Friday, January 19, 2007

Another Singer Gone

I guess it's gonna start happening with more frequency now: losing performers I grew up with, ones no more than 10-15 years older than me who entertained me with their acting or singing. Not to discount writers or any of the above of different ages, but when it's someone who figured in your formative years, it resonates a bit more. Denny Doherty of The Mamas and the Papas has died. Cass Elliott, of course, has been long gone and Papa John Phillips died in 2001. We lost George Harrison not all that long ago, and James Brown is gone now, too. But The Mamas and the Papas was a special band, with 2 men and 2 women who combined for some of the sweetest harmonies you could ask for. Peter, Paul, and Mary were and of course, still are co-ed, but the mixed sex group concept was rare enough to be noteworthy back in the '60s. The only other group like that that comes to mind is the Fifth Dimension, another group with a sweet sound.

"Creeque Alley"
John Phillips and Michelle Gilliam)

John and Mitchie were gettin' kind of itchy
Just to leave the folk music behind;
Zal and Denny workin' for a penny
Tryin' to get a fish on the line.
In a coffee house Sebastian sat,
And after every number they'd pass the hat.
McGuinn and McGuire just a-gettin' higher in L.A.,
You know where that's at.
And no one's gettin' fat except Mama Cass.Zallie said, "Denny, you know there aren't many
Who can sing a song the way that you do; let's go south."
Denny said, Zallie, golly, don't you think that I wish
I could play guitar like you."
Zal, Denny, and Sebastian sat (at the Night Owl)
And after every number they'd pass the hat.
McGuinn and McGuire still a-gettin higher in L.A.,
You know where that's at.
And no one's gettin' fat except Mama Cass.

When Cass was a sophomore, planned to go to Swathmore
But she changed her mind one day.
Standin' on the turnpike, thumb out to hitchhike,
"Take me to New York right away."
When Denny met Cass he gave her love bumps;
Called John and Zal and that was the Mugwumps.
McGuinn and McGuire couldn't get no higher
But that's what they were aimin' at.
And no one's gettin' fat except Mama Cass.

Mugwumps, high jumps, low slumps, big bumps -
Don't you work as hard as you play.
Make up, break up, everything is shake up;
Guess it had to be that way.
Sebastian and Zal formed the 'Spoonful;
Michelle, John, and Denny gettin' very tuneful.
McGuinn and McGuire just a-catchin' fire in L.A.,
You know where that's at.
And everybody's gettin' fat except Mama Cass.

Broke, busted, disgusted, agents can't be trusted,
And Mitchie wants to go to the sea.
Cass can't make it; she says we'll have to fake it -
We knew she'd come eventually.
Greasin' on American Express cards;
Tents low rent, but keeping out the heat's hard.
Duffy's good vibrations and our imaginations
Can't go on indefinitely.
And California dreamin' is becomin' a reality...

-----o0o-----

On a lighter note, who wouldn't want an M&M avatar?

Feeling:

~~~o0o~~~
Technorati Tags: ,