The remarkable musical year 1968 saw the first release from Todd Rundgren's group Nazz, and Welsh singer Mary Hopkin [left], who followed the success of the first record released on the Beatles' Apple Records--"Those Were the Days"--with versions in French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Hungarian, and German (that's the version I play on this show).
It was also the year a number of artists released stunning second albums: Cream, Janis Joplin, and Sly & the Family Stone. And even though albums fully came into their own, singles were still going strong, with the likes of The Doors, Johnny Taylor, and Johnny Cash.
Also on this week's show is a remarkable outtake from The Beatles' White Album, written by John Lennon in India, called "Child of Nature." It'll sound familiar because the lyrics were re-written a few years later and released as an altogether different song, but this one has an innocence that wasn't there in the later version.
Here's what you'll hear.
In the year 1968 we first heard Donovan sing about Maharishi as well as the sun and the river, The Beach Boys sang about friends, James Brown sang about being black, and Traffic sang about an herbal preparation called "medicated goo."
Everyone knows Etta James' wedding classic "At last," but her song "Tell mama" should also be sung at weddings, in my opinion.
The Band's debut album "Music from Big Pink" featured the sad and weird classic "Long Black Veil," and James Taylor inspired George Harrison with his love song, "Something in the way she moves."
The wild variety and creativity of the music released in 1968 was and still is astounding. My playlist is here.