Thursday, February 9, 2012

1960s and British

     I have an odd knowledge base about 1960s British pop music. I barely remember what the actual assignment was now, but in 9th grade I did a presentation on the British Invasion. Of course, The Beatles were a part of it, but I delved a little deeper. Everyone knew about The Beatles, so to me, that was less interesting. I was interested in learning more about the rest of it, and the music my parents listened to.
     My parents would have been in high school in 1965, so I was trying to make a connection between my music obsession and what I was hoping was theirs. My dad kept all their old records from that time. He apparently didn't care much for The Beatles--he as used their album covers as a drop-cloth of sorts when painting. I'm guessing my mother bought the albums, and he passive-aggressively drew goatees on them and painted them blue. It's the type of thing they would do.
     I asked my mom, a lot, about going to concerts and whether she understood she was living at a time that would be considered a revolution as far as music was concerned. No, she didn't. She never went to concerts. She had a story about wanting to go see Elvis perform somewhere in Detroit but my dad wouldn't take her because he said Elvis would always be around and it was no different than listening to the record. Sometimes I wonder how I came from these genes. But I digress.
     The odd piece of knowledge that stuck with me throughout this research from this 9th grade project was my mother's favorite band was Herman's Hermits. The fact that she preferred Herman and his hermits to the much more popular Beatles was endearing. She also enjoyed Gary Lewis & The Playboys, but they were not British so it didn't factor into my presentation. However, I often get them mixed up now, and I'm embarrassed by that. All of this brings me to the point that if someone asks me to name a song from the 1960s that's British, I always refer to Herman's Hermits. So, earlier today, a variation of this conversation happened:
Mary: I have a song stuck in my head, but I don't know what it is. I just know it's 1960's and British.
Me: Maybe it's "This Diamond Ring," by Herman's Hermits.
Me: No, wait, that's Gary Lewis & The Playboys
Me: But if it's Herman's Hermits, maybe it's "Mrs. Brown, you've got a lovely daughter."
Mary: JESUS CHRIST, Nancy, it is! 
 The actual conversation was riddled with (my) typos, but that was basically it. Mary was thinking of a 1960s British song, and my mother's love of Herman's Hermits led me to correctly identify the song.
     Also, "This Diamond Ring" and "Mrs. Brown..." are a little similar.

Also, just to tie this up neatly, this was my parents' wedding song:

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