I very rarely post any songs that have been a chart hit, mainly because that normally means that the track is already well known and has probably already been featured on blogs elsewhere. Whilst today’s selection was a chart hit, it’s still not a song that’s too well known in the U.K. certainly in comparison to the U.S., Holland and Australia in particular.
I’m sure many of you are aware of Melanie, no doubt due to her huge hit “Brand New Key” which was released in 1972, some 2 years after this single (Brand New Key was to become the inspiration behind The Wurzels’ U.K. No1 novelty hit “Combine Harvester”) It was this track however that was to be Melanie’s major breakthrough single in the U.S. and was inspired by her performance a year earlier at the legendary Woodstock festival.
Melanie is backed on the track by the Edwin Hawkins Singers, themselves a very succesful group who won a Grammy for their single “Oh Happy Day” (which went on to sell an incredible 7 million copies worldwide!!) Another point of note about E.H.S. is that they featured a young singer who we have already featured here on the blog called Dorothy Morrison (the track in question being the rousing gospel influenced “Rain”)
Unsurprisingly then, this single is an uplifting gospel-edged hippy tune featuring fantastic backing vocals (Melanie’s lead vocals are none too shabby either it has to be said). There is a brilliant live version of this on youtube – I think it’s on a Dutch tv show where the audience look so uninterested in the performance which is kinda funny but also more than a little bit disappointing too!! I recommend checking it out!