Thursday, August 11, 2011

An Early Clue to the New Direction -- Special Celebrity Guest Edition!!!!

A brief postscript to my paean to The Lovin' Spoonful's late psych/pop masterpiece "Only Pretty What a Pity" from from a few weeks ago:

I just got off the phone with the song's co-writer and lyricist, Spoonful drummer Joe Butler -- and I gotta tell you, to me that was as cool as if I'd been talking to a Beatle; I mean, I was and am a HUGE Spoonful fan -- and it seems I got the lyrics to the song slightly wrong.

The last verse actually goes...

Everyone, except the baby

Answers for the face they wear

It's the map of your contentment

Or the mask of your despair

...and I stand corrected.

I should add that Joe confirmed my suspicion that the song was inspired by a real person, but (to my disappointment) the details of her life as limned in the lyric are otherwise completely fictionalized. Joe also confirmed my recollection that the Spoonful performed the song on The Ed Sullivan Show back in the day, although with the song's co-composer Jerry Yester; for some reason, I'd remembered that the then departed Zal Yanovsky was on board, but apparently I was on drugs at the time.

In any case, from 1966 and the great Hums of the Lovin' Spoonful album, please enjoy the previously unreleased backing track to what, ironically enough, is perhaps Joe's finest moment as a vocalist for the Spoonful -- the majestic and melodic "Full Measure."

And as always, a coveted PowerPop No-Prize will be awarded to the first reader who gleans the clip's relevance to the theme of tomorrow's Weekend Listomania.

[h/t Watertiger]