A Bit Like You And Me Radio

September 28, 2012

The Lovin' Spoonful - Night Owl Blues (1965)

In 1964, the short-lived group known as The Mugwumps split up. From the group, Cass Elliot and Denny Doherty would go on to form The Mamas & The Papas while Zal Yanovsky paired up with fellow folk-fan John Sebastian and two rock-types, Steve Boone and Joe Butler, from Long Island, to form this group. They would go on to put out such classic hits as “Do You Believe In Magic,” “Daydream,” “Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind?,” “Summer in the City,” and more in the short span of only four years. Members of the Grateful Dead also credit this band for inspiring them to “go electric” and move away from the pure-folk they were playing on the West Coast. In 1967, Zal parted ways with the group to pursue a solo career; and, by 1968, Sebastian had left with solo aspirations, as well. By 1969, the group decided to go out without fading out and they called it quits. This is definitely one of those iconic groups that cannot be summed up in this small space.

This song comes from the group’s 1965 debut album, Do You Believe in Magic. It’s the only track on the album to feature all four members as writers of the song. It was released on the Kama Sutra label and featured the classic songs “Do You Believe In Magic” and “Did You Ever Have to Make Up Your Mind?”. For more on today’s featured song, read the exclusive story below from John Sebastian himself!



A Special Edition post with John Sebastian from The Lovin' Spoonful!

Number nine! Today's exclusive story comes from a man who founded The Lovin' Spoonful, performed at Woodstock, appears on "Roadhouse Blues" by The Doors, and had a successful solo career. None other than the songwriting genius himself, John Sebastian. Here's John's account regarding "Night Owl Blues," which you can also hear below.
A Bit Like You And Me and readers,

The Spoonful were always looking for things they could do that didn't sound like The Wrecking Crew, who seemed to be making everybody else’s records. “Jug Band Music” was one answer, but I had been playing harp for a long time, Zal sounded great in a blues format, and so we started to play Muddy-style blues.

The simple form we came up with begun with an intro like “Fathead” Newman’s intro to Ray Charles' "(Night Time Is) The Right Time." It became the B-side to Magic, partially so we could show off that we had more than one trick in our bag.

Years later, I ran into “Fathead” Newman picking up take-out at a local establishment. I had to ask, “Sir, did you play the intro to ‘(Night Time Is) The Right Time’?”

“Yeah, I did.”

“Well, I gotta thank you, ‘cause it became the intro to a tune we did called ‘Night Owl Blues’.”

And that's the story of “Night Owl Blues”…except for one detail. Ever wonder why it starts to fade in the middle of Zally’s second break? It's because Steve Boone stopped playing a few seconds later and no overdubs were attempted.

All the best,

John Sebastian
It's great to receive a first-hand account about this song from The Lovin' Spoonful's main man. A huge 'thank you' goes to John Sebastian for taking the time to share his memories with A Bit Like You And Me and his many fans. What a day!

To visit John's site, which includes merchandise and tour dates, click here.
To hear "(Night Time Is) The Right Time" by Ray Charles, check out this YouTube video posted by someone.

And now that you've enjoyed this exclusive story, why not check out what other exclusive stories we've received?



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The Lovin' Spoonful - Night Owl Blues (1965)

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Lyrics:

(instrumental)

September 27, 2012

The Lemon Pipers - I Was Not Born to Follow (1968)

This group came together in 1966, being composed of local Oxford, Ohio college students who had previously been playing in other, separate bands. Robert “Reg” Nave, the band’s keyboardist, had been playing with The Wombats; Dale “Ivan” Browne, their singer, played with Ivan and the Sabres; and both William Bartlett, their guitarist, and Ron “Dude” Dudek, their original bassist, played with Tony and the Bandits. In 1967 they managed to release a single and place second in a Battle of the Bands competition, losing to the James Gang. Two records and some international success later, the group was frustrated with what they wanted to play versus what their label wanted them to play and they split up before the end of 1969.

Although the group desired to be a rock ‘n’ roll band, their first release failed to chart. Because of this, their record company, Buddah Records, made the group record a bubblegum pop song, "Green Tambourine," that had been written by Buddah songwriter Paul Leka and his writing partner, Shelley Pinz. The song was released in late 1967 and rose to the top of the charts by February 1968. It's considered the first bubblegum pop song to ever reach number one. Because of its success, the group was pressured into recording even more bubblegum pop, such as the song heard below, and they complied, knowing that if they didn’t, they would have probably been dropped by the label. This song was written by Carole King and Gerry Goffin.

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The Lemon Pipers - I Was Not Born to Follow (1968)

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Lyrics:

No, I'd rather go and journey
Where the diamond crescents glowing
And run across the valley
Beneath the sacred mountain
And wander through the forest
Where the trees have leaves of prisms
That break the light up into colors
That no one know the names of

And when it's time, I'll go and wait
Beside the legendary fountain
‘til I see her form reflected
In its clear and jeweled waters
And if you think I'm ready
You may lead me to the chasm
Where the rivers of our visions
Flow into one another

And I'll stay awhile and wonder
At the mist that they created
And lose myself within it
Cleanse my mind and body
And I know at that moment
As I stand in that cathedral
I will want to dive
Beneath the white cascading water

She may beg and she may plead
And she may argue with her logic
Mention all the things I'll lose
That really have no value
Though I doubt that she will ever
Come to understand my meaning
In the end she'll surely know
I was not born to follow

September 26, 2012

The Charlatans - Alabama Bound (1969)

Formed in 1964 in San Francisco, this group was the first to play the style which would eventually be known as the San Francisco Sound. By they themselves wearing Victorian and Wild West-styled clothing, they would also become highly influential in more than just a musical regard, influencing the Haight-Ashbury area’s hippie clothing style. In 1965, the group created a promotional poster for their gig in Nevada, now collectively known as “The Seed,” which would later be regarded as the first psychedelic concert poster. Despite heavily influencing the psychedelic scene in San Francisco, they ironically had more of a folk/jug-band type of sound. And although the band was very popular locally from 1965 through 1967, they weren’t able to release their only full-length album, The Charlatans, until 1969 due to internal conflicts. That long delay, unfortunately, would break the group. By the time of that album’s release, the group’s sound was considered to be outdated and the album didn’t sell as well at all.

That’s not to say, however, that the group wasn’t recording music prior to 1969. The group’s recordings from 1966 until 1968 were gathered and released on a 1996 CD titled The Amazing Charlatans. Unfortunately, it’s been said that the recordings don’t feature the same energy that their live performances showcased. This song, a traditional tune from 1909 (and inspired as far back as 1849), was released on the band’s 1969 album, The Charlatans. It was rearranged by the band, as many traditional songs are, to give it the band’s personal touch. This version has a strong psychedelic sound to it, while two alternate versions of the song released on The Amazing Charlatans were more folk sounding.

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The Charlatans - Alabama Bound (1969)

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Lyrics:

Don't you leave me here
Don't you leave me here
If you must go please leave a dime for beer
Don't you leave me here
Don't you leave me here
And don't you leave me here

Don't you do like me
Don't you do like me
Drink your good cherry wine
Let that whiskey be
Let that whiskey be
And let that whiskey be

I'm Alabama bound
I'm Alabama bound
If that train don't stop and turn around
I'm Alabama bound
I'm Alabama bound
I'm Alabama bound
Yes I am

I'm Alabama bound
I'm Alabama bound
If that train don't stop and turn around
I'm Alabama bound
I'm Alabama bound
I'm Alabama bound

Yes I am, yes I am
Yes I am, yes I am
I’m Alabama bound
(Yes I am, yes I am)
I’m Alabama bound
(Yes I am, yes I am)
I’m Alabama bound
(Yes I am, yes I am)
I’m Alabama bound
(Yes I am, yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am, yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound
(Yes I am)
Alabama bound…

September 25, 2012

The Blades of Grass - Happy (1967)

Composed by two high school students from Maplewood, New York and two more from South Orange, New Jersey, this band was unique in the fact that they were one of the few psychedelic bands to be from the east coast of the United States. Originally known as The Toasters, and then The Furnace Men, half of their members were kicked out of their high school after dedicating their song, “I Can’t Stand to Look at Your Ugly Face,” to the faculty of the school during a battle of the bands competition. They released one album, Are Not for Smoking, in 1967 and were the opening act for The Doors, Neil Diamond, The Dave Clark Five, and Van Morrison. At the time, most psychedelic acts were coming from the west coast of the United States, primarily from San Francisco, sporting long, stereotypical-type hair. This band, in comparison, was clean cut with relatively short hair.

This song was recorded and released on the east coast by the band in 1967. Unknown to them, another group, The Sunshine Company, was also recording and releasing the track on the west coast. Since The Sunshine Company’s version was an exact replica of the demo each group received, The Blades of Grass felt that they had the superior version, since they felt they had improved upon the demo. Although The Blades of Grass version did better on the east coast, it was The Sunshine Company’s version which rose higher on the national charts, devastating the group.

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The Blades of Grass - Happy (1967)

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Lyrics:

Happy is the day I found you
Happy is the world around you
I'm never sad as long as
We're together
My happiness is you

Happy is the way I love you
Happy is just thinking of you
I found a lifetime of pleasure
A hidden treasure
In the happiness of you

You're the girl I want to marry
You're the girl that makes (You're the girl that makes)
(You're the girl that makes) Me
(Makes me happy) Happy (Makes me happy)

Happy is our lives together
Happy is our love forever
What more in life could you give me?
Happy is living all my life with you

You're the girl I want to marry
You're the girl that makes (You're the girl that makes)
(You're the girl that makes) Me
(Makes me happy) Happy (Makes me happy)

Happy is our lives together
Happy is our love forever
What more in life could you give me?
Happy is living all my life with you
You

September 24, 2012

Big Brother and the Holding Company - Down On Me (1967)

Peter Albin had been playing with future Grateful Dead members Jerry Garcia and Ron McKerman through whom he met Sam Andrew. The pair decided to start a band and picked up guitarist James Gurley and eventually drummer David Getz (who had replaced their first drummer, Chuck Jones). After achieving a decent amount of successs in the Haight-Ashbury section of San Francisco, the group’s manager, Chet Helms, suggested they try a singer he knew of in Texas: Janis Joplin. After arriving, the group wasn’t thrilled with Joplin’s singing style compared to the direction they wanted to take their music, but Joplin’s style eventually won out and the group’s popularity skyrocketed.

A traditional song from the 1920s, this song was first recorded by Deacon Leon Davis and His Congregation in 1926 under the title, “Everybody’s Down On Me”. This particular recording by today’s artist was rearranged by Joplin and first released during the Summer of Love on the group’s debut self-titled album. Joplin also added new lyrics, essentially making the song her own. A live version would later be released in 1973 on the album titled Janis Joplin’s Greatest Hits.

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Big Brother and the Holding Company - Down On Me (1967)

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Lyrics:

Down on me
Down on me
Looks like everybody in this whole round world
They're down on me

Love in this world is so hard to find
When you've got yours and I got mine
That's why it looks like everybody in this whole round world
They're down on me

Saying they're down on me
Down on me
Looks like everybody in this whole round world
Down on me

When you see a hand that's held out toward you
Give it some love, someday it may be you
That's why it looks like everybody in this whole round world
They're down on me, yeah

Oh, Lord, they're down on me
Down on me, oh
Looks like everybody in this whole round world
Is down on me

Believe in your brother, have faith in man
Help each other, honey, if you can
Because it looks like everybody in this whole round world
Is down on me

I'm saying they're down on me
All down on me, oh
It looks like everybody in this whole round world
Down on me

September 21, 2012

Jason Crest - Turquoise Tandem Cycle (1968)

Don’t be misled by their name. This was no solo artist; it was a psychedelic band coming from the ashes of a band called The Good Thing Brigade in a place called Tonbridge, England, located some twenty-nine miles southeast of London. Signed to Philips Records at the end of 1967, the group released five singles in 1968. All five releases were considered commercial failures, even their cover of The Move’s popular song, “(Here We Go Round) The Lemon Tree,” despite receiving heavy airtime. Following the group’s disappointing releases, they disbanded in 1969 when their contract with Philips expired. The only link to success the band was ever able to claim was when the French singer Joe Dassin covered their song “Waterloo Road” in 1968 under the title of “Les Champs Élysées” and took it to number one in France.

The song, coming from the group’s first single as the A-Side was the first of five failures released by the group in 1968. Combined with the failure of the second single, the record company suggested that the group try a cover song rather than original material. The Move’s “(Here We Go Round) The Lemon Tree” was chosen, but failed to make an impact. Unfortunately, the band’s fourth and fifth singles were met with the same indifference.

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Jason Crest - Turquoise Tandem Cycle (1968)

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Lyrics:

A turquoise tandem cycle
Has wheels of rubber rings
A choir of silent voices
A book of silent hymns

A house of papier-mâché
The walls are very thin
I’d be knocking there forever
They’ll never let me in

A band of scarlet ribbons
Are hanging from the sky
A mother expects a baby
An old man waits to die

A house of papier-mâché
The walls are very thin
I’d be knocking there forever
They’ll never let me in

A band of scarlet ribbons
Are fading from the sky
The mothers have her baby
The old mans die

September 20, 2012

Trees - The Garden Of Jane Delawney (1970)

Formed in 1968, this British folk (and sometimes folk-rock) group put together a total of two albums around the songwriting talents of Tobias “Bias” Boshell. (Boshell would later be noted for being the keyboardist of The Kiki Dee Band and writing Kiki Dee’s hit song “I’ve Got the Music In Me.”) From a distance, this band appeared to be a knock-off of Fairport Convention at the height of Fairport’s popularity, possibly trying to cash in on the newly emerging “electric folk” scene. And although that theory may carry some weight, to the band’s credit, it has also been stated that CBS Records, who signed the group, was never really committed to allowing ample rehearsal time before the group’s recording, as well as putting a lot of pressure on the band despite not offering them much compensation.

This song comes from the group’s first album, The Garden of Jane Delawney, released in 1970. The album featured a total of nine tracks, four of which were traditional folk songs. This song, written by Boshell, was given praise for sounding as if it were a traditional folk song written hundreds of years prior. Lasting four minutes and nineteen seconds, it is the shortest track on the album. It was covered by Françoise Hardy in 1971.

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Trees - The Garden Of Jane Delawney (1970)

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Lyrics:

The poet's voice lingers on
His words hanging in the air
“The ground you walk upon”
“Might as well not be there”
Might as well not be there

I'll take you through my dreams
Out into the darkest morning
Past the blood-filled streams
Into the garden of Jane Delawney
Into her garden, now

Though the rose is there
Don't pluck it as you pass
Or the fire will consume your hair
And your eyes will turn to glass
Your eyes will turn to glass

In the willow's shade
Don't lie to hear it weep
Or its tears of gold and jade
Will drown you as you sleep
Will drown you now

Jane Delawney had her dreams
That she never did discover
For the flow that feeds the streams
Is the lifeblood of her lover
Is the lifeblood of her lover

And the purifying beams
Of the sun will shine here never
While the spirit of her dreams
In the garden lives forever
Lives forever, now

September 19, 2012

Blossom Toes - I'll Be Late For Tea (1967)

Formed in London in 1967, this group’s original name was The Ingoes. Their first album, We Are Ever So Clean, released in 1967, is widely considered to be a hidden gem in the psychedelic genre. Two years after its release, in July ’69, the group released If Only for a Moment, which was a much harder rock approach than what the group was known for based on their previous releases. Although the group disbanded in 1970 after only releasing two albums, their guitarist/vocalist Jim Cregan would go on to have the most successful career, highlighted by a twelve year musical relationship alongside Rod Stewart.

Written by the group’s guitarist, vocalist, and keyboardist, Brian Godding, this song is a shining example of British psychedelia. Coming from the We Are Ever So Clean album, this track, as many of the others, was backed with an orchestra and numerous session musicians. As it was, it made it very difficult for the band to reproduce their songs on a stage in concert; and, as a result, the group tended to perform a lot of other group’s material (such as Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band) when performing live.

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Blossom Toes - I'll Be Late For Tea (1967)

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Lyrics:

What would you do if you had a bus?

Hurry up, sleep, take me
Or I'll be late for tea
Hurry up, sleep, take me
Or I'll be late for tea

I was lying on my bed
Looking out the widow
Sleep taking over from my head
And my mind would soon go

Fell down to the floor
No one saw
But my room laughed at me
‘cause I'll be late for tea

Oh, it's just a dream, I know
But if I'm late, she will go
And my princess will just flow away

I'll be late for tea

Hurry up, sleep, take me
Or I'll be late for tea
Hurry up, sleep, take me
Or I'll be late for tea

So I have to try once more
For I was in a hurry
Pick myself up from the floor
She'd be waiting for me
Got back into bed
Hoped my mind would soon set me free
‘cause I'll be late for tea

Hurry up, sleep, take me
Or I'll be late for tea
Hurry up, sleep, take me
Or I'll be late for tea

September 18, 2012

Holy Mackerel - Scorpio Red (1968)

Coming together and breaking apart in 1968, this group stayed around long enough to create one eponymous album. Composed of talented members that would be largely successful in the future, the most prominent member of the group was Paul Williams. Paul would go on, in the ‘70s, to claim responsibility for The Carpenters' “Rainy Days and Mondays;” Three Dog Night’s “An Old Fashioned Love Song;” and many others hits of the decade. He would also have a successful acting career, most notably portraying Little Enos Burdette in Smokey and the Bandit (1977). Also to find success after the group, Paul’s brother, was Ralph Williams. Ralph would be responsible for the 1973 hit, “Drift Away,” released by Dobie Gray. Of course, by that time, he was going by the name Mentor Williams.

Written by Paul Williams, this song was the second track on the group’s only album. Released on Reprise Records, the studio never did anything to promote the album and it unfortunately failed to reach any commercial success.

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Holy Mackerel - Scorpio Red (1968)

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Lyrics:

Born at the edge of winter
She was November’s child
Under the sign of the Scorpio
She was bound to be wild

Hold her and love her
Still she’s a stranger
The red headed lady
Just will not be tamed

Though you may need her
Don’t try to lead her
This is the lady they named

Scorpio Red
Scorpio Red
Scorpio Red

Wearing a robe that is emerald green
She can make a man bow
Some say the cat that she carries about
Is like her somehow

Men will pursue her
Wanting to do her
Favors and errands
But she will have none

Laughing at money
Riches seem funny
Heaven and Hell may just want

Scorpio Red
Scorpio Red
Scorpio Red

Was a time she belonged to me
Was a time she belonged to me

Sunlight’s her right light for loves that she
Giving herself to me
Her hair falling over my pillow
Like a crimson waterfall

Making no promise to stay
I knew she’d leave me someday
I’d wake alone in the morning
And that would be all

Of Scorpio Red
Scorpio Red
Scorpio Red

September 17, 2012

The Wild Vybrashons - A Place in the Sun (1969)

Having only released one single, this band from Birmingham, Alabama was lucky enough to have two local radio DJs arrange their songs for them. Naturally, the record received heavy local airplay from the DJs and the group’s A-Side, heard below, rose to number one on the local station, WSGN. Band members included Chuck Terpo, Vern Reeves, Harford Capps, Mark Papsian, and Al Lovoy. Lovoy had replaced the group’s previous original singer, an unidentified female. The B-Side to their single was a cover of “One Track Mind,” which had previously been released by Gary Lewis & The Playboys, The Knickerbockers, and The Gants, possibly among others.

This song, the group’s A-Side, was written by Ronald Miller and Bryan Wells, and originally performed by Stevie Wonder in 1966. Besides this version recorded by today's group, it has also been covered by such famous names as The Supremes, The Temptations, The Young Rascals, and others.

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The Wild Vybrashons - A Place in the Sun (1969)

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Lyrics:

Like a long lonely stream
I keep on runnin' towards a dream
Movin' on, movin' on
Like a branch on a tree
I keep reachin' to be free
Movin' on (Movin’ on)
Movin' on (Movin’ on)

'cause there's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for everyone
Where my poor restless heart's gotta run
There's a place in the sun
And before my life is done
I got to find me a place in the sun

Like an old dusty road
I get weary from the load
Movin' on (Movin’ on)
Movin' on (Movin’ on)
The child, child troubled
I've been rollin' since my birth
Movin' on (Movin’ on)
Movin' on (Movin’ on)

‘cause there's a place in the sun
Where there's hope for everyone
Where my poor restless heart gotta run
There's a place in the sun
And before my life is done
I’ve got to find me a place in the sun

You know, when times are bad
And you're feeling sad
I want you to always remember that

There's a place
It’s up in the sun, yeah
Where you know there’s hope- hope for everyone
Where my poor restless heart gotta run
There's a place in the sun
And before my life is done
I’ve just got to find me a place
In the sun

Whoa, I, oh, I, oh, I
Oh, I, aww
Yes, there’s a place
In the sun
And before my life is done
I’ve just got to find me a place
In the sun

September 14, 2012

Queen - My Fairy King (1973)

In London, 1970, Farrokh Bulsara joined what remained of the local band he was a fan of, known as Smile. Still in the loosely assembled group at the time were guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor. Early in the following year, Bulsara renamed the band to its now-widely recognized name, seen above. Also at this time, in February 1971, the group finally discovered a bassist that they had enough chemistry to record with, and John Deacon completed the group’s lineup. Shortly after, Bulsara found inspiration in the lyrics of the song heard below, which he wrote, and changed his stage name to Freddie Mercury.

Written by Mercury and released on the group’s 1973 debut eponymous album, this song was the first by the group to feature Freddie on piano. Lyrically, the song is about the fictional world known as Rhye, also created by Mercury. The mentioning of the land would be repeated again later in their song “Seven Seas of Rhye.” In this song, however, the line sung, “Mother Mercury, look what they’ve done to me,” was said to be about Freddie’s mother. It is also this line, as touched on above, where Freddie found the inspiration for his new stage name.

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Queen - My Fairy King (1973)

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Lyrics:

In the land where horses born with eagle wings
And honey bees have lost their stings
They’re singin’ forever to you
Lions’ den with fallow deer
And rivers made from wines so clear
Flow on and on forever
Dragons fly like sparrows through the air
And baby lambs where Samson dares
To go on, on, on, on, on

My Fairy King can see things
He rules the air and can see things
That are not there for you and me to see (Ooh, yeah)
My Fairy King can do right and nothing wrong

Then came man to savage in the night
To run like thieves and to kill like knaves
To take away the power from the magic hand
To bring about the ruin to the promised land

They turn the milk into sour
Like the blue on the blood of my veins
(Why can't you see it?)
Fire burnin' in Hell with the cry of a screaming pain
(Son of Heaven, set me free and let me go)
Sea turns dry, no salt from sand
Seasons find no helping hand
Teeth don't shine like pearls for poor man's eye (No more)

Someone- someone has drained the color from my wings
Broken my fairy circle ring
And he shamed the King in all his pride
He changed the winds and wronged the tides
Mother Mercury
Look what they've done to me
I cannot run, I cannot hide

September 13, 2012

The Deepest Blue - Pretty Little Thing (1966)

Coming out of Pomona, California (near Los Angeles), this group was actually predominately known as The Doves for the majority of their existence. When they released their only single, they changed their name on the disc, thinking it would fit more in line with their sound. They played at clubs on the Hollywood strip with groups such as The Seeds and The Leaves. After failing to finish recording an unfinished album, the group took a couple of the completed songs and released them under the name Egyptian Candy. Both songs had been heavily influenced by Chris Darrow, a future member of the US band Kaleidoscope (not to be confused with the UK Kaleidoscope) and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

This song comes from the group’s only release under their Deepest Blue name. It was heavily influenced by Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones and features an extra guitar that was overdubbed by a session musician who was assigned to track after its recording by the studio without the band’s knowledge.

[Note: The lyrics were difficult to understand. If you think you've got them, leave a comment!]

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The Deepest Blue - Pretty Little Thing (1966)

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Lyrics:

Pretty little thing
I have seen you once before
Until that day
Just come walkin’ through my door

They don’t mean to trouble
Once comin’ on my way
They don’t mean
To add it up their way of play
That’s been trouble
Since I gave you that first ring
Yeah

You’re still the greatest
And you’re my
Pretty little thing

Pretty little thing
Don’t try to fool me, I can see
Don’t even try
There’s just no need to convince me
I’m convinced
Of pretty little thing, which that I love ya

Don’t play games
I seem to need ya, pretty thing
It’s been heartache
Since that first time
You came around
Yeah

Stay by me
Pretty little thing
And don’t let me down

Pretty little thing
Oh, sit with me just so
Pretty little thing
Oh, walk with me some
Yes, I want to walk inside your love
Inside
Yeah!

Yeah!

Pretty little thing
I have seen you once before
Until that day
When you come walkin’ through my door

They don’t mean trouble
It’s just not my way
They don’t mean
To add an unfarewell friend
I’ve been trouble
Since I gave you that first ring
Yeah

You’re still the greatest
And you’re my
Pretty little thing

September 12, 2012

The Jive Five - My True Story (1961)

Coming out of Brooklyn, New York in the late 1950s, this American doo-wop group struggled to remain with any one label in their fifty year history. Starting with Beltone records, they were known as the name seen above (and released their most famous song, heard below); since, they have been signed to United Artists, Decca, Avco, Chess, and Columbia Records using various names such as The Jyve Fyve, Shadow, and Ebony, Ivory, and the Jades. If you were born in the ‘70s or ’80s, you may remember an older group of gentlemen singing jingles on the kids’ television network, Nickelodeon. The famous “Nic-Nic-Nic” jingle was sung by them.

Released in 1961, this song was the group’s most popular recording. It reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100, as well as the top of the charts, number one, on the R&B tracks.

[Note: If you'd like to hear the group singing the doo-wop jingles for Nickelodeon, check out this video that someone posted on YouTube.]

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The Jive Five - My True Story (1961)

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Lyrics:

(Cry) Cry, cry, woah
(Cry) Cry, cry, woah

There is a story, yeah
That I must tell
Of two lovers
That I bewail

Now they must cry, cry
(Cry) Woah
Their blues away
(Cry, cry, cry, their blues away)

Her name was Sue, yes
His name was Earl
His love was Lorraine
She's a wonderful girl

But they must cry, cry
(Cry) Woah
Their blues away
(Their blues away)

Love will make you happy
And love will make you cry
Love will make the tears fall
When your lover says goodbye

And then you'll cry, cry
(Cry) Woah
Your blues away
(Cry, cry, cry their blues away)

This story ends, yes
It was no lie
Names have been changed, dear
To protect you and I

But we must cry, cry
(Cry) Woah
Our blues away
(Cry, cry, cry)
Mmm (Woah, our blues away)
We must cry (Cry)
(Cry, cry, cry, woah, our blues away)
Oh...

September 10, 2012

Kyu Sakamoto - Ue o Muite Arukō (1961)

Born in 1941 in Kawasaki, Japan, this artist is remembered for singing the only Japanese song to reach the top of the Billboard charts. When he was only two and a half years old, he and his family fled the bombings of Tokyo occurring during World War II. As a teenager, he joined a Japanese band, known as The Drifters, until internal strife led to him parting ways. After the success of his major solo hit, heard below, he embarked on a worldwide tour that eventually spawned a decently successful follow-up single and full-length album. In 1985, he died in the crash of Japanese Airlines Flight 123, the worst single-aircraft accident in human history.

Originally titled “Ue o Muite Arukō, or “I Look Up When I Walk,” this song was written by lyricist Rokusuke Ei and composer Hachidai Nakamura. When the British owner of Pye Records, Louis Benjamin, visited Japan, he heard the song multiple times during his trip and decided to bring it back with him to England. He chose to have the song renamed to "Sukiyaki" so that it would be both easier to pronounce and still sound distinctly Japanese. The new name, as seen above, had absolutely no relation to the lyrics of the song, as it is the name of a Japanese food dish. Released in the United States in 1963 with its new name, the song went to number one.

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Kyu Sakamoto - Ue o Muite Arukō (1961)

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Lyrics:

Japanese Lyrics English Lyrics

Ue o muite arukou
Namida ga kobore nai you ni
Omoidasu haru no hi
Hitoribotchi no yoru

Ue o muite arukou
Nijinda hoshi o kazoete
Omoidasu natsu no hi
Hitoribotchi no yoru

Shiawase wa kumo no ue ni
Shiawase wa sora no ue ni

Ue o muite arukou
Namida ga kobore nai you ni
Nakinagara aruku
Hitoribotchi no yoru

Omoidasu aki no hi
Hitoribotchi no yoru

Kanashimi wa hoshi no kage ni
Kanashimi was tsuki no kage ni

Ue o muite arukou
Namida ga kobore nai you ni
Nakinagara aruku
Hitoribotchi no yoru

Hitoribotchi no yoru

I look up as I walk
So that the tears won’t fall
Remembering those spring days
But I am all alone tonight

I look up as I walk
Counting the stars with tearful eyes
Remembering those summer days
But I am all alone tonight

Happiness lies beyond the clouds
Happiness lies up above the sky

I look up as I walk
So that the tears won’t fall
Though the tears well up as I walk
For I am all alone tonight

Remembering those autumn days
But I am all alone tonight

Sadness lies in the shadow of the stars
Sadness lies in the shadow of the moon

I look up as I walk
So that the tears won’t fall
Though the tears well up as I walk
But I am all alone tonight

But I am all alone tonight

September 07, 2012

The D-Men - I Just Don't Care (1965)

Note: This is the early ‘60s American group known as The D-Men.
For the Australian band also known as The D-Men, click here.


Coming out of Stamford, Connecticut in 1963, this group started by playing local dives in New York before graduating to the popular hot-spots in Greenwich Village. Playing up to six nights a week, they found the time to release three singles. The band made numerous appearances on the television show, Hullabaloo, where they played their most popular song, heard below. At one point, The Beatles’ manager, Brian Epstein, was a co-host of Hullabaloo and expressed interest in signing the group. In 1966, the group changed their name to The Fifth Estate and found success with their sunshine pop cover of “Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead”.

Released in March 1965, this song was the group’s most popular hit. As mentioned above, it was performed numerous times when the band appeared on Hullabaloo.

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The D-Men - I Just Don't Care (1965)

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Lyrics:

I’ve suffered loneliness and pain
(No, no, I just don’t care)
And now you want me back again
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I don’t care what you say or do
‘cause, baby, now I’m cured of you
You say you’ll be waiting there

But I just don’t care
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I just don’t care
(No, no, I just don’t care)

Walk up the address of your home
(No, no, I just don’t care)
Walk up the number of your phone
(No, no, I just don’t care)
And all the things we used to do
I just forgot about them, too
The memory’s probably there

But I just don’t care
(No, no, I just don’t care)
Oh, I just don’t care
(No, no, I just don’t care)

Okay, let’s give it to ‘em, baby

I wasn't waitin' for your call
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I ought to see you not at all
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I don’t care what you say or do
‘cause baby now I’m cured of you
You say you’ll be waiting there

But I just don’t care
(No, no, I just don’t care)
Woah, I just don’t care
(No, no, I just don’t care)

I don’t care anymore honey
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I’ve had it with you
(No, no, I just don’t care)
You’re too much for me
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I’ve cried too much
(No, no, I just don’t care)
My time has come
(No, no, I just don’t care)
I gotta go now
(No, no, I just don’t care)
So long, girl

[Note: Thanks again to Peter from Peter's Power Pop for help with the lyrics!]

The D-Men - You Just Don't Care (1964)

Note: This is the early ‘60s Australian group known as The D-Men.
For the American band also known as The D-Men, click here.


As with so many other groups around the world, this Australian group was profoundly influenced by The Beatles and Beatlemania. Formed in 1963 in Sydney, Australia, this group featured two rhythm guitarists and three total guitarists at all times. Their popularity was most prominent in New South Wales due to extensive touring with acts such as Ray Brown & The Whispers and Billy Thorpe & The Aztecs.

Released in 1964, this song was the B-side of the single that featured the A-side “I Don’t Know What to Do”. The three guitarists were Frank Collimore, Freddie Cooke, and Vic Sacco. The band also featured George Robertson on bass and Ross Rignold on drums.

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The D-Men - You Just Don't Care (1964)

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Lyrics:

I’ve been tryin’ to figure out a way
To make you mine, but I don’t know what to say
Once you stop playin’ hard to get
True, it’s only been once we met
It seems to me you just don’t care

Every time you’re seen with someone new
Is there anyone per that I’m blue?
I’m just sitting here by myself
Like a lonely pool on a shelf
It seems to me you just don’t care

I’ve never felt this way before
I only wish I’d see you more

If you ever need a love that’s true
Call on me and I will come to you
Maybe one day you’ll meet a guy
Whom you’ll love, and he’ll say ‘goodbye’
And tells you that he doesn’t care

I’ve never felt this way before
I only wish I’d see you more

If you ever need a love that’s true
Call on me and I will come to you
Maybe one day you’ll meet a guy
Whom you’ll love and he’ll say ‘goodbye’
And tells you that he doesn’t care
And tells you that he doesn’t care
And tells you that he doesn’t care

September 06, 2012

The Salt - Lucifer (1968)

In 1968, Joey Levine, of The Ohio Express and “Yummy Yummy Yummy” fame, decided to record a song with a group of session musicians. They weren’t really a group, but they recorded as one. This song was the result; and, as it didn’t sell well, the musicians never recorded together again.

This song was more or less attempting to cash in on the Summer of Love by mimicking everything that had been released the previous summer. Despite the upbeat melody, the lyrics are rather dark and brooding listened to closely. Although the melody is fun, it and its B-side, “A Whole Lot of Rainbows,” failed to sell.

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The Salt - Lucifer (1968)

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Lyrics:

Lucifer’s going to take you down
Na-ha-ha-ha-how
He lives in a very strange part of town
Found underground
He’ll take you down

Lucifer sports a devilish grin
Na-ha-ha-ha-how
His line is trying to sell you sin
He’ll suck you in
You’re sold, baby, yeah

(Temptation is strong)
(Its color is red)
(Resistance is right)
(Its color is white)

Lucifer gives his persuasive talk
Na-ha-ha-ha-how (Lucifer)
He hides behind a big pitchfork
Watching like a hawk
Careful where you walk

Rid of Lucifer
Get rid of Lucifer
Woah, baby

(Lucifer)
He fell in love with the devil
(Lucifer)
He fell in Hell with the devil

(Lucifer)
He fell in love with the devil
(Lucifer)
He fell in Hell with the devil

(Lucifer)
He fell in love with the devil
(Lucifer)
He fell in Hell with the devil

September 05, 2012

49th Parallel - Twilight Woman (1969)

Originally known as Shades of Blond, this Canadian group constructed one national Canadian hit, heard below, in their short lifespan. Coming out of Calgary, Alberta, they renamed themselves to reference the latitude line separating the United States and Canada. They debuted with their first song, “Laborer,” a regional hit in 1966. Their second single, “Blue Bonnie Blue,” was written by the then-unknown Delaney Bramlett about his wife, the also then-unknown Bonnie Bramlett, both of future Delaney & Bonnie fame. Members of the group began shuffling in and out after the success of their song heard below, and the name of the band was changed a couple of more times. First, in 1970, the band renamed themselves Painter, and then a few years later, to Hammersmith.

Released in 1969, this song was released on a single featuring an equally amazing B-Side, “Close the Barn Door”. It was the first success the band was able to muster in the United States, where it had moderate success in various US locations. The success of the song led to the group being offered to record an album, but constant personnel switches kept the group from keeping any stability.

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49th Parallel - Twilight Woman (1969)

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Lyrics:

Twilight woman, she comes
And stays through the night
And she's gone with the sun
Like a shadow

Twilight woman, she loves
She loves through the night
And I must see her face
'cause I love her
Twilight woman, twilight woman

Maybe tonight you will show me your face
What can be wrong that you won't let me see
Twilight woman?
Every night she comes to my place
I'd rather see her than just embrace
Twilight woman, twilight woman

Twilight woman, she comes
And stays through the night
And she's gone with the sun
Like a shadow

Twilight woman (twilight woman)
Twilight woman (twilight woman)

Twilight woman, she comes
And stays through the night
And she's gone with the sun
Like a shadow

Twilight woman, she loves
She loves through the night
And I must see her face
'cause I love her
Twilight woman, twilight woman
Twilight woman, twilight woman
Twilight woman, twilight woman
Twilight woman, twilight woman…

September 04, 2012

The Wailers - No Woman, No Cry [Demo] (1973)

In 1973, The Wailers were gathering increasingly larger crowds during a tour across England. The main members, Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, and Bunny Wailer, received no money for their “promotional” tour and were soon expected to do the same in the seedy nightclubs of the United States. Bunny refused. Hoping his friends would join him in his refusal, he was disappointed to find that Tosh and Marley were going to carry on with the group’s tutor, Joe Higgs, in his place. Shortly after the tour ended, Tosh parted ways with the group as well. He felt Chris Blackwell, the group’s producer, was ripping them off. He also felt that after twelve years of primarily being a backing vocalist, he wasn’t able to materialize the lyrics, music, and emotion that had built up inside of him. Bob Marley continued the group as Bob Marley & The Wailers with his new backing vocalists, The I-Threes.

The original version of this song was released on the 1974 album, Natty Dread. Although it was the first record to be released without Tosh and Bunny, this demo version of this particular song still features Peter Tosh on piano. The female backing vocalists are unknown. Written by Bob Marley, the writing credits were officially given to Vincent Ford, a soup kitchen owner in the Kingston ghetto known as Trenchtown. Marley gave rights to Ford so that he could collect the song’s royalties and continue to feed the starving people in Kingston, Jamaica.

The title is often misinterpreted as meaning “no woman equals no crying;” but, in actuality, the singer is telling a woman, “no, woman, don’t cry”. The confusion arises from the Jamaican slang for “don’t,” pronounced “nuh”. So when the title was being listed, “no, woman, nuh cry,” it was confusingly written as “No Woman, No Cry”.

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The Wailers - No Woman, No Cry [Demo] (1973)

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Lyrics:

No, woman, no cry
No, woman, no cry
No, woman, no cry
No, woman, no cry

‘cause, ‘cause
‘cause I remember when we used to sit
In a government yard in Trenchtown
Oba- observing the hypocrites
Yeah
Mingle with the good people we meet
Yeah
Good friends we have, oh, good friends we have lost
Along the way
(Yeah) Yeah
In this great future, you can’t forget your past
So dry your tears, I say
Yeah

No, woman, no cry
No, woman, no cry
Hey, yeah
A’little darlin’, don’t shed no tears
No, woman, no cry

Hey, said, said
Said I remember when we used to sit
In the government yard in Trenchtown
Yeah
And then Georgie would make the fire lights
I say, a’log wood burnin' through the night
Yeah
Then we would cook corn meal porridge
I say, of which I'll share with you
Yeah
My feet is my only carriage
And so I've got to push on through
But while I'm gone

Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright
Everything's gonna be alright

So, no, woman, no cry
No, woman, no cry
I say, oh little- oh little darlin’, don't shed no tears
No, woman, no cry
Hey

No, woman- no, woman- no, woman, no cry
No, woman, no cry
One more time, I’ve got to say
Oh, little- little darling, please don’t shed no tears
No, woman, no cry

(Hey, little sister) No, woman
It’s his voice
No, woman, no cry
(No, woman, no cry)

I promise you
(Hey, little sister)
Everything’s gonna be alright
(Don’t shed no tears)
Everything’s gonna be alright
Everything’s gonna be alright
(No, woman, no cry)
Everything’s gonna be alright
Everything’s gonna be alright
Everything’s gonna be alright
Everything’s gonna be alright, hey
(Everything’s) gonna be alright
Everything’s gonna be alright
Everything’s gonna be alright
(Everything’s…)

September 03, 2012

Apaşlar - Anadolu Oyun Havası (1967)

In 1961, in Istanbul, Turkey, the local bands Sen Gencler and Kuartet-X united as one to create this band, named after The Shadow’s “Apache”. It wasn’t until 1967 that the group really took off, after recruiting Cem Karaca, the group’s new vocalist. Under Karaca’s songwriting skills, the group went touring in Germany and signed a record deal. They recorded with the Ferdy Klein Orchestra, returned to Turkey as cultural icons, and incorporated Hendrix-like theatrics on stage. Tension between Karaca and the group’s guitarist led to the group splitting up in 1970, but Karaca would go on to become one of Turkey’s greatest singers of all time, largely molding Anatolian rock. He passed away in 2004 after a career of numerous successful recordings.

This song comes from the group’s earlier successful years. It’s an instrumental Anatolian rock song, meaning it fuses elements of Turkish folk music with rock and roll. Perhaps it’s being culturally ignorant, but it sounds a lot like surf rock to me. And that’s a great thing.

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Apaşlar - Anadolu Oyun Havası (1967)

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Lyrics:

(instrumental)