Farewell to the First Golden Era
"All the leaves are brown...and the sky is gray..." ... The opening words of "California Dreamin'" speak of a Summer past and it's sad that the high Summer of the wonderful Mamas and Papas is over; it's melancholy that we may not see them again for a long time.
Michelle and John, Cass and Denny are leaving America soon and will pass through London on their way to the Islands which punctuate the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas where they will seek to rediscover the unity, the sense of fun and the inner-strength which took them from a cheerful valley of poverty and struggle to the broad, sunlit uplands of fame and success, of world-wide recognition and widespread acceptance as incomparable contemporary minstrels.
It was in the Virgin Islands, sunworshipping and lazing around in the early 1960's that the four of them planned how it would be when someone gave them the key to unlock the musical treasure chest which, their experience and instinct told them, they surely possesed.
The key came in Los Angeles from Lou Adler, the producer who recalls being introduced to them by Barry Mc Guire and who, when he first saw them, couldn't believe his eyes and who then, when he heard them sing, couldn't believe his ears. Nor, could any of us believe our eyes and ears, for it seemed too much of a bonus in 1965, that exciting bountiful year, to realize that on top of all the other musical adventures and explosions were the Mamas and Papas. Looking back from now, it's unbelievable that in pop-terms there was ever a time when there wasn't a Mamas and Papas.
The group feel that by leaving America for a time and by traveling through Europe -- and who knows how far beyond -- together, the four of them will be able to find each other again. By remaining a unit and yet by separating themselves from familiar environments, they feel they may -- now being now and then being then -- rather than recapture the old magic, fall into a new alchemy.
It's impossible to accept that we will not again enjoy that lovely line-up -- honest, happy, hippy Cass in an enormous dress, billowing, feathering and soft-shoeing across the stage in her boots ... lovely Michelle enraptured by John, her lean and long husband, group leader and composer of the music. And Denny with the cheerful, hooded, wicked eyes, owner of that light baritone -- or maybe tenor, depending on your ear for pitch -- which has threaded its way through so many songs. While they're away, we will miss them.
Through "California Dreamin'" to "Monday, Monday," "Words Of Love," "Look Through My Window," "I Saw Her Again Last Night," "Dedicated To The One I love," "Creeque Alley" to "Twelve-Thirty," (the story of the journey from the streets of New York to the California canyons -- a record which went into the top ten) through the marvelous Monterey International Pop Festival, through countless magazine articles, numberless television appearances and through a continuing involvement in the local Los Angeles "scene" we have grown to prize them highly and love them dearly.
It is two years since "California Dreamin'" became a reality and The Mamas and Papas, owners of a brand new recording studio built in the Bel Air home of John and Michelle -- a home once owned by Jeanette Mac Donald -- and there is no reason, beyond sentiment, to mention it -- were to have recorded their fourth album of original songs. Three album songs were already finished, but they have found they can no longer carry on without the search for peace and new artistic expressions as a group. Eras are only eras; they are not the end of time.
DEDICATED TO THE ONE I LOVE BMI 2:56
GO WHERE YOU WANNA GO ASCAP 2:32
WORDS OF LOVE ASCAP 2:13
LOOK THROUGH MY WINDOW ASCAP 3:00
DANCING IN THE STREET BMI 3:00
MONDAY, MONDAY ASCAP 3:03
CREEQUE ALLEY ASCAP 3:45
GOT A FEELIN' ASCAP 2:44
TWELVE-THIRTY ASCAP 3:20
(Young Girls Are Coming to the Canyon)
I CALL YOUR NAME BMI 2:32
I SAW HER AGAIN ASCAP 2:50
CALIFORNIA DREAMIN' ASCAP 2:32
PRODUCED BY LOU ADLER
ENGINEER "BONES" HOWE
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