Tuesday, July 12, 2011

63. Margo Guryan, "Under My Umbrella" (1968)


I owe thanks for this one to the blog blowupdoll ("YOU'RE JUST JEALOUS 'COS YOU CAN'T BE ME," which is probably true enough as far as it goes). I've had it parked over there in my blogroll for longer than I care to say. And it's also been awhile since I've made regular rounds to go forth and download things, so I was happy to check and see it's still up and going strong and evidently working the same territory—breathy chick singers of the '60s and '70s, or of the style. Margo Guryan wrote "Sunday Mornin'," the redoubtable Spanky & Our Gang (and, later, Oliver) hit of the late '60s, but it says in Wikipedia she didn't like touring so she didn't do it much and her career suffered some. It also says she tilted toward jazz until someone sat her down and played her the Beach Boys' "God Only Knows." which naturally changed her life. (As whose hasn't it?) You can kind of pick that vibe out of "Under My Umbrella," the way the melody darts and soars, undergirded by the softly plonking "Chopsticks" piano figure. It's a lovely, entirely coherent production designed with laser focus to inspire feelings of swooning dreaminess. In memory I am always listening to this song lying on my back, looking at blue skies and fluffy clouds (in spite of the weather report in the lyrics) or maybe blowing puffy dandelion seed balls to smithereens off the stem. That kind of thing. Pure Peter Max '60s, all technicolor, a movie montage. It also carries a vaguely black & white Parisian vibe too, springtime and the season's warmth in the air. I don't very often hear the rain in this, though I appreciate the coziness of the titular image. Under her umbrella sounds like one of the nicest places to be in that turbulent decade.


  1. I didn't write this song. It was written by Bobby Weinstein and Mickey Leonard. This is a demo I did for them.