A Bit Like You And Me Radio

March 29, 2017

The Pattens - Jump (1966)

This Wheaton, Illinois band only ever released two singles. Their first single featured the A-Side “Shame Shame Shame” backed with a cover of Gene Vincent’s 1958 song “Say Mama.” Its release date is unknown, although it was most likely released sometime in 1965 or early 1966.

The band’s second single was definitely released in 1966. It featured the A-Side “You Should Know” and was backed with the B-Side “Jump.” Although “You Should Know” was credited by The Pattens as having been written by a “R. Kahler” (perhaps a member of the band?), the very same song was recorded and released a year prior in 1965 by another local Wheaton band, The Escavels. The Escavels claim the song was actually written by their band’s Stan Sherbino with some help from his bandmates Ken Utterback and Tony Pavilonis.

Before a case of “he said, she said” is brought about regarding the true authorship of the song, it should be noted that The Pattens don’t exactly have a reputation for giving original authors their due. The Pattens credited their second single’s B-Side, heard below, to a “Ren Shawel.” It can hardly be considered a mistake when you find out that that song, too, had been previously recorded and released by another band. In 1964, The Toggery Five (all the way over in Manchester, England) released “I’m Gonna Jump,” which is the same exact song, and was written by member Frank Renshaw.

Although it cannot be determined if this lack of credit was the ill-intentions of the band, somebody at Stature Records, or some unknown third party, it certainly appears that The Pattens' “Jump” was avoiding giving credit to The Toggery Five by slightly changing the name of the song and crediting its authorship to “Ren Shawel” rather than The Toggery Five’s true author, Frank Renshaw.

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The Pattens - Jump (1966)

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Lyrics:

I saw you yesterday and I died
I saw you yesterday and I knew that you’d lied
I saw you walking with a guy holding his hand
I saw you kissing him and giving in to all his command

Don't you know I'm gonna jump, girl?
Yes, jump
Jump in that river, yes, I’m gonna die

You said you loved me; all the time you were faking
You didn't tell me about the guys that you were making with
And now I know all about your game called “tantalize”
And now I'm broken up- and it’s your fault- and I hope you’re satisfied

Don't you know I'm gonna jump, girl?
Yes, jump
Jump in that river, yes, I’m gonna die

Don't you know I'm gonna jump, girl?
Yes, jump
Jump in that river, yes, I’m gonna die

Don't you know I'm gonna jump?
Don't you know I'm gonna jump?

March 24, 2017

The Mojo Men - Lost Love (1965)

In the late 1950s, cousins Jim Alaimo (1934-1992) and Steve Alaimo (b. 1939) were in an instrumental band in Miami, Florida known as The Redcoats. When the band broke up around 1960, Steve Alaimo went on to have a respectable career as a solo recording artist and quite successful career in the television industry. (Perhaps most notably, Steve Alaimo became the host and co-producer of Where the Action Is with Dick Clark.) Jim Alaimo, on the other hand, got together with Paul Curcio, Dennis DeCarr, and Don Metchick to form The Valiants, a band which would sometimes back Steve Alaimo on his solo recordings.

In 1964, The Valiants wanted to be where the music scene was blooming and therefore decided to move to San Francisco and change their band’s name; they became The Mojo Men. Out in San Francisco, the band signed with Autumn Records where they joined up with record-producer Sylvester Stewart (later known as Sly Stone) and recorded a bunch of early material that never got released. Finally, in 1965, the group released “Dance with Me” and made their first appearance on the Billboard Hot 100.

Unfortunately for the band, Autumn Records closed shop and Dennis DeCarr left the band. They then signed up with Reprise Records, replaced DeCarr with The VejtablesJan Errico, and changed their sound to a more pop and folk rock style. In 1967, they released what would become their most popular song, a cover of Buffalo Springfield’s “Sit Down, I Think I Love You.” It was the group’s only Top 40 hit. Metchick left the band in 1968, “The Mojo Men” became “The Mojo,” “The Mojo” became “Mojo,” and after failing to chart again, they eventually called it quits in 1969.

Below is a song from The Mojo Men’s early years, circa 1965, from the Autumn Records collection of material Sly Stone felt wasn’t good enough for release. The collection became available in 1995 on the release Whys Ain’t Supposed to Be by Sundazed Records, a label who specializes in releasing obscure and rare recordings from the 1950s, ‘60s, and ‘70s. This song was written by Paul Curcio, Don Metchick, and Jim’s cousin Steve Alaimo.

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The Mojo Men - Lost Love (1965)

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Lyrics:

Where is the love
I used to know?
Where is my lost love?
Where did she go?

I’ve been so lonely
Since she went away
I love her, only
She left me one day

What does it take
To make a love last?
We don’t know the future
Could it be the past?

I’ll keep on searching
Wherever I go
But will I find her?
Does anyone know?

All I can pray is
Someone above
Will help me search for
My long, lost love

What did I do?
How did I fail?
Why is my love such
A sorrowful tale?

March 20, 2017

Ellen Margulies - The White Pony (1968)

Ellen Margulies is an American singer who was briefly in the duo “Tom & Ellen” (with Tom Everett) which released the single “Too Many Things” b/w “My Up Is My Down” in 1966. It appears to be the only single released by the duo.

It also appears that Margulies recorded one more single, as a solo artist in 1968, before exiting the music industry for good. In ’68, Margulies recorded “The White Pony” b/w “Meditation.” “The White Pony” was written by Roger Joyce, Steve Steinberg, and Danny Secunda, while “Meditation” appears to only have been written by Joyce, who also served as producer, arranger, and conductor.

It’s rumored that Margulies was unaware of her songs being released until sometime after the year 2000, leading one to assume that she never saw any royalty money from her recordings.

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Ellen Margulies - The White Pony (1968)

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Lyrics:

Prague lee wing raindrops come down from the skies
Like crystalline tear drops, they roll from my eyes
I reach for the sunlight, the bright rainbow door
And chase the white pony through doomed skies once more

I’ll ride so high, where cotton clouds fly
And cellophane nightingales always sing
There I’ll seek worlds that could be
And I’ll know that I can do anything

Cross-legged, I sit in this cold, cloistered room
Trying to see if the flower will bloom
I’ll taste the sweet pollen and open my eyes
And ride the white pony through crumbling skies

I’ll ride so high, where cotton clouds fly
And cellophane nightingales always sing
There I’ll seek worlds that could be
And I’ll know that I can do anything

I’ll ride so high, where cotton clouds fly
And cellophane nightingales always sing
There I’ll seek worlds that could be
And I’ll know that I can do anything

March 15, 2017

Rosie and the Originals - Angel Baby (1960)

Born in Oregon in 1945 to a Mexican mother and American father, Rosalie “Rosie” Hamlin spent her youth living in Alaska and California before finally settling with her family in National City, California.

In 1958, at the age of thirteen, Rosie lied about her age and joined her first band as its lead singer. At the age of fourteen, she wrote her first song, based on her first boyfriend, heard below; and at the age of fifteen, Rosie and a group of her friends drove one hundred miles to the closest recording studio so that they could record her song.

After shopping their record around for a while, the group received an offer for a contract from Highland Records under the stipulation that David Ponci, the oldest member of the group, would receive the writing credits. By the time the song was receiving airplay, the members of the group still had not received their copies of the contract. Unfortunately for Hamlin, when she finally did receive the contract, she quickly learned that she would be unable to collect royalties from the song since she wasn’t listed as the songwriter. This, quite immediately, lead to the break-up of the group. And although Hamlin won the copyright to her music in 1961, decades of legal battles followed.

Despite credit originally being given to David Ponci, the song below was written entirely by Rosie Hamlin. It was released in November 1960 and featured the vocal talents of Rosie Hamlin when she was only fifteen years old. By January 1961, the song reached number five on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was later covered by John Lennon in 1973 (though not released until 1986), where Lennon referred to it as one of his "all-time favorite songs." In the song's intro, he also adds, "Send my love to Rosie, wherever she may be..."

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Rosie and the Originals - Angel Baby (1960)

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Lyrics:

It's just like heaven being here with you
You're like an angel, too good to be true
But after all, I love you, I do
Angel baby, my angel baby

When you are near me, my heart skips a beat
I can hardly stand on my own two feet
Because I love you, I love you, I do
Angel baby, my angel baby

I love you, I do
No one could love you like I do

Please, never leave me blue and alone
If you ever go, I'm sure you'll come back home
Because I love you, I love you, I do
Angel baby, my angel baby

I love you, I do
No one could love you like I do

March 10, 2017

We Five - You Were on My Mind (1965)

Michael Stewart (younger brother of The Kingston Trio’s John Stewart) is largely responsible for putting together this band from the ashes of its forerunner, The Ridgerunners. Assembled in 1964, the group was signed to Herb Alpert’s A&M Records and released their first album, You Were on My Mind, in 1965. The album’s title track, heard below, sold over one million copies and was nominated for a Grammy.

After the release of their second album Make Someone Happy in 1967, the group’s Beverly Bivens decided to leave the group. Having sang lead on the group’s biggest hits, Bivens departure from the group severely hurt the band. Although they would release two more albums in ‘69 and ’70 with Debbie Graf Burgan replacing Bivens, the group was unable to reach their prior levels of success. They disbanded in 1970.

Written by Sylvia Fricker (later Sylvia Tyson) in 1962, the song below was first recorded and released by the duo Ian & Sylvia on their 1964 album, Northern Journey. The version heard below was altered slightly both musically and lyrically by Michael Stewart. Released in 1965, the song reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100.

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We Five - You Were on My Mind (1965)

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Lyrics:

When I woke up this morning
You were on my mind
And you were on my mind
I got troubles
I got worries
I got wounds to bind

So I went to the corner
Just to ease my pains
Just to ease my pain
I got troubled
I got worried
I came home again

When I woke up this morning
You were on my mind
And you were on my mind
Yeah, I got troubles
I got worries
I got wounds to bind

And I got a feeling
Down in my shoes
Said, way down in my shoes
Yeah, I got to ramble
I got to move on
I got to walk away my blues

When I woke up this morning
You were on my mind
And you were on my mind
Yeah, I got troubles
I got worries
I got wounds to bind

March 06, 2017

The Hollies - Maker (1967)

The Butterfly album by The Hollies was the last album to feature Graham Nash as a member of the group. For some time, there was a growing divide between Nash and the other members of the band regarding the musical direction of the group. Nash, as he recounts in his autobiography Wild Tales, wanted to take the band in a more political and “enlightened” direction by writing lyrics that alluded to drug use, sex, and the issues he saw in the world around him. Conversely, his fellow bandmates (lead by Nash’s best friend growing up, Allan Clarke) wanted to keep the formula they had been successfully using: happy-go-lucky pop music. The straw that broke the camel’s back came when Nash learned that the group wanted their next album to be entirely made up of covers of Bob Dylan songs. (This would later be released, without Nash, as Hollies Sing Dylan and was disliked by fans and critics alike.)

The song heard below was written and composed entirely by Graham Nash. It was featured as the third track on the Butterfly album, released in November 1967, which coincidentally featured more tracks written and sang by Nash than any Hollies album had yet. In the United States, Butterfly was released under the title Dear Eloise / King Midas in Reverse. On that version of the album, the track below was found on the flip side as the tenth overall song.

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The Hollies - Maker (1967)

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Lyrics:

Days of yellow saffron.
Nights with purple skies
Melting in the sunbeams
From my maker's eyes

Mountain-colored lilac
In the distant haze
I would like to lie here
Timing all my days

Move past my window
Sunshine is shimmering
Jack-o-lanterns glimmering
Giant moths are flickering around

See, the moon is hiding
Underneath the sea
Pretty soon he'll venture
To take a look at me

So I humbly stand here
Beneath his golden glow
Doesn't he remind me
Of somebody I know?

I must be leaving
Back to reality
Don't you just pity me?
I could so easily stay here

March 01, 2017

Bobby Darin - If I Were a Carpenter (1966)

As mentioned in our first post regarding today’s featured artist, Bobby Darin was a teen idol who had had pop music hits such as “Splish Splash,” “Beyond the Sea,” and “Dream Lover” in the late 1950s and early ‘60s. But by the mid-1960s with that style of music falling out of popularity with the general public, Darin was forced to reinvent himself. In June 1966, Darin released an album consisting of then-current Broadway musical numbers. Just six short months later in December 1966 he did an about-face and released If I Were a Carpenter, which was an album of folk and folk rock songs.

If I Were a Carpenter featured Darin singing five songs written by Tim Hardin, two songs written by John Sebastian, a song by Buffy Sainte-Marie, and a few others. But far and away without question, the biggest hit was the title track.

Written by Tim Hardin, the song heard below hadn’t even yet been released by Hardin himself when Darin took the song to number eight in the USA (and number nine in the UK). In fact, Hardin wouldn’t release his version of the song until his album Tim Hardin 2, which hit shelves in April 1967. Ultimately, Hardin wasn’t happy with Darin’s release, believing the Darin too closely copied his vocal style of the song (heard on his demos) and the musical arrangements.

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Bobby Darin - If I Were a Carpenter (1966)

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Lyrics:

If I were a carpenter
And you were a lady
Would you marry me anyway?
Would you have my baby?

If a tinker were my trade
Would you still find me?
Carrying the pots I made
Following behind me

Save my love through loneliness
Save my love for sorrow
I've given you my only-ness
Come give your tomorrow

If I worked my hands in wood
Would you still love me?
Answer me babe, "Yes, I would
I'll put you above me"

If I were a miller
At a mill-wheel, grinding
Would you miss your color-box?
Your soft shoes shining?

If I were a carpenter
And you were a lady
Would you marry me anyway?
Would you have my baby?

Would you marry anyway?
Would you have my baby?