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Music of Our Times

We are going to post a music video each week up to Reunion and we want you to choose the Music of our Times. Doesn’t have to be 1971 or 1972 vintage…just the songs and artists that makes you remember.  We all had favorites…what’s yours?

We will play requests posted on our Facebook Group Page and post a new one every weekend. If you are not a Facebook user, then you can use the Contact Us feature.

Come on home and be with your friends! 

Sign up and register to come to our 50th reunion!

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May 27, 2022

I'll Be Around - The Spinners (1972)

Requested by:  Barb Nicoll (Scher)

 

I'll Be Around is a song recorded by the American R&B vocal group The Spinners (known as "Detroit Spinners" in the UK). The song was co-written by Thom Bell and Phil Hurtt and produced by Bell.

Recorded at Philadelphia's Sigma Sound Studios, the house band MFSB (Mother Father Sister Brother) provided the backing. The production of the song gives it a smooth, mid-tempo feel, with the signature guitar riff (in octaves) played by Norman Harris at the forefront and punctuation from female background singers, the MFSB horns & strings and conga-playing from Larry Washington. Bobby Smith handles lead vocals on the song.

The song was included on the group's 1973 self-titled album on Atlantic Records, their first album release for the label. It was initially released as the B-side of the group's first single on Atlantic Records, with How Could I Let You Get Away being the A-side. Radio deejays, however, soon opted for I'll Be Around which led to Atlantic flipping the single over and the song became an unexpected hit, eventually spending five weeks at number one on the U.S. R&B chart (the group's first number-one on the R&B chart), and reaching number three on the U.S. Pop chart in the fall of 1972. It also reached sales of over one million copies, 
The Spinners' first record ever to do so. The success of I'll Be Around would be the first in a series of chart successes The Spinners and Bell would have together during the 1970s.

Thanks, Barb...Great choice!

 

 

 


 

Suffrin Blye! .... LIVE! at our 50th Reunion!

 

  • Steve Blakeney (NHS '72)
  • Dave Lopresti (NHS '72)
  • Dave Cintolo (NHS '72)
  • Bill Bergin (NHS '73)
  • Steve McDonnell (NHS '73)
  • Pete Loven (NHS '73)
  • Dave Arbuckle (NHS '73)
  • Tom Roberts
  • Al Tutlys
  • Sound Engineer: Al Kennedy (NHS '73)

 

These guys have been rocking for 50 years!  They came to us and generously offered to play for free at our reunion and we graciously accepted.  You are going love their sound.  Many of us have been listening to them over the years.  Thanks, Steve Blakeney, Dave Lopresti, Dave Cintolo and all the guys...we can't wait!

 

Suffrin Blye as they are today.

 

Suffrin Blye as they were back in the day.

 

 

Previous Weeks:

May 21, 2022

Can't Find My Way Home - Blind Faith (1969)

Requested by:  Bob Spence

Can't Find My Way Home is a song written by Steve Winwood that was first released by Blind Faith on their 1969 album Blind FaithRolling Stone, in a review of the album, noted that the song featured "Ginger Baker's highly innovative percussion" and judged the lyric "And I'm wasted and I can't find my way home" to be "delightful"

Blind Faith was a Supergroup made up of Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Ginger Baker, and Ric Grech. They released just one album, which topped both the UK and US charts around the same time the group was breaking up.  Many critics noted that Blind Faith sounded a lot more like Winwood's  old band Traffic than Clapton's Cream, which is what Clapton was going for.

Clapton played acoustic guitar on this track, which is something he rarely did. In his previous group, Cream, he played long, intense solos, something he wanted to get away from with Blind Faith.

This is the thrid appearance of Clapton on our Music of Our Times page. 

Clapton and Winwood 2007

May 13, 2022

Take the Long Way Home - Supertramp (1979)

Requested by:  DJ's Choice

Take the Long Way Home is the third US single and sixth track of English rock band Supertramp's 1979 album Breakfast in America.

According to its composer Roger Hodgson, the song deals with how the desire to go home can go both ways:

"I'm talking about not wanting to go home to the wife, take the long way home to the wife because she 
treats you like part of the furniture, but there's a deeper level to the song, too. I really believe 
we all want to find our home, find that place in us where we feel at home, and to me, home is in the 
heart and that is really, when we are in touch with our heart and we're living our life from our heart, 
then we do feel like we found our home."

Take the long way home and be with your friends at our 50th Reunion.  We are all going to be there, so should you. Register for reunion today!

Roger Hodgson (Supertramp)

 

May 6, 2022

I'd Love to Change the World - Ten Years After (1971)

Requested by:  Steve Blakeney

I'd Love to Change the World is a song by the British blues rock band Ten Years After. Written by Alvin Lee, it is the lead single from the band's 1971 album A Space in Time. It is the band's only US Top 40 hit, peaking at number 40 on the Billboard Hot 100 and their most popular single in the United StatesWhen it was released, I'd Love to Change the World was a staple of both FM and AM radio, a rarity for the time.

 

Matthew Greenwald of Allmusic highlighted Lee's guitar work as the "most expressive—and most tasteful—electric guitar performance of his career", and added "if there is a single song that can describe the overall vibe of the counterculture in 1969/1970, this may very well be it. The band and Lee never quite matched the song's supple power in their later efforts, but this song is representation enough of their awesome artistry."

 

Thanks, Steve for this one.  Hard to find LIVE video...this is the best I could find.

April 30, 2022

Blue Sky - Allman Brothers (1972)

Requested by:  Jeff Helm

Allman Brothers guitarist Dickey Betts wrote this about his Native Canadian girlfriend, Sandy "Bluesky" Wabegijig. They married in 1973 and divorced two years later. This was the first time Betts sang lead on an Allman Brothers song. He also sang lead on their biggest hit, Ramblin' Man. For a while after his 1975 divorce from this song's muse Sandy, Dickey Betts refused to perform this song. This was released after Duane Allman's death on Eat A Peach. The album is dedicated to him. Betts and Sandy Bluesky had a daughter, Jessica, on May 14, 1972. Betts wrote Jessica about her a year later.

Thanks, Jeff for this excellent choice

Allman Brothers Band - Great Woods - 1991

April 15, 2022

Turn the Page - Bob Seger (1972)

Turn the Page is a song originally recorded by Bob Seger in 1972 and released on his Back in '72 album in 1973. Tom Weschler, then road manager for Seger recalls, Turn the Page, Bob's great road song, came along in '72, while we were driving home from a gig. I think we were in Dubuque, Iowa, in winter and stopped at a restaurant. We stood out when we entered a store or a gas station or a restaurant en masse. At this restaurant it was particularly bright inside, so there weren't any dark corners to hide in. All these local guys were looking at us like, "What are these guys? Is that a woman or a man?" – just like in the song. ... That was one incident, but there were so many others on the road that led Seger to write that song.

April 15, 2022

Taxman - Beatles (1966)

Taxman is a song by the English rock band the Beatles from their 1966 album Revolver
Written by the group's lead guitarist, George Harrison, it protests against the higher level of progressive tax imposed in the United Kingdom by the Labour government of Harold Wilson, which saw the Beatles paying over 90 per cent of their earnings to the Treasury. The song was selected as the album's opening track 
and contributed to Harrison's emergence as a songwriter beside the dominant Lennon–McCartney partnership. It was the group's first topical song and the first political statement they had made in their music.

This video features George Harrison and Eric Clapton LIVE from Tokyo

April 8, 2022

Question - Moody Blues (1970)

Requested by:  Me

Question is a 1970 single by the English progressive rock band the Moody Blues. It was written by guitarist Justin Hayward, who provides lead vocals. Question was first released as a single in April 1970 and remains their second highest-charting song in the UK, reaching number two and staying on the chart for 12 weeks. 
The song reached number 21 on the Billboard Top 40 in the USA. It was later featured as the lead track on the 1970 album A Question of Balance

Justin Hayward – 12-string acoustic guitar, lead vocals
John Lodge – bass guitar, backing vocals
Mike Pinder – Mellotron, backing vocals (1970 recording)
Ray Thomas – tambourine, backing vocals
Graeme Edge – drums, percussion 

The Moody Blues - Royal Albett Hall - London Philharmonic

 

April 1, 2022

More Today than Yesterday - Spiral Starecase (1969)

Requested by:  Janis Connell (Taylor)

The Spiral Starecase was an American pop band, best known for its 1969 single More Today Than Yesterday. The band, from Sacramento, California, United States, was recognizable for its horns and lead singer/guitarist Pat Upton's voice.

The band had hits with More Today Than Yesterday, released in January 1969, and the follow-up She's Ready. More Today Than Yesterday has been covered by, among others, Sonny and Cher, Diana Ross, and Goldfinger, and was featured in the 1991 film My Girl, on the soundtrack of The Waterboy in 1998, and in an episode of Ally McBeal entitled Silver Bells.

The group evolved from a four-piece instrumental group called the Fydallions, which formed in 1964 in Sacramento, California, for an Air Force talent contest. After leaving the Air Force, the band went on the road, playing five-hour lounge jobs on the Las Vegas circuit.

Columbia signed the band, but insisted that they change their name. The band was renamed after the movie The Spiral Staircase, but with a deliberate misspelling. About 18 months after the single's release, after releasing one album and a few more singles, the group disbanded due to poor management and squabbles over finances. 

Thanks, Janis...great choice!

 

 

March 26, 2022

Born To Be Wild - Steppenwolf (1968)

Requested by:  Kris Bouyoukas

"Born to Be Wild" is a song written by Mars Bonfire and first performed by the band Steppenwolf. The song is often invoked in both popular and counter culture to denote a biker appearance or attitude. It is most notably featured in the 1969 film Easy Rider. It is sometimes described as the first heavy metal song, and the second verse lyric "heavy metal thunder" marks the first use of this term in rock music (although not as a description of a musical style but rather a motorcycle).

"Born to Be Wild" was the band's third single off their 1968 debut album Steppenwolf and became their most successful single, reaching No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine placed "Born to Be Wild" at No. 129 on the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list.

In 2018, the song was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in a new category for singles.

Here are clips from the movie Easy Rider with Born To Be Wild as background music.  Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Jack Nicholson headin' out on the highway.

Another great pick, Kris!  

Happy Birthday, MB!

 

March 19, 2022

American Pie - Don McLean (1971)

Requested by:  Karen Hall (Hasenfus)

"American Pie" is a song by American singer and songwriter Don McLean. Recorded and released on the American Pie album in 1971, the single was the number-one US hit for four weeks in 1972 starting January 15 after just eight weeks on the Billboard charts (where it entered at number 69)

The song has nostalgic themes, stretching from the late 1950s until late 1969 or 1970. Except to acknowledge that he first learned about Buddy Holly's death on February 3, 1959 – McLean was age 13 – when he was folding newspapers for his paper route on the morning of February 4, 1959 (hence the line "February made me shiver/with every paper I'd deliver"), McLean has generally avoided responding to direct questions about the song's lyrics; he has said: "They're beyond analysis. They're poetry."He also stated in an editorial published in 2009, on the 50th anniversary of the crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J. P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson (who are alluded to in the final verse in a comparison with the Christian Holy Trinity), that writing the first verse of the song exorcised his long-running grief over Holly's death and that he considers the song to be "a big song ... that summed up the world known as America". McLean dedicated the American Pie album to Holly.

Put your feet up and get comfortable and enjoy the nearly 9 minutes of Don McLean's American Pie... LIVE back in the day.

March 12, 2022

Build Me Up Buttercup - The Foundations (1968)

Requested by:  Barbara Burke (Quinif)

Field Hockey Team Bus Song

Build Me Up Buttercup is a song written by Mike d'Abo and Tony Macaulayand released by The Foundations in 1968 with Colin Young singing lead vocals. Young had replaced Clem Curtis during 1968 and this was the first Foundations hit on which he sang.

It hit No. 1 on the Cash Box Top 100 and No. 3 on the US Billboard Hot 100 in early 1969. 
It was quickly certified Gold by the RIAA for sales of over a million US copies.

Build Me Up Buttercup is featured in the 1998 romantic comedy film There's Something About Mary and the 2020 film The Kissing Booth 2, as well as in a series of 2020–21 Geico commercials. It is also one of the 7th inning stretch tunes played at the Angel Stadium since 1990, home of the Los Angeles Angels.

Dedicated to the Needham High School Class of 1972 Varsity Field Hockey Team.

Class of '72 Players:

* Kate Grasso * Kathi Nye * Valerie Jones * Mary Ann Power * Janis Merkel * Barbara  

They didn't lose a game that season!

The Foundations 2012 - Build me Up Buttercup

February 26, 2022

NHS Class of 1972 - Our Class Song

You've Got A Friend - Carole King (1971)

Requested by:  Sheila Vara

You've Got a Friend was written by Carole King during the January 1971 recording sessions for her own album Tapestry and James Taylor's album Mud Slide Slim and the Blue Horizon. King has stated that "the song was as close to pure inspiration as I've ever experienced. The song wrote itself. It was written by something outside myself, through me." According to Taylor, King told him that the song was a response to a line in Taylor's earlier song Fire and Rain that "I've seen lonely times when I could not find a friend."


King's album was recorded in an overlap with Taylor's, and King, Danny Kortchmar (congas), and Joni Mitchell (back up vocals) perform on both. The song is included on both albums; King said in a 1972 interview that she "didn't write it with James or anybody really specifically in mind. But when James heard it he really liked it and wanted to record it".

Thank you, Sheila for dusting off our class song.  

Come back home for reunion and we will form a circle hand-in-hand and sing out loud our CLASS SONG!...(I don't think so).  

Carole King - LIVE at Mantreux (1973)

February 19, 2022

Layla - Derek and the Dominoes (1972)

Requested by:  Kris Bouyoukas

The song was inspired by a love story that originated in 7th-century Arabia and later formed the basis of 
The Story of Layla and Majnun by the 12th-century Persian poet Nizami Ganjavi, a copy of which Ian Dallas had given to Clapton. The book moved Clapton profoundly, because it was the tale of a young man who fell hopelessly in love with a beautiful young girl, went crazy and so could not marry her. The song was further inspired by Clapton's love for Pattie Boyd, the wife of his friend and fellow musician George Harrison of the Beatles. Clapton and Boyd eventually married.

In 2004, "Layla" was ranked number 27 on Rolling Stone's list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time".

This is the second appearance of Eric Claption on our Music of Our Times page.  The first being our initial entry way back on December 4, 2021.  

"Every time you pick up your guitar to play, play as if it's the last time." - Eric Clapton

Thank you, Kris Bouyoukas...excellent choice!

Eric Clapton - Derek and the Dominoes - LIVE Madison Square Garden 1999

 

February 12, 2022

Joy to the World - Three Dog Night (1970)

Requested by:  Betty Ann Spencer (Dietz)


 Joy to the World is a song written by Hoyt Axton and made famous by Three Dog Night.
When Hoyt Axton performed the song to the group, two of the three main vocalists – Danny Hutton and Cory Wells – rejected the song, but Chuck Negron felt that the band needed a "silly song" to help bring the band back together as a working unit. Negron also felt that the song "wasn't even close to our best record".

The single had been out less than two months, when on April 9, 1971, Joy to the World 
was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.

When the song hit number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1971, Axton and his mother, Mae Axton,
became the first mother and son to each have written a number one pop single in the rock era. 
Mae Axton co-wrote Heartbreak Hotel, which was the first number one hit for Elvis Presley.

The single went on to sell 5 million copies worldwide.

Thanks, Betty Ann

Joy to the World - Three Dog night LIVE (1975)

February 5, 2022

Lookin' Out My Back Door - Creedence Clearwater Revival (1970)

Requested by:  Bob Morrissey

Creedence Clearwater Revival Lookin' Out My Back Door was written by the band's lead singer and guitarist, John Fogerty, from their 1970 album Cosmo's Factory.

The song's lyrics, filled with colorful, dream-like imagery, lead some to believe that it is about drugs.
According to the drug theory, the "flying spoon" was a reference to a cocaine or heroin spoon, 
and the crazy animal images were an acid trip. Fogerty, however, has stated  that the song was actually written for his three-year-old son, Josh. Fogerty has also said that the reference to a parade passing by was inspired by the Dr. Seuss book And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street.

The song begins and ends with the mention of Illinois, and locking the front door in a vain attempt 
to prevent his troubles there from following him home. Country singer Buck Owens is also mentioned in the song, and the music reflects some of the Bakersfield sound Owens made famous.

Thanks, Bob...this is a good one!

CCR - Lookin' Out My Back Door (Lip Sync?...you be the judge)

 

January 28, 2022

Baba O'Reilly - The Who (1971)

Baba O'Riley, also erroneously referred to as its chorus refrain "Teenage Wasteland", was written by Pete
Townshend for his Lifehouse project, a rock opera intended as the follow-up to the Who's 1969 opera, Tommy. When Lifehouse was scrapped, eight of the songs were salvaged and recorded for the Who's 1971 album Who's Next, with Baba O'Riley as the lead-off track.

The song is played at halftime of most New England Patriots home games, leading up to the second-half kickoff. Baba O'Riley appears at No. 159 on Rolling Stone's list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time".

The Who LIVE in 1979.  Daltry and Townshend... the consummate performers.

 

January 22, 2022

Teach your Children - Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young (1970)

Requested by: Bob Ponte

"Teach Your Children" is a song by Graham Nash. Although it was written when Nash was a member of the Hollies, it was never recorded by that group in a studio. The song first appeared on the album Déjà Vu by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young released in 1970.


David Crosby from the Byrds, Graham Nash from the Hollies, Steven Stills  and Neil Young from the Buffalo Springfield.

Thanks, Bob....excellent choice!

Teach Your Children - 11/3/1991 - Golden Gate Park

 

 

January 15, 2022

Me and Bobby McGee - Janis Joplin (1970)

Requested by: Betty Ann Spencer (Dietz)

Janis Joplin recorded the song for inclusion on her Pearl album only a few days before her death in October 1970. Kris Kristofferson (the song writer) had sung the song for her and did not know she had recorded it until after her death. The first time he heard her recording of it was the day after she died. Joplin's version topped the charts to become her only number one single in 1971. Her version of this song is ranked No. 148 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

There are no live recordings of Janis singing this iconic song. 

Janis Joplin - Me and Bobby McGee - Mix of TV Appearances

 

January 8, 2022

This Weekend's Song:

Sweet Baby James - James Taylor (1970)

Seems appropriate for those of us currently covered in snow.  James Taylor needs no further introduction.

 

January 1, 2022

New Year's Day - U2 (1983)

A VERY young Bono, Edge and Adam Clayton.  This was the released single off their War album and their first international hit.  Happy New Year, Rockets!

U2 - New Year's Day 

 

December 25, 2021

Little Saint Nick - Beach Boys (1964)

Before there was YouTube and music videos there was SHINDIG!  

 

"Run, run reindeer..he don't miss no one"  Happy Christmas, Rockets!

 

December 18, 2021

Maggie May - Rod Stewart (1971)

Requested by: Betty Ann Spencer (Dietz)

Sir Rod Stewart (“Rod the Mod” not “Rod the Bod”) released "Maggie May" on his Every Picture Tells a Story album, in 1971 and the song launched his solo career.  "Maggie May" expresses the ambivalence and contradictory emotions of a boy involved in a relationship with an older woman and was written from Stewart's own experience. In the January 2007 issue of Q magazine, Stewart recalled: "Maggie May was more or less a true story, about the first woman I had sex with. The woman's name was not "Maggie May"; Stewart has stated that the name was taken from an old Liverpudlian song.

 

Rod Stewart - Maggie May (Live Unplugged) Dedicated to NLS71

 

December 11, 2021

You're So Vain - Carly Simon (1972)

Requested by: Betty Ann Spencer (Dietz)

The subject of the "You're So Vain" song itself became one of the biggest mysteries in popular music, with the famous lyric "You're so vain/I bet you think this song is about you". For more than 40 years, Simon has not publicly revealed the name of the subject. She hinted that it could be a composite of several people, with most press speculation considering Mick Jagger, who sings backup vocals on the recording, and Warren Beatty. Simon hinted the identity to a variety of talk shows and publications over the years, and, on August 5, 2003, auctioned off the information to the winner of a charity function for US$50,000, with the condition that the winner, television executive Dick Ebersol, not reveal it. Finally, in November 2015, Simon, promoting her about-to-be-published memoir, said, "I have confirmed that the second verse is Warren" and added that while "Warren thinks the whole thing is about him", he is the subject only of that verse, with the remainder of the song referring to two other, still unnamed men.

For me, this is the perfect example of "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" and to keep it alive in music lore for decades is pure mastery of "getting even". As you watch Carly sing in this video, you'll see she is still "sticking it to 'em."

Thank you, Betty Ann...great choice!

Carly Simon ...live on the Queen Mary (2005)

 

December 4, 2021

My Back Pages - Bob Dylan (1961)

“Ah, but I was so much older then I’m younger than that now “  

 Weren't we all!  

We’ll start it off with “My Back Pages”.  The 1961 version is vintage folk/poet Dylan.  The BYRDS (Roger McGuinn, David Crosby and others) covered the tune in 1967 off their “Younger than Yesterday” album.  My favorite is from the Bob Dylan 30th Anniversary Concert (1992) with Bob Dylan, Roger McGuinn, Tom Petty, Neil Young, Eric Clapton & George Harrison.