Here’s the third, and for now the last, installment of destination songs chosen by you, the readers of this here blog.
- Paul McCartney, “Back In The USSR” Janet suggested this one, and while I couldn’t find The Beatles doing it (WMG issues, don’t you know), I did find Paul doing it live on The David Letterman Show, which is almost as good. The original was on The Beatles, more commonly known as “The White Album.”
- The Mamas & The Papas, “California Dreamin'” This was another Janet suggestion. John and Michelle Phillips wrote it, and it was originally done by Barry McGuire, with The Mamas & The Papas singing backup. Their own version features an alto flute solo by the great Bud Shank, and P. F. Sloan did the initial guitar figure. It was released in late 1965 and it took until March of 1966 to reach its peak at #4 on both the Billboard Hot 100 (17 weeks) and the Cash Box survey (20 weeks). Both magazines rated it the #1 song of 1966, with Cash Box having it tied with SSgt. Barry Sadler’s “Ballad of The Green Berets.” Thanks as always to Wikipedia for providing all this info.
- John McCormack, “It’s A Long Way To Tipperary” Uncle Jack suggested this one when he suggested songs about locations in Ireland. McCormick was the first to record it, in 1914. Tipperary is both a town and a county in south central Ireland, and its name means “The Well of Ara.” Just thought you’d like to know what I found out about it.
- Jacques Brel, “Dans le Port d’Amsterdam“ Debbie came up with this one, saying that if I couldn’t find Jacques Brel’s version that David Bowie’s was almost as good. Well, we found the original. Jacques Brel is alive and well…
- Tim McGraw, “Portland, Maine” Cathy submitted this. It’s from Tim’s 2014 album Sundown Heaven Town.
- Johnny Cash, “I’ve Been Everywhere, Man” Dan and Kip both suggested it, and I can’t think of a better choice for the list. This was originally done by Australian country singer Geoff Mack in 1959, and the destinations were all within Australia. Hank Snow came up with the original US version in 1962, and Johnny recorded it in 1996 for his album Unchained. Ironically, it didn’t go anywhere in the Country charts.
- Martha & The Muffins, “Echo Beach” Annalisa suggested this. Martha & The Muffins, a Canadian group, recorded this in 1979 for their album Metro Music. It was released as a single in 1980 and achieved Gold status in October of that year, and won the Juno Award (the Canadian equivalent of the Grammy) for Best Single that year. It was their only international hit, peaking at #10 in the UK and #6 in Australia. I don’t think it went anywhere in the US…
- Green Day, “Jesus of Suburbia” Another Annalisa choice, this is from Green Day’s seventh studio album, 2004’s American Idiot, and was the last single released from that album. This is the full version; the “radio edit” was only 6½ minutes long. It reached #27 on Billboard‘s Alternative Singles chart in the US, #17 in the UK.
- Bucks Fizz, “Land Of Make Believe” Annalisa’s last suggestion was this song from 1981. As a single, it reached #1 in the UK in January 1982. Bucks Fizz were winners of the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest, with “Making Up Your Mind.”
- The Beatles, “Penny Lane” Guitarspotting recommended this, and practically all The Beatles’ songs that had a destination. BMG is releasing some videos on Vevo, and this is one of them. Originally intended for inclusion in Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, it was released in February 1967 as part of a double A-sided single with “Strawberry Fields Forever.” Which of the two A-sides to promote was the subject of some concern for WLS in Chicago, and I remember voting for “Strawberry Fields Forever” in the telephone poll. My choice didn’t win. It reached #1 in the US on both the Hot 100 and the Cash Box survey, #1 in Canada and Australia, but only #2 in the UK and Ireland.
There will be other destination lists in the near future, I promise, just not in the immediate future. If you have any other suggestions, feel free to make them, and when I get enough we’ll do this again. For now, that’s The Friday 5×2 for July 21, 2017.