♫ Walk Away Renée ♫

I was looking for something fun to play for tonight … it’s been one of those weeks and I wanted a song that would make us all smile.  This one by the Four Tops came to mind, I was humming it and smiling, so I thought … Why not?  Imagine my shock to realize that this was originally by a band called the Left Banke, with the Four Tops’ version coming a full year later in 1967!  I probably knew that at one time, but I had completely forgotten about the Left Banke version.  Hint:  my favourite is the Four Tops anyway!

This was written by Left Banke band member Michael Brown, who was 16 at the time, with help from his friends Bob Calilli and Tony Sansone. Brown wrote it after meeting Renée Fladen, the girlfriend of the band’s bass player.  Renée Fladen was in the control room when Michael Brown tried to record his harpsichord part. He later said in an interview that he was so nervous trying to play with the beautiful Renée present that his hands were shaking. In the end he gave up and returned later when he recorded it without any problem.

The Left Banke version hit #5 in the U.S. and #3 in Canada in 1966, and then came the Four Tops, whose cover reached #2 in Canada, #15 in the U.S., and #3 in the UK.  As I said, I much prefer the Four Tops’ version for it seems to have more energy, while to my ears the Left Banke version is rather flat.  But, because I’m nice and try to be fair, I will treat you to both and you can decide for yourself!

Walk Away Renee
The Left Banke / Four Tops

And when I see the sign that points one way
The lot we used to pass by every day

Just walk away Renee
You won’t see me follow you back home
The empty sidewalks on my block are not the same
You’re not to blame

From deep inside the tears that I’m forced to cry
From deep inside the pain that I chose to hide

Just walk away Renee
You won’t see me follow you back home
Now as the rain beats down upon my weary eyes
For me it cries

Just walk away Renee
You won’t see me follow you back home
Now as the rain beats down upon my weary eyes
For me it cries

Your name and mine inside a heart upon a wall
Still finds a way to haunt me, though they’re so small

Just walk away Renee
You won’t see me follow you back home
The empty sidewalks on my block are not the same
You’re not to blame

Writer/s: Tony Sansone, Bob Calilli, Mike Brown
Publisher: Warner Chappell Music, Inc., Round Hill Music Big Loud Songs, BMG Rights Management, CARLIN AMERICA INC
Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

26 thoughts on “♫ Walk Away Renée ♫

  1. I knew both versions, the Four Tops due to its chart success and the Left Banke because it got lots of airplay on the pirate radio stations that we had, before the government closed them down. Anything with the great Levi Stubbs will get my vote!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree … the Four Tops brought life to the song that I didn’t hear in the Left Banke version. Glad you liked it … I sort of recalled it was among your faves. Sorry I broke you, though! But … I owe you one anyway, for guess what song I’ve had stuck in my head for about three days now? Well, you’ll probably see it here tomorrow 😉
      Cwtch

      Liked by 1 person

    • That’s funny … I only remembered the Four Tops version and you only remembered the Left Banke one! I’m glad you liked it! My friend Jerry texted me a bit ago to thank me for planting an earworm! 😉

      Like

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