Far More than a Singing Lesson (Vid of the Day)

YouTube’s Anne Reburn and her “clones” cover I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony). An earlier version of this Bill Backer / Billy Davis / Roger Cook / Roger Greenaway composition had been the soundtrack to an über-successful TV advertising campaign, which, circa 1971, had added more “fizz” to Coca Cola’s™ profits.

Tapping into that advertising blitz’s popularity, recording artists, such as the Hillside Singers and the New Seekers, covered a lyrically reworked version, which dropped all product references. And, from that point forward, “Sing” became an international radio hit.

Interestingly enough, it was during that very bygone era when my younger self’s brand loyalty had “somehow” shifted from Pepsi™ to Coke™… where my allegiance has remained ever since. [Note to Self: On this summery mid-afternoon, be sure to pop open a can and enjoy.]

Yet, there was… still is… far more in play. We’re speaking of the heady, lyrical, upbeat appeal for equality / inclusiveness / world unity. Such principles certainly exemplify my ideals.

Beyond that, “Sing” suggests that Madison Avenue’s impact is not always measured in mere dollars and cents. Indeed, headstrong capitalism, when tempered with a healthy dosage of altruism, hath the power to sell far more than commodities.

Hmm… re the above… might it be time to take this reality check, multiple choice test?

a. Have I been reading too damned much between the lyrical lines?
b. Has pandemic necessitated social isolating rendered me stir-crazy?
c. Is Ms. Pollyanna seated upon some branch of my family tree?
d. None of the above?

Whatever the answer(s), rest assured, both Ms. Reburn and I are well aware of how it’ll take far more than a feel-good three-minute song to cure societal ills (btw, I hope you stuck around to check out her post performance soliloquy / reality check).

To briefly put a more distinct face on those ills… too damned many of our compatriots, worldwide, have been facing down the dual, deadly, “I can’t breathe” issues… one precipitated by the pitiless, out of control coronavirus… the other by the out of control, brutal cops’ chokeholds and asphyxiating tear gas.

And be one fighting for her/his life in an ICU, fighting for freedom in the streets, or too damned scared to even consider exiting our sequestration bunkers, we’ve all been feel powerless to do one damned thing about it… and could never expect autocratic leaders to ever channel their power constructively.

And that’s F’ing depressing! And that’s not healthy!

So, if listening to I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing can cheer us up… even in some small way… even for a fleeting moment… what’d be the harm in that?

 

Stay Safe… Stay Home… Stay Healthy…

 

 

 

 

 

 

September BlogCast ~ A Heartfelt Plea for Harmony

 

My greetings to all of my WordPress blogging colleagues, followers and visitors! If you’re just here to hear the music, scroll down and start clicking away… these four selections will amply communicate my intended sentiments, which I’ll now further expand on… i.e., should you choose to read onward…

Initially, I found it tough to set the proper mood for this installment of our monthly musical get-together. I had to scuttle my original “hot fun in the summertime” theme… deeming it insensitive and inappropriate in the wake of all the death and destruction caused by Hurricane Harvey… considering how life may never fully return to normal for the millions of flooded out, uprooted survivors in Texas. My heartfelt condolences to folks who lost loved ones and hopes that you, who have survived, can restore your lives as much as possible and can find happiness again.

I’d have to ditto my mood barometer reading regarding all who were recently maimed and slaughtered during the eerily similar, vehicular ISIS terrorist attacks against Barcelona and Cambrils, Spain AND Nazis / Klansmen terrorist assaults against Charlottesville, Virginia. My wholehearted condolences to the all the good people who lost their loved ones and best wishes that the surviving victims recover speedily and as completely as possible. Hopefully, someday soon, happiness will be yours once more.

As if those meteorological and ideological storms weren’t bad enough, already, we, of good conscience, have also been deeply in mourning over the loss of the American presidency. And by saying “presidency” I’m referring to the monumental, leadership vacuum that’s been sucking the air out of the Oval Office… sucking the life force out of my homeland and our global community… all perpetrated by an ethically barren, morally bankrupt, avaricious and vicious, Orwellian, stick-figure figurehead.

In times of trouble, a nation’s citizenry should be able to count on their leader for a comforting pep talk… an FDR-esque, folksy fireside chat as it were… but… alas… long sigh…

Folks, it’s downright depressing and disgusting to observe the cannibalistic, parasitical, so-called prez…

  1. Feeding off the post-hurricane apocalypse’s human suffering… just to sate his voracious narcissistic hungers… just to erect a smokescreen to enshroud his nefarious, fascist political agenda.
  2. Feasting off the ISIS terrorist attacks in Spain just because that’ll wrongfully validate his flat-out hatred of all Muslims1. It is stunning how… practically in the same breath… he lavishes praise upon un-american [sic] Nazis and Klansmen… sucking up to them just so they’ll help reelect him in 2020.

Net effect, the so-called prez, has wildly emboldened these domestic terrorists. Left unchecked, these co-conspirators… the pathetic “prez” and his deplorable pals… will violently subvert all that the real America stands for. We’re likely witnessing the rebirth of Nazi Germany.

So what the hell does that make the so-called prez? An Adolf Hitler / David Duke hybrid? Did some nefarious, eager beaver recombinant DNA scientist mutate him? Did a psychotic psychosurgeon lobotomize / reprogram him? Or was he “merely” born and/or reared that way? Whatever the cause of his mental illness/illnesses, we can only wish him a speedy, complete and permanent recovery. In this modern medical era, no one should be condemned to live out one’s life bouncing off the rubberized walls… be they real or hallucinated.

The real America’s survival… indeed the survival of the whole world… depends on a sane presidency and sound minded leaders elsewhere, too. How else could we ever hope to see our global population live in harmony?

That plea for harmony is from where I now take my musical cue… set the tone for this month’s BlogCast.

Folks, I find the negativity of what I just blogged… to say the least… disturbing. What else can I conclude than negative leaders bring out the worst in me, indeed, in every like-minded, warmhearted, ethical patriot who truly gives a damn? And that has got to change… starting with the legal, orderly and peaceable ouster of such negative entities.

But, until the day that becomes reality… I believe the following music will provide an ear and eye opening… a mind expanding and mood elevating experience.

Accompanying only my sparse, supplemental commentary, I’ll now let the songwriters’ and singers’ sentiments speak for themselves.

Ray Stevens ~ Everything Is Beautiful

Admittedly, I would’ve preferred this track’s religious undercurrents to have been more inclusive of faiths other than Christianity… but… when we consider the less globalized era in which this song was first composed and recorded, would not genuine believers of all religious stripes be forgiving? Additionally, I sincerely believe one can also be agnostic and still be fully capable of concurring with the overall message of unity. Oh, btw, you can also give a listen to an alternate track featuring a duet performed by Ray Stevens and another of this month’s BlogCast featured artists, Glen Campbell.

The New Seekers ~ I’d Love To Teach The World To Sing

Many decades ago a slightly, lyrically modified, abridged version of this song became the soundtrack to a Coca Cola™ commercial, which you can view here.

Glen Campbell ~ Try A Little Kindness

I joyfully rediscovered this track just one week ago upon purchasing the late Mr. Campbell’s greatest hits CD… after finding it while grocery shopping at my local supermarket superstore. I first heard Campbell perform on the late Sixties era, “Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour” TV show… a program with a distinctly, politically progressive POV… from where I derived own liberal attitude. Campbell died just a few short weeks ago on August 8, 2017. You can access a video tribute.

Peter, Paul & Mary ~ Weave Me The Sunshine

Peter Yarrow will now introduce this BlogCast finale… thusly…

“‘Weave Me The Sunshine’  became a very big hit in South Africa and in Brazil and ultimately of course it’s a song that has found it’s way into many churches and synagogues.”

About all I could possibly add, here, (as is true with nearly all folk music) it’s nearly impossible not to sing along with this upbeat and uplifting tune. And I recommend that we all add our voices… sing it loudly… sing it proudly… trump all of those negative vibes. Let us all spread outward its unifying, harmonizing message (indeed, the messages from all four of these songs) to all four corners of our world.

Thank you for listening on this day. If you LIKE what you heard, click back here

for my next BlogCast on Sunday, October 1, 2017.

Past programs are archived in my BlogCast and music categories.

 

 

 

1 We, who still can and do think clearly, fully realize that ISIS has mutilated and muddied true Islam and now exploits it just to justify their deadly, bloody attacks.