Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Music I Grew Up With, 1966-1972

It was the music of Simon and Garfunkel that brought me to admit I liked popular/rock music. Sounds of Silence wasn't silly and it wasn't about love. I have no idea what it is about. But it seemed deep. Sounds of Silence was the first 45 record I ever bought and the album was one of the first albums I ever bought.

I soon was buying records with most of my allowance. I bought record boxs at K-Mart to store them in and wrote all the records on the index card provided.
I had record boxes like these

Index cards with the records I bought
Some were great records; others have been long forgotten.

Missing from my collection were the songs so often played I didn't need to buy them, especially The Beatles, and living in Metro Detroit, Motown.
Sheet music cover For Once In My Life by Stevie Wonder
Here are the records I bought between January 1966 and 1972. I have links for the songs that are not as well known.

  • Sounds of Silence, Simon and Garfunkel. Simon says he was inspired by Bob Dylan.
  • Michelle, Billy Vaughn's cover of the Beatles hit.
  • Lightnin' Strikes, Lou Christie.
  • Flowers on the Wall, the Statler Brothers. My mom liked this one.
  • Ebb Tide/I Love You for Sentimental Reasons, the Righteous Brothers.
  • Elusive Butterfly, Bob Lind. Learn more about it here.
  • Can't Grow Peaches on a Cherry Tree, Just Us. Very folk-rock.
  • The Ballad of the Green Berets, St. Barry Sadler. The patriotic hit just before the anti-war movement.
  • Homeward Bound/Leaves that are Green, Simon and Garfunkel. I still sing both of these.
  • What Now My Love, Tijuana Brass. Mom was a big Herb Alpert fan. We had all the records and Mom bought me the piano music to learn.
My music book of Herb Alpert

Sheet Music cover of Bang, Bang
  • Bang, Bang, Sonny and Cher. Mom liked this one.
  •  Message to Michael, Dionne Warwick. What a voice!
  • Sloop John B, The Beach Boys. Still singing this one. Love it.
  • Norwegian Wood, George Edwards. Folksy with an ethnic flair.
  • Monday, Monday, the Mamas and the Papas. I loved their harmonic singing.
  • Sweet Talkin' Guy, The Chiffons. Upbeat girl band song.
  • I Am A Rock, Simon and Garfunkel. I told you I was a fan. This song is my antithesis.
  • Strangers in the Night, Frank Sinatra. So sweet I didn't realize it was about getting laid.
  • Paint it Black, The Rolling Stones. I was getting edgy in my music taste.
  • Rainy Day Women, Bob Dylan. And getting edgier!
  • You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, Dusty Springfield. Schmaltz for sure.
  • He, The Righteous Brothers. The girl who bought this also bought Rainy Day Women?
  • Red Rubber Ball, The Cyrkles. Bubble Gum Music.
  • Little Red Ridding Hood, Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs. Warning girls about boys.
  • Tar and Cement, Verdelle Smith. Loss of country beauty.
  • Sweet Dreams, Tommy McLain. Rockified Country.
  • The 1812 Overture by Tchaikovsky came free from Puffed Rice.
  • Out of this World, Chiffons. Another upbeat song from the girl band.
  •  Reach Out, I'll Be There, The Four Tops. So good. That driving beat.
  • The Dangling Conversation, Simon and Garfunkel. Love the poetry.
  •  I've Got You Under My Skin, The Four Seasons. I love this so much. "So deep in my heart, you're really a part of me...I've got you under my skin." Those bells. "Never win." That pause before the coda. Sigh.
  • Hazy Shade of Winter, Simon and Garfunkel. Remains one of my favorites; I sing it every November.
  • I Who Have Nothing, Terry Knight and the Pack. Written by Ben E. King. Performed by a local DJ. Overwrought.
Sheet music cover for Born Free with Roger Williams
Sheet music cover of Stand By Me, Ben E. King

Sheet Music cover of Easy to Be Hard from Hair

Sheet music cover for Witchita Lineman by Glen Gampbell

Sheet music cover of Don't Let Me Down by the Beatles

Sheet music cover for theme from Love Story
Sheet music cover El Condo Paso, Simon and Garfunkel
  • Indiana Wants Me, R. Dean Taylor. Man murders to protect his woman's honor.
  • Peace Will Come, Melanie. Hippie folk rock from Woodstock.
  • El Condor Paso, Simon and Garfunkle
  • Fire and Rain, James Taylor
  • Ticket to Ride, The Beatles. An old one I found somewhere.
  • If You Could Read My Mind, Gordon Lightfoot. Lovely.
  • Deja Vu, Crosby, Sills, and Nash
Sheet music cover for Leaving on a Jet Plane
performed by Peter, Paul and Mary
written by John Denver

Sheet music from Carly Simon

Albums were expensive. But I bought quite a few, there were lost by accidental water damage. Here are the ones I remember:
  • Happy Together by the Turtles
  • Sounds of Silence by Simon and Garfunkel
  • Rubber Soul by the Beatles
  • Beach Boys album--but I forget which one
  • Procol Harem. A Whiter Shade of Pale, Reid said, is 'evocative,' not about sex or drugs.
  • Bob Dylan's Greatest Hits (1967)
  • Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
  • Songs of Leonard Cohen. I loved Suzanne.
  • Realization by Johnny Rivers. It had a great sound.
  • Beggars Banquet by The Rolling Stones. Sympathy for the Devil.
  • Remember the Wind and the Rain by folk singer Jamie Brockett
  • Abby Lane by the Beatles. Everyone was so excited when it came out.
  • Candles in the Rain by Melanie
  • Bookends by Simon and Garfunkel
  • Crosby, Sills and Nash. It was so fresh.
  • Chicago, the big Chicago band sound was all the rage at college that September, blaring out of the dormitory windows.
  • Sweet Baby James, James Taylor
  • Tommy, The Who
  • Jesus Christ Superstar
Sheet music cover of Colour My World, Chicago
Some of my piano sheet music didn't make it through 14 moves, including Sounds of Silence and Yesterday by the Beatles, but they were easy piano versions. I started collecting sheet music in the late 1970s and the photos in this post are from my collection of over 1,000.

Some recordings have grown on me over the years. Like Unchained Melody. That longing. Sigh.
I heard a college friend sing The Boxer by Simon and Garfunkel and I've loved it ever since.
"In the clearing stands a boxer
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of ev'ry glove that laid him down
Or cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame
"I am leaving, I am leaving"
But the fighter still remains"
Much later I bought CDs of music I grew up with, including The Temptations. I sang, "Sugar pie honey bunch/You know that I love you/I can't help myself/I love you and nobody else" to my baby son. Marvin Gaye's What's Going On album also ended up on my shelf. I also bought piano music books of many artists, including Paul Simon.

I met my husband at Adrian College. We both loved classical music and choral singing. He also liked folk rock including The Kingston Trio, The Irish Rovers, and Peter, Paul and Mary. We became John Denver fans in the early 70s and saw him in concert several times. In 1978 we attended the Philadelphia Folk Fest and discovered many wonderful artists, including Stan Rogers, Priscilla Herdman, Roberts and Barrand, Eugene O'Donnell, and Jean Redpath. By this time the Disco/Philadelphia Sound was big and I wasn't keeping up with popular music.

For a long time, I avoided classic rock because the memories associated with the music was so strong, and too often so sad. I didn't want to think about those tortured teen years or the painful memories of the social and political upheaval of the '60s.

But to this day, when I hear a classic rock song on the radio I can tell you what year it came out and what was going on in my life at that time. It was, after all, the music I grew up with, interwoven in my life.

What music is part of your story?

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