Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Dixie Chick’s Cover of “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac

Normally I have trouble with groups covering famous songs by amazing bands, but the Dixie Chicks with the help of Stevie Nicks do a nice job on this cover of “Landslide.” The song uses the Dixie Chick with the rest of their full country band including banjo, guitar, fiddle, mandolin, bass, percussion, xylophone, and some sort of synthesizer or orchestral accompaniment. The song is in two-four with an eight measure introduction that is only guitar and mandolin. The verse begins, “I took my love and I-took it-down” being “do-sol-fa” which is kind of the first melodic theme. The second melodic theme comes in the third line of the song, “and-I-saw-my-re-flec-tion-in-the….” being “re-do-mi-fa-mi-re-do-la-sol. The first two lines are eight measures and the third phrase is always eight measures long. For these first twenty-four measures there is only guitar, mandolin, and vocal. The rest of the band comes in at the twenty-fifth measure along with the harmony vocals which appear on the second line of the section. While the band is playing the bass can be heard doing a lot of do-ti-la-sol and sol-la-ti-do stuff. Similarly, the rest of the song also makes use of eight measure phrases. After the second verse which is about twenty-four measures as well, there is a nice mandolin solo. This song does not have a whole lot of chordal motion which is possible because of the simple melody.
I really enjoy the beautiful harmonies and the fact that you can hear Stevie Nick’s voice amidst the harmony. I enjoy the entire band except for the synthesized sound because this is such a natural sounding song and doesn’t really need the cheesy fake stuff. Violins would be nicer.

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