Saturday, February 23, 2008

SONGS THAT MAKE ME SMILE

I was driving around the Berkshires a few days ago, scanning radio stations looking for something to listen to when the song “Afternoon Delight” came on. Even though I wasn’t that crazy about it when it first came out, I found myself smiling, and even singing along.

I couldn’t stop grinning.

So last night when I needed something to help me fall back to sleep after being woken up by some loud voices in the alley between my bedroom window and the Indian restaurant next door, I came up with an alphabet list of songs that make me smile when I hear them:

AFTERNOON DELIGHT (Starland Band?)
BLUE MOON (Elvis Presley’s Sun Session version, when he kind of yodels in falsetto)
CLOUDBURST (Lambert, Hendricks & Ross)
DON’T LET IT BOTHER YOU (Fats Waller)
EPISTROPHY (Eric Dolphy on his LAST DATE lp)
FILTHY MCNASTY (Horace Silver’s original recording)
GHOST OF A CHANCE (Thelonious Monk solo)
HARD NEW YORK DAYS (aka SAINTS, by Terence Winch and Celtic Thunder)
I’VE GOT A GAL IN KALAMAZOO (the original Glen Miller band recording)
JUMPIN’ AT THE SAVOY (Count Basie’s version)
KICK OUT THE JAMS (MC5)
LAY IT DOWN (Lonnie Mack)
MY FOOLISH HEART (Bill Evans version on his WALTZ FOR DEBBY lp)
NEARNESS OF YOU, THE (Nat Adderly on his NAT TO THE IVY LEAGUE lp)
OOH CHILD (The Five Stairsteps)
PURE IMAGINATION (from the original Willy Wonka with Gene Wilder)
QUEEN OF THE SLIPSTREAM (Van Morrison)
ROCKY RACCOON (The Beatles)
SO WHAT (from Miles Davis KINDA BLUE lp)
'TIS A GIFT TO BE SIMPLE (the Shaker song incorporated into Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring)
UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF LOVE (Barry White and Love Unlimited)
VOLARE OH OH (? Can’t remember his name)
WINDY (The Association)
X?
YOUV’E GOT A FRIEND (Carole Kibng’s vocal on her song)
ZIPPITY-DOO-DAH (Johnny Mercer’s vocal on his tune)

I can think of others as well, but what about you? Any songs that always make you smile when you hear them?

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I like to move it move it... from the movie Madagascar sung by Sacha Baron Cohen. Ridiculous and catchy.
Caitlin

Lally said...

Totally. I had no idea that was him singing that on the soundtrack, but it always makes me laugh. Some of the songs on my list aren't funny at all, but they make me smile for various reasons, the clever writing, the memories, etc.

harryn said...

various reasons for sure:
i wanna hold your hand + two of us, beatles ...
imagine + intuition + out of the blue, john lennon ...
play misty for me, roberta flack ...
tutu, miles davis ...
wild horses, rolling stones ...
beautiful day, u2 ...
sunshine superman, donovan ...
cameron, paco de lucia ...
another day goes by, sting ...
stolen moments, oliver nelson ...
hejeira, joni mitchell
sandy, bruce springstein ...
time of the season, zombies ...
chuckys in love, rickee lee jones ...
off ramp, pat metheney
ashes to ashes, david bowie
positively 4th street + idiot wind, bob dylan ...
pretty woman, roy orbison ...
summer in the city, lovin' spoonfull
tuesday afternoon, moody blues ...
pink panther, henry mancini
all of me, frank sinatra ...
jordu, clifford brown ...
on and on,
smiles :)

-K- said...

I'm glad you mentioned Fats Waller. Sometimes I put him on in the mornings just to get me going.

Lally said...

Back in the early 1970s, when I was living in DC and going through some romantic disappointment, Terry Winch made me listen to Waller playing and singing "Don't Let it Bother You" and it worked!
PS: Great list Paul, I especially would agree with Chuck E.'s in Love (I knew Chuck E. in L. A., he always dressed in old 1940's, early '50s hipster style vintage clothes and was a fine singer and musician himself), and Summer In the City, absolutely as well as Orbison's Pretty Woman, which I think was actually Oh Pretty Woman, I knew him too in L. A., and his widow Barbara. He was a sweet man, and she was a strong, smart and beautiful woman.

Anonymous said...

Some special moments lately with music in Chicago. At the Jackson subway stop in the Loop, a group was doing "Sweet Thing" by Rufus and Chaka Khan, and they were quite good. A young African-American woman was singing the lead and she was great. A crowd gathered, and everyone was really enjoying it. Just at that moment, 4 CTA workers in uniform started walking through the tunnel from the south to the north, and they sang along all the way. You could hear them long after they were out of sight, their voices echoing through the tunnel. The crowd loved it. It was fun.

The Kid said...

Stompin at the Savoy! Yes! One the best get-you-moving songs, ever

I'm Every Woman by Chaka Khan - Whenever I hear this song I have to dance—when I was pregnant with Ali and danced to it, I would be filled with the purest happiness I had ever experienced. I was sure she was dancing along with me in the womb.

I Love You More Today Than Yesterday by Spiral Staircase
My ex-mother-in-law's favorite song; she was a second mother to me and I like to be reminded of her

Fields of Gold sung by Eva Cassidy
makes me so sad I get happy
(does that make any sense?)

great, great list Mike, thanks