Right after I graduated from university, I took a job in Cincinnati, Ohio. Miles from where I lived, so a good 30-minute drive away. At the time, I’d just picked up a CD of the amazing Etta James album ‘Seven Year Itch‘. Within a couple of months of having that job, that CD was almost worn out, as it’s just about all I played on my trips backwards and forwards to work.
My favorite song on the album was ‘Damn Your Eyes‘, as it described my then current relationship. It’s also the track I’ve been listening to today as my Repeat Rotation Video. And, yes, Etta James still gives me the chills, like she did back then.
But, what’s even better than Etta singing ‘Damn Your Eyes‘ on ‘Seven Year Itch‘ is Etta James live at the Montreux Jazz Festival singing ‘Damn Your Eyes‘ back in 1989. Damn.
‘Damn Your Eyes‘ is the quintessential we-are-so-sick-of-men-who-lie-to-us song, and one I’ve come back to again and again over the years, as relationship followed relationship. It’s a beautifully written song, with such simple yet gut-honest lyrics, and Etta James’ voice, of course, is sublime.
Listen to Etta James singing ‘Damn Your Eyes‘ live at the Montreux Jazz Festival in the video below. She may have been gone for a couple of years now, but that will never stop her being one of my all-time favorite singers. What a voice. What a performance. And what emotion.