Sunday, July 24, 2011

Hot town, summer in the city

Music on Sunday @ The Reaction

Okay, let's go for the obvious today for our Sunday music post: The Lovin' Spoonful's "Summer in the City."

It was a #1 hit on the Billboard charts in August of 1966 and was written by Mark Sebastian, the brother of band principle John Sebastian, and Steve Boone.

It does a not bad job of giving the feel of sweltering heat in an urban setting, complete with honking car horns and jackhammer sounds. Unbelievable heat in an urban setting is certainly where I found myself this week. I don't think I had ever noticed before that wind could feel that hot.

Anyway, back to the song. The Lovin' Spoonful had a bunch of hits in the mid-'60s, including "You Didn't Have to Be So Nice," "Daydream," and "Do You Believe in Magic."

I've always been partial to the band because they typified the relationship between the earlier folk music scene of the '50s and '60s and what became the rock and pop of the '60, much of which that music influenced. That's one of my hobby-horses, but I won't bore you with it.

As for "Summer in the City," I suppose we can say that something has actually made it as a cultural marker when it's featured on The Simpsons, as the song was in an episode called "Poppa's Got a Brand New Badge."

(As a totally gratuitous aside, John Sabastian had a #1 single in 1976 as a solo act with "Welcome Back," the theme song to the Welcome Back, Kotter television show, which, if you have been living in an alternate universe for awhile, or you're just young (same difference), you may not know was John Travolta's first vehicle to stardom).

Without further ado, I give you "Summer in the City." Stay cool.

(Cross-posted at Lippmann's Ghost.)

Labels: ,

Bookmark and Share


Post a Comment

<< Home