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Author Topic: Good Timin'  (Read 2399 times)
Rerun
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« on: July 24, 2013, 04:21:28 PM »

Good Timin' is one of these songs that constantly get stuck in my head despite how little I listen to it.  I turned it on the other day and it occurred to me what I dislike about it and it is that it has some of the worst, minimal production of any of their 'hits'.  Generic drum line all the way through with almost no instruments, relying solely on the strength of its wonderful melody and harmonies.  Such a frustrating listen because you can sense how great it could have been instead of being squarely 'good'.
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"Today, in our increasingly secular world, loving one another doesn't just mean "loving."  It means being forced to accept as normal those behaviors and lifestyles that are absolutely abnormal.  It's not enough to live and let live.  You must chant their mantra as well; you must repent, renounce your own values, and pronounce those of the radical left as superior and adopt them."
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« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2013, 04:51:44 PM »

Good Timin' is one of these songs that constantly get stuck in my head despite how little I listen to it.  I turned it on the other day and it occurred to me what I dislike about it and it is that it has some of the worst, minimal production of any of their 'hits'.  Generic drum line all the way through with almost no instruments, relying solely on the strength of its wonderful melody and harmonies.  Such a frustrating listen because you can sense how great it could have been instead of being squarely 'good'.
The vocals are the instruments. I'd love it even had it been done A Cappella.
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Rerun
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« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2013, 04:58:12 PM »

I would prefer an A Capella version since that would be at least an artistic choice.  Instead, they seemed to throw in some rat-tat-tat drums, played a bit of piano, and half-assed a backing track.
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"Today, in our increasingly secular world, loving one another doesn't just mean "loving."  It means being forced to accept as normal those behaviors and lifestyles that are absolutely abnormal.  It's not enough to live and let live.  You must chant their mantra as well; you must repent, renounce your own values, and pronounce those of the radical left as superior and adopt them."
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« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2013, 05:04:36 PM »

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EgoHanger1966
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« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2013, 05:16:27 PM »

You pretty much diss this song because it has a conventional drum pattern. The backing track isn't unfinished or sparse. There's that really nice harpsichord (or something that resembles a harpsichord) harkening back to the SMiLE stuff. 
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« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2013, 05:29:01 PM »

I have to give Bruce his due as a producer on "Good Timin". The vocal blend is spectacular. A lot of Bruce's backing tracks on L.A. (Light Album) don't quite have that spark. But, Bruce was able to really clean up the vocals and make them sound crisp and fresh again. I thought all the way back to Holland that the vocal blend wasn't quite as tight or smooth; they were gradually losing it. Needless to say that carried through 15 Big Ones and Love You, and even MIU has its rough edges. Whatever Bruce did in the studio, he at least made the harmonies their trademark again.
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« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2013, 06:53:01 PM »

it's pretty much a perfect late-seventies soft rock tune, drums and all.  The same can be said for LA Light as a whole.  If the album had been released by Ambrosia or someone of the like it would have sold truckloads.  Love it.
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« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2013, 08:36:45 PM »

I have to give Bruce his due as a producer on "Good Timin". The vocal blend is spectacular. A lot of Bruce's backing tracks on L.A. (Light Album) don't quite have that spark. But, Bruce was able to really clean up the vocals and make them sound crisp and fresh again. I thought all the way back to Holland that the vocal blend wasn't quite as tight or smooth; they were gradually losing it. Needless to say that carried through 15 Big Ones and Love You, and even MIU has its rough edges. Whatever Bruce did in the studio, he at least made the harmonies their trademark again.

Big fan of both Love You and Holland and I still see your point, I think I even agree. "Good Timin'" must've really moved their longtime fans when it came up as the opening song on the Light Album. That is the actual sound of a classic Beach Boys ballad. Now imagine if Carl and Brian actually shared the lead vocal...
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« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2013, 11:27:05 PM »

The minimalist backing track is what helps make Good Timin' such a gem. Anything more substantial and it would've just been overly fussy. Sparse backing, complex harmonies - perfect!
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« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2013, 01:51:30 AM »

Good Timin' is one of these songs that constantly get stuck in my head despite how little I listen to it.  I turned it on the other day and it occurred to me what I dislike about it and it is that it has some of the worst, minimal production of any of their 'hits'.  Generic drum line all the way through with almost no instruments, relying solely on the strength of its wonderful melody and harmonies.  Such a frustrating listen because you can sense how great it could have been instead of being squarely 'good'.

I agree, but I wonder whether drums are good for this song at all. Knowing it from the album, I didn't think Good Timin' was a good song until I heard the unplugged version on the SMiLE tour. Incredibly beautiful that one, that's how it should have been produced.
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« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2013, 06:38:54 AM »

Good Timin' is one of these songs that constantly get stuck in my head despite how little I listen to it.  I turned it on the other day and it occurred to me what I dislike about it and it is that it has some of the worst, minimal production of any of their 'hits'.  Generic drum line all the way through with almost no instruments, relying solely on the strength of its wonderful melody and harmonies.  Such a frustrating listen because you can sense how great it could have been instead of being squarely 'good'.

I made a mix to get more instrumentation into the track:
https://soundcloud.com/alexander-t-king/good-timin-mix1
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NHC
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« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2013, 06:43:05 AM »

The minimalist backing track is what helps make Good Timin' such a gem. Anything more substantial and it would've just been overly fussy. Sparse backing, complex harmonies - perfect!

Yes.
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Micha
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« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2013, 09:40:35 AM »

Good Timin' is one of these songs that constantly get stuck in my head despite how little I listen to it.  I turned it on the other day and it occurred to me what I dislike about it and it is that it has some of the worst, minimal production of any of their 'hits'.  Generic drum line all the way through with almost no instruments, relying solely on the strength of its wonderful melody and harmonies.  Such a frustrating listen because you can sense how great it could have been instead of being squarely 'good'.

I made a mix to get more instrumentation into the track:
https://soundcloud.com/alexander-t-king/good-timin-mix1

Definitely a big improvement. Maybe add a few cymbal hits at a few places?
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Rerun
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« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2013, 01:33:50 PM »

You pretty much diss this song because it has a conventional drum pattern. The backing track isn't unfinished or sparse. There's that really nice harpsichord (or something that resembles a harpsichord) harkening back to the SMiLE stuff. 

I wouldn't even say it is a "conventional drum pattern" as it is simply the snare drumming of the 6/8 time that the song is in.  There is no imagination or creativity in the whole ordeal.  There is some harpsichord tickling around in the background somewhere, but to compare it to Smile seems to be a bit of a stretch. 

I would love to hear a track-only version of that song, stripped of any vocals, which I absolutely concede were done well.  I think it would bring to light what a missed opportunity it was.
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"Today, in our increasingly secular world, loving one another doesn't just mean "loving."  It means being forced to accept as normal those behaviors and lifestyles that are absolutely abnormal.  It's not enough to live and let live.  You must chant their mantra as well; you must repent, renounce your own values, and pronounce those of the radical left as superior and adopt them."
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« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2013, 01:54:18 PM »

I really like the song too, it's very soothing to me.  Yeah, some of the instrumentation is tacky, but the vocals make it great.  But they messed it up by fading it out so soon.  The song should have been a good 30-45 seconds longer. 
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« Reply #15 on: July 25, 2013, 03:23:45 PM »

It's a great number, with nods to doo-wop and other softer styles of classic pop.

A beautiful lead, great harmonies and I think a lot punchier than the demos/track only versions.

This song always makes me want to grab my wife for a slow dance - and I ain't no dancer.
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« Reply #16 on: July 25, 2013, 04:50:47 PM »

First time ever I heard this tune was June '79, somewhere on I-50 outside Gunnison, Colorado, crossing the Continental Divide, hitchin' from San Francisco to New York - perfect timin.'
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