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Roy Orbison — Oh, Pretty Woman
Album: Black and White Night
Avg rating:
7.8

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1213









Released: 1987
Length: 5:53
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Pretty woman, walking down the street
Pretty woman, the kind I like to meet
Pretty woman
I don't believe you, you're not the truth
No one could look as good as you
Mercy

Pretty woman, won't you pardon me?
Pretty woman, I couldn't help but see
Pretty woman
That you look lovely as can be
Are you lonely just like me?
Wow

Pretty woman, stop a while
Pretty woman, talk a while
Pretty woman, give your smile to me
Pretty woman, yeah, yeah, yeah
Pretty woman, look my way
Pretty woman, say you'll stay with me

'Cause I need you
I'll treat you right
Come with me, baby
Be mine tonight

Pretty woman, don't walk on by
Pretty woman, don't make me cry
Pretty woman, don't walk away, hey, okay
If that's the way it must be, okay
I guess I'll go on home, it's late
There'll be tomorrow night, but wait
What do I see?

Is she walking back to me?
Yeah, she's walking back to me
Oh, oh, pretty woman
Comments (118)add comment
Tom Petty > George Harrison > Roy Orbison. I thought for sure Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne were sure to follow. Darn.
 
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.
 
Just when I thought I've read the dumbest thing possible on the Internet, I see this.  Winning!
wish I was there in 1987... pretty sure that was a great show.
Very tasty version of this song.
This was an epic concert and anyone who wonders why Roy is celebrated so much should watch it.
James Burton really makes this band special. If you haven't seen the video, you should check it out. It plays regularly during fund-raisers on your local PBS station. 
 Isabeau wrote:


Right to Left: Costello, Clapton, Springsteen, Orbison, Browne, 

...hard to tell the drummer, and dang, I know who that last guitarist is!! Help me out here.
 
That's James Burton, R&R hall of famer, and the lead guitar on Pretty Woman.
 ciarataylor wrote:
Good thing his voice carried over all that help.  Good help, but way too much good help.
 

I disagree. No such thing as too much....of a good thing!
 Isabeau wrote:


Right to Left: Costello, Clapton, Springsteen, Orbison, Browne, 

...hard to tell the drummer, and dang, I know who that last guitarist is!! Help me out here.
 
After reading the Wiki page for the 'black and white' concert.... wow....would have been a neat concert, even for my then 10 year old self; I'll let you figure out who you missed....https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
 SheRidesABeemer wrote:
listening to the lyrics in the #metoo era, Roy sounds like a creeper. {#Ask}
 
So says 'SheRidesABeemer' - I think your moniker fits well in the 'Pound Me Too' era....Long Live RP and sly sarcasm not going un-noticed ;-) 
 nomnol wrote:


OK. Can anyone name these fellows, left to right?
 

Right to Left: Costello, Clapton, Springsteen, Orbison, Browne, 

...hard to tell the drummer, and dang, I know who that last guitarist is!! Help me out here.
 On_The_Beach wrote:
https://www.elvisblog.net/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Roy-Orbison-A-Black-and-White-Night.jpg
 

OK. Can anyone name these fellows, left to right?
Long Live                                                                                                               Radio Paradise
My rating UP:                                                       8 -Most Excellent   to              9- OUTSTANDING
Nice. Traveling Wilburys set Bill!
listening to the lyrics in the #metoo era, Roy sounds like a creeper. {#Ask}
Kind of, almost, but not really met him back stage at a small club in Boston mid 80's.  He was sitting in this little dump of a back room with his dark glasses on and I think I mumbled "Hi" in his direction....In my memory he lifted his chin in acknowledgement.
George Harrison followed by Roy O and before that Tom Petty.  Who's up next?  Bob Dylan or Jeff Lynne? :)

https://www.elvisblog.net/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Roy-Orbison-A-Black-and-White-Night.jpg
 coarsely_ground wrote:
thanks, needed that set , Petty, Harrison, Orbison....too much

 
Same set today. Jeff Lynne and Bob Dylan will be next I guess.
thanks, needed that set , Petty, Harrison, Orbison....too much
Some days RP hits all the right notes at the right times. This is one of those days.
Good thing his voice carried over all that help.  Good help, but way too much good help.
{#Bounce} this originaly on cinemax they did several of these ! and they all rocked
Orbison is the reason my daughter, born in 1967, is named Leah. Loved that song... :)
Good stuff!
 TJOpootertoot wrote:
For the record, the full list is probably way down thread but, yes, the guitar at the end is James Burton dueling with Bruce Springsteen. For the most part, Bruce and the rest of the band totally let themselves be background to Roy's voice and songs. This is, ahem, rather impressive line-up playing on this track:
Roy Orbison: lead vocals, guitar, harmonica
T Bone Burnett: acoustic guitar; musical director
Glen D. Hardin: piano
James Burton: lead guitar
Jerry Scheff: upright bass
Ronnie Tutt: drums

Bruce Springsteen: guitar, vocals
Elvis Costello: acoustic guitar, electric organ, harmonica
Tom Waits: electric organ, acoustic guitar
Michael Utley: keyboard
Alex Acuña: percussion

J. D. Souther: backing vocals; acoustic guitar; vocal arrangements
Steven Soles: backing vocals
Jackson Browne: backing vocals
Bonnie Raitt: backing vocals
k.d. lang: backing vocals
Jennifer Warnes: backing vocals

Tells you a lot about Orbison, looking at that list, people like Bonnie Raitt and k.d. lang willing to hide in the background and do their part...

 
Thanks for that, had no idea who was backing  up RO.
Veeery nice live version, is like having 2 songs in one, the original tune and this R&R guitars that make you stand up and dance!
 bh1 wrote:
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.

One hit wonder? Are you kidding? Although he never achieved the fame he richly deserved in America, in Europe he was a giant. How many one hit wonders have as their opening act The Beatles? Look at the dvd of this show or view it on utube. He has Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello, Tom Waites, J D Souther, & Jackson Browne in the band. His backup singers include K D Lang, Jen Warnes, & Bonnie Raitte. He was an equal member of the Traveling Willbury with Petty, Dylan, Harrison, & Jeff Lynne. A man from noplace Texas who endured some great tragedy in his life and by all accounts remained a fine person and performer. One hit wonder? Sure. 

 
Thanks for this. FWIW, beware of overreacting to trolls.
For the record, the full list is probably way down thread but, yes, the guitar at the end is James Burton dueling with Bruce Springsteen. For the most part, Bruce and the rest of the band totally let themselves be background to Roy's voice and songs. This is, ahem, rather impressive line-up playing on this track:
Roy Orbison: lead vocals, guitar, harmonica
T Bone Burnett: acoustic guitar; musical director
Glen D. Hardin: piano
James Burton: lead guitar
Jerry Scheff: upright bass
Ronnie Tutt: drums

Bruce Springsteen: guitar, vocals
Elvis Costello: acoustic guitar, electric organ, harmonica
Tom Waits: electric organ, acoustic guitar
Michael Utley: keyboard
Alex Acuña: percussion

J. D. Souther: backing vocals; acoustic guitar; vocal arrangements
Steven Soles: backing vocals
Jackson Browne: backing vocals
Bonnie Raitt: backing vocals
k.d. lang: backing vocals
Jennifer Warnes: backing vocals

Tells you a lot about Orbison, looking at that list, people like Bonnie Raitt and k.d. lang willing to hide in the background and do their part...
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.

One hit wonder? Are you kidding? Although he never achieved the fame he richly deserved in America, in Europe he was a giant. How many one hit wonders have as their opening act The Beatles? Look at the dvd of this show or view it on utube. He has Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello, Tom Waites, J D Souther, & Jackson Browne in the band. His backup singers include K D Lang, Jen Warnes, & Bonnie Raitte. He was an equal member of the Traveling Willbury with Petty, Dylan, Harrison, & Jeff Lynne. A man from noplace Texas who endured some great tragedy in his life and by all accounts remained a fine person and performer. One hit wonder? Sure. 
Roy is just plain cool and was oh so unique back in the day and today.
What a great part of the Travelling Wilbury's too.
Miss him.
Love the jamming on this version but prefer his vocals on another. 
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.

 
Really?  I beg to differ.  Roy scored 20 consecutive Top 40 hits between 1960 and 1965.
Never noticed this before, but there's a similarity with Peter Gun. theme
 oldfart48 wrote:

FOUR+ , listen to the man, he is the real  KINGof ROCK & ROLL  unlike Presley.  Roy wrote most  (99%) of his tunes....

 
Great observation....this is truly state of the fart commentary...lol
 osbyec wrote:
What a voice!  I heard a story about him on NPR the other day, and they were talking about his three-octave vocal range.  THREE OCTAVES?  That's ridiculous!

 
FOUR+ , listen to the man, he is the real  KINGof ROCK & ROLL  unlike Presley.  Roy wrote most  (99%) of his tunes....
 linden wrote:


I'd like to know who that kid in the lower right is. What a party to find yourself at.

 

NO EGO THERE, JUST FRIENDS AND FAMILY.....
 osbyec wrote:
What a voice!  I heard a story about him on NPR the other day, and they were talking about his three-octave vocal range.  THREE OCTAVES?  That's ridiculous!

 
I don't know how reliable Wikipedia is on this and I know damned little about music theory, but the article Wikipedia has for Freddie Mercury stated that he had a four-octave range. Also says this: 

"Although Mercury's speaking voice naturally fell in the baritone range, he delivered most songs in the tenor range. His vocal range extended from bass low F (F2) to soprano high F (F6). He could belt up to tenor high F (F5). 


BTW--Roy Orbison was hardly a one-hit wonder. Too bad some people don't bother to learn about the history of American rock before dismissing Roy. The Wikipedia article for him mentions that he may have had a four-octave range as well. It also cites an Orbison biography when it states

"Elvis Presley and Bono have stated his voice was, respectively, the greatest and most distinctive they had ever heard." 

As for me: this is the best version of "Pretty Woman" that I've heard. Amazing guitar playing--if it is James Burton as some here have stated, I'll have to check this guy out.  
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.

 
GUESS YOU NEVER HEARD OF ROCK N ROLL, WHEREEVER YOU OOOOOZED OUT OF.....EDDY  COULDN'T POLISH ROYS SHOES...... oh yeah this was laid down in 1963.......just another  #one hit
 apd wrote:

wow - this one really brought out the trolls, didn't it?

 

NO SHIT, WHERE WERE THESE IDIOTS FROM THE WORTHLESS 80S? or the 90s wasteland ?
 frecklady wrote:
Great version of this song to jumpstart my morning—thank you

  OUGHT TOO,  IT IS THE FIRST VERSION.........


yes, yes, yes.....the REAL KING......{#Jump}{#Dancingbanana}.{#Fire}{#Crown}{#Guitarist}{#Dancingbanana}{#Jump}
 ptooey wrote:
James Burton for the win.

  
I never liked Roy Orbison very much, but this live version of Pretty Woman is very good, and this guitar, "Polked Salad Annie" at its best .
Was it really James Burton? It sounds so! 
I saw him live in March 2012 with the TCB - Band   It was fantastic. He is the King of guitar, and Ronnie Tutt is the King of drums.
Elvis forever!


Poor drummer. Most boring gig ever.
 apd wrote:

wow - this one really brought out the trolls, didn't it?

 

Van Halen's version is pretty amazing... i do like it more, but it would never existi without this gem.
 patrick30 wrote:
Sometimes in certain situations, even a good song sucks...

 
Yea, except for the voice, guitars and rhythm section, this one sucks
 ptooey wrote:
James Burton for the win.

  Bruce showed Mr. Burton much respect .



van halen rocks


wow - this one really brought out the trolls, didn't it?

 

rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

Mercy!  RIP Roy {#Notworthy}{#Sunny}
Great version of this song to jumpstart my morning—thank you

There is some guitar picking going on here!
9 from the jungle
 philbertr wrote:
The Subdudes —> Ray Orbison

It does NOT get any better than this.  Bill, you are a friggin' GENIUS!  {#Notworthy}
 
He is a friggin GENIUS.. There is no other explanation!! 
Just noticed the average rating for this song.  Oh come now, my fellow RP listeners, what is WRONG with you?!  This should average at least 8.5 if only for the incredible guitar riffing (did I just make up a word?) there at the end.

IMHO   {#Nyah}
The Subdudes —> Ray Orbison

It does NOT get any better than this.  Bill, you are a friggin' GENIUS!  {#Notworthy}
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.
 
wow - this one really brought out the trolls, didn't it?
The "Big O" ........  Ohhhhhhhhhh Yeaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh!  Great version.{#Notworthy}
 Cynaera wrote:

Minnie Ripperton.  Phoebe Snow. Olivia Newton-John. Pretty much any guy, if you grab him in the right place with enough force.

 
Well...yeah. {#Lol}
Damn Bill, you made me turn on the big rig to listen to this.

{#Sunny}
 Dalebarely wrote:
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.
 
Nominee for funniest comment of the day on RP

Roy Orbison - one hit wonder.

Studied any rock and roll history dude.

I don't think so.
 patrick30 wrote:
Sometimes in certain situations, even a good song sucks...
  This is in no freaking way one of those times, amigo.... you have got to be kidding me.

This is definitely from the Black and White Night where multiple stars and ridiculously good session men came together to pay tribute to Roy.


 patrick30 wrote:
Sometimes in certain situations, even a good song sucks...
 
Check.
The King of the one hit wonders. Van Halen did a better job with this mediocre tune.
 Zep wrote:
Mercy!


 
Exactly! LOL What a toe-tapper.
I've never heard this version.  Really liking the extended jam!  Thanks, Bill!{#Bananajam}
 calypsus_1 wrote:


Beatles Lennon and Starr with Roy Orbison by rising70
https://www.flickr.com/photos/the_first_rays/

.
Copyright All rights reserved
 

I'd like to know who that kid in the lower right is. What a party to find yourself at.
Sometimes in certain situations, even a good song sucks...
 osbyec wrote:
What a voice!  I heard a story about him on NPR the other day, and they were talking about his three-octave vocal range.  THREE OCTAVES?  That's ridiculous!
 
...more like five.{#Yes}
The Voice ! {#Notworthy}
Great artist, great DVD. 
Agreed!!! The CD of this is great and the DVD is just fantastic. I believe that it is available on Roy Orbison's web site, a must have for any collection. 

 
DaMoGan wrote:

The most awesome version of Oh, Pretty Woman, EVAR! {#Bananajam}

 


 osbyec wrote:
What a voice!  I heard a story about him on NPR the other day, and they were talking about his three-octave vocal range.  THREE OCTAVES?  That's ridiculous!
 
A three octave range would be a good one for any singer.  But, on the other hand, I read in a book on songwriting that you
should write the melody in a one-octave range.  I suppose that's for the "average" singer.

 CCSandman wrote:
Ruined by that awful film.
 
This song cannot be ruined by a mere film. How old is this song? Is the movie going to hold up that well? Unlikely.

 WonderLizard wrote:

Actually, three octaves is pretty much what a well-trained vocalist should be able to achieve. For example, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, and Yma Sumac are reputed to have five-octave ranges. Don Van Vliet (Captain Beefheart) had a 6-7 octave range. Prince's range is fairly wide. And so on. You get the picture.

Here's one source for Houston and Carey: https://prince.org/msg/8/264879

There are others.
 
Minnie Ripperton.  Phoebe Snow. Olivia Newton-John. Pretty much any guy, if you grab him in the right place with enough force.

Slinking away now.



Beatles Lennon and Starr with Roy Orbison by rising70
https://www.flickr.com/photos/the_first_rays/

.
Copyright All rights reserved


Ruined by that awful film.
 osbyec wrote:
What a voice!  I heard a story about him on NPR the other day, and they were talking about his three-octave vocal range.  THREE OCTAVES?  That's ridiculous!
 
Actually, three octaves is pretty much what a well-trained vocalist should be able to achieve. For example, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, and Yma Sumac are reputed to have five-octave ranges. Don Van Vliet (Captain Beefheart) had a 6-7 octave range. Prince's range is fairly wide. And so on. You get the picture.

Here's one source for Houston and Carey: https://prince.org/msg/8/264879

There are others.
 jagdriver wrote:
Reminds me of driving out to the lake in the summer of what—'65?—with my older brother, who was Mr. Cool indeed and would have us all roaring with laughter at the dinner table as he told us tales. Anyway, we were going to check out his new boat in the convertible Mustang when the original version of this tune would be on CK, Wixie, or Keener13.

Unfortunately, he passed seven years ago after (like George Harrison) having refused to give up the ciggies. I was the last of the siblings to see him alive while he was in hospice care.

And as for Roy, don't miss the Black & White Night DVD if you haven't already seen it. Everybody is on it!

 
Roy would smoke two packs a day and drink a case of Coke.
He had perfect pitch,never slipped in the studio or live.

What a voice!  I heard a story about him on NPR the other day, and they were talking about his three-octave vocal range.  THREE OCTAVES?  That's ridiculous!
gorgeous! {#Cool}
Never got it - never will. 

Roy Orbison and Johnny Cash - "Pretty Woman" Live:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSMcKfIGO-Y

James Burton for the win.
This is jam-tastic!
Talk about over played...

The most awesome version of Oh, Pretty Woman, EVAR! {#Bananajam}


Roy Orbison - "Pretty Woman" Live  (1982):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mBrbpWwWafQ

" We miss you Roy. One of my all time favorites. You got me thru the 60's "

"Roy Orbison began his career at Sun Studios alongside Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley but took a very different route to rock 'n' roll success. Orbison's strength was his unique vocal style, which combined perfectly with the dramatic love stories told by his songs.
Despite a dip in his career in the 70's, Orbison came back to prominence in the 80's as part of the Traveling Wilburys in which he lined up alongside George Harrison, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne. This in turn lead to a reinvigorated solo career cut short only by his early death in 1988. "

"He was and always will be one of the greats of rock 'n' roll." —  Paul McCartney

"Roy Orbison is the greatest singer in the world." — Elvis Presley

"With my parents I grew up listening to Chris Rea (Dad's side) and Roy Orbison (Mum's side). I'm now a hardcore metaller, but at least once a week I listen to Roy and Chris to remind me of my roots. Quality."

"Pretty Woman is Roy Orbison's trademark song and its also the song i played when i asked my girlfriend to marry me"

Does Homer Simpson's 'rrrowl' derive from this song? Curious minds want to know...
Black and White Night cover
{#Curtain}(image available)
handyrae wrote:
This song is a classic. This version of this song.....not so much.


You posted this before the jam near the end didn't you?

Ohhhh Man, This was such an awesome concert!!! Have to find this on Dvd!
Roy called, he wants you to hold the phone up to the mic.{#Yawn}
Mercy!




This song is a classic. This version of this song.....not so much.
 sutcliff wrote:
Whenever I hear his voice sometimes think of candy colored clowns.

A candy colored clown they call the sandman Tiptoes to my room every night Just to sprinkle stardust and to whisper Go to sleep, everything is alright...

Great voice...chilling images thanks to Mr. Lynch.
 
PLAY CANDY COLORED CLOWNS, MAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I have this concert on VHS and I watch it a couple of times a year. What a timeless, iconic artist! {#Clap}

Way well deserved and lovingly executed tribute by an exceptional cast.  Workin' for The Man. 


but wait! what do i seeeeeee....??

fabulous song, great night with great musicians with one of the best preformers, least the people that never saw him in person have this to remember him by

 

remembering Mr. Roy Kelton Orbison "The Big O,"

** 9 **



I love this movie so much, I'll watch it on PBS during a fund raiser.
Reminds me of driving out to the lake in the summer of what—'65?—with my older brother, who was Mr. Cool indeed and would have us all roaring with laughter at the dinner table as he told us tales. Anyway, we were going to check out his new boat in the convertible Mustang when the original version of this tune would be on CK, Wixie, or Keener13.

Unfortunately, he passed seven years ago after (like George Harrison) having refused to give up the ciggies. I was the last of the siblings to see him alive while he was in hospice care.

And as for Roy, don't miss the Black & White Night DVD if you haven't already seen it. Everybody is on it!

realy something great.... BRAVISSSSSSSSSSIMO...
 songbirdfemme wrote:


...... though I dig these guitar interludes!!
 

Those are some fantastic licks!
This version not working it for me

 macadavy wrote:
A classic.
 
So true...................

 macadavy wrote:

I wouldn't say so.  The first four comments have identical timestamps - we're neck & neck! {#Smile}

 

Thanks...makes me feel better.
 sutcliff wrote:
Whenever I hear his voice sometimes think of candy colored clowns.

A candy colored clown they call the sandman Tiptoes to my room every night Just to sprinkle stardust and to whisper Go to sleep, everything is alright...

Great voice...chilling images thanks to Mr. Lynch.
 

I agree, and I would rather hear anything by Roy than Pretty Woman, though I dig these guitar interludes!!
Yes, yes and yes - Great Coconout band -
Whenever I hear his voice sometimes think of candy colored clowns.

A candy colored clown they call the sandman Tiptoes to my room every night Just to sprinkle stardust and to whisper Go to sleep, everything is alright...

Great voice...chilling images thanks to Mr. Lynch.
 Ericac wrote:
Darn....beat out by macadavy.
 
I wouldn't say so.  The first four comments have identical timestamps - we're neck & neck! {#Smile}

too overplayed for me
Darn....beat out by macadavy.
Hey - I uploaded this and it's here already. How lovely!

The James Burton/Bruce Springsteen dueling Telecasters are so very lovely and Roy...well, he's always great, ain't he? It's just effortless.

The only knock on this, as Excelsior kinda hinted, is the recording is a bit digital and crisp. For me that's easily offset by the quality of the backing band here including: -Bonnie Raitt, Tom Waits, T-Bone Burnett, Elvis Costello...I can't remember them all.


Treble at 10,
Bass at 0,
Rating at 2.
The original would get a "10"—sorry, Roy. Wotta voice!
Not my favorite version but it IS a great song!  First?
A classic.