My Sunday Song – “How Do You Love?” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #172, we are going to discuss the song “How Do You Love?” off Collective Soul’s 2004 album ‘Youth’.  The song was the third single off the album and hit #16 on the Adult Top 40.  The album itself was actually the first album the band did on their own label EL Music Group and was an overall well-rounded pop/rock album with a good balance of both.  This song would fall in the pop realm and was written entirely by Ed Roland as most Collective Soul songs were.

We are slowing it down this week with a ballad.  Yes, they all can’t be rockers.  This one connected to me as I was a very shy guy growing up and I wasn’t great with the ladies (I know…shocker right!).  The song is from the point of view of the person that was in love with someone who didn’t notice, care or love them back at all.  He/She is asking them that if they never knew that people were out there loving them, How did they actually love?  What could they do to make you notice them.  It is a common theme and I think connects with most people as I believe we have all been there at one time or another.  Thankfully, I found that woman that noticed me and now we have 2 beautiful daughters to help us show how to love!!

Musically, as I said, it is a ballad so the tempo is a little slowed down.  You get a mixture of keyboards, guitar, bass, drums and even a string section for added impact.  The chorus picks up the beat a little giving it a little of the power element.  You get a nice little guitar solo from Joel Kosche which all good ballads need.  Ed sings with a lot of emotion with a deliberate pacing to add to the emotion.  I found the song to be quite beautiful and one of my favorites on the album and from the band.

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My Sunday Song – “Heavy” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #171, we are going to discuss the song “Heavy” off the band’s 1999 album ‘Dosage’. The song was the second single and the band’s last #1 song on the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks as well as the last to make the Billboard Hot 100 where it only reached #73.

The song was the last song written for the record and actually was written after the record was complete.  The band liked it so much they made sure to get it on the album before it went out to production.  Ed Roland wrote the song and was inspired by all the crap that went on with their former manager.  The weight of everything was riding heavy on Ed’s shoulders and as a result we got this great song.  An interesting to note, the song title of “Heavy” it is no where in the song.  The weight of the lyrics and the heavy guitar sound are where the title comes from as the word summed up the vibe.

The song opens with a heavy guitar riff and is at such a break neck speed it is over before you know it at under 3 minutes in length.  The guitar solo by Ross Childress actually includes six types of wah effects according to songfacts.com.  It includes two standard pedals, three Auto Wah pedals, and a digital Wah via Pro Tools.  It brings a really cool sound to the solo like none they had ever done before.  The whole album saw the band exploring different sounds and this was one of their most creative for me.

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My Sunday Song – “Shine” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #171, we are now going to spend the next 10 weeks talking about songs from another favorite band of mine, Collective Soul.  And why not kick it off with the song that jump started the band to stardom…”Shine”.  The song was the debut single of the band and their debut album ‘Hints, Allegations and Things Left Unsaid’.  The song came out in 1993 and was such a big hit for them as it went #11 on the Billboard Hot 100 as well as winning a Billboard Award for Top Rock Track in 1994.

The song also caused problems for the band that were unexpected.  First was the fact the song mentioned the word Heaven in the song and the chorus does come across as very church-like and almost sounding like a prayer.  This caused people to think the band was a so called “Christian” band and let me tell you they are not.  They are a genuine article rock band who happened to sing a song with heaven in the title. As Ed Roland likes to point out, Led Zeppelin had “heaven” in one of their songs and no one called them a Christian band.  It did pigeoned-holed the band a little to be lumped in to Christian music.

The second problem was due to the song sounding like a Grunge song with its distorted guitar sounds and dark feel of the song.  This was slab dab in the middle of that era and I can see why people thought they were a Grunge band as I even labeled them as that when I heard it.  But when you really listen to the band, it is not all dark, sad, depressing music like Grunge (you know its true – Grunge is pretty damn depressing, not fun at all music).  It is a solid rock album.

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Collective Soul – ‘Blood’ – Album Review

25 Years!  Wow!  Collective Soul is celebrating 25 years together as a band and as luck would have it, we also get a new record to boot.  The band delivers their 10th Studio Album with ‘Blood’ and they prove there is still life in that blood running through their veins.

With the opening track, “Now’s the Time”, you get that classic Collective Soul guitar sound and Ed’s soaring vocals. The song is high energy and welcomes you to the party with open arms.  The heavy bass line from Will Turpin opens the next song “Over Me” which keeps the energy level pumped up to 10.  The band has a way with catchy riffs and choruses that are simple yet impactful.

“Crushed” is a song that would feel right at home on their 2000 album ‘Blender’.  It is a throwback, yet modern. Then comes “Right as Rain” which the band has been playing live for awhile now so it makes you feel right at home.

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Collective Soul – The Albums Ranked from Worst to First

For me, this was a local band making it big.  Collective Soul was from Stockbridge, GA which was just outside of Atlanta so for they were a local band since I lived just outside of Atlanta as well…only in a slightly different area.  The band was Ed Roland, brother Dean Roland, Will Turpin, Ross Childress and Shane Evans.  Ed Roland was the driving, creative force behind the band and still is today.

The band started selling numerous copies of their debut album ‘Hints Allegations and Things Left Unsaid’ without a record label’s help.  I think they sold over 10,000 copies.  The record companies took notice and they were snatched up pretty quickly. In 1994, Atlantic Records signed them and basically slapped their label name on the disc and put it out since the album was already made.  Not a bad investment.  The rest is history.

Now we are over 25 years later and the band is getting ready to release their 10th studio album and to celebrate, I thought I would rank all their albums from worst to first.  And let me tell you this was really hard for me.  Collective Soul is a very consistent band.  They have a sound that is consistent throughout all albums.  They don’t venture far from their formula and why should they.  This is amazing considering they have been through 3 lead guitarists over the years, but have kept that same guitar sound.

The hard thing for me is what order as on any given day I can like one album more than the other and then back to liking another one.  There isn’t a bad album in the bunch only some I like more than others.  I stuck with only the Studio albums, no collections, no E.Ps and no live albums so not everything is here on this list.  I hope you enjoy it and maybe discover a band you weren’t all too familiar with.

WORST – AFTERWORDS (2007)

 

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