Emitt Rhodes Sings “You Must Have”

emitt_rhodes_1970_coverListen to this track by former The Merry-Go-Round multi-instrumentalist, and once-hailed ‘one man Beatles’ singer-songwriter Emitt Rhodes.  It’s the optimistic and contemplative “You Must Have”, the closing track to one of rock’s unlawfully buried treasures, the self-titled Emitt Rhodes, from 1970.

Emitt Rhodes’ debut was a record that was hailed as ‘best album of the decade’ by many fans and critics when it hit Billboard’s top forty that year, reaching a very respectable #29. Sadly for Rhodes, the decade had only just begun and played out in a rather underwhelming way for him as a solo artist after this initial success.

The song itself is typical of the whole record; full of melodic sunshine with a hint of melancholic cloud, and rife with plenty of optimism and magic left over from the late 1960s.  Rhodes had established himself in that earlier period with the Beatlesque band The Merry Go-Round,  an L.A based band that one could have sworn was from Merseyside.  When the band folded in 1969, and when recordings for an album called The American Dream were shelved by label A&M, Rhodes took to the garage to record on his own.  The resulting album, including this gem of a track, was astounding.

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