I woke up with this song in my head recently. If you were around in the 70s, you definitely heard this one on the radio. “Baker Street” was written and recorded by Gerry Rafferty. To my ears, it’s a unique piece of music. The saxophone plays the main melody/riff, but there’s also a great guitar solo in it as well.
I would describe this song as “musically patient” — the song sort of cascades into the catchy main riff as opposed to the intro of most Ramones songs. I can appreciate both. If I were trying to describe the “vibe” of the 70s, I would use “Baker Street” as an example. I’ve looked at YouTube for various versions and discussions on this song which brings me to the Foo Fighters’ version.
One of the discussions pointed out the Dave Grohl & Co. version doesn’t feature the sax, but instead has the main riff played on electric guitar. The point being you could play this melody on your instrument of choice. Foo Fighters weren’t the first to do this.
When I was looking at some of the mechanics on how this song is played, I searched for acoustic versions and came across a version by… Waylon Jennings?
I love this version because it’s a seemingly odd coupling of song and performer. Other musicians who have covered “Baker Street” include everyone from Rick Springfield to Ann Wilson. Hopefully, you can find a version you like.
Incidentally, the sax riff was played by Raphael Ravenscroft and the guitar solo was played by Hugh Burns. As a side note, I used to frequent a store called Record Reunion which had a painting of Gerry Rafferty’s “City to City” album cover hanging on the wall. (I believe the album cover was painted by John Byrne.) I wonder if it’s still there?
Till next time, keep your Mojo on the Horizon!