Thursday, April 22, 2021

1968 - Wichita Lineman

 Here's another sweet one from 1968. Glen Campbell's recording reached number 3 on the US Pop Chart, and it stayed in the Top 100 for a total of 15 weeks. It also made Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" in 2010. I rushed to record this on April 22, 2021, when I learned that would have been Glen Campbell's 85th birthday.


As I note in the introduction, I have at least one other Jimmy Webb song coming up - in 1987. But the list is fluid, and your suggestions may push another Webb classic onto the list. Please share your memories and favorites.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

1968 - This Guy's in Love With You

Here's a sweet song to lift your spirits, from Burt Bacharach and Hal David.

"This Guy's in Love With You" was a number one hit for Herb Alpert, who was bests known as a trumpeter who led the Tijuana Brass. I was surprised to learn (as part of my scanty research on this song) that Mr. Alpert - known at the beginning of his career as Dore Alpert - started out as a vocalist.

The song is a simple declaration of love, and it has stood the test of time. Whether it will continue to stand following this rendition for SixtySongs remains to be seen.


That's it for now - there's a follow-up SixtySong for 1968 coming soon. As I say in the video, be safe and be healthy.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

1967 - My Cup Runneth Over

My second entry for 1967 is a little different. Most of my SixtySongs are pop and rock songs, while this is from the Broadway musical "I Do! I Do!" It's true that the version by Ed Ames reached #1 on the Adult Contemporary Chart (and #8 on the Pop Chart), but it's still something of a SixtySongs outlier.

Harvey Schmidt wrote the music, and Tom Jones (not the singer) wrote the lyrics, which speak of the many reasons that the husband in the play loves his wife. He tells us that his love will endure, even as the world is "turning cold". I know just how he feels.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

1967 - Child of Clay

"Into the darkness, he was cast by parents who were ignorant ..." 

That line opens Child of Clay, which was written by Ernie Maresca and Jimmy Curtiss. The song was a 1967 hit for Jimmie Rodgers, and it proved to be his last. It was recorded in 1997 by P.J. Proby and Marc Almond, thirty years after Rodgers' version.

The song tells the sad story of a person who went "out into the street at night" to find answers to life's questions. He fell in with people who used him instead of helping him, leading him to a life of "sordid sin". 

I see this as a cautionary tale for parents, in the mode of Cat's in the Cradle by Harry Chapin. Here's my take on it:


Who is to blame? The Oompa-Loompas claimed to know "... exactly who is to blame -  the mother and the father!" But I'm not so sure. 

Well, we'll move on to the other half of 1967 soon. As I note in the video above, the selection may come as a surprise to some viewers. But I gave one clue in the video, and here's another - I do like quite a few songs from Broadway musicals. 

Please share your memories and favorite songs from 1967 and stay "tuned" to SixtySongs. Thank you!

Sunday, March 10, 2019

1966 - Sounds of Silence

"The Sounds of Silence" is my third SixtySong from 1966, one of two songs named when I put out the call for special requests. (It's interested to note that the other request was another Simon & Garfunkel song - "Homeward Bound". Fortunately, both songs are very much among my favorites.)

Finding some definitive meaning for this song is difficult at best. Finding a personal meaning, however, is easier. To me, the lyrics speak to the dangers of giving up on communicating with one another, whether the conversation is intimate or political. Silence, indeed, "like a cancer grows".

We're coming up on 1967, which will feature two songs - one made famous by the Monkees, and another one originally recorded by Jimmie Rodgers. See you then!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

1966 - Homeward Bound

Homeward Bound was written in 1964 by Paul Simon when he returned to England after he and Art Garfunkel recorded their first album, "Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M." According to Wikipedia, he had met Kathy Chitty in New York, and the song is about the conflict between his longing to return home and his desire to continue performing.

As I note in my introduction, this was the first song I performed before a live audience. I was in fourth or fifth grade at Paradise Elementary School, and we - Tim Schobert, Randy Bumpous (aka Randy Holliday), and I - played the song on the basement stage for our fellow students. I was so nervous, I sang the entire song with my back to the audience. Perhaps that's my best side!

Sadly, as I mention in the video, Paradise Elementary was destroyed by the Camp Fire in November 2018, along with most of the other structures and homes in the town. My heart aches for the people who lost their lives in the tragedy, and for those who have been displaced. You can help by donating to one or more of the sites set up to help. As a Rotarian, I recommend donating to the Paradise Rotary Foundation's page. Click on this link - #PARADISESTRONG - to make your contribution.

Enough talk - here's the song!

Saturday, March 24, 2018

1966 - Solitary Man

In the early seventies, I was a big Neil Diamond fan. I had a lot of his songs memorized - which was relatively easy, since there weren't a lot of complex chords.

Instead of selecting any of his other hits as a SixtySong, I opted for "Solitary Man". It has a classic opening riff (that I actually know how to play), and an equally classic theme - the betrayed lover.

The song has been recorded by Johnny Cash (as I mention in the video), Chris Isaak, Billy Joe Royal, and Johnny Rivers, among many others. And now me ...

I would like to hear any suggestions you have for the "flip side" of 1966. And I would appreciate your comments - think of those as coins in a virtual tip jar! 

Thanks again for visiting 1966 with me! Until next time!

P.S. - "The Girl From Ipanema" was first recorded in July 1964, if you were wondering.