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Monday, June 6, 2011

100 Records That Shook The World, #42

Get It On

T. Rex

Originally Tyrannosaurus Rex, with long album titles such as My People Were Fair And Had Sky In Their Hair...But Now They're Content to Wear Stars On Their Brows, playing rock'n'roll-influenced folk, gradually getting into Middle Eastern mythology and baroque, lush and somewhat surreal songs, by 1969 Marc Bolan's band had become favourites on the Peel show and around the student union halls of the UK. However, after a disagreement between Bolan and percussionist Steve Peregrin Took, they reinvented themselves as T.Rex and embraced the glam-rock phenomenon head-on.

Coming from their 6th album Electric Warrior,  the single "Get It On" (which had to be retitled "Bang a Gong (Get It On)" in the USA to avoid confusion with a song by another band) was the second Number One single for T.Rex (the first being "Hot Love").  It's also the song that all but ended the friendship between Bolan and DJ John Peel, because Peely had said he didn't really care for the song on air when he played the advance copy. There was also some confusion about the piano glissando on the song because Elton John was miming the piano part on a TOTP appearance; however it was Rick Wakeman who performed the small piano part, being at the time desperate to pay his rent!

It stayed at number 1 for 4 weeks in the summer of '71. It remains one of the greatest guitar tracks of all time.

Here's the song, with Elton John miming the hell of the ol' joanna.

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