Friday, May 02, 2008

Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind?

We drove somewhere in a car together, one day after he got out of college. My oldest brother, 21 years old, voting age (then), an adult, about to join, or in the army, and about to go off to fight in Vietnam. I was 11, colt legged, budding breasts and thick lenses, halfway between child and adolescent. Ten years apart, he was already in high school by the time I could remember anything, and so we may never have been alone together before. We had shared dinner tables and holidays, but never had intimate conversation. Perhaps I was now at an age where he saw me as no longer a "kid". At any rate it felt like I was being treated special, to ride with him.

It was the summer of 1966. The radio was on, of course, as it always was when we went anywhere in the car. He was kind of shy and I was too. I didn't really know what to talk about. A song came on that I liked, Lovin' Spoonful, I think, or Mama Cass. We talked about the music. One song after another, the hits just kept on comin'. I'm not sure who made the statement first, but we both agreed that this year, 1966, had to be the best year EVER for pop music. There was never a better year and might never be a better year. These are songs we will remember all of our lives. Any we have:

Some of the hits from 1966. The tunes start up in my head as I read the titles.

Cherish, Association
Monday, Monday, The Mama's and The Papa's
96 Tears, ? and The Mysterians
Reach Out I'll Be There, Four Tops
Summer In The City, Lovin' Spoonful
California Dreamin', The Mama's and The Papa's
You Can't Hurry Love, Supremes
We Can Work It Out, The Beatles
When A Man Loves A Woman, Percy Sledge
Good Lovin', Young Rascals
Paint It Black, Rolling Stones
Wild Thing, Troggs
Paperback Writer, The Beatles
Good Vibrations, Beach Boys
Red Rubber Ball, The Cyrkle
Walk Away Renee, Left Banke
Bus Stop, Hollies
Dirty Water, Standells
Crying Time, Ray Charles
Secret Agent Man, Johnny Rivers
The Sounds Of Silence, Simon and Garfunkel
Did You Ever Have To Make Up Your Mind?, Lovin' Spoonful
Homeward Bound, Simon and Garfunkel
Uptight (Everything's Alright), Stevie Wonder
Wipe Out, The Surfaris
Barbara Ann, Beach Boys
Black Is Black, Los Bravos
Nowhere Man, The Beatles

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

!966...the best year ever...until 1967, it seems hard to believe but that next year was even groovier.
Of course you weren't in a car with Bob .
Love, John