Song Lyric Sunday/Song of the Day: Tommy James & The Shondells, “Sweet Cherry Wine”

Today, Jim’s prompts are "Blossoms/Cherry/Flowers," and so far no one’s chosen this one. Dibs!

Thus spake Wikipedia:

"Sweet Cherry Wine" is a song by Tommy James and the Shondells from their 1969 album, Cellophane Symphony. It hit number seven on the Billboard Hot 100 and rose to number six on the Canadian charts. This psychedelic song was released at the height of psychedelia, right after one previous ‘mind expanding’ song by Tommy James and the Shondells, "Crimson and Clover", and before "Crystal Blue Persuasion". It begins with the use of an organ, adds brass instruments, and ends with a solo flute that fades out at the end. Adding to the feel of this form of music, this and other songs on the album included the then-new Moog synthesizer.

And, totally apropos of the day:

James, in an interview on the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) in 2010 stated that the song "was about the blood of Jesus" and acknowledged that many fans and peers assumed it was drug related…It is also a protest song about the Vietnam War.

The lyrics, courtesy of

Come on everyone we gotta get together now
Oh yeah, love’s the only thing that matters anyhow
And the beauty of life can only survive
If we love one another
Oh yeah yesterday my friends were marching out to war
Oh yeah listen now we ain’t a marching anymore
No we ain’t gonna fight
Only God has the right
To decide who’s to live and die
He gave us sweet cherry wine
So very fine
Drink it right down, pass it all around
So stimulating, so intoxicating
Sweet cherry wine
To open your mind
And everybody’s gonna feel so fine
Drinking sweet cherry wine
Yes they will

Watch the mountain turn
To dust and glow away
Oh Lord, you know there’s got to be a better way
And the old masquerade is a no soul parade
Marchin’ through the ruins of time
To save us He gave us sweet cherry wine

Sweet cherry wine, so very fine
Drink it right down
Pass it all around
So stimulating, so intoxicating
Sweet cherry wine
Drink it with your brother
Trust in one another, yeah, yeah
He gave us sweet cherry wine
Sweet cherry wine
Drink it right down
Pass it all around
People don’t you know the cup is running over
Sweet cherry wine

And that’s Song Lyric Sunday and Song of the Day for April 4, 2021.

15 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday/Song of the Day: Tommy James & The Shondells, “Sweet Cherry Wine”

  1. I loved Tommy James and the Shondells. This song reminds me of dating my first boyfriend. Made me feel all the same feelings. Wow. What was that other song, my favorite one? Crimson and Clover, but as I look over their list, I really loved all their songs. Including this one. Thanks for posting these! It’s great. I’m sorry I missed so many posts!


    1. After a while, the number of posts seems to grow exponentially….

      Tommy James & The Shondells really gew musically from “Hanky Panky” and “Mony Mony” to “Crystal Blue Persuasions” and “Crimson and Clover,” all within a couple of years.


  2. Didn’t Neil Diamond record this song too ?? I remember their recording too. Happy Easter Mr. John, Oh never mind the husband just told me that was Sweet Caroline ;)…

    Liked by 2 people

        1. “Sweet Caroline” and “Sweet Cherry Wine” both have the same number of syllables. That’ll happen to me sometimes, when it’s the wrong song but the words fit the melody…


          1. The Husband set me straight…Hi Mr. John, hope you had a great Easter. It was an unusual ly warm Easter in Chicago. I remember it always being cold here on Easter Sunday, but today was beautius ❤ Blessings to you and the family ❤ .

            Liked by 1 person

    1. They were a really great band, especially when I was in grammar school (’62-’70). They were based in Niles, Michigan, so they were practically local and they got a lot of play on WLS and WCFL. This wasn’t as popular as “Crystal Blue Persuasions” or “Crimson and Clover,” but we still heard it a lot.


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