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