Before you read on let me give you due warning: it is soppy, sentimental, sappy stuff….!
I was idly wondering the other day about the influence that music had on my life and started recalling songs and how old I was when they impressed me.
For some unfathomable reason the first one that came to mind was:
Two little Boys – I recalled it as the source of some sort of comradely
heroic ideal and thought that I must have been extremely young and immature to think so. Rolf Harris sang it in 1969 when I turned 18!
Another in the same heroic genre that appealed to me was Roger Whittaker’s The Last Farewell That came out in 1971 when I was already a quasi-hippy student! What was I doing listening to such establishment warrior class stuff?
Then I remembered a real tear jerker which used to reduce me to tears when I heard it. I thought it was lucky that in Founders House the hit parade was after lights-out so no-one could see me snivelling. When I checked, I found my memory had deceived me again. The song was: Honey Number 2 on 23 June 1968 LM Hit Parade. I was 16 and playing First XV rugby! – What a toughie!
I began recalling my all time favourites and the number one was a sophisticated piece of music – it must have been in my student years in the 70’s … wronggg again : Procul Harum’s Whiter Shade of Pale came out in 1967, when I was still a schoolboy.
I was pretty close with All over the world by Francoise Hardy which came out in 1966 and New York Mining Disaster 1941 by the BeeGees in 1967.
Another of my ‘own’ choice of singers was Barry McGuire – I remember playing Eve of Destruction and Masters of War to my Mum – it made her weep and I had to stop. That was about 1969.
Of course, I have forgotten about the Simon and Garfunkel songs, which we used to sing in the school bus on long trips back from rugby games; like I am a rock and Sounds of Silence; my favourite was probably For Emily wherever I may find her
Heavens! I was such a sook!
I musn’t forget my pre-teen years and the influence of my older brother and sister and my parents. My Dad loved Gilbert and Sullivan so it was all The Mikado and HMS Pinafore operetta stuff with a bit of Bach, Mozart and Tschaikovsky thrown in: Jesu Joy, Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Piano Concerto No 1 and Handel’s Messiah and Water Music.
Doris Day, Rosemary Clooney, Pat Boone, Elvis and Cliff also come to mind – so a fairly eclectic exposure, I suppose.
I am still a sook and weep every time I hear Danny Boy for goodness sake!