The Spectropop Group Archives
presented by Friends of Spectropop

[Prev by Date] [Next by Date] [Index] [Search]

Spectropop - Digest Number 93


______________                                            ______________
______________                                            ______________
______________        S  P  E  C  T  R  O  P  O  P        ______________
______________                                            ______________
                     SUITABLE FOR 14 - 20 AGE GROUP

There are 12 messages in this issue of Spectropop.

Topics in this Digest Number 93:

      1. "vo-dee-oh-doh"
           From: "mikey1" 
      2. Re: retro retroness
           From: Stewart Mason 
      3. Vo-Dee-Oh-Doh, Doo-Dah
           From: "Joseph Scott" 
      4. Voh-Dee-Oh-Doh Sixties
           From: John Frank 
      5. music hall nostalgia
           From: Jamie LePage 
      6. Lesley's Bear Family
           From: ELRONBEE 
      7. What Am I Gonna Do?
           From: "Will (Allen) George" 
      8. Re: Peppermint Rainbow
           From: Marc Wielage 
      9. Jackie DeShannon
           From: "Will (Allen) George" 
     10. Re: The Orchids/ Blue Orchids
           From: Jamie LePage 
     11. Phil Spector's girlfriend
           From: "GSPECTOR" 
     12. Re: Nancy & Phil
           From: Carol Kaye 


Message: 1
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 03:06:57 -0500
   From: "mikey1" 
Subject: "vo-dee-oh-doh"

"alan zweig"  wrote:

> Spanky and Our Gang and Harpers Bizarre. Each of their
> records is almost ruined for me by songs that I can only
> describe as "vo-dee-oh-doh". Oldtimey, Rudy Vallee. They 
> parody some barbershop Roaring Twenties song style. If 
> you want, I can name songs. But they both do it and it 
> drives me crazy. Who liked that stuff? What were they 
> thinking?

Why?: Very Simple......because record companies in the 
'60s were always quick to exploit any genre that was a 
hit for someone else. "Winchester Cathedral" was a HUGE 
hit at this time, and was done in that 20s style, so 
just about every other record compay tried the thing....
........thats why!!


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 2
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 02:51:14 -0700
   From: Stewart Mason 
Subject: Re: retro retroness

Alan Zweig asks:

>I get the sense that Spanky and Our Gang were more 
>"genuinely" hip. I don't know why. Maybe it's their 
>association with Bob Dorough who seems like the real 
>thing to me. Then again, he could be hip but they don't 
>have to be. Which actually brings up a question I've 
>always had. Two really cool soft pop vocal groups. 
>Spanky and Our Gang and Harpers Bizarre. Each of their 
>records is almost ruined for me by songs that I can only
>describe as "vo-dee-oh-doh". Oldtimey, Rudy Vallee. They 
>parody some barbershop Roaring Twenties song style. If 
>you want, I can name songs. But they both do it and it 
>drives me crazy. Who liked that stuff? What were they 
>thinking? If it was just one group or one song, I could 
>ignore it. But it seemed like some kind of "phenomenon".
>Please explain.

Dude, it was *way* more than those two bands. Remember 
that faux-swing revival from a couple years ago? It was 
that pervasive, if not more so. As near as I can figure,
there were two reasons:

Two words: "Winchester Cathedral"

Three more words: "Bonnie and Clyde"

The song is all but forgotten now, but the novelty hit 
"Winchester Cathedral" by the New Vaudeville Band was a 
*H*U*G*E* hit in 1966, and it touched off a fashion for 
'20s and '30s-style pop songs. Tons of artists in both 
the UK and the US did this sort of thing, from the 
Beatles ("When I'm Sixty-Four," "Your Mother Should Know") 
on down. The Association did a song in this style on 
INSIGHT OUT called "Isn't It A Bit Like Now," Nancy 
Sinatra did an entire album of them called SUGAR (which 
by the way has about the porniest major label album 
cover of the '60s--she's the only person in the photo 
and she *still* looks like she's having sex), Michael 
Nesmith went through a phase of writing these songs 
is an obvious one, and "Tapioca Tundra" from the same 
album replicates the through-a-megaphone singing style),
even Moby Grape did a song on WOW called "Just Like Gene 
Autry: A Foxtrot" that went so far as to feature Arthur 
Godfrey and (on original pressings) have to be played at
78 rpm! This is just a sample off the top of my head, 
there's dozens more examples.

(The New Vaudeville Band themeselves were actually part 
of a minor re-revival of trad jazz which flared up 
around early 1966, a good three years after the first UK
trad jazz revival supposedly ended; other members of this
scene included The Temperance Seven and the early lineups
of my beloved Bonzo Dog Band, whose first single was two 
old vaudeville novelties, "My Brother Makes the Noises 
for the Talkies" and "I'm Going To Bring A Watermelon To
My Girl Tonight." There were people who played in all 
three of these bands at one time or another.)

The fad would have died around the fall of 1967 if not 
before, but then Arthur Penn's BONNIE AND CLYDE became a
boffo box office sensation. Not only did the fad for that
era of music kick back up into high gear, it touched off 
a fashion trend where people around the world were 
dressing like Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway for at 
least the next couple of years. F. Scott Fitzgerald was 
extremely fashionable for a few years right around the 
same time, and seemingly every high school and college 
girl went through a Zelda Fitzgerald phase around then 
as well.

So, as for the question, "Who liked this stuff?"...seems
like pretty much everyone did!


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 3
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 10:41:34 -0700
   From: "Joseph Scott" 
Subject: Vo-Dee-Oh-Doh, Doo-Dah

Alan Z. wrote:

>... Which actually brings up a question I've always had. 
>Two really cool soft pop vocal groups. Spanky and Our 
>Gang and Harpers Bizarre. Each of their records is 
>almost ruined for me by songs that I can only describe 
>as 'vo-dee-oh-doh'. Oldtimey, Rudy Vallee. They parody 
>some barbershop Roaring Twenties song style. If you want, 
>I can name songs. But they both do it and it drives me
>crazy. Who liked that stuff? What were they thinking? If 
>it was just one group or one song, I could ignore it. 
>But it seemed like some kind of 'phenomenon'.
>Please explain.

I think that was one part of an overall revival of 
interest in '20s-style music by some rock groups and 
similar during the '60s, particularly vaudeville (which 
is pretty much the same thing as music hall). Imo the 
two most important and influential people to popularize 
that revival were Ray Davies of the Kinks and John 
Sebastian of the Lovin' Spoonful, starting around '65. 
"Sunny Afternoon" and many other Kinks songs are in a 
vaudeville-like style. The Lovin' Spoonful were mostly 
(just about everything except "Summer In The City") 
strongly based on the sound of the jug bands (which were
typically not vaudeville as such, but quite similar to it) 
of the late '20s and early '30s, despite the fact that
they didn't have a jug player.

(An example of a Roaring Twenties-associated style that 
we're not talking about here much at all would be '20s 
"Jazz Age" jazz, which typically pretty much sounded 
about halfway between "Dixieland" and Rhapsody In Blue.)

Barbershop is the term that became popular in the '40s 
and '50s to describe a style of male quartet singing 
that ruled around the '10s. An example of a vaudeville- 
and barbershop- influenced group from the old days would
be the Ink Spots, guys who started out in the business in
the '20s, and were influenced by both vaudeville-style 
jive singing and sweet quartet singing (and by the '40s 
were mostly emphasizing the sweet quartet singing). 
Anyway, mostly, I think there was a revival of interest 
in vaudeville and similar in the '60s, and not so much a
revival of interest in the '00s-'20s barbershop sound. 
(A separate issue is that the close-harmony rock groups 
of the '60s, their harmony singing all went _ultimately_
back to the close-harmony singing of roughly the '10s 
anyway, i.e. barbershop, but through a gradual evolution
over the decades, not deliberate revivalism of an old 
style a la John Sebastian.)

Vaudeville-style music was so popular for a while there 
in the '60s that e.g. even the Rolling Stones could be 
expected to try their hand at it, and they did in places
on Between The Buttons, but not particularly convincingly.

Imo, the problem with any feeble music is not so much 
that it's in such-and-such musical style, but that it 
just doesn't have it, doesn't happen to sound nearly as 
good as "Sunny Afternoon," if you know what I mean.

Joseph Scott

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 4
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 18:06:22 -0800
   From: John Frank 
Subject: Voh-Dee-Oh-Doh Sixties

Alan Zweig said:

>Spanky and Our Gang and Harpers Bizarre. Each of their 
>records is almost ruined for me by songs that I can only 
>describe as "vo-dee-oh-doh". Oldtimey, Rudy Vallee. They 
>parody some barbershop Roaring Twenties song style. If 
>you want, I can name songs. But they both do it and it 
>drives me crazy. Who liked that stuff? What were they 
>thinking? If it was just one group or one song, I could 
>ignore it. But it seemed like some kind of "phenomenon".
>Please explain.

I clearly remember that there certainly **was** a 
20s-nostalgia thing going on during part of the 60s, and
not only reflected in some of the music. The Andrews 
Sisters made a comeback with guest appearances on TV and
with a theatrical musical "Over Here". I vaguely remember
TV series that were placed in that time, but the only one
I distinctly remember is "Margie" with Dorothy Provine, 
but that was early 60s, I think. Julie Andrews' "
Thoroughly Modern Millie" was in the theatres (although 
not a box-office smash).

Besides Spanky & OG, and Harpers Bizarre, you could 
point to Tiny Tim, "Winchester Cathedral," "Second Hand 
Rose," Guy Marks' "Loving You Has Made Me Bananas," 
Susan Christie's "I Love Onions" (Is she *really* Lou's 
sister?!), The Youngbloods' "Grizzly Bear" and more, I'm
sure, that I can't think of right off the top of my head.

On the surface, it was bizarre that in the midst of the 
60's "cultural revolution" there was this 20s nostalgia 
trend, but scratch the surface, and maybe it makes sense, 
oddly, as the 20s was a decade of deep cultural change
as well.

John Frank

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 5
   Date: Mon, 22 Jan 01 16:19:14 +0900
   From: Jamie LePage 
Subject: music hall nostalgia

Hi Alan,

First of all I have to agree that the 60s music hall 
nostalgia thing generally hasn't held up well; in 
retrospect it seemed to patronize both the under and 
over 30 generations. It usually interrupts the listening
experience. I always skip over tracks like Hello, Hello 
on Claudine's album. On the other hand, when it was good, 
it was very good, and I think Harpers were an 
exception to the rule. In other words, I can live 
without Herman's Hermits' Mrs. Brown and Henry VIII but 
I need my Kinks' Face to Face LP.

When I'm 64, You Know My Name, Your Mother Should Know... 
McCartney took the Beatles down that road even, 
although not nearly as convincingly as those trad-jazz/
music hall freaks who made a brief appearance in their 
Magical Mystery Tour flick. I need the Bonzos but
perhaps not those particular McCartney tracks.

I have a half-baked theory here. I think the music hall 
nostalgia thing may have largely been about a naive yet 
widely-accepted assumption that the increasing
acceptance of marijuana use would eventually lead to its 
legalization. Open defiance of prohibition circa 1967. 
Roaring 20s speakeasies become Swingin' 60s pot parties.
If you dig, you're there. If you don't, you're square. 
The Monkees. Paul Mazursky. I love you Alice B Toklas...
don't laugh! As inexplicable as it may seem, New 
Vaudeville Band, Sopwith Camel, etc. are today 
associated with the 60s "psychedelic" movement!

Perhaps as an indirect result of that 60s defiance, 
since then, casual use of marijuana has become so banal 
that jokes such as "I didn't inhale" are instantly 
understood by entire populations. Even today, the Bush 
one-liners are relentless. But in the 1960s, for one 
moment it seemed music was going to change the world, 
and one of the changes on its promised horizon was the 
endorsement of legalized use of marijuana, a big issue 
with the under 30ers. Delivery was pre-empted, however, 
with the Brady Bunch, Have a Nice Day and a legacy of 
dead rock stars. But that's a whole different subject 
for a whole different thread.


Jamie (who ALWAYS skipped over "Mabel" when listening 
to the first Procol Harum album for the very reason you 

np - That Acapulco Gold by the Rainy Daze

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 6
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 04:22:16 EST
   From: ELRONBEE 
Subject: Lesley's Bear Family

<< Jamie also asked whether the Bear Family box was worth
the investment, and I say yes, even if "only" for the
sake of all the previously unreleased material found
there, not least of which is the entire cancelled
"Magic Colors" album. Other votes? >>

You can have my vote, too. Just to have both mixes of 
"The Look of Love" together in glorious sound is enough, 
but you also get Magic Colors and her foreign language 
offerings. Superb!! and another vote for her web site. 

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 7
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 18:11:47 -0000
   From: "Will (Allen) George" 
Subject: What Am I Gonna Do?

I love this song, and I only know one version of it. 
Nobody mentioned it in the discussions. The version I 
have is by Skeeter Davis. She does an excellent job with
it. I think it must be from the mid-60s. Does anyone know
this version?

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 8
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 18:08:19 -0800
   From: Marc Wielage 
Subject: Re: Peppermint Rainbow

Randy M. Kosht" commented on the SpectroPop group:

>"Will You Be Staying After Sunday" was out in the spring
>of '69 -- if memory serves, Paul Leka wrote it(?).


Actually, Leka just produced it. The song was written by
Al Kasha and Joel Hirschorn, who later wrote some 1970s 
tunes like "The Morning After" and most of the songs for
the Disney film PETE'S DRAGON.

As far as I know, the singer on "Sunday" was Pat Lamdin;
that's at least the impression I got from the liner notes
on their 1969 album. I agree with the others who said 
that her voice was very close to that of Elaine "Spanky"
McFarlane. Maybe the confusion happened because her group
had another "Sunday" song -- "Sunday Will Never Be the 


-= Marc Wielage      |   "The computerized authority   =-
-= MusicTrax, LLC    |       on rock, pop, & soul."    =-
-= Chatsworth, CA    |         xxxxxxxxxx@axxxxx       =-

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 9
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 18:09:32 -0000
   From: "Will (Allen) George" 
Subject: Jackie DeShannon

Hi all,

I'm a new member here. I was just catching up on a few 
of the archives. I was lucky enough to be in the studio 
audience the night that Jackie DeShannon sang on David 
Letterman. She sang Just How Right You Are (from the new
CD), Needles and Pins, When You Walk in the Room, Bette 
Davis Eyes (twice; they had to redo it for technical 
reasons), and Put A Little Love In Your Heart. It was my
first time seeing her live, and I was thrilled to find 
that she sounds great. Better than on the new CD, 
actually. I'm very much looking forward to seeing her in
concert in NYC in March.

Anyone interested in Jackie should check out this 

William George

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 10
   Date: Mon, 22 Jan 01 14:44:04 +0900
   From: Jamie LePage 
Subject: Re: The Orchids/ Blue Orchids

Scott wrote:

>In 1965 they (the British group) changed their name to 
>The Exceptions and released one final single before 
>splitting up.

And what a single it was - well, at least the B-side! 
Soldier Boy, written by Orchids/Exceptions' lead 
vocalist Georgina, is killer! It can be found on the 
recent Decca CD "The Girls' Scene", along with Orchids' 
Oo-chang-a-lang. A must-have for girl groups fans. 

The CD is annotated by our own Ian Chapman, whose remarks 
on the Orchids can be found at:


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 11
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 13:23:11 -0700
   From: "GSPECTOR" 
Subject: Phil Spector's girlfriend

TO: Steve Marinucci 

Well, I guess it's true now.

Actually it was addressed in Spectropop #66:
Message: 5
   Date: Wed, 06 Dec 2000 12:40:21 +0900
   From: Randy Wheeler 
Subject: Phil Dating Nancy?

Just read this "item" in the Detroit Free Press, Monday,
Dec. 4, 2000:

"Dating: Nancy Sinatra, Frank's 60-year-old daughter,and
legendary record producer Phil Spector, also 60.


Though at the time of the message, He was not 60 yet but
he is now.

And no, she has not met or spoken to his "kids". I 
personally think it's great that he found someone again 
to have a good time with since his only daughter is now 
in college in a different state and he does not interact
with any of his sons.

From the Keyboard of:
Gary Spector
Not just another P.S. fan.

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 12
   Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 07:12:34 -0800
   From: Carol Kaye 
Subject: Re: Nancy & Phil

>>>Apparently, the new issue of Entertainment Weekly
mentions that Phil Spector's girlfriend is none other
than Nancy Sinatra. Talk about a small world...


Like I said in a previous post, they are just buddies at
this time. They got together as friends when we were all 
at Jack Nitzsche's funeral some weeks ago. 

Carol Kaye

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Click here to go to The Spectropop Group

Spectropop text contents © copyright Spectropop unless stated otherwise. All rights in and to the contents of these documents, including each element embodied therein, is subject to copyright protection under international copyright law. Any use, reuse, reproduction and/or adaptation without written permission of the owners is a violation of copyright law and is strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.