Friday, June 8, 2012

If You're Going to San Francisco

Be Sure to Wear:  Driving home yesterday from a shopping trip to Trader Joe's (again, no challah!) Abq Jew flipped the radio dial (pressed a programmed Sirius XM station, "'60's on 6") and heard this song for the first time in like a zillion years.

Abq Jew was close to the right place (suburban Sunnyvale, only 45 miles from The City By The Bay) at close to the right time (he was 16, going on 17)... nah, he really did miss the Summer of Love by that much.  [Youngsters: this is a reference to Get Smart.]  1967.  45 years ago.  You can look it up.

So, Abq Jew is sure you're wondering, what's the Jewish connection?

To be honest (as he always tries to be), Abq Jew isn't sure there is any.  Except that, as everyone knows, almost all the hippies were Jewish.

Even the Hare Krishnas.  Especially the Hare Krishnas.  Or, as they were also known, the Harry Kirschners.

And then there was Philip Blondheim.  Or, as we all know him - Scott McKenzie.

Wikipedia (as always) explains:
Scott McKenzie (born Philip Blondheim, January 10, 1939, Jacksonville, Florida) is an American singer. He is best known for his 1967 hit single and generational anthem, San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear [Some] Flowers in Your Hair).

At one of these parties I complained that nobody could understand my real name... [and] pointed out that this was a definite liability in a profession that benefited from instant name recognition. Everyone started trying to come up with a new name for me. It was [comedian] Jackie Curtis who said he thought I looked like a Scottie dog. [John] Phillips came up with Laura's [?] middle name after Jackie's suggestion. I didn't like being called "Scottie" so everybody agreed my new name could be Scott McKenzie."

In 1961 Phillips and McKenzie met Dick Weissman and formed The Journeymen, which recorded three albums and seven singles for Capitol Records. After The Beatles became popular in 1964, The Jorneymen disbanded. McKenzie and Weissman became solo performers, while Phillips formed the group The Mamas & the Papas with Denny Doherty, Cass Elliot and Michelle Phillips and moved to California.

On his website, Scott says:

If you're going to be a one hit wonder,
San Francisco is the hit to have.


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Shabbat Shalom, Albuquerque!
Good Shabbos, New Mexico!

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