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In the second half of the 1960s, several pop songs were released that had a nostalgic, vaudevillian sound. “Daydream” (#2, Mar 1966), “Winchester Cathedral” (#1, Dec 1966), “Honey Pie” (White Album, Nov 1968), and today’s SotW, “Hello Hello” (#26, Jan 1967) by the Sopwith Camel. (You might throw the music of Harper’s Bazaar in there too.) Each of these songs had an old timey feel and vocals that sounded like they were being sung through a megaphone.
The song was later included on the soundtrack for the movie Milk (2008), that depicted the life of the San Franciscan who became the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in 1977.
The Sopwith Camel came out of the San Francisco psychedelic scene. The recording was produced by Erik Jacobsen who had recently moved to Northern California after having been fired by the New York based Lovin’ Spoonful. In fact, you can hear the similarities in their sound (not to mention that both recorded for the small Kama Sutra label).
The band broke up the same year that their eponymous first album was released. They reunited to record another album, 1972’s The Miraculous Hump Returns from the Moon, but never repeated the success of “Hello Hello”, leaving them as another name on the long list of “one hit wonders.”
It ain’t rockroll but I loved it as a kid and it sounds pretty damn fun now. Thanks, Tom.
I like it quite a bit myself. A good-time feel with a twinge of melancholy. Nice.
nice choice for a kickoff tom! welcome to the fray (the site, ugh, not the band).
Reminds me of junior high, when lots of music like this was all over the Bay Area airwaves. (We had two top-40 stations, plus (perhaps a little later) two “soul” stations.) “Happy Together” might be another in the same genre. I’m sure there are many more.