The Lovin' Spoonful
Time to dig around in the past looking for gems. And what better to find than the Lovin' Spoonful? Here was a group that bucked the trends of the time with a sound that cheered and lyrics that spoke of dreamy days and a blissful lack of interest in the storm clouds on the horizon.


And we loved them, though we should have rejected their music as light and fluffy in comparison to the doom-laden protests of the moment. I guess the truth is that they were just too likable, their tunes too catchy, their careless optimism too infectious to be scorned. In fact, whisper it but they were a welcome relief from our need to be the harbingers of a new and more concerned world.

Apart from the fact that they were so obviously enjoying what they did, they were also such good musicians that they could do whatever they pleased - and did. Who could forget John Sebastian's cheerful grin as he strummed the zither or Zal Yanovsky's antics on rhythm guitar? They were a breath of fresh air just at the moment the sixties needed a break.

It was the song, Daydream, that first brought them to my notice. It was so different from the music I was listening to at the time that I had to sit up and take notice. The lyrics, so redolent of lying on the lawn in the summer sun, were a part of the attraction, adding to the rolling, carefree beat of the tune. It remains the song I think their best.

But only just; such songs as Rain on the Roof, Do You Believe in Magic? and You Didn't Have to Be So Nice came very close to supplanting it in my affection. They all had that fresh, optimistic outlook on life that seemed so much a contrast to the serious and slightly self important mood of the day. If Bob Dylan was our social conscience, the Spoonful was our smile.

And that is good. At the same time that the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band was reminding the Brits to laugh occasionally, the Spoonful broke out the smiles for all of us. They were so much smoother in the way they did it too, the Bonzos harking back to an age of vaudeville but the Spoonful speaking of today, the here and now.

Those were the days.


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