♫ The Great Pretender ♫ (Redux)

I had a song in my head tonight … “Only You” by The Platters.  But then, I started looking into it and this one popped up on my feed, and I decided to play it instead.  Only problem … I played it already in February 2019.  Oh well, that’s almost 2 years ago now, so be the ‘great pretender’ and pretend you’ve forgotten that I already played it, okay?


A few weeks ago, I played a verrrrrry oldie by The Platters, and since most of you liked it, I decided to try another favourite by them.

The Platters’ manager and producer, Buck Ram, says he wrote this song in about 20 minutes in the washroom of the Flamingo Hotel in order to have a song to follow up the success of Only You.

What I wasn’t aware of is that this song was revived in 1987 by Freddie Mercury of Queen, and his version was also a hit in the UK, though I don’t think so much in the U.S.  I checked out the Queen version and found it not to my liking.

The Great Pretender
The Platters

Oh-oh, yes I’m the great pretender
Pretending that I’m doing well
My need is such I pretend too much
I’m lonely but no one can tell

Oh-oh, yes I’m the great pretender
Adrift in a world of my own
I’ve played the game but to my real shame
You’ve left me to grieve all alone

Too real is this feeling of make-believe
Too real when I feel what my heart can’t conceal

Yes I’m the great pretender
Just laughin’ and gay like a clown
I seem to be what I’m not, you see
I’m wearing my heart like a crown
Pretending that you’re still around

Too real is this feeling of make-believe
Too real when I feel what my heart can’t conceal

Yes I’m the great pretender
Just laughin’ and gay like a clown
I seem to be what I’m not, you see
I’m wearing my heart like a crown
Pretending that you’re still around

Songwriters: Buck Ram
The Great Pretender lyrics © Panther Music Corp.

24 thoughts on “♫ The Great Pretender ♫ (Redux)

  1. The Platters were a fantastic group and Tony Williams had a great voice. They lead by a mile with this song. That’s not to detract from Freddy Mercury’s version which I also enjoyed. I’ve heard the version by The Band which I think was best as a live performance.
    Cwtch

    Liked by 1 person

    • Though I like Freddie Mercury and much of his music, his version of this just didn’t hold a candle to The Platters, in my book. I concur with your thoughts about The Band … I hadn’t heard their version, listened to it just a few minutes ago, and while it isn’t bad, I think seeing a live feed would have been much better. But then, as I told Clive, I’m a Motown junkie, so likely to my poor ears, nothing would compare to The Platters. Anyway … I’m glad you liked it!
      Cwtch

      Liked by 1 person

        • I know what you mean … I frequently have a song in my head, but can only remember a line or two of the lyrics. Fortunately, Google is usually a big help! I did have a rather nice Sunday … thanks Michael, and I hope you did too! I’ve never asked you, and you can feel free to tell me it’s none of my business, but do you have a family with whom you’ll be spending the holidays, Michael?

          Like

  2. I think this replaced The Yellow Rose of Texas as my favourite then song, and stayed there until Freight Train Blues came along. If the release/popularity timing is not consecutive, you must remember, I grew up in Winnipeg, Our music was not always what Americans were listening to.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I didn’t mind the Freddie Mercury version, but I’m a Motown junkie, so I did love the Platters. I did listen to a recording of the version by The Band, and while it wasn’t bad, I think David might be right, that it would be better live. This is what I love about music … we each have our own tastes and sometimes we like the same things, sometimes we don’t.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve often said that life, like music, would be boring if we all liked the same things! The Band were generally best seen and heard live, that’s why I think The Last Waltz concert recording is so good!

        Liked by 1 person

          • There’s plenty of good new music around, depending on your taste – it isn’t likely to be found on mainstream radio though! The concert was The Band’s ‘farewell concert’ – the last show by the original line up, though they have produced a lot more since then in various configurations. It was released in 1978 as a triple album, and there was a movie of the show, directed by Scorsese. It had loads of guest artists, and is to me a classic. The DVD occasionally still gets an airing 😊

            Liked by 1 person

            • I rarely listen to radio anymore … unless I use my daughter’s car and when I start it up, the radio comes on at 1,000 decibels! You are far more well-versed in music than I am! For one thing, I am 90% deaf, so while with headphones I can hear the music, I can rarely understand the lyrics. I’ve given my girls many a laugh when singing the wrong lyrics to a song! Still, I love certain artists and their music … I’d have to put Stevie Wonder at the top of my list, along with Kenny Rogers, Lionel Richie, Marvin Gaye, James Taylor, Jim Croce, and many others.

              Liked by 1 person

              • I used to do that with the car radio too! I don’t think it’s about being more well-versed, just that our knowledge lies in different areas of music. Some good choices there 👍

                Liked by 2 people

                • I’m really enjoying these music posts … first, because I’m learning so much about the backstory of the songs and the artists and songwriters, and second because I’m enjoying the discussions and comments with readers, some of whom share my tastes almost entirely, others who have broadened my horizons with music that was new to me. And an added benefit, I’m learning what the lyrics REALLY said! 😉

                  Liked by 2 people

Comments are closed.