Tuesday, January 17, 2017

SHG: The Lovin' Spoonful: "Daydream"

The Lovin’ Spoonful: “Daydream”
Entered the chart on: 3/12/66
Peaked on: 4/9/66
Weeks at #2: 2
Song at #1: “(You’re My) Soul & Inspiration” by the Righteous Brothers

The Lovin’ Spoonful get my vote as one of the more underrated 60s “classic rock” acts. Their rootsy sound was sort of the lost, missing link between the Young Rascals and Creedence Clearwater Revival. And I rather prefer them to either of the aforementioned (though I like the Rascals fine, and rather regret that I won’t be reviewing any of their tunes). Unfortunately, in these “90% of acts from the past are reduced to one-hit wonder status” days of oldies radio programming, “Summer in the City” is the only tune of theirs that seems to get any airplay these days.

Not that it’s a bad song, but they have a lot more to recommend than just that. I imagine it gets a lot of love because it’s their “edgiest” song. In general, they were a bit laid-back and good-natured, which I guess doesn’t play as well in a world gone hard and cynical. I, for one, have a soft spot for this element of their sound, fondly remembering my mom’s copy of “Nashville Cats*.”

So...clearly these guys need a second appraisal. Let’s examine the first (of two) of the songs that brought them here to Second Hand Goods:

Wow, talk about stripped-down! All you hear at first accompanying John Sebastian’s voice is a banjo-sounding guitar. Eventually we get a full band of sorts, with some light, very legato guitar injections, saloon piano and bass. And is it my imagination, or are there no drums on this track? All I’m hearing are spoons! So that’s where Split Enz got it from!

Despite the country-fied sound, lyrically this comes across as very suburban. A song about the simple domestic pleasures of a day off from work, with his best lady. “Bundle of joy” suggests that she’s just given birth, too...or maybe that’s his pet name for her. In any case, in spite of the late winter release date, this conjures up images of lazy summer afternoons, sipping a cold drink while swinging in a hammock with one of your feet dangling over the side.

Really not much more to say about this. A modest pleasure, but one I sure wouldn’t want to be without.

Rating: 5

*on the Kama Sutra label, fact fans. I admired the label design, and because my age was still in single digits, the “suggestive” nature of the label’s name flew right over my innocent head. Incidentally, one of the first records I ever owned, which I’ll be reviewing some time in the future, was also released on Kama Sutra. I’ll let you ponder what that might be.