Suite For 20G

Album: Sweet Baby James (1970)
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Songfacts®:

  • This song was an amalgamation of several bits of songs/melodies/lyrics/themes that Taylor had laying around as kernels for three future songs that hadn't yet come together. He and his producer, Peter Asher, had a deadline to meet for completing the Sweet Baby James album, and they needed one more song to do it. Asher had him string these loose themes together to make a single "Suite" and get the $20,000 (20G) they were promised by Warner Bros. Records for completing the album, which is how it got the title.

    "If you listen to it, you'll hear there's three completely different tempos and keys, but it worked - it sounded kind of cool," Asher said. "I said, call it 'Suite For 20 G' because that's why we're doing it. We were desperately broke and needed the $20,000." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Steve - Hamilton, Ontario
  • The lyrics are pretty basic stuff, with a vague story about finding comfort in music. The opening line is a blatant exploit of the "moon, June, spoon" songwriting style, as Taylor sings: "Slipping away, what can I say, won't you stay inside me, month of May."
  • Taylor's producer, Peter Asher, used fairly spare instrumentation on most of the Sweet Baby James album, but on this track he opened the throttle, with a Danny Kortchmar electric guitar and a horn section.

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