The idea for this came from my Uncle Jack, who suggested the song “A Bushel and A Peck” as a possible fit for last week’s M4. Now bushel and peck aren’t numbers per se, but they’re associated with numbers: they’re units of measure. Immediately songs titles suggested themselves, and I had this week’s theme.
- Doris Day, “A Bushel and A Peck” Uncle Jack’s suggestion. It was written by Frank Loesser for the 1950 musical Guys And Dolls, but was left out of the 1955 film version, replaced by a song called “Pet Me, Poppa.” I’m not making that up, The Blogger’s Best Friend told me so. Doris’s version reached #30 in January 1951 and became popular again in 2017 when State Farm Insurance used it in a commercial. A peck is two dry gallons, or 8.8 liters; a bushel is four pecks, or 35.2 liters. Just thought you’d like to know.
- Julie Andrews, “A Spoonful of Sugar” from the 1964 film Mary Poppins, starring Julie, Dick Van Dyke, David Tomlinson, Glynis Johns, Karen Dotrice and Matthew Garber, with whom I share a birthday and who would be 62 if he hadn’t died in 1977. I remember Dad taking Mom and the three of us to see it one Sunday. What I remember of the day was it was cold, we stopped at Grandma’s, she gave me an old clock, and I bawled uncontrollably at “Feed The Birds,” which was written by the Sherman Brothers and was Walt Disney’s favorite song (when Walt was having a bad day, he’d summon the Shermans to his office and have them play it for him). Assuming the spoon is a teaspoon, it’s 5 ml, 15 ml if it’s a tablespoon.
- The Proclaimers, “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” Scottish twin brothers Charlie and Craig Reid were the core of The Proclaimers. This record was #11 in the UK and #1 in Australia in 1988 and #3 in the US in 1993. I needn’t tell you that 500 miles is 800 kilometers, as 1 mile is 1.6 kilometers.
- The Byrds, “Eight Miles High” Folk-rock pioneers The Byrds only took this to #14 in the US and #24 in the UK in 1966. For ten points, eight miles is how many kilometers?
- Harry Chapin, “30,000 Pounds of Bananas” From his 1974 album Verities and Balderdash, it was based on an actual incident in Scranton, Pennsylvania. It was very popular in concert among Harry’s fans but not among Harry’s band members, who uttered the phrase “Harry, it sucks!” on a live recording. It became a catchphrase aming his fans, who even had it printed on t-shirts. Wikipedia, from which I got all that information, also tells me that 30,000 pounds of bananas (or anything else, for that matter) is equivalent to 14 tonnes, where one tonne (pronounced “tunny,” because I said so) is 1000 kilograms.
- Aerosmith, “Big 10-Inch Records” From their 1975 album Toys In The Attic, it takes a risqué double entendre and turns it into a rather good song about a guy impressing his girlfriend with his collection of 78 rpm blues records, which are ten inches (25.4 centimeters) across.
- Peter, Paul & Mary, “500 Miles” The Beatles’ least-favorite folk act (John Lennon called them “Pizza, Pooh and Magpie”) released this as the B side to their 1963 single “Settle Down (Goin’ Down That Highway)” from their 1963 album Moving. I told you what 500 miles was in kilometers already. 😉
- The Who, “I Can See For Miles” Recorded on their 1967 album The Who Sell Out, it was the only single from that album and was their only single to reach the Top Ten, peaking at #9 in November of that year. We already established that a mile is 1.6 kilometers…
- Howlin’ Wolf, “Spoonful” The song is by the legendary Willie Dixon, who wrote a lot of songs recorded by Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, and just about everyone else on the South and West sides. Wolf’s recording came out in 1960, and Etta James had an R&B hit with it the following year. Cream recorded for their first album, 1966’s Fresh Cream. See #2 for appropriate conversion information.
- Keith, “98.6” A song that really belonged with last week’s theme, I throw it in here because nearly everyone knows that 98.6 refers to normal body temperature, 98.6° Fahrenheit, 37.5° centigrade (or Celsius, whichever you prefer). And, I like the song. James Barry Keefer, a/k/a Keith, had a #7 hit in the US in 1967 with this. And, Wikipedia tells us, “Australian Radio Station smoothfm re-recorded a version of this song and replaced 98.6 with their on air frequencies of 95.3 and 91.5. Australian recording artist Rick Price sings vocals on the new version.”
And that’s Monday’s Music Moves Me for July 23, 2018.