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This was written by Graham Gouldman, who later formed the band 10cc. Gouldman was a prolific songwriter who also came up with songs for The Hollies, Cher, The Shadows, and Herman's Hermits. For The Yardbirds, he provided three of their hits, also composing "Evil Hearted You
" and "For Your Love
." Yardbirds drummer Jim McCarty said in our 2010 interview
: "'Heart Full of Soul,' which was very moody, gave us the ability to play the riff in sort of an Eastern way, give it an Oriental touch. Another very good song."
Lead guitarist Jeff Beck employed an early use of a fuzz box on his lead part. The original arrangement called for a sitar playing the lead guitar part, but they instead opted for Beck's sitar-sounding guitar.
The roots of Sitar blended into Rock started November, 1964, when Brian Auger engineered the first recording of "Heart full of Soul" by the Yardbirds. An authentic Indian sitar player was brought into the studio, as well as a tabla player who could not get the 4/4 time signatures right. Since The Yardbirds were a road group and the original could not be played to live audience, Jeff Beck stood in and used his fuzz machine with a tone blender that created a similar and extremely effective sound. (thanks to Shiloh Noone, author of Seekers Guide To The Rhythm Of Yesteryear)
This was one of many songs at the time that was influenced by Eastern music. It was released five months before the Beatles' "Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)
," which featured George Harrison playing the Sitar for the first time in Western pop music.
The members of Rush practiced this a lot when they were first starting out. In their teens they would play this song often. It is one of 8 songs Rush covered on their 30th anniversary album Feedback. (thanks, Mike - Mountlake Terrace, Washington)
Gary Louris of The Jayhawks
The Jayhawks' song "Big Star" has special meaning to Gary, who explains how longevity and inspiration have trumped adulation.
Since his debut single "I'm On Fire" in 1975, Dwight has been providing Spinal-Tap moments and misadventure.
dUg Pinnick of King's X
dUg dIgs into his King's X metal classics and his many side projects, including the one with Jeff Ament of Pearl Jam.