Archives » 1960s

Friday on my Mind 124: It’s Gettin’ Better

This is just a wonderful feel-good song. Cass had a distinctive voice. Pity she died so young. (So it goes.)

Cass Elliott:- It’s Gettin’ Better

Not Friday On My Mind 35: RIP Cilla Black

I know it’s not good form to speak ill of the dead but I’m afraid I can’t share the “National Treasure” stuff surrounding the passing of Cilla Black. She was undoubtedly a substantial entertainment figure of the 1960s though, with several big hits and many smaller ones. Yet to my mind her singing voice became too harsh when she upped the volume. In softer tones she could be quite effective though.

As to her later incarnation as a television presenter, I saw Blind Date once. It wasn’t for me. I never watched Surprise, Surprise.

I went off her completely when she was introducing some awards ceremony or other and mentioned Margaret Thatcher, at which the audience booed. Cilla then protested (against all reason) “But she’s put the great back in Great Britain.” Maybe for successful entertainers, but not for those left behind.

This was Cilla in her 1960s pomp, in a clip from Top of the Pops:-

Cilla Black: Surround Yourself With Sorrow

And here she is in her softer register. (Interesting that in the intervening almost forty years since I first heard her perform this song, to reflect our modern sensibilities the lyric has been changed from “ye’ll gerra belt from yer da’,” to “Ye’ll get told off by your da’.”)

Cilla Black: Liverpool Lullaby

Priscilla Maria Veronica White (Cilla Black): 27/5/1943-1/8/2015. So it goes.

Friday on my Mind 123: Hi Ho Silver Lining

You may remember back in the dim distant past of this category’s genesis I mentioned a competition at my workplace for favourite 60s hit. Hi Ho Silver Lining came second but not the original version by The Attack. Rather it was Jeff Beck’s recording that was voted in.

The Attack: Hi Ho Silver Lining

And here’s a footnote to why the above is now the lesser known version of the song:-

David Arden attacks the hyping of Hi Ho Silver Lining

And for comparison purposes here’s the reverse-hyped version.

Jeff Beck: Hi Ho Silver Lining

Not Friday On My Mind 34: The Truth

The Truth found difficulty coming up with their own songs. As this link from last week says, their singles were all written by people from other, more famous bands, in order here: The Beatles, The Kinks and The Rascals.

The Truth: Girl

The Truth: I Go To Sleep

The Truth: Sueno

Val Doonican

Yet another voice from my young past has been extinguished.

Val Doonican was always determinedly old-fashioned and was probably more famous for Irish novelty songs, wearing woolly jumpers and singing while reclining in a chair than for ruffling the charts but he had a good crooner’s voice and five top ten hits between 1964 and 1967.

Doonican’s biggest was What Would I Be – a no 2 – and his cover of Bob Lind’s Elusive Butterfly reached No 5 in the UK charts – as, curiously, did Lind’s own version.

Val Doonican: Elusive Butterfly

Michael Valentine “Val” Doonican: 3/2/1927 – 1/7/2015. So it goes.

Friday on my Mind 122: Fly Away Bird

The reason I was googling The Left Banke last week was because I finally stumbled across an embeddable file of the version of Walk Away Renee that I actually bought. The one by The Truth.

The B-side, Fly Away Bird, is fairly stripped down.

The Truth: Fly Away Bird

Just for completeness here’s the A-side. There’s much more production on this.

The Truth: Walk Away Renee

Friday on my Mind 121: Pretty Ballerina

I’ve just been googling The Left Banke again and discovered that their bassist Michael Brown passed away on 19th March this year.)

He was a co-writer of Walk Away Renee (which I featured here) but this song, Pretty Ballerina, was all his.

The Left Banke : Pretty Ballerina

Michael Brown (Michael David Lookofsky): 25/4/1949 – 19/3/2015. So it goes.

Not Friday On My Mind 33: Do I Still Figure in Your Life?

Firstly, a piece of English whimsy typical of Honeybus, which I have mentioned before.

Like last week’s offering – (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay – Honeybus’s version of this Pete Dello song has brackets in its title.

Honeybus: (Do I Figure) in Your Life?

Joe Cocker reworked it in his own distinctive way – with title slightly amended, and no brackets. In Cocker’s hands the song has a totally different feel.

Joe Cocker: Do I Still Figure in Your Life?

Not Friday On My Mind 32: (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay

Like Hard to Handle, Otis Redding’s biggest hit was released after his death. So it goes.

Not typical Redding, it has a more reflective feel.

Otis Redding: (Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay

Friday on my Mind 120: Terry

I just read yesterday that 60s almost one-hit wonder, Twinkle, has passed away.

Her big hit Terry caused a fuss at the time it was released as it was about a boy who died in a motorbike crash. Coincidentally The Shangri-Las’ similarly themed Leader of the Pack came out at much the same time. I do remember my next to oldest brother buying Terry. He had a thing for records by solo female singers.

Another of Twinkle’s claims to fame is that she eventually married the Milk Tray man.

Here are both sides of the Terry single.

Twinkle: Terry (plus The Boy of my Dreams)

Twinkle’s only other hit, Golden Lights, was later covered by The Smiths!

Twinkle: Golden Lights

Lynn Annette Ripley. “Twinkle.” 15/7/1948 – 21/5/15. So it goes.

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