What a WONDERFUL mysterious song that celebrates an anniversary of the lyric, but did not chart until August, 1967. It's a great one fer sure!
And coming on June 25 (by my count), it will be time to play this last great classic by Teddy & the Pandas, "68 Days 'til September." The idea is along the lines of the Happenings' "See You In September" from two years earlier. Absolutely shoulda been a HIT!
Then, come July 12, there's some groovy music from Charlie Rich to remember from 1970. "July 12, 1939" moves along in a story ala "Ode to Billie Joe" but did not manage to hit the big time.
Sometimes, musical dates hit and sometimes they miss, but they are some GOOD music.
More chart reflections.....from 50 years ago.
First, the "Action Beat" chart (replacement for the earlier "Top Hits of Chicago" Charts) from June 12, 1967
You'll find the American Breed's first REAL hit debuting at 30 and "Hold On" by the Mauds and the Buckinghams' "Mercy Mercy" as Records to Watch as well as how to join Jimy Sohns' harum!
HEADQUARTERS was The Monkees' coming out album as a self contained "real" band.
Like a lot of deejays back then, I was puzzled by the last track on the LP. Just who was this character named Randy Scouse and what was he supposed to "git?". A haircut?
Living in London in the late sixties while serving with the US Navy, I found my answer.
There was a British tv comedy that everybody watched called TILL DEATH US DO PART. In it, the bigoted curmudgeon Alf Garnett, had a habit of calling his son-in-law a "randy scouse git". Loosely translated the Cockney expression means something like "lustful Liverpudlian fool".
The gist of the song itself is about a party The Beatles had thrown for The Monkees and friends the night before at London's Speakeasy Club. Afterward, Micky Dolenz watched the tv program and the defamatory remark stuck with him. And so his first attempt at songwriting became "Randy Scouse Git".
In the song, "the four kings of EMI" were The Beatles. "The girl in yellow dress" was Mama Cass. "She's a wonderful lady and she's mine, all mine" was BBC's TOP OF THE POPS "disc girl" Samantha Juste, who Micky would marry in 1968. I'm guessing the "why don't you cut your hair" came from Alf Garnett chastising his son-in-law on the tv program.
The song was only released as a single in the UK but, because the title would be offensive coming from an American group, it was labeled simply "Alternate Title". It peaked at #2 in the UK as did HEADQUARTERS behind SGT.
PEPPER'S. In 1971 an Americanized version of the Alf Garnett family would debut in the US as ALL IN THE FAMILY. Archie Bunker called his son-in-law "meathead".
In 2012 Dolenz reimagined "Randy Scouse Git" with a new arrangement on his album REMEMBER. Old episodes of TILL DEATH US DO PART can be viewed on You Tube.
This has always been a GREAT part of Monkeeslore over the years ... but has always posed a problem for me. To be clear, every bit of the inspiration you cite in your email is EXACTLY the way the story has been told for the past fifty years ... and it makes 100%, complete sense. Dolenz himself has told this same story many times.
But despite the fact that EVERY bit of this seems completely plausible and justified, it's just never "added up" in my head.
The Monkees recorded "Randy Scouse Git" over three sessions held on March 4th, March 5th and March 8th of 1967. Micky arrived in England on February 6th and met Samantha a few days later when he and Mike Nesmith appeared on the "Top Of The Pops" program where Juste worked as a hostess.
But the night he went to The Speakeasy with The Beatles didn't happen until July 3rd, while The Monkees were on tour of England ... which is a four full months LATER after the song had already been recorded and released!!!
(You'll find this conflicting timeline addressed in our July 3rd calendar posting this way):
Brian Epstein organized a party at The Speakeasy Club to welcome The Monkees, who were doing their first UK Tour. Present that night were John and Cynthia Lennon, George and Patti Harrison, Paul McCartney and then-girlfriend Jane Asher as well as Eric Clapton, Mama Cass Elliott, The Who, Dusty Springfield, members of Procol Harum, Lulu, Manfred Mann and Micky's future wife, Samantha Juste. In what clearly appears to be a conflicted timeline, it is reported that earlier that same day, Micky Dolenz had caught part of a British soap opera called "Till Death Do Us Part", which used the phrase "Randy Scouse Git" (loose translation: horny Liverudlian Lad), which inspired the title of his song. The lyrics of the song reportedly recap several of the events of that evening's party. ("She's a wonderful lady and she's mine all mine"; "the four kings of EMI" [The Beatles] and the "girl in yellow dress" [Mama Cass].) When released as a single in Great Britain, it went all the way to #2 under the name "Alternate Title" (as the record company felt the British slang a bit too much to garner airplay.) This single was never released here in America … but remains one of The Monkees' most popular tracks. Three years later "Till Death Do Us Part" would be "Americanized" into the controversial comedy "All In The Family" by Norman Lear. By evening's end George Harrison had broken out a ukulele for a jam session that included Peter Tork on banjo and Keith Moon drumming on the table. (Man, if somebody had only had a camera there that night to film all of this!)
I'll admit that some of these ratings are a bit surprising ... definitely "family fare" with a skew to the older generation that now gets regularly ignored. But I'll betcha I personally watched half of these on a regular basis. My favorite was "The Fugitive", which also isn't listed in The Top 30 ... and this was the big, final season. (More on that in the weeks to come in Forgotten Hits ... when we do a HUGE salute to one of my all-time favorite television series.) kk
On June 11th at 1:00 pm (PST) Harvey
Kubernik does a two hour radio interview …
The first hour will be a salute to the 50th anniversary of the
Monterey International Pop Festival, whose 50th is June 16th - 18th.
Harvey and his brother Kenneth wrote a 2012 book on the landmark event "A
Pick up the books here:
In case you haven't had enough of 1967 ---
Monday - On DECADES-TV - A Flashback to 1967.
I can't EVER get enough of 1967. In fact, I was just talking to deejay Phil Nee a few minutes ago about putting together a Top 40 Summer Of Love Countdown for his Those Were The Days Program. Stay tuned! (kk)