I prefer the Blues Brothers' cover.
|This is a sculpture of the Blues Brothers; it's in the Chicago airport...|
Perhaps it's because the song is part of a great soundtrack and a funny movie. (I mean, come on! Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles and Cab Calloway...It couldn't get much better!) Perhaps it because the brass is a little more prominent in the Blues Brother's version than Sam and Dave's. (Or so I'd like to try and convince myself.) Or perhaps it's because there's the element of humor---even as they sing---in Belushi and Ankroyd's voices.
And it got me thinking about something I've considered several times during the 10 or 12 decades I've been alive so far.
What is it about some comedians who---when they immerse themselves in playing certain characters (like Joe Cocker, or Frank Sinatra) they cast off their comedian's coccoon and morph into a singer? I really don't think they have had great vocal ability all along...I think something happens to them when they allow themselves to become completely enveloped in a character.
(And here it comes, Hope...Wait for it...)
As writers, doesn't something happen to us when we immerse ourselves in our characters? I know I'm not the only one who gestures or works on a task or gallops to the car and I become a character for a moment. Or, I contemplate how I would describe the gesture, the movement, if I was a character in the story.
Perhaps there are some gifted comedians who are chameleons...And when we write well, we get into the skin of the characters we create...
At least that's our hope...