Times They Are A-Changin'


Bob Dylan

(CBS) 201751 1965
  Bob Dylan; born May 24th 1941 in Duluth

"Times they are a-changin'" sang Bob Dylan in 1965, and indeed in the realms of popular music they certainly were changing.

Although the top groups were still riding high, the UK's obsession with the group sound was beginning to fade and new artists were appearing. The trend was towards singer-songwriters on both sides of the Atlantic.

'Times They Are A-Changin'' was actually recorded in 1964 and Dylan had some UK success during that year with albums, but this was his first success on 45 rpm reaching #9.

Bob Dylan, drawing heavily on influences from Woody Guthrie, wrote prolifically. His songs became familiar during the remaining 1960s years. Sometimes they were sung by other people, like the Byrds -one of the 'new' groups that appeared to displace those that came before.

Eve Of Destruction


Barry McGuire

RCA 1469 1965
  Barry McGuire born 15th October 1937 in Oklahoma

1965 saw the appearance of the 'protest' song, a manifestation of the new 'Dylan' folk sound.

There was no better example than 'Eve Of Destruction' which reached the UK #3 position. The song even gave rise to a less successful 'answer' record called 'Dawn Of Correction' by a group calling themselves the Spokesmen.

Barry McGuire had a varied career in the 1960s. Before going solo with 'Eve Of Destruction' he was the lead singer with the New Christy Minstrels. So he was familiar with an altogether different style of 'folk' with numbers like 'Green, Green' and 'Three Wheels On My Wagon'.

Despite quite good material, Barry McGuire never had impact on the UK chart again under his own name. However, his close association with the Mamas and Papas a year or two later mean that he can be heard as a backing vocal on a few more 1960s singles.

Catch The Wind



7N.15801 1965
  Donovan Leitch born May 10th in Glasgow

The quasi-folk sound of 1965 gave rise to the UK producing its own offerings. Although subject to obvious comparison with Bob Dylan, Donovan achieved an altogether lighter, less serious, style than his American counterpart.

'Catch The Wind' was the first of many successful UK releases and achieved a chart position four places higher than Dylan's 'Times They Are A-Changin''

Donovan managed to enter the UK top ten chart no less than seven times during the 1960s but never got to the elusive top position. However, the popularity of British music in the USA during this period enabled him to reach #1 in that country with 'Sunshine Superman' in 1966.

And I Love Him


Esther Phillips

AT.4028 1965
  Esther Phillips born December 23rd 1935 in Galveston

Although the industry's practice of creating multiple cover versions to compete with original issues was coming to an end, covers in the form of different interpretations of good songs could still be found.

This record is an example of such a re-interpretation. Esther Phillips was an entirely different artist to the Beatles. This suitably retitled version of their 'And I Love Her' shows an entirely new dimension to the song. She also made a female version of the Percy Sledge hit 'When A Woman Loves A Man'

Esther Phillips began singing professionally during her early teens, at which time her small stature allowed her to adopt the name 'Little Esther'. The earlier part of her career was spent singing and recording Rhythm and Blues with which she became well known but never hit the big time.

She reverted to her true name in the early sixties and began to sing a wider variety of material. Her biggest chart success came in 1962 with 'Release Me' which made #8 in the USA but had no impact on the British scene until Engelbert. If any record demonstrates that chart position is no indicator of quality then 'And I Love Him' does. Although none of Esther's singles had UK chart success they are all well worth seeking out.

In The Midnight Hour


Wilson Pickett

AT.4036 1965
  Wilson Pickett born March 18th 1941 in Pratville

1965 also saw a significant growth in the popularity of 'Soul' music. Motown and Atlantic were to continue as two of the genre's most successful labels for the rest of the decade and beyond.

Wilson Pickett had a longer chart life than many of his contemporaries. His hits included a Soul version of the Beatles' 'Hey Jude' which was his final UK top twenty success at the end of the decade.

'In The Midnight Hour' is now regarded as a Soul Classic and has itself been covered by many singers.

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