Written by cycleguy on September 2nd, 2018

I’m feeling nostalgic for some reason. I didn’t post a song last week because I know my style of music is not most of my reader’s style. But lately, even as I drive and workout or cut grass, Spotify has been on several of my “oldies” lists. So I decided to wax nostalgic for a few weeks. Over the next 5 weeks I’m going to post my Top 5 favorite songs of all time. I don’t know if you have ever done this but I do rankings in my mind a lot. I’m going to start from Top to bottom as opposed to bottom to top.

The ’60s was an age of upheaval and sometimes strange music. A war that seemed to have no beginning; no rhyme or reason; no ending dominated the airwaves. Campus unrest was the norm. Long hair on guys became more common than short hair. Many women went with the long, straight look. Clothes were definitely a different look than the ’50s more prim and proper suit with the straight leg pants.

But the music! The music! Once dominated by doo-wop and lounge-type singers and Elvis suddenly turned 360 degrees. Strange sounds were coming out the guitars. Long guitar and drum solos. Loud music. Songs which talked more openly about sex and drugs were pretty much across the board.  It was during this time I was in my teen years. Jimi Hendrix. Led Zepplin. Vanilla Fudge. Grand Funk Railroad. Even the Beatles were still slightly in the mix (although I never was much of a fan).

Into this mix came my favorite group. Psychedelic they were not. Not by a long shot. I was in Junior High when they hit it big with one song dug out of a bin by a DJ in Pittsburgh. Hanky Panky became a song which launched Tommy James and the Shondells into the atmosphere.  But in time even they were influenced by the music of the Woodstock generation and they released Crimson and Clover. (I always liked the longer version).  But while I like that song, it was the next one which was released that caught my attention and is still today my #1 song of all time. Tommy says it was inspired by his reading of the Bible. He was searching for meaning to life and an escape from the drugs which had begun to take over his life. He read the Bible. His book tells how he accepted Christ but still struggled with his demons. I believe he has put them behind him now. His voice today has lost some of its upper register (as is typical) but it is still rich and soothing.  And yes, I still listen to him…a lot.

So to start out this Top 5 series, here is my #1 song of all time.

From 1969

From a live concert at the Bitter End.

Hope you enjoy!


12 Comments so far ↓

  1. Lisa notes says:

    I didn’t remember any of the lyrics but I recognized the tune as soon as a I heard it. 🙂 A good one.

  2. How I loved that song! Never knew the back story though, Bill, and I’m so glad you shared it here.
    Feeling nostalgic with you . . .

  3. Ed says:

    I was born in 1966, but I definitely love the music of the 60s. I remember listening to music from Mac Davis even (WOW!…Mac Davis?!!!) Glen Campbell, and yes Tommy James and the Shondells!!!

  4. Ed says:

    I was born in 1966, but I always remember the radio was always on when I was growing up. Loved the music of the 60s. I remember this song well.

  5. cycleguy says:

    From Gail: Love

  6. floyd samons says:

    I guess I’ve been around a long time… so long that I already knew the artist and song!

    I like it… but over Crimson and Clover or Draggin’ the Line? Oooooo. I don’t know, pilgrim.

    I like the nostalgia…

    • cycleguy says:

      yeah if anyone was going to know the artist and song it would be you. 🙂 C & C and Draggin’ are both excellent songs too. In fact, there isn’t a whole lot TJ has done I don’t like. The simple fact you know about Crimson and Draggin’ tells me you know good taste.