A Bit Like You And Me Radio

February 29, 2016

The Flamingos - I Only Have Eyes For You (1959)

This doo-wop group was originally formed in 1950 by cousins Jacob “Jake” Carey and Ezekiel “Zeke” Carey. The two had moved from Baltimore, Maryland to the south side of Chicago, Illinois and joined their church’s choir, where they met other original members. As with most doo-wop groups of the time, members of the group left, other members joined, and the lineup switched around quite a few times. The group started out under the name “The Swallowsand,” until they discovered a group in Baltimore using the name “The Swallows” had started to take off. This led them to start calling themselves “The El Flamingos,” followed by “The 5 Flamingos,” and then finally, just “The Flamingos.”

Originally performed in the 1934 movie Dames by Dick Powell and Ruby Keeler, this song was written by composer Harry Warren and lyricist Al Dubin. It had been featured in numerous films by different performers; and, at its peak, hit number two for Ben Selvin in 1934.

But it was The Flamingos who really put the song into popular culture when they recorded and released their version in 1959. Though The Flamingos’ version only reached number eleven on the national charts, it reached number one in countless local markets, and became a hit in multiple countries surrounding the globe. Since its debut, the version heard below has been used in dozens of movies, television shows, and has been sampled by numerous artists.

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The Flamingos - I Only Have Eyes For You (1959)

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Lyrics:

My love must be a kind of blind love
I can't see anyone but you

Are the stars out tonight?
I don't know if it’s cloudy or bright

I only have eyes for you, dear

The moon may be high
But I can't see a thing in the sky

I only have eyes for you

I don't know if we're in a garden
Or on a crowded avenue

You are here
And so am I
Maybe millions of people go by
But they all disappear from view
And I only have eyes for you

February 23, 2016

Four Jacks and a Jill - Master Jack (1967)

This South African band first performed together in 1964 under the name The Nevadas. Later, when they were going by the name The Zombies (no, not those Zombies), they added a new lead singer, Glenys Lynne and changed their name to the one above, which is now most remembered. Besides Glenys, rounding out the band was Clive Harding on bass; Till Hanamann on guitar, trumpet, and organ; Bruce Bark on guitar, harmonica, and saxophone; and Tony Hughes on drums. The group performed together for eighteen years, sometimes recorded in the Afrikaans language, and reunited for a tour in 2000.

The band received their biggest hit to date in South Africa when their song “Timothy” rose to number eighteen in 1967. Later that same year, the band released the song heard below and topped the charts of South Africa with the number one spot. When it was released in the United States the following year, the song managed to reach number eighteen, where it would become their highest charting song stateside.

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Four Jacks and a Jill - Master Jack (1967)

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Lyrics:

It's a strange, strange world we live in, Master Jack
You taught me all I know and I'll never look back
It's a very strange world and I thank you, Master Jack

You took a colored ribbon from out of the sky
And taught me how to use it as the years went by
To tie up all your problems and make them look neat
And then to sell them to the people in the street

It's a strange, strange world we live in, Master Jack
You taught me all I know and I'll never look back
It's a very strange world and I thank you, Master Jack

I saw right through the way you started teaching me now
So someday soon you could get to use me somehow
I thank you very much and though you've been very kind
But I'd better move along before you change my mind

It's a strange, strange world we live in, Master Jack
You know how I feel as if I'll never come back
It's a very strange world and I thank you, Master Jack

You taught me all the things the way you'd like them to be
But I'd like to see if other people agree
It's all very interesting the way you disguise
But I'd like to see the world through my own eyes

It's a strange, strange world we live in, Master Jack
No hard feelings if I never come back
You're a very strange man and I thank you, Master Jack

You're a very strange man and I thank you, Master Jack
You're a very strange man, aren't you, Master Jack

February 22, 2016

Benny Goodman - Memories of You (1956)

Benjamin “Benny” Goodman was born in Chicago, Illinois on May 30th, 1909. He was a jazz musician, a swing musician, a clarinetist, and a bandleader. He led a popular, integrated jazz group during the height of segregation. He performed throughout his entire life- which ended in 1986 at the age of seventy seven- despite the ailing health of his later years. His overwhelming success in the music industry earned him the nickname “The King of Swing.”

The song heard below is a 1956 recording by Benny Goodman on his clarinet, and featuring his backing band. When originally written in 1930 by Eubie Blake, the song had accompanying lyrics which were written by Andy Razaf. The song had been made for use in the 1930 Broadway play Lew Leslie’s Blackbirds of 1930. It was in this play that the song was first introduced by singer Minto Cato. Although the version below is instrumental, there is a version which was released by Goodman featuring the lyrics being sung by Rosemary Clooney.

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Benny Goodman - Memories of You (1956)

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Lyrics:

(Instrumental)

February 17, 2016

The Remains - Heart (1966)

In 1964, at Boston University, four students from a dormitory across the street from Fenway Park in Kenmore Square decided to form a band. The lead singer and guitarist, Barry Tashian, and their keyboardist, Bill Briggs, were both from Westport, Connecticut. Their drummer, Chip Damiani, was from Wolcott, Connecticut. Their bassist, Vern Miller, was from Livingston, New Jersey.

It was when the band’s live acts began to accumulate groups of people lined all the way back to Fenway Park down the street that the band really took off locally. They were signed to Epic Records and released some singles that did well regionally. In 1965, the band relocated to New York City and made an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, furthering their stardom. In 1966, the band moved out to California, trying to tap into the west coast, and made an appearance on Hullaballoo. Their persistence and dedication paid off; but, unfortunately, for only a short period of time.

It was in 1966 that the band was made an offer to appear as an opening act for what would become The Beatles’ last tour. Though most members of the band were ready for the tour, it was their drummer Chip Damiani who, for one reason or another, decided to back out of the tour and quit the band. The group’s replacement (future Mountain drummer N.D. Smart) was skilled enough, but lacked the preparation and experience with his bandmates to fill the void that was left by Damiani. Though the group was able to get through the tour, they disbanded later that same year.

The song heard below was written by Georges Aber, Tony Hatch, and an uncredited Petula Clark. It was first recorded and released by Petula Clark in June 1965. The version heard below was recorded for the band’s only album, titled The Remains, and released to little ado in 1966 as the album's opening track.

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The Remains - Heart (1966)

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Lyrics:

Heart
I can hear my heart
Every time we meet
Every time we part

When I'm in your arms
I can hear my heart
We kiss
And the rhythm starts

I can hear the beat, beat, beat
Every time you're here
What? Don't speak to me
'cause I just couldn't hear

I can hear the boom, boom, boom
Like a rhythm of a train
Like a thousand drums
There it comes again

Woah, what can I do now?
My heart is beating just for you

Yeah, my poor heart
Well, can't you see?
What you have started
Oh, what you're doing to me?

You gotta stop now
I'm going crazy
I’m going out of my head
Heart

You gotta stop now
I'm feeling hazy because I got it so bad

I'm so in love with you
Nothing I can do
And I'm gonna lose my heart to you