By Julius Freeman
I don’t tend to listen to a lot of music very often because when I’m on my computer, I’m doing things & don’t need distractions. Not only that, but when I do get into music, once I get started, before I know it, I’ve posted 50 songs in the blink of an eye.
Anyway, here’s another song that never fails to take me back to where I was when it was out & the memories are so vivid, it’s almost as though I can touch them. I can see myself, my surroundings, the family & friends as they were back then…I can do everything but taste the ice cream.
It was Summer of 1967, late August, to be exact & I was half-excited to be getting ready to start the 2nd grade & half-downhearted that my first Summer vacation was about to come to an end.
This song was blasting on the left side of the dial, meaning WMCA (which I rarely listened to because they were a little TOO POP) & WABC, which after WWRL, WNJR & WLIB, was cool, as they tended to play Soul Music as well as Rock & Pop, so, they were cool with us.
It wasn’t a song that you could play for the average Soul fan because of its musical arrangement & it’s very ethnic motif. Nevertheless, upon first listen, this song grabbed me by the heart & 55 years later, it’s never released its hold.
This is one of those songs that my more closed-minded friends tended to mock, but there was nothing to be mocked & if they didn’t get the beauty of this song, then the loss was & remains theirs.
For my part, I’m just glad that in my grandmother’s home, between my mother, aunts & cousins, we heard EVERYTHING but Country Music & I’ve gotta admit that grandma could keep her Liberace, Mitch Miller, Perry Como, Jim Nabors stuff to herself, because I wasn’t feeling it then, ain’t feeling it now & if I die & come back 20 times or as that jerk named chump, I still wouldn’t like that stuff.
Anyway, I just love this song & back in 1967, we were still playing it in our house around the Christmas Holidays. Lord, how I miss these days & the way that most of us tended to treat one another.
The world in which I grew up was full of strife & just a year later, things were about to really throw us for a loop. Despite this fact, we grew up with something called HOPE for a brighter tomorrow, something which can’t truly be said, these 55 years later.
But for about 2 minutes & 53 seconds, I can close my eyes, take a trip back to those days, smile & remember when Ma was young, my little sister was still here, the grandparents, cousins, uncles & aunts were still around, before I became a jaded skeptic, due to learning far more about the ways of the world & people, than I ever wanted to see or know. If I think too much about it, this song can bring a lump to my throat & a tear to my eye. Not due to sadness, but because of youth lost & an era where we actually liked one another…an era which we’ll not see the likes of again.
Well, at least, not within this lifetime.
Forget the genre, forget the motif played on the concertina, forget the waltz-time time signature. The way that Eddie phrases the last few words of the verses, especially when he sings the lyric “You know where I can be found” & lingers on the word “founnnnnnnddddd”…
DAMN!!! Gets me every time!!
If this song isn’t a thing of beauty, I really, really, really want to know what qualifies as such.
I really, really, really want to know!
I absolutely LOVE this song, always have & always will.