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Rick Cooper

Eddie Spencer / Precisions- If This Is Love- difference?

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Without giving it much thought I always had the Eddie Spencer recording of If This Is Love using the same backing track as the Precisions. The difference just down to mastering or mixing plus Eddie's strong vocals. However the info on John Manships auction for EP has it as a completely different recording and done in Canada. So can any one give any more information on where, how and why the Eddie Spencer record was recorded and did it sell or get any radio plays.

 

I always prefered  Eddie Spencer but a version poll could prove interesting.

Ian Levine was the first DJ I heard playing EP at Blackpool around 74/75. A few months after it's first plays I found 50+ copies but as they had been packed at the top of a LP size box about half of them were cracked from side to side, at £5.00 a copy an expensive mistake. They were the only Canadian title in the shipment of US records so did it sell in the Detroit area?

https://www.raresoulman.co.uk/eddie-spencer-if-this-is-love-i-d-rather-be-lonely-you-re-so-good-to-me-baby-arc-1206-163540.html

 

Rick

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Just now, Rick Cooper said:

Without giving it much thought I always had the Eddie Spencer recording of If This Is Love using the same backing track as the Precisions. The difference just down to mastering or mixing plus Eddie's strong vocals. However the info on John Manships auction for EP has it as a completely different recording and done in Canada. So can any one give any more information on where, how and why the Eddie Spencer record was recorded and did it sell or get any radio plays.

 

I always prefered  Eddie Spencer but a version poll could prove interesting.

Ian Levine was the first DJ I heard playing EP at Blackpool around 74/75. A few months after it's first plays I found 50+ copies but as they had been packed at the top of a LP size box about half of them were cracked from side to side, at £5.00 a copy an expensive mistake. They were the only Canadian title in the shipment of US records so did it sell in the Detroit area?

https://www.raresoulman.co.uk/eddie-spencer-if-this-is-love-i-d-rather-be-lonely-you-re-so-good-to-me-baby-arc-1206-163540.html

 

Rick

It is different, the Bass does some pretty little flourishes on the Eddie Spencer cut that are missing on the Precisions one.

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4 minutes ago, BabyBoyAndMyLass said:

It is different, the Bass does some pretty little flourishes on the Eddie Spencer cut that are missing on the Precisions one.

The intricacies of the bass guitar part would obviously stand out for you but for  a non musician  these things just get lost in the overall sound. Can you hear any other differences?

Rick

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Eddie Spencer version for me all day,It was the first I heard,So I still have the memories of it,I got it on the Power Exchange when released over here(UK),Would have been 75-76 ish,The Prescisions is a great record,Not to keen on the Geno Washington take on it really,Like with many other sounds,Your first listen,If you like it is the one that grabs you,Great tune though,The intro is what makes it for me.

 

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to be honest, I don't believe the story that the backing is a re-recording. Let's look at it from a economic point of view. What's cheaper? To license the backing track and record new vocals over it or to have Mike Terry flying/driving all the way to Toronto, working hours and hours in the studio, arranging the backing band, hiring all the musicians, etc.?

I never noticed that the backing tracks of Precisions and EP are different. But I'm not saying they are not different. So, accepting you guys saying there are subtle differences, how about this theory: Someone in Toronto heard the Precisions record, licensed a backing track from Drew to record new vocals over it, the guys at Drew sent over a tape but sent an alternative take by mistake.

What you think?

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19 hours ago, Benji said:

to be honest, I don't believe the story that the backing is a re-recording. Let's look at it from a economic point of view. What's cheaper? To license the backing track and record new vocals over it or to have Mike Terry flying/driving all the way to Toronto, working hours and hours in the studio, arranging the backing band, hiring all the musicians, etc.?

I never noticed that the backing tracks of Precisions and EP are different. But I'm not saying they are not different. So, accepting you guys saying there are subtle differences, how about this theory: Someone in Toronto heard the Precisions record, licensed a backing track from Drew to record new vocals over it, the guys at Drew sent over a tape but sent an alternative take by mistake.

What you think?

Benji

I'd agree with your theory, especially as according to the Record World ads, If This Is Love was the B side. It's not uncommon for artists to add vocals to an existing track to save money on recording costs. It was John Manship who had the record as a completely different recording so I assume he had some information to state this. It seems unlikely that a new recording done by Mike Terry would be an almost exact copy of another producer/arranger. 

Rick

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Posted (edited)

Sounds like the exact same track to me, although mixed slightly differently - I hadn't really noticed the pianos during the "bridge" or middle-eight section - but listening back to The Precisions, they're definitely there, just lower in the mix and with harmonies over them. And the strings sound more prominent in the Eddie Spencer version due to the lack of backing vocals...

 

I'd have to say that, in my opinion, The Precisions beats Eddie Spencer hands down, just the male vocal harmonies blending with the strings totally makes it, along with the effortless lead vocal. And that knock-out group harmony "whoooooooaaaaaaaaa!" sucker punch before it even begins - you're floored from the start! Eddie Spencer's version just sounds a bit too rushed, like he's singing slightly ahead of the beat (maybe this gives it some urgency for some?) and a bit empty without the group backing. Then again, it probably all just depends on which version you heard first - BUT... if you don't like either, you don't like northern soul!

Edited by cover-up

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5 hours ago, cover-up said:

Sounds like the exact same track to me, although mixed slightly differently - I hadn't really noticed the pianos during the "bridge" or middle-eight section - but listening back to The Precisions, they're definitely there, just lower in the mix and with harmonies over them. And the strings sound more prominent in the Eddie Spencer version due to the lack of backing vocals...

 

I'd have to say that, in my opinion, The Precisions beats Eddie Spencer hands down, just the male vocal harmonies blending with the strings totally makes it, along with the effortless lead vocal. And that knock-out group harmony "whoooooooaaaaaaaaa!" sucker punch before it even begins - you're floored from the start! Eddie Spencer's version just sounds a bit too rushed, like he's singing slightly ahead of the beat (maybe this gives it some urgency for some?) and a bit empty without the group backing. Then again, it probably all just depends on which version you heard first - BUT... if you don't like either, you don't like northern soul!

 YUP ! Just as I ever compared both with my critical earbuds more so than with my "memory". Precisions fa me !

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