. . .
I was this many years old when I learned that “Here Comes The Night,” the other great song by Them, was written by producer Bert Berns and not Morrison himself. I’d just always assumed that it was. My bad.
“Here Comes The Night” has two really cool counterintuitive things going for it. First off, it leads with the chorus, featuring a stately guitar hook — supposedly played by ace session guitarist Jimmy Page — and a full blown chorus of people who may or may not be the actual members of Them singing the title a couple of times.
Whoa, here it comes
Here comes the night
Here comes the night
Whoa whoa whoa yeah
The other cool thing is that it speeds up on the verses and slows down for the chorus, made much less cool by the fact that the verses are very close to the dread music-hall beat and Morrison is singing like a generic second-tier British Invasion and not, you know, Van Fucking Morrison.
I could see right out my window
Walkin’ down the street, my girl
With another guy
His arm around her
Like it used to be with me
Whoa, it makes me want to die
Yeah yeah yeah
But it’s all redeemed by the chorus, each and every time, which perfectly straddles the line between being too damn rough and too damn lovely.
And people responded: “Here Comes the Night” was Them’s biggest hit in the U.K., making it all the way to #2 in the U.K. and even cracked the top 30 in the U.S., stalling out at #24, and getting stuck on the U.S. version of The Angry Young Them, which was simply entitled Them here in the U.S., because maybe Van Morrison’s U.S. record company didn’t want to tip off how angry he was from the start?
Anyways, Them broke up in 1966, and Van Morrison went on to have one of the greatest careers any musician has ever had, which we’ll discuss in detail in the next year or so, a career that took off artistically once he got away from Bert Berns, who wanted Morrison to be far more pop that Morrison wanted to be.
History does not record what happened to ace session guitarist Jimmy Page.
“Here Comes The Night”
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