Monday’s Music Moves Me: We Are Family…

Image by amyelizabethquinn from Pixabay

Since it’s Stacy’s sister’s birthday tomorrow (Happy Birthday!), she thought it would be a good idea to do songs about brothers and sisters. I wasn’t really sure where to go with this, so I just picked songs with “brother” and/or “sister” in the title. Hope you like ’em!

# Song
1 It’s Too Late, Brother
Little Walter
Probably not what Stacy was thinking, but still a great song by the king of the blues harmonica. Released as a single in 1956, but didn’t chart.
2 Me And Baby Brother
Interesting to read the comments on some of these. A lot of people dedicated this song to a younger brother who is sadly no longer with us. Reached #15 on the Hot 100 and #18 on the R&B chart in 1973, from their album Deliver The Word.
3 Brother Louie
Hot Chocolate
This story of interracial love was a big hit in the US for Stories in 1973, but the original, by Hot Chocolate, was released earlier that year in the UK, where it reached #7. This version features British bluesman Alexis Korner on one of the speaking parts and Cozy Powell (“Topsy (parts 1 and 2)”) on drums.
4 Brothers In Arms
Dire Straits
Title track from their 1984 album, it was written in 1982, the year of the Falklands War. In 2007, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of that war, they re-released the song for the benefit of the veterans of that war that were suffering from PTSD. Reached #16 in the UK, #10 in Ireland, #5 in New Zealand, and #1 in Poland.
5 We Are Family
Sister Sledge
In honor of the 1979 World Champion Pittsburgh Pirates, who used this as their theme song. From Sister Sledge’s 1979 album of the same name, the song reached #2 in the US and #1 in Canada.
6 Sister Mary Elephant
Cheech & Chong
Couldn’t resist this classic comedy bit by Cheech and Chong. People ask me if Catholic school was like this; I tell them “not always.” From their 1972 album Big Bambu, it was released as a single in late 1973 and eventually reached #24 in 1974.
7 Sister Moonshine
An album track from their 1975 album Crisis? What Crisis? It wasn’t released as a single.
8 I Wish I Could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate
Muggsy Spanier
A song that was written by Armand J. Piron and published in 1922, Muggsy Spanier was a cornet player and bandleader from Chicago and was a pioneer of Chicago-style jazz, which was part Dixieland, part swing.
9 Brother, Brother, Brother
Isley Brothers
Title track from their 1972 album, but not released as a single. Brothers singing about brothers…
10 Brother, Can You Spare A Dime?
Bing Crosby
Written by Yip Harburg and Jay Gorney, the melody is based on a Russian-Jewish lullaby. Both Bing and Rudy Vallee had hits with this song in 1932, at the height of the Great Depression.

And that’s Monday’s Music Moves Me for August 17, 2020.

Monday’s Music Moves Me is sponsored by X-Mas Dolly, Cathy, Alana, and Stacy, so be sure and visit them, where you can also find the Linky for the other participants.

20 thoughts on “Monday’s Music Moves Me: We Are Family…

  1. Some old favorites (Supertramp). Songs with real power here: Brother Louie, first time I’ve ever heard the original; I never realized the Stories were doing a cover. Brother in Arms: been a long time for that one and the sadness is always there. And, Brother Can You Spare a Dime. I’ve heard Rudy Vallee’s version before – Bing’s is so much more powerful in telling the story of this song, I think.


    1. I’d heard that Bing’s was particularly powerful. You can hear the shake in his voice, like he’s really down on his luck.Glad you enjoyed the set!


  2. Hi John – happy birthday to Stacey – and you’ve given us a thorough list … some I know, most I don’t – but I was interested to read your notes on each. Oh and I’ve just seen Mary’s comment – love that song … but all good – take care – Hilary


  3. Sir, you have done an absolutely marvelous job finding all these great tunes for our lady Stacy! Oh my gosh, such wonderful selections and some songs that have totally slipped my mind. Brother Louie for one, and believe it or not my father taught me the song, “Brother can you spare a dime.”! Beautiful tune especially when you know the story behind it. So, wish I could shimmy like my Sister Kate… my mom tried that tune once… and she never tried it again… if ya know what I mean. hahahahaha Great job m y friend. Great job. Hope you had fun with this little ditty! Be safe…. be healthy! Have a great day!


    1. I read somewhere that Bing’s version of “Brother Can You Spare A Dime” was especially haunting and desperate-sounding. I like it, and like how he’s breaking character from the guy who’s cool and collected.

      So your mother shimmied and threw her back out, eh? Something tells me she wasn’t the only one…


  4. Hey John, you have some really old ones in your set. BTW, “Brother Louie” wouldn’t play on your site. YouTube wanted me to go to their site to view it. “We Are Family” had me chair boogieing! Thanks for joining the 4M crew on the dance floor, my friend. Stay safe and be well.


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