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YouTube Gold: Van Morrison Sings Tupelo Honey

Morrison is still one of the most dynamic performers in rock and roll

Van Morrison Singing at the 1980 Bammies
Van Morrison Singing at the 1980 Bammies
Photo by © Roger Ressmeyer/CORBIS/VCG via Getty Images

When people talk about the musical greats of the rock and roll era, there’s broad agreement on the very best: Elvis, Chuck Berry, the Beatles, the Stones, the Who, Bob Dylan.

As history rolls on, there will be a lot of revisionism and it won’t surprise us at all to see Van Morrison’s reputation go up dramatically.

Morrison was born in Belfast and grew up loving R&B and soul music. He scored his first big hit with Gloria as part of the band Them in 1964 and the enduring classic Brown Eyed Girl as a solo artist in 1967.

He’s never stopped recording and performing and has been a major figure in music for over 50 years.

In this video, he’s doing a live version of Tupelo Honey from his 1971 album of the same name and, as Morrison tends to do, does things that are generally inexplicable yet brilliant and that no one else could possibly do and probably wouldn’t even think of. He is a complete and total original. And as a bonus, Pee Wee Ellis matches his vocal high wire act on a superb sax solo.