Song Lyric Sunday — Atlantis

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday, Jim Adams has given us “above,” “below,” and “between” for our theme. My choice for this week comes from way down below the ocean. It’s “Atlantis” by Donovan.

“Atlantis” was written and recorded by Scottish singer/songwriter Donovan Leitch. Released as a single in 1968, it became a worldwide hit. The song was not deemed likely to be a hit in the U.S. because of its length and the fact that the first third of the song is spoken prose and was, therefore, not “radio-friendly,” which is why it was demoted to B-side status to “To Susan on the West Coast, Waiting.” However, the song was quite successful, reaching number 7 on the Billboard charts, and it became an anthem of the hippie movement. Interestingly, the only sung line in the song are Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be.

The song begins as a long narrative poem in which Donovan tells of the legendary island of Atlantis. Exotic and mythological images were on the minds of many hippies in the ’60s, and Atlantis was the symbol of the conterculture moment with the hope that, if true love is found, Atlantis will be reached.

Here are the lyrics to “Atlantis.”

The continent of Atlantis was an island
Which lay before the great flood
In the area we now call the Atlantic Ocean.
So great an area of land,
That from her western shores
Those beautiful sailors journeyed
To the South and the North Americas with ease,
In their ships with painted sails.
To the East Africa was a neighbour, 
Across a short strait of sea miles. 
The great Egyptian age is 

But a remnant of The Atlantian culture.
The antediluvian kings colonised the world
All the Gods who play in the mythological dramas
In all legends from all lands were from far Atlantis.

Knowing her fate,
Atlantis sent out ships to all corners of the Earth.
On board were the Twelve: 

The poet, the physician, The farmer, the scientist,
The magician and the other so-called Gods of our legends.
Though Gods they were –
And as the elders of our time choose to remain blind 
Let us rejoice 
And let us sing 
And dance and ring in the new Hail Atlantis!

Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be,
Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be,
Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be.
Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be,
Way down below the ocean where I wanna be she may be.
My antediluvian baby, oh yeah yeah, yeah yeah yeah,
I wanna see you some day
My antediluvian baby, oh yeah yeah, yeah yeah yeah,
My antediluvian baby, 
My antediluvian baby, I love you, girl,
Girl, I wanna see you some day. 
My antediluvian baby, oh yeah
I wanna see you some day, oh My antediluvian baby.
My antediluvian baby, I wanna see you
My antediluvian baby, gotta tell me where she gone
I wanna see you some day Wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up,
oh yeah Oh club club, down down, yeah
My antediluvian baby, oh yeah yeah yeah yeah

Weekly Song Challenge — Love, Food, and Sunshine

Musical NotesFor this week’s Weekly Song Challenge, Laura has asked us to post three videos — a song that reminds us of a loved one, of food or drink, and of rain or sunshine.

Her rules are:

  • Copy the rules and add them to our own post, pinging back to Laura’s post.
  • Post music videos for our answers to the musical questions.
  • Tag two people anyone who wants to participate!

So here goes.

1. Post a video of a song that reminds you of a loved one.

2. Post a video of a song that mentions a food or drink.

3. Post a video of a song that talks about rain or sunshine.

Okay, now it’s your turn. Give it a go.

Song Lyric Sunday — Season of the Witch

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday theme, Helen Vahdati chose “season.” Yes, I know that in two days it will be Christmas, but I’m resisting the urge to post a song about the Christmas season. Or even a song about winter. Instead I’m going with a classic song by Donovan Leitch, “Season of the Witch.”

Written by Donovan and Shawn Phillips, the song was released in September 1966 on Donovan’s album, Sunshine Superman. It was never released as a single, but it became a very popular song with Donovan’s fans, enough so that Donovan played it live more than most of his other hits.

“Season of the Witch” was an early example of what became known as the “psychedelic genre” of music.

“There was a feeling, even then, that all was not perfect in the Garden of Eden,” Donovan said of the song in an interview with Mojo magazine June 2011. “Dealers were moving into bohemia and hard drugs were on the fringes.” The song proved to be somewhat prophetic in the months after he recorded it. There is a line in it that goes “Some cat looking over his shoulder at me.” Those bad cats looking at him would soon come calling at his door. He was arrested for possession of cannabis — the first high-profile London drug bust of the 60s. That bust prevented him from travelling to the United States, where he was due to perform at the Monterey Pop Festival, in June, 1967.

Here are the lyrics to Donovan’s “Season of the Witch.”

When I look out my window
Many sights to see
And when I look in my window
So many different people to be
That it’s strange
So strange

You got to pick up every stitch
You got to pick up every stitch
You got to pick up every stitch
Mmmm, must be the season of the witch
Must be the season of the witch, yeah
Must be the season of the witch

When I look over my shoulder
What do you think I see?
Some other cat lookin’ over
His shoulder at me
And he’s strange
Sure is strange

You got to pick up every stitch
You got to pick up every stitch, yeah
Beatniks are out to make it rich
Oh no, must be the season of the witch
Must be the season of the witch, yeah
Must be the season of the witch

You got to pick up every stitch
Two rabbits runnin’ in the ditch
Beatniks out to make it rich
Oh no, must be the season of the witch
Must be the season of the witch
Must be the season of the witch
When I go

When I look out my window
What do you think I see?
And when I look in my window
So many different people to be
It’s strange
Sure is strange

You got to pick up every stitch
You got to pick up every stitch
Two rabbits runnin’ in the ditch
Oh no, must be the season of the witch
Must be the season of the witch, yeah
Must be the season of the witch
When I go
When I go

SoCS — Organ-ized

For today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, Linda G. Hill has asked us to “talk about an organ or base your post on the theme of them…or one.”

Okay, I’ve got to get my mind out of the gutter. I have to admit that the first thing that came to mind was sex organ. But since this a PG-rated blog, I decided to think of other types of organs, like internal organs. You know, livers, kidneys, lungs, hearts (although some might argue that the heart is a muscle and not an organ).

And then I thought about mouth organs, like harmonicas or melodicas. Or pipe organs like you might find in churches. Or calliopes (steam organs) that you might find at circuses or carnivals.

And there are electronic organs and these days even digital organs.

But to my mind, there’s nothing like the organ grinder. No, not the kind you find in a butcher shop to make to make chopped liver. The organ grinder I’m thinking about was an entertainer who played a barrel organ in the streets back in the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century. You often found them with little monkeys that were trained to dance around to the sounds coming from the organ.

And that, in a true stream of consciousness mode, led me to the old song by Donovan, “The Hurdy Gurdy Man.”

#writephoto — Mellow Yellow

39E52DA9-9E28-487D-B554-5F6C4BFF119BAs the brothers walked down the path, yellow tipped flowers growing in abundance on both sides and nearly as far as the eye could see, Ronald suddenly started humming the old Donovan song, “Mellow Yellow.”

Donald got a broad smile on his face and uttered the words, “quite rightly.” Both of them cracked up.

The young men then started singing together. “I’m just mad about Saffron, Saffron’s mad about me. I’m just mad about Saffron, she’s just mad about me. They call me mellow yellow (quite rightly). They call me mellow yellow (quite rightly).”

By the time they finished singing those words, Ronald and Donald were doubled over with laughter. “Who is Saffron, anyway?” Ronald asked Donald.

“I don’t know, but I heard that mellow yellow refers to a rumor back in the sixties that one could get high from smoking dried banana skins,” Donald said.

“Oh yeah?” said Ronald. “Well I heard that the song is about being cool and laid-back.”

“Well,” said Donald, “I heard that the ‘electrical banana’ in the song is about women’s battery-operated vibrators. They were just appearing on the scene at that time.”

Once again, both men cracked up. “Pass me that joint, brother,” Ronald said.

“Here you go,” Donald said. “Wow, these flowers sure are yellow.”

“And I sure am mellow,” quipped Ronald.


Written for this weeks Thursday Photo Prompt from Sue Vincent.

And, in case you were wondering, here’s Donvan’s song.