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Songs of 1966 - Taking Back the Airwaves
1966 has so many good songs that it was hard to narrow it down to just 11. This first one includes a lot of the music I loved as a kid. I had discovered the Supremes, the Temptations and the Four Tops by then, but I didn’t include the Motown songs from 1966 because I think they deserve an article all of their own. I would say that if 1964 and 1965 were the years of the British invasion that 1966 was the year of the Motown invasion. Music seemed to shoot off in a thousand different directions in the mid-60s and it was hard to decide what your favorite genre was.
When I was 9, it didn’t really seem to matter what the music was called. Music was just music, I wasn’t “sophisticated” enough yet to be critical and elitist about certain music; I just loved it all. I loved listening to my parents Jim Reeves records, I loved the songs we sang in the school choir (everything from old-English folk songs to The Sound of Music), and, of course, I enjoyed the popular music of the day.
The Mamas and the Papas - California Dreamin'
I’ve always been a fan of this group. The harmonies and vocals are always great. As I write this, I’m watching a biography of the band.
Question Mark and the Mysterians - 96 Tears
I love the organ on this song. This is the best video I could find that actually showed the band.
The Beach Boys - Good Vibrations
This is my favorite Beach Boy song. Pet Sounds, the album it came from, is their masterpiece album. In the way that Sgt. Pepper was for the Beatles.
The Yardbirds - Shape of Things
More English psychadelia. An excellent song.
Paul Revere and the Raiders - Just Like Me
I developed a crush on lead singer Mark Lindsay in the late 60s.
The Monkees - I'm a Believer
This song was written by Neil Diamond. The Monkees were my first full blown teeny-bopper crush. I was in love with Davy, as millions of girls my age were, and I always thought Mickey was cute. In later years, I developed more of an interest in Mike Nesmith and his style of music.
The Lovin' Spoonful - You Didn't Have to be So Nice
I really like all of the Lovin’ Spoonful’s songs. This one, Daydreamer, Summer in the City, etc. I can’t name a bad song by this band.
Los Bravos - Black is Black
I thought for the longest time that this was Gene Pitney singing. I remember this song from when I was a kid and I always liked it.
The Byrds - Eight Miles High
The Byrds were one of the originators of psychedelic rock.
The Who - Happy Jack
The Who are one of my all-time favorite bands. I’ve liked their music ever since I first heard it on my transistor radio.
The Beatles - Eleanor Rigby
A true classic from the Beatles. This song never fails to give me the chills.