Thursday, 10 October 2019
"A Hazy Shade of Winter" is a song by American music duo Simon & Garfunkel, released on October 22, 1966, initially as a stand-alone single, but was subsequently included on the duo's fourth studio album, Bookends (1968). It peaked at number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100.
In 1987, the Bangles were approached to record a song for the soundtrack of the film Less Than Zero. They chose to record a cover of "A Hazy Shade of Winter", which they had been performing live since at least as far back as March 1983.
Their cover, retitled "Hazy Shade of Winter", was a harder-edged rock song that removed most of the bridge section. The record, like the rest of the soundtrack album, was produced by Rick Rubin. After a fruitful but disappointing experience with David Kahne, the producer of their album Different Light (where they were given little input in the production of the songs), the group decided to take more control for the recording of this song, and they were given an additional producer credit. Michael Steele later commented that "we sounded the most on this record the way we actually sound live", and "If we hadn't been so messed up as a band, it could have been a turning point for us."
Lead vocals were performed jointly by all four members of the group, with a short solo led by Susanna Hoffs towards the end. This was a rare occurrence in The Bangles songs, as they mostly had just one member singing lead. Due to pressure from their record label, The Bangles removed the verse from the original song that contained the line "drinking my vodka and lime". According to liner notes on the Soundtrack album, Steve Bartek from the band Oingo Boingo played acoustic guitar on the track.
When released as a single in November 1987, "Hazy Shade of Winter" became a huge hit, surpassing the popularity of the original version, peaking at number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100, behind Tiffany's "Could've Been", and also number 11 in the UK. It was also a hit around Europe.
01 (Bangles) Hazy Shade Of Winter (Purple Haze Mix)
02 (Bangles) Hazy Shade Of Winter (Dub Shady HazeVersion)
03 (Joan Jett & The Blackhearts) She's Lost You
04 (Bangles) Walk Like An Egyptian (Extended Dance Mix)