Song Lyric Sunday — It’s a Laugh

Jim Adams, our guest host for Song Lyric Sunday chose “laugh/laughter/laughing” as this week’s theme. For better or worse, Jim then proceeded to suggest about a dozen or so songs for us to use for this theme. Not wanting to use one of his suggested songs, I had to think long and hard about a song not on his list for my post. Fortunately for me, one finally came to mind. The Darryl Hall @ John Oates song, “It’s a Laugh.”

Written by Daryl Hall, “It’s a Laugh” was the biggest hit from the duo’s seventh studio album, Along the Red Ledge, which was released in August 1978. “It’s a Laugh” was the biggest hit single on that album, reaching number 20 on the U.S. charts.

The song is one of the more bitter breakup songs of its era. A dumped boyfriend dismisses his relationship with his ex as nothing of significance, even as a joke.

Hall claims that the song is one of his favorite songs that he ever wrote. He said that it is dripping with irony. It was written after he was pretty hurt in a situation, but looking back at it, he said he relates to one particular line that repeats throughout the song. It goes, “It’s so stupid that I gotta laugh.”

Here are the lyrics to “It’s a Laugh.”

You must be thinkin’ something
But you ain’t sayin’ nothing
You remember me
I used to be your boyfriend

There ain’t no point in reason
It only gets defensive
Why should we ruin the purity of the moment

It’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid I gotta laugh
And the funny thing is everyone thought
We were forever

It’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid that I gotta laugh
And the other thing is I really thought
That we were special

Maybe I should feel guilty
Is that the American way
But I just look at myself
As if I were above me

You must be thinkin’ something
But you ain’t saying nothing
You remember me, I have been here always

It’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid I gotta laugh
And the funny thing is everyone thought
We were forever

It’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid I gotta laugh
And the other thing is I really thought
We were special, we were forever

It’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid I gotta laugh
And the funny thing is everyone thought
We were forever

It’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid I gotta laugh
And the other thing is I really thought
That we were special

So strange but it’s a laugh, what a laugh
It’s so stupid I gotta laugh
And the other thing is everyone thought
We were forever

Song Lyric Sunday — Doctor My Eyes

My blogging buddy, Jim Adams over at A Unique Title for Me, has taken over as guest host for Helen Vahdati’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt while she takes a hiatus from blogging to deal with some health issues. Jim chose the theme for this week’s SLS to be “doctor/health/medicine.”

One of my favorite artists is Jackson Browne, and one of his first hit songs was “Doctor My Eyes.”

“Doctor My Eyes” was written by Jackson Browne and was included on his debut album Jackson Browne, which, for the longest time I thought was titled Saturate Before Using because of the album cover.5a06fc5a-34c4-4071-a480-dfa61cd86551Recorded and released in 1972, it reached number 8 on the U.S. Billboard charts that year. In the U.K., it was The Jackson 5 who had a hit with this song. Their 1973 cover went to #9.

This was Browne’s first single and it isn’t typical of his work. The radio play version ran just 2:55 and the song lacks the personal, introspective lyrics he’s known for. Still, the song did very well in America, and remains a fan favorite, garnering lots of airplay on classic rock and adult contemporary radio, and often earning a spot on Browne’s setlists.

When he first wrote the song, the lyrics were about a guy who tries to get help, but is doomed because it’s too late. His record company thought it was too much of a downer, so Browne made it into a story about a guy who has gone through a lot in life and comes to accept his fate.

Here are the lyrics to this song.

Doctor, my eyes have seen the years
And the slow parade of fears without crying
Now I want to understand

I have done all that I could
To see the evil and the good without hiding
You must help me if you can

Doctor, my eyes
Tell me what is wrong
Was I unwise to leave them open for so long

‘Cause I have wandered through this world
And as each moment has unfurled
I’ve been waiting to awaken from these dreams
People go just where they will
I never noticed them until I got this feeling
That it’s later than it seems

Doctor, my eyes
Tell me what you see
I hear their cries
Just say if it’s too late for me

Doctor, my eyes
Cannot see the sky
Is this the prize for having learned how not to cry

Song Lyric Sunday — What’s New?

Helen Vahdati was late in posting her theme for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday prompt, but we forgive her because she’s been dealing with some health issues recently. But she finally posted did post her theme, which is “new.”

Now I have a confession to make. It’s almost midnight my time and I was out and about most of the day and I’m dog tired, but as soon as I read Helen’s theme for this week, a song popped into my head and I had to write a post about it. The song? “What’s New Pussycat?” by Tom Jones.

“What’s New Pussycat?” was the title song for the movie of the same name starring Peter Sellers. Sung by British singer Tom Jones, and written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, it was released in June 1965 and peaked at number 3 in the U.S. Billboard chart that year.

The song is intentionally outrageous, with the singer telling a girl to powder her pussycat nose so he can kiss her “sweet little pussycat lips.” At the time, Jones was developing an image as a ribald pop star, and this song played right into it. Burt Bacharach knew that Jones had the chops to convey the right tone in the song, and convinced him to do it.

“What’s New Pussycat?” was nominated for an Academy Award for best original song in 1966, but did not win that year.

Here are the song’s lyrics.

What’s new, Pussycat?
Whoa, whoa
What’s new, Pussycat?
Whoa, whoa

Pussycat, Pussycat, I’ve got flowers
And lots of hours
To spend with you.
So go and powder your cute little pussycat nose!

Pussycat, Pussycat, I love you
Yes, I do!
You and your pussycat nose!

What’s new, Pussycat?
Whoa, whoa
What’s new, Pussycat?
Whoa, whoa

Pussycat, Pussycat, you’re so thrilling
And I’m so willing
To care for you.
So go and make up your cute little pussycat eyes!

Pussycat, Pussycat, I love you
Yes, I do!
You and your pussycat eyes!

What’s new, pussycat?
Whoa, whoa
What’s new, pussycat?
Whoa, whoa

Pussycat, Pussycat, you’re delicious
And if my wishes
Can all come true
I’ll soon be kissing your sweet little pussycat lips!

Pussycat, Pussycat, I love you
Yes, I do!
You and your pussycat lips!
You and your pussycat eyes!
You and your pussycat nose!

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

Song Lyric Sunday — Classic Favorite

Sometimes things just click. For example, for today’s Song Lyric Sunday theme, Helen chose “girls.” And for today’s 30-Day Song Challenge, we’re supposed to select “a song that’s a classic favorite.”30 DaySo how could I possibly not choose the classic favorite, “My Girl” by the Temptations?

“My Girl” was written and produced by Smokey Robinson and Ronald White. It was recorded by The Temptations and released in December 1964 and became The Temptations’ first number one single. It is considered to be their signature song.

When Robinson wrote the song he was married to his first wife, Claudette, and it was widely thought that he wrote it about her. But in an interview, Smokey said that the song is not about a specific girl, but was “written with all the women in the world in mind.”

The song was written in the Apollo Theater when The Temptations were playing as part of a package tour with The Miracles. After The Temptations heard the song, they convinced Robinson to let them record it instead of The Miracles. Robinson, who was Berry Gordy’s right-hand man at Motown agreed, and rehearsed the song with The Temptations for a week before recording it.

“My Girl” was the first Temptations single to feature David Ruffin on lead vocals and it led to a greater role for Ruffin with the group, as he became their primary lead singer.

Here are the lyrics to “My Girl.”

I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day.
When it’s cold outside I’ve got the month of May.

I guess you’d say
What can make me feel this way?
My girl (my girl, my girl)
Talkin’ ’bout my girl (my girl).

I’ve got so much honey the bees envy me.
I’ve got a sweeter song than the birds in the trees.

Well, I guess you’d say
What can make me feel this way?
My girl (my girl, my girl)
Talkin’ ’bout my girl (my girl).

Hey hey hey
Hey hey hey
Ooooh.

I don’t need no money, fortune or fame.
I’ve got all the riches, baby, one man can claim.

Well, I guess you’d say
What can make me feel this way?
My girl (my girl, my girl)
Talkin’ ’bout my girl (my girl).

I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day
With my girl.
I’ve even got the month of May
With my girl
Talkin’ ’bout
Talkin’ ’bout
Talkin’ ’bout
My girl
Ooooh
My girl
As long as I can talk about my girl…