The 60's

  • Gary Lewis and the Playboys "Everybody Loves A Clown"

    for this music blog I tend to pick songs that have a very interesting angle about them lyrically but not always musically. this song on the other hand is super interesting in my opinion because it takes up an interesting angle in a traditional pop love song. basically what's happening in this song is the singer is talking about how most people love clowns but the girl he is interested in doesn't like clowns at all. in fact, she is scared of clowns and every time she sees the singer who is a clown, she takes off and leaves when everybody else laughs, and he jokes around at a party while she's there, she doesn't laugh or looks and she just doesn't care, the singer is confused as to why the girl isn't really that interested in him and his antics to the point that it's really making him sad, but he gives the girl a little perspective as to what it's like to be in his shoes by saying it's really not easy to be a clown and be in love with her when she doesn't return the same feelings for him. in fact, in the final verse of the song, we find out that the singer really has no interest in being a clown and is frustrated that the girl he's interested can't seem to understand or see the whole other side of him that's a lot darker then just him being super happy as a clown. the song concludes with the singer who imagines himself pretending to be the clown with a broken heart and then lastly, he begins to think that the girl she's talking to has big dreams of falling in love with a guy but does not even know where to begin as to how she can go about finding that and to start doing that. but what's interesting about this song is that it's sad but the loose ends are not tightened at the end and the ending is not very happy and extremely open ended which makes this song very interesting. and not only that but the production on this track is very much top notch for records of this era from doubled guitar and orchestral chimes in the bridge to a very up front harpsichord throughout the whole record and Gary's doubled lead vocals. and what's also surprising about this record is a lot along with the Wrecking Crew, memebers of the Playboys are also playing on this which included Tommy Tripplehorn and Carl Radle, and David Costell and John West and David Walker a long with memebrs of the Wrecking Crew including Hal Blaine and Tommy Tedesco and Ray Pohlman and Bill Pitman and of course, the head arranger and producer Leon Russell who not only did the Arrangement but also played Harpsichord on this record and many other Playboys songs. this song was cut at United Western Recorders on Sunset Boulevard and was cut on June 3rd, 1965

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  • Peter and Gordon "I Go to Pieces"

    there's a reason why I always will and keep coming back to 60's music. I don't care if I"m 89 years old I will still have just a strong of a passion and love for this decade of music as I do right now at 22 years old. I might not be able to relate to and connect with each song from this era in terms of the lyrics but that does not take away at all from my passion and love for it. Now this song, I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have heard this song. and trust me, I've heard it over a MILLION times, but after not hearing it for a while, I have to hear it again. it really is one of those songs I tend to gravitate two because of it's pure raw emotion in the lyrics and the chord structure in the song. it utilizes my favorite chords of all time. the minor 3 and the minor 2 chord, and those chords perfectly fit with what's happening in the lyrics. and really it's what's happening in the lyrics that intrique me about this song. right from the very first verse, as soon as he see his ex girlfriend, he can't get his eyes off of her and he becomes weak and vulnerable. he tries to let his arms know to hold someone knew but they don't seem to listen or care. and things get very interesting in the bridge when he all of the sudden turns back the clock and goes back to the moment when his girlfriend said goodbye to him, and things all of a sudden go from third to first person. it seems as if the girl leaves things with him opened ended by saing "we'll meet again soon maybe" but then she quickly closes things off by saying "but until we do all my best to you" and then things quickly go back to the guy being lonely missing his ex, but it's curious as to why he actually misses her because at the last part of the last verse, he says "she hurt me so much inside now I know she's satisfied" I don't know why he misses her and wants to come back to her when she hurt him deep inside. that I"ll probably never know but this song is such a great example of fantastic songwriting. from the switch to third to first person to an amazing hook, definitley a greta record. but what also makes this song interested is the story behind. it. it was written by an American Singer Songwriter named Del Shannon who has had hits with songs such as "Runaway" and "Hats Off to Larry" and "Little Town Flirt"  and he tried to record this song with an artist he was producing at the time he wrote it named Lloyd Brown. when he did that, he shopped the recording around to various different record labels in New York, none of them were interested in putting out the single so he recorded it himself in Mira Sound Studios but was unable to throw down a satisfactory vocal for the song. so he decided since he can't sing the song himself, he would give it somebody else, at the time he had just scored a really big hit despite the onslaught of the the British Invasion called "Keep Searching Will Follow the Sun" and that allowed him to tour worldwide again and share the stages with other popular british Invasion bands. the story goes he was put on the bill with two really huge British Invasion groups. the Searchers and this duo named Peter and Gordon. it was then that he pitched this song to the Searchers and they were not interested in recording it at all, but then Peter and Gordon who were apart of the same show overheard that song and fell in love with it. they gladly asked Del's permission to record hit. he gave them the green light to record it and sooner then later, the duo came back to England and took this song with them for a recording session at Abbey Road Studios produced by John Bugress and Arranged by Geoff Love. Eddie King their guitar tech can also be heard playing the 12 string guitar along with their guitar playing on this record. it was released in Dec. of 1964 in America, and a month earlier in their home country the UK, and it became the 4th consecutive Top 40 hit in America after A World Without Love, I Don't Want To See You Again and Nobody I Know. it also was the first hit they had that was not written by John Lennon or Paul McCarntney of the Beatles. Peter Asher later went on to become a successful A&R Man for Warner Brothers Records producing the likes of Linda Rodstat or James Taylor in the 70's but that's another story.

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  • The Searchers "Love Potion Number 9"

    This song has always been really fascinating to me for several reasons. it's plot can be extended and embellished into a major motion picture, but really this song is just one of those I always had a clear memory of even as a child but for the longest time did not know who the band was who did it or who wrote the song, but as soon as I found that out, I was just fascinated by the song's history. but let's just start with the song's lyrical content, it starts with a guy who keeps failing with girls and is desperately looking for some kind of cure to get him to have more success with the ladies, so he goes to this gypsy named Madam Ruth who happens to have this "gold cap tooth" in her mouth and her place is located on the intersection of 34th/Vine (and by the way there is no such intersection as 34th/Vine, at least in Los Angeles) and when gets there, he finds out that she has seven little bottles of this chemicle known as "love potion Number 9" and that's exactly what she pescribes to him after he lets her know what his issues with girls are and then what really makes the song interesting is that he goes into describing what the potion smells and looks like (specifically Turmpen Thyme and Indian ink) and then he proceeds to having a sample of this love potion and what happens is that his vision goes completely down the drain and can't tell if it's day or night and he starts kissing everything in sight but as soon as he kisses a cop in the same intersection where the gypsey was located in (34th/Vine) the bottle of Love Potion Number 9 gets broken but what's really interesting about this song is that yes it's about love but there is no one specific girl involved and the main subject in the song is not a girl or a romatic relationship but a bottle of chemicles which I firmly believe did not fix his girl problems but still made the song fun and entertaining nonetheless. it kind of follows the old cliche of the guy going to go see a fortune teller or a love guru looking for solution for his problems but instead finding something else entirely different then that. but anyways, this song was actually written by Two Brill Building Veterans Jerry Lieber and Mike Stoller and originally recorded by a African American group the Clovers and their version contained an alternate lyric at the end "I had so much fun that I'll go do it again I wonder what wil happen with Potion Number 10" and whether or not Lieber and Stoller made this story up or if it was based off of anything real I don't know, but chances are the story was completely fictional and untrue. but regardless, the group that recorded this was a British group that was just on the heels of the Beatles in America and were the second british group to have hits in America after the Beatles along with Dusty Springfield. and they consisted of Mike Pinder, Tony Jackson, Chris Curtis and John McNally. they were signed to Pye records and were produced by the same guy that produced Petula Clark, Tony Hatch.

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  • Ray Charles "You Don't Know Me"

    There are very few songs from the 60's that I can personally relate to. it seems as if they're was more songs about already being in a relationship and having that being reciprocated (you know, she love me, I love her and all of that BS) or on the flip side, songs about relationships gone wrong, guy cheats on the girl, or visa versa, they can't understand each other so the guy ends it with the girl or visa versa and then the girl or guy misses each other so badly and they can't stand being lonely or without and how everything sucks and their life is really shit and they can't stand being without each other even though their past relationship is gone. Now granted while these situations might be relatable to most other people my age, I've never really been in a serious romantic relationship or had that much success with girls so the human feelings or emotions that are surrounded in those songs are things I've never really had or have had expereinced before. but there is one subject matter that really does speak to me and one human feeling and emotion that I can personally say I have had before with girls, and this particular song sums that emotion all up in just a few lines of lyrics. and if you haven't already figured it out by now (and hopefully you have since I"m assuming whoever reads this blog is somewhat intellectual and can pick up on things pretty quickly) and that is the feeling of being attracted to the girl but she does not feel the same way or is not attracted to me at all and only considers me as a friend. This has happened to me on numerous occasions and quit honestly, I don't want it to happen again but really, there are some lyrics in this song that really speak to me. for example "for I never knew the art of making love", that lyric rings true to me for a reason that I won't reveal in this blog post but given the subtext in the lyric you should be able to figure out why that one line of lyric speaks to me so much. and also, the other half of that section "afraid and shy, I let my chances go by a chance that you might love me too" now this one I will explain why I can relate to it so much. in numerous times while I try to get girls, I always feel so frustrated because I let them slip away from me and into the arms of another man because of my inability to attract and seduce them, but for me it's not neccesarliy because I"m afraid and shy (and really I"m not) it's because of my social awkwardness and my "friendly" and non sexual conversations I have with these girls that result in me not getting her in the long run, or her already being in a commited romantic relationship with another guy before I stepped into the picture which automatically puts me in the "friends zone" and really, that is what this song is all about. and also, what makes this track really interesting is that this was originally a Country song written by Eddy Arnold and Cindy Waalker that was pretty basic but Ray Charles re arranged it and turned into a tender R&B Ballad with extremely sophisticated chord changes that are just drop dead sexy,and trust me, if I didn't tell you that it was a originally a country song written by Nashvill writers, you probably would have thought it was a smooth R&B Pop tune written by Charles himself. but anyways, this song was really interesting because Ray became one of the first male Black singers to do a full album of Country songs written and originally recorded by white people. now at first people thought he was crazy and it would never amount to anything really big but he proved them wrong and had his publisher track down the most popular C&W hits of the past 5 years and that is what he would up recording at a brand new studio in Hollywood called United Western Recorders with Sid Feller producing and the Randy Van Horn singers backing him up. and also, a very young Don Peake is in these sessions as well as a guitar player. the first white Guitar player to join Ray Charle's session and touring band.

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  • Chris Montez "Call Me"

    Do you ever listen to a song and think to yourself "man I can really picture myself saying that to a specific person I'm interested romantically and sexually?" well that's exactly how I felt when I listened to this song. it's one of those songs that says what a lot of guys say to a girl that they're romantically interested in, and while the song might be dated in a sense that the average person doesn't really make a whole lot of phone calls in this day and age and most people prefer texting but still since Call and text or one syllable words they can be swapped out for one another since it would still fit with the melody of the song. if someone were to do a cover of this song in 2017, they could easliy sing "text me, don't be afraid you can text me, baby it's late but just text me" but that's besides the point. the point is the singer is suggesting the girl should call him so they could potentially get together for a date, now when I'm usually talking to girls I don't usually suggest they should call me or text me in fear they might think I"m desperate or needy and that's the kind of vibe that the singer is getting off in the song because really, he's letting the girl know that he is available and she should call him whenever she needs him which isn't neccesarily a bad thing but it's always better to let girls know that your busy and you have a life and you don't have a whole lot of free time on your hands. but either way, it's every guy's dream to tell a girl that they like to call or text them and have them actually do it. Cause a lot of times you'll tell them that and they will say "ok but they won't follow through with it. it's something I've always looked for in a girl, but have never been able to achieve, but the point is the message that the guy is giving to the girl is clear and to the point and can still fit in a situation in the modern world even though this song is 52 years old. but really, what makes this song remarkable is the incredible musicianship of the players (which were regulars of the A&M record label which was Herb Alpert's label started by him and Jerry Moss. hence the A&M name of the label) Herb Alpert produced this song and he used top notch players such as Nick Ceroli on drums, Julius Whecther on vibes, Pete Jolly on piano, Chuck Bergphopper on bass, and John Pisano on guitar. but really, the vibes and the piano are the instruments that really stick out on this song as well as some of the tasty drum fills and I really do enjoy the live feel of the recording (specifically the handclaps) to make it seem like the song was recorded in a nightclub when it was really cut at Gold Star Studios on the corner of Vine and Santa Monica Boulevard. but another interesting thing about this song is that it was written by Tony Hatch and originally recorded by Petula Clark. which is interesting because most of her songs were songs that nobody else really did at the time and this was only 1 out of the 2 songs that she originally recorded first and did not have a hit with (at least in America) but someone else recorded it  and a pretty decent sized hit with it in America. the other song was "Your the One" by the Vogues, that one she actually co wrote with her writer/producer Tony Hatch.

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  • Simon and Garfunkel "Homeword Bound"

    when you listen to songs, often times they are about romantic relationships that either went really great and everything is awesome or things went to complete shit. either the guy or the girl got cheated on or one of them initiated a breakup so something more or less went wrong with that. but how often do you hear songs that are simply about the feeling of looking forward to coming home while being on a long journey? Now personally it's difficult for me to relate to songs like that because I have not travelled super far away from where I live (I usually stick in the Los Angeles Area and not go outside of it) But I have known many friends that have travelled a great distance to live where I live (LA) and I'm pretty sure this song will hit home for them. This is also one of those songs that have lyrics that really paint a picture of what's going on with the singer's life. you can hear that he is a solo artist/songwriter that is tired and warn out after doing several shows around the city he is visiting and now is eagarly waiting for his train to arrive that will take him home to his girlfriend and he'll hear his beatiful music playing in his home as soon as he arrives. You can tell when listening to the song that he feels a sense of loneliness and he has gotten warn out of the monotony of the places he is travelling to and all of the people he is running into on his journey aspire him to want to go back home. Any aspiring Singer songwriter who goes on tour and travelles across the country will be able to relate to this song. Just the feeling of wanting to go back home and being sick of the monotoney of every single city you travel in is something that was relatable back then and even right now in 2017. and also, what makes this song even more interesting is that Paul wrote this based off of his own experience about traveling as a singer songwriter in England (where he was living at the time) in 1964. he also had a strong infatuation with a girl in Greenwich Village named Kathy Chitty who has a ticket taker at a club he used to perform at before he moved to England and was still living in New York after the recent faliure of Wednesday Morning 3am. A landmark album for the duo. after it became clear that he wanted to perform in England, the two parted ways and when he got stuck at a Widness Railway Train station (which was in Liverpool) he wrote the lyrics for this song. You can clearly now see where he got the inspriation to write this song now. this song is also in my favorite musical key (Bb Major) and it features beatiful acoustic guitar work by Paul and a great piano work by Al Kooper. and this track was also recorded in New York in Columbia Studios with Bob Johnston producing.

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  • Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons "Working My Way Back To You"

    I have been waiting to do a review of this group for quite a long time. and I apologize for not doing any reviews in Oct or for the rest of Sept. My site was down for a long time because long story short I missed a payment but when I paid for it my site was still down, contacted Virb and they told me to get in touch with GoDaddy (my domain name server) I did and they fixed a minor issue that was causing my site to be down. but moving on, I'm really excited to tackle this one and give my two cents on it. why? because whenever I try to describe people about my music, I always mention this group. why? because when you listen to my original songs (and I"m not neccesarliy focusing on the vocal performances, but on the melodies and song structure and lyrics) I've been able to model my songs in terms of structure (the hook, the chorus, and the verses and pre choruses) from listening to songs by this group. their songs (especially a few of their 1965 songs) have been a big influence on me as a songwriter and in my honest opinion, I think their music represents the best music that came out of the 60's hands down but exactly makes their music so good? well, it's not just the hooks and the melodies that make their songs so memorable and unique but the lyrics is what I really want to focus on for this song. now whether or not you can relate to the singer's actions he has made towards his girl, the situation that is painted in this song can describe a young man's situation right now in 2017. he was with the girl, but when he was with her, he didn't think much of her and for whatever reason was not satisfied by her at all and he treated her like dirt and enjoyed it but as soon as the girl decides to call it quits and move on to someone else, he immediately regrets his past actions because now he spends many nights a lone and he can't stand not being with her but he also knows that he will have to work his way back to getting back together with her with a happiness that slipped away from him when karma bit him in the ass. now this song was not written by the team that wrote most of the group's hits but you can tell just by listening to the song that the team that wrote this modeled this tune after the songs that Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio wrote for the group (the group's main writer's/producers) and made it sound simliar in terms of structure but not infringing on their copyrights either. all of the group's songs benefited from supreme musicianship by New York's top studio musicians.players like Buddy Saltzman, Al Gorgoni, Hugh McCracken, Vinnie Bell, Ralph Casale, Lou Mauro, Eric Gale, Dick Hyman, Bernie Glow, Ernie Royal, and several others. some of the best players in New York are on their records and not only that, but for mono singles, they also benefited from excellent engineering work that made their performances pop and shine, and that would not be possibly without people like Phil Ramone or Sandy Dalvadore While I can say that their music drasically improved by 1964, I honestly believe their music has had the best capability of standing the test of time and becoming absolutely iconic. and I can guarantee you, after hearing this song, the chorus will be drilled into your brain and you won't be able to get it out of your head for weeks on end. that's how good their music was. even if you won't remember any of the verse lyrics. the chorus will stick with you. their music was so good that even the Spinner's a 1970's pop soul disco group decided to cover this song and make it a big hit all over again the late 70's early 80's. and MadCon even covered one of their songs and turned into a big radio hit in the mid 200's. just goes to show you how good they were, heck, there even was a broadway play and a movie made about this group.

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  • The Newbeats "Run Baby Run"

    this song and this band are quit honestly one of the most fascinating groups of the 60's. there music was the perfect blend of two very popular genres of music of the mid 60's and the lead singer's lead vocals are very distinct as well. what made this group so interesting? well, for starters, they came out of Nashville. now for us music history buffs, we should know that Nashville (before this record came out) had a very strong reputation in the music business for putting out corny/schmaltzy country songs with lush string arrangements and slide guitar and really reallly sappy background vocals. that became well known in the biz as the "Nashville Sound". this was emboddied in many hit records by the likes of Skeeter Davis, Roy Orbison, Brenda Lee (especially her) and Johnny Tilloston. glossing over country with those types of arrangements help that genre of music cross over onto the Pop Charts. but really, when Nashville came out with this group, right out of the gate, it was quite the departure for what they were most well known for up until that point. first of all, when you listen to their first hit record (Bread and Butter) that Tambornie Slam on Two and Four and the two chord piano riff echoed many Motown songs of that time (including many Marvin Gaye records like Your A Wonderful One) and more importantly, Larry Henley's distinct Falsetto lead vocal seemed to have been very influneced by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. so essentially, their music was very much a combination of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and Motown, but to me it feels like Henley's falsetto lead vocal seemed to would have become a big influence on the Bee Gees for their music in the 70's. but on the side, to me it sounds like this group was a direct result of how Nashville was listening to what the Four Seasons and Motown were putting  out at the time and their take on how there were going to compete with both of those groups and those labels by creating their own version of the Motown and Four Seasons sound. this record in, in particular, is a great example of just that. with it's fuzztone guitar and rolling piano riff and it's staccato strings, it really is a unique sounding record with a lyric that can be tied with a real story behind it but I"m not exactly sure if it was based off of anything real but I doubt it was. the song is essetionally about a guy that is encouraging a woman to run into his arms if the guy she's really interested in hurts her and makes him cry, a story that very well could have been done before in another song but the way this record came out, it made that old cliche story fresh and new again. this record was also produced by Wesley Rose and I"m honestly not sure about who's playing on the record but given the time period this record came out in and the city it was recorded in, It was probably some of the Nashville Usual suspects of the mide 60's (Nobert Putnam or Charlie McCoy on bass, Hargus Pig Robbins Or David Briggs on piano, Kenny Buttery or Jerry Carrigan on drums or Jerry Kennedy and Wayne Moss on Guitar)

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  • Herman's Hermits "Just A Little Bit Better"

    When the British Invasion happened in 1964, it wipped out the careers of many singers and groups that were extremely popular between the years 1959 and 1963. many groups that were consistantly having Top 10 and Top 20 hits within this period were no longer having hits after the Beatles came to America. these groups included the Everly Brothers, Ricky Nelson, Neil Sedaka, Bobby Vee, the Shirelles and Dion. some of these singers were lucky to have a comeback in the 70's or late 60's but some of them never saw the light of day after the Fab Four took over the Hot 100 in 1964 (this included the Shirelles). Some groups were not harmed by the British Invasion at all. Such as Motown, the Beach Boys and Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and several others. (Chicago Soul included and the Newebats and the Shangri Las and others as well). but during the British Invasion, many bands ranging from towns such as Newcastle, St Albans, and Manchester, Liverpool and Tottenham brought a different Flavor of British on to the Pop charts. some of the bands were harder edged and more about Blues and Rock and Roll like the Animals, but this group in particular was more a long the lines of Bubblegum pop but they were still intellligent enough to have songs that appealed to older Teenagers other then just little kids. they were also, one of the most popular British Bands of the 60's Ranking up 12 Top 10 singles between the years 1964 and 1967. this song in particular has an interesting angle. it's song from a guy that talks about a woman's love interest (that isn't him by the way) that's fuilty rich and can buy her all of these fancy and lugurious things that he simply can't afford, but what he can give her is love, and he's trying to convince the girl that love would be a million times better then any fancy item her love interest can give her. the song opens up an opportunity for an asnwer record to be made sung by the girl as to who she decides to date, the guy that has all of the money and can get her whatever she wants or the broke guy that can give her love and that's pretty much it. that concept can easily be appliable to a modern day situation and I can relate to it to a certain extent because of my current financial situation and I know when trying to get girls, I could be competing against guys that have jobs and can buy her whatever she wants. but anyways, now I would like to talk more about this group. they were first and foremost a real group. they played on most of the American Top 10 hits (expcet for There's a Kind of Hush) and were a solid band Derek Leckenby (the group's lead guitar player) is a solid lead guitar player who played the solo on I"m Henry the Eigth and the distincitve lead guitar on Mrs Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter. other band members included bassist Karl Green, Rhythm Guitar Player Keith Hopwood and drummer Barry Whitwam, and of course, the lead vocalist Peter Noone (who looks and sound the same today, by the way) the producer on this (Mickie Most) also produced Donovan, the Animals, and Lulu. most of their songs were cut at Dee Lane Lea Studios in London. the only songs they did not play on their covers of Wonderful World and Silhouettes and No Milk Today and There's a Kind Of Hush. John Paul Jones and Jimmy Page are on those records though (and Possibly Bobby Graham as well)

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  • the Monkees "I'm Not Your Stepping Stone"

    there is no other word to desrcibe this track other then completely and totally badass. Not only is this track totally ahead of it's time but it conveys such an attitude that would be the precursor to a genre of music that would later become known as Punk Rock. now really when you listen to this track, the attitude that comes out of it is a sure fire "don't fuck with me" attitude that would really hit home to a lot of listeners but what exactly makes this track so badass? well first of all, it's in a minor key and really the message in this song is clear. and what he is trying to tell the girl he's talking to is also very clear. now this is definitely not your conventional love or break up song at all. it's really about a girl that has put the guy down in the past and has used and abused him and the guy lets her know upfront that he will not be another one of her victims she can just push over and basically be her "stepping stone", and to add more of an interesting angle to this song, the narrator paints the picture for us in a sense that he lets know that the girl definitely has money and is very upper class and not poor at  all and the clothes she wears are so outragous that it could cause people to take notice of what she is wearing and it could cause "Public scenes" but at one point she used to have no money at all (hence the lyric when I first met you girl you didn't have no shoes) and the guy also lets the girl know that he will never be a friend of hers and she won't find his name in her book of contacts that she has. either way, this song has a strong hook and it's definitely different from a lot of other songs that they, but it's still totally badass. and another thing that's really cool about this song is that it goes Double time in the section after the  chorus. still super cool. but now I would like to talk about some of the history behind this particular band. this band was formed and created by two TV producers/writers Bob Rafelson and Bert Schneider. the cast the 4 actors in the show based off of a casting call they made out to hire 4 young good looking musicians for the show. but during these early stages of the show, they did not let the members of the monkees Play on their own records or write their own singles. instead, they hired two songwriters/producers from Screen Gems to write songs for the series, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart to write and produce for the series. production of the show started in the summer of 1965 and the instrumental tracks were written and recorded for the first album were done without any real participation from the group members minus singing on the tracks. the musicians on these early recordings included Larry Taylor on bass, Wayne Erwin, Gerry McGee and Louis Shelton on guitar, and Bobby Hart on Organ and Billy Lewis on drums. this angered a couple of members of the band because Michael Nesminth originally wanted to write and produce some of the band's singles but was limited to writing and producing 2 original songs as album cuts. eventually, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart were fired as writers and producers of the show and the Monkees were allowed to play ont their own records for their first album but that album generated no hit singles and was knocked off the charts by Sgt Pepper's by the Beatles. Neil Diamond and Gerry Goffin and Carole King also wrote songs for the Monkees and so did John Stewart of the Kingston Trio. most of their early songs were cut at RCA studios in Hollywood.

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