Two songs from PPL

February 3, 2023 • 2:00 pm

As Rodney Dangerfield (real name Jacob Rodney Cohen) would say, “Oy, have I had a rough day!” (adjusts knot of tie). But I got a lot done—just not on this website. I wrote a long letter to a secularist organization, an op-ed for a newspaper publicizing an upcoming paper of which I’m an author (stay tuned), and other assorted mishigas. Now I’m tired and will go home to do more work, rest, cook, and read a bit. I have a good bottle of red waiting, too.

In lieu of intellectual fodder, I’ll put up some Seventies music, put out right when rock was beginning its decline into perdition.

Last night I heard “Amie“, the 1972 country-rock song by Pure Prairie League that became a #27 Billboard hit in the U.S. It deserved more than that, I think. Here it is sung live by Vince Gill, though the original singer was Craig Fuller.  Gill’s guitar work isn’t as good as that on the original, but I couldn’t find a live version with the original musicians.

I like it because of the acoustic guitars (and the solo), as well as its bouncy beat. I could dance to it, so I’ll give it an eight. But what woman was ever named “Amie” with an “ie”?

This is the other PPL song I like, also sung by Vince Gill, who by 1980, when this was released, had become the band’s lead singer. Gill of course, went on to become a huge country star, and is now in the Country Music Hall of Fame.

This version is certainly lip-synched to the original, and I can’t find a version that’s completely live. Still, it’s a lovely song—and quite romantic. It’s clearly about a guy trying to win over a woman who’s pining for her ex. (The sax work by David Sanborn is great, too.)

When you find out how good love can be
You’re so lost when it sets you free;
They say once in your life you find someone that’s right
Someone who loves you like me.

19 thoughts on “Two songs from PPL

  1. I had the PPL album Bustin’ Out (on which “Amie” first appeared). Played the hell out of it, I did. Till I finally grew tired of it and gave it to my kid sister. She played the hell out of it, too.

    1. Come to think of it, I may have given my sister the Bustin’ Out vinyl for Christmas, then played the hell out of it myself, then let her have it back when I headed back to college for winter quarter — which was the kind of thoughtful, loving brother I was in those days, dammit. 🙂

    2. I still have it on vinyl. For a long, loooong time Amie contained one of my many misunderstood song lyrics: I thought it went “Play me what you want to do…”

      But then I also thought Edgar Winter’s “Free Ride” went “come on and think and be right.”
      Ah, tinny AM car radios, I miss you.

  2. My home boys! Well, some of them, anyway. Craig Fuller, Tom McGrail, Jim Caughlan (a Facebook friend today), and John David Call were all from the Waverly, OH (Pike County) area, my mother’s birthplace. I first saw some of them in a local and very popular band, the Swiss Navy. Fuller (later on in Little Feat) was my classmate at the Chillicothe (my hometown) campus of Ohio University in 1967. But they moved on, with some shuffling of members, to Columbus and then Cincinnati. Will always remember their gracious playing for free at a benefit concert in Lexington, KY to assist victims of the Buffalo Creek WV mine failure disaster (corporate murder is more accurate) in the early 70s. Vince Gill came along much later. None of the original members involved with the band in recent years. Call and Caughlan still perform sometimes in the area.

    Thanks for the memories, Jerry!

  3. I’ll always have a soft spot for Pure Prairie League. After graduating from high school in the Chicago area I traveled south to a state university where a band I’d never heard of — PPL — was spoken of in tones both enthusiastic and reverential. Yes, they were good. They had also apparently played at this school surrounded by corn fields and earned an undying gratitude. The student radio station played “Amie” with alarming regularity. I quickly learned to enjoy them, though I never became the kind of fan to act shocked by ignorant freshmen and tell them no, really, they had to hear them.

    1. I’ve really liked that song for a long time, and recently got around to learning on guitar (acoustic 😉). Subscribe still not working

  4. E.g.,

    (Amie Ann) Duffy Welsh pop singer
    Amie Beth Dickinson American activist and beauty queen; Miss Alabama 1994
    Amie Miriello American singer,songwriter of group Dirtie Blonde
    Amie Kaufman Australian novelist
    Amie Lynn Thomasson American philosopher
    Amie daughter of American Indian Chief Massasoit of the Wampanoag

    1. I love it! It’s always fun to hear how people have misheard lyrics.

      There are classics, of course: “Excuse me, while I kiss this guy!”

      My own claim to fame, and one I’ve not heard anyone else mention:

      “Sleeeeeep … in the mooooon-shine”—is what I heard when Steven Tyler was singing Aerosmith’s “Sweet Emotion.”

      Also, in America’s “Sister Golden Hair,” I always heard “You ain’t been undermined” instead of “You ain’t been on my mind.” I also heard “Sister Golden Hair so bright” when the actual (inane) lyric is—apparently; still not entirely convinced!—”Sister Golden Hair surprise.” What does that even mean?

    2. Posted this farther up the thread before discovering this post. Fortunately still had time to move it.

      I still have the album on vinyl. For a long, loooong time Amie contained one of my many misunderstood song lyrics: I thought it went “Play me what you want to do…”

      But then I also thought Edgar Winter’s “Free Ride” went “come on and think and be right.”

      Ah, tinny AM car radios, I miss you

  5. Can someone tell me what I need to do to get the email updates for posts, aka ‘sub’..?

    PCC(E) and I have been fiddling with settings but I’m still confused.

    Because maybe it’s not just me?

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