Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Live a Life of Ease and Dine on Green Cheese

I'm really digging Alyson's series on full moons as we follow the lunar calendar, and her latest is on the Strawberry Moon because, as she puts it, "for the Algonquin tribes of North America, June was the month the wild berries started to ripen and could be harvested." Upon reading this post last night, I began rolling moon-themed songs in my head, and the first one to pop into my mind was Echo & the Bunnymen doing "The Killing Moon", but then my mind wandered into jazz and easy listening territory. Frank Sinatra's delivery on "Fly Me to the Moon" is pure cool, and Julie London's take on "No Moon at All" is so sultry I blush just thinking about it. Having said that, I think my favorite might be Mel Tormé's "Swingin' on the Moon".

In 1960, as the race to space became an international obsession, the Velvet Fog recorded an entire album of moon songs. Most of them were standards, such as "How High the Moon" and "Moonlight in Vermont", but the title song and album opener was a Tormé original and a real gas. Backed by Russel Garcia's Orchestra, Tormé sings about taking a space trip with his gal. Here are a few of my favorite lyrics.

Let's have a honeymoon on the moon, honey
Far from the noisy earth below
And if your mama asks, "Why the moon honey?"
Just tell her your feller has gone inter-stellar

Hey, let's grab a holiday on the moon, honey
Far from the hustle of the crowd
And if your folks ask about our house, honey
Tell mater and pater we live in the crater

Now that's a smile! The song fades with Tormé singing, in order, the titles of every song on the album. Buckle up and take a rocket ship back to a simpler time.

Swingin' on the Moon


Alyson said...

Gosh - thanks for the mention Brian and glad you're enjoying the series. The songs you mentioned have either all been already included or are on the "post pending" list - All except Mel Tormé of course so thanks for bringing him to my attention. That song is a smile indeed and hard to believe it's from nearly 60 years ago as sounds almost contemporary, in the style of some of the current swing artists.

I'm reading the book Moondust at the moment about the men who went to the moon - Strange that back in those simpler times we were making such things happen yet soon there will be no-one left on Earth who has walked on the moon. Don't know about where you are but the Strawberry Moon is just about full here, so looking very impressive!

Brian said...

Next summer will be 50 years since that first moonwalk. You're right about that strange fact. Not many of those pioneers left. A heavy blanket of clouds here in the Pacific Northwest the entire week, Alyson. I will miss the Strawberry Moon entirely, I'm afraid. Didn't mention it, but how about that Tormé album cover, eh? One of my favorites. Take care.