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Fetta
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Posted: 17 November 2022 at 11:40am | IP Logged Quote Fetta

While it did not make the Top 40, "There But For The
Grace Of God Go I" by Machine is a huge disco classic
that did peak at #77 on the Hot 100 and #8 on the Dance
Club Chart (and was played on 92 KTU in NY)

For those who are interested, I just discovered that
there is a 5th version of the song (after only knowing of
4).

Version 1: 5:18
This was only found on Side B of the Promo 12" and is
called "Long Version" This has a short piano intro
before it get's into the actual song. While this only
appeared on the Promo 12", to my knowledge, this is only
version available on CD.

Version 2: 5:01
This was the version on the commercial 12" and on Side A
("Short Version) on the promo 12". I think this can
easily be created by removing the piano intro from the
5:18 version.

Version 3: 4:43
This is the LP version. I personally don't know much
about it (there is a dub on youtube) and to my knowledge,
has never been released on CD.

Version 4: 2:43
This is the version on both the Promo and commercial
45's. This is a more "radio friendly" version with
alternate lyrics.

Version 5: 5:01
I just discovered there was a 2nd Promo 12" of the song
that has the alternate lyrics on the 5:01 version. I'm
not sure if there are any other mix differences (I am
awaiting a dub) but can follow up when I do.

https://www.discogs.com/release/780763-Machine-There-But-
For-The-Grace-Of-God-Go-I   

-Jeff
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crapfromthepast
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Posted: 17 November 2022 at 12:13pm | IP Logged Quote crapfromthepast

Great song! I remember it well from WKTU/New York.

The song was produced and co-written by August Darnell. Before Machine, he was in Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band. After Machine, he would form Kid Creole And The Coconuts. Cool guy.

I think the LP version is mislabeled on the LP as being 4:43, and is actually the Long Version (5:18) from the promo 12 inch single.

I didn't know there was a second promo 12" that included the revised lyrics. Nice find!

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Fetta
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Posted: 17 November 2022 at 12:37pm | IP Logged Quote Fetta

I too, thought that the the 4:43 LP version was a misprint
but I found this on youtube. It's clearly an import but it
is from the Album.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XxpXjvejbag

I should also mention that I have a 3:50 version on "The
Best Disco Album In The Universe" Volume 6 but I am
assuming it is just an early fade.
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promojunkie
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Posted: 17 November 2022 at 1:12pm | IP Logged Quote promojunkie

This song definitely a disco must for 70's dance theme
gigs. I just heard the "clean" version edit on youtube.
Can anyone make out what the alternate lyric is? I hear
"where only other black people stay" Is this correct?

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crapfromthepast
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Posted: 17 November 2022 at 1:40pm | IP Logged Quote crapfromthepast

"Where only upper class people stay"

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promojunkie
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Posted: 17 November 2022 at 1:57pm | IP Logged Quote promojunkie

thank you! I didn't think what I thought was hearing made
sense because of the original lyric.

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ChicagoBill
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Posted: 18 November 2022 at 1:09pm | IP Logged Quote ChicagoBill

I seem to remember there was a lyric correction that came out on a 12" (maybe Fetta's Version 5) that made it
sound like the original lyric was even more racially or ethnically incorrect. We'll see if Jeff's upcoming dub
is the one I remember. -Bill.
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ChicagoBill
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Posted: 18 November 2022 at 1:14pm | IP Logged Quote ChicagoBill

So when RCA came out with the 45 RPM single, I heard it and thought, "Oh, they corrected the correction".
-Bill.
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crapfromthepast
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Posted: 18 November 2022 at 3:12pm | IP Logged Quote crapfromthepast

Wikipedia says that the original, original lyrics had this as the third verse:

"Baby, she turns out to be a natural freak
Popping pills and smoking weed
And when she's sweet sixteen she packs her things and leaves..."

But the only versions I've ever heard, including the LP, the 45, and all the 12" singles that are on YouTube, have this as the third verse:

"Baby, she turns out to be a natural freak
Gaining weight and losing sleep
And when she's sweet sixteen she packs her things and leaves..."

There's even a video on YouTube of Jay Stovall Of Machine, Disco Fever at the St. George Theater 2017, singing the "gaining weight and losing sleep" lyrics in the third verse (and the un-PC lyrics in the first verse).

Does anyone know if the "popping pills and smoking weed" lyrics were ever in a released version of the song? There are plenty of references to these lyrics on the web, but I can't find any actual evidence that these lyrics were in a released version of the song.

Edited by crapfromthepast on 18 November 2022 at 3:13pm


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MMathews
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Posted: 26 November 2022 at 3:21pm | IP Logged Quote MMathews

Ron,
I too scoured the net looking for any evidence of the
alleged original third verse "smoking weed" lyrics and
found nothing. Perhaps the lyrics were written that way
but never recorded.

Also, shortly after WKTU started to play the song in
heavy rotation, they switched to the 2nd promo 12" with
revised lyrics. After buying the 45 I thought they might
have spliced that part in themselves but I just recently
learned from Jeff that it was an actual promo 12".

MM
    
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