At this point, All Things Must Pass is my favorite album by a Beatle, including all of the Beatles' albums.
Album of the Year
All Things Must Pass, George Harrison
Also totally good and I'm sorry for the things I say in this post
- Tapestry, Carole King
If you only listen to one song: "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman", Carole King
About Tapestry and All Things Must Pass
As much as I adore Carole King -- and I loves me some Carole King -- seeing Tapestry and All Things Must Pass were released in the same award cycle shocked me. Once we've evolved as a society to make albums that sound like All Things Must Pass, why would you continue to make albums that sound like Tapestry? (See also: Are You Experienced, The Jimi Hendrix Experience.)
The production quality of Tapestry sounds amateurish when juxtaposed to All Things Must Pass... and maybe that's part of Tapestry's charm and why it's such a special album. Unfortunately, for this particular round of the OMAs, All Things Must Pass is too rich and sophisticated for this to be a shared award.
About A Natural Woman
Having said those things about Tapestry, I might as well get all the sacrilege out of the way: I prefer Carole King's version of "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" to Aretha Franklin's.
To be clear: I agree that Aretha's version is better. If I were giving out an award, Aretha would win that award. When I hear Aretha sing the song, I think "Wow... Aretha is so special and she's definitely from another planet."
I prefer Carole King's version because it's from this planet; King's version makes me feel special. When I listen to Carole King's version, I can imagine some hypothetical someone singing that song to me, specifically for me: on a 20th anniversary, or after a 23rd date, or just some random Saturday night. For everything that's great about Aretha's version, Carole's version feels like a special moment that a person could actually have in their real-life life.
The current One Man Academy (OMA) project is listening to the Grammy's Album of the Year nominees and re-choosing winners, absent of historical context.
Featured songs from this post: Spotify
All previous OMA Album of the Year Winners