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Friday on my Mind 168: When You’re Young and in Love

Another Motown song from one of the label’s lesser known artists.

I particularly like the Rachmaninov style piano introduction.

The Marvelettes: When You’re Young and in Love

Friday on my Mind 167: Captain of Your Ship

Despite the clanking bell on the intro (signalling we are probably to think of a paddle-driven river boat) and the reference to the boat leaking this always put me in mind of Science Fiction. It must have been the futuristic sounding name Reparata and that Delrons sound like something from Captain Scarlet.

Reparata and the Delrons: Captain of Your Ship

Friday on my Mind 166: Take Me in Your Arms and Love Me

Another Motown song. Is that a harpsichord in the intro? Unusual for Motown.

This builds up from a slow, quiet start to something rather more ostentatious.

Gladys Knight and The Pips: Take Me in Your Arms and Love Me

Friday on my Mind 165: Up Up and Away

Another Jimmy Webb song this was first recorded by the 5th Dimension in the US but it was The Johnny Mann Singers who had the UK hit.

The Johnny Mann Singers: Up Up and Away

Not Friday on my Mind 50: Elenore

This song’s lyric is surely the only pop song to include the word etcetera. Or at least to attempt to rhyme it.

The Turtles: Elenore

Friday on my Mind 164: When You Walk in the Room

Another song which has the word nonchalant in its lyric, When You Walk in the Room was written and performed by Jackie DeShannon but is more familiar to Britons via the cover version recorded by The Searchers which got to number 3 in the UK 1964. The song’s title is never actually sung in its entirety during its course; only its last four words.

The Searchers: When You Walk in the Room

Here also is Jackie DeShannon with the song on US TV:-

Jackie DeShannon: When You Walk in the Room

Friday on my Mind 163: Poupée de Cire, Poupée de Son/Les Sucettes. RIP France Gall

France Gall who has died recently won the Eurovision Song Contest for Luxembourg in 1965. She was French as was the song’s composer Serge Gainsbourg. I blieve this video is of her performance on the night.

France Gall: Poupée de Cire Poupée de Son

Gall was apparently the subject of a particularly cruel trick by Gainsbourg when he persuaded her to record the song Les Sucettes (Lollipops) about whose double meaning Gall claims she was unaware. (Though the Guardian obituary linked to above says that when requested to lick one for a TV performance, she declined.) The film below makes the lyric’s inference obvious.

France Gall: Les Sucettes

This video outlines the story, along with Gall’s viewpoint.

Isabelle Geneviève Marie Anne “France” Gall: 9/10/1947 – 7/1/2018. So it goes.

Friday on my Mind 162: The Rain, the Park and Other Things

I mentioned the Cowsills a few weeks ago. They never had a hit in Britain but had more success in the US of which this song was the breakthrough single.

The group was apparently the inspiration for The Partridge Family.

The Cowsills: The Rain, The Park and Other Things

Here’s a rather impressive live version recorded in 2013.

The Cowsills: The Rain, The Park and Other Things

Not Friday on my Mind 48: I Am a Rock

“A winter’s day/In a deep and dark December.”

Today is just about as deep and dark as December gets.

So here’s a song about darkness in the soul.

Simon and Garfunkel: I Am a Rock

Friday on my Mind 161: Retiens La Nuit: Que Je T’aime – RIP Johnny Hallyday

Johnny Hallyday is perhaps the biggest rock and roll star you’ll never have heard of. Huge in the Francophone world and beyond, but not in the Anglophone sphere. He died this week.

His first hits were in the early 1960s – two French no. 1s with a cover of Chubby Checker’s Let’s Twist Again under the French title Viens Danser Le Twist and Retiens La Nuit. They sound like early 1960 songs. The less said about Viens Danser Le Twist perhaps the better but here’s Retiens La Nuit.

Johnny Hallyday: Retiens La Nuit

A more typically French sound is Que Je T’aime from 1969 but it still has late 1960s hallmarks with Eurovision overtones.

Johnny Hallyday: Que Je T’aime

Hallyday’s career was long but he had to wait till the 2000s for his next no 1s, two in 2002, one each in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

This is a montage of various live performances of Gabrielle showing he could rock it up with the best of them.

Johnny Hallyday: Gabrielle

Johnny Hallyday (Jean-Philippe Léo Smet): 15/6/1943 – 6/12/2017. So it goes.

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