♫ Happy Together ♫

Having been under a dark cloud for days now, I thought that the very least I could do would be play an upbeat song, so I went in search of songs about “happy”.  This was among the first five to pop up on Google, and the first I actually recognized, so I set about to find some related trivia about the song.  But, as I did so, it sounded all too familiar, so I checked the archives and … sure enough, I played this one a couple of years ago (2019).  Still and all … it is a happy song and I’m wiped out tonight, so I’ll play it again!  Funny … I still have the same problems with my van now that I had two years ago!  Ali promises that when the weather gets warm, he’s going to repair the transmission for me so that I can drive it farther than the Kroger across the street!  To be fair, Socrates has over 225,000 miles on his odometer and he’s tired — I can relate.  Anyway, let the music set your toes to tapping and put a smile on your faces, okay?


The “Check Engine” light keeps coming on in my van.  I keep checking, and the engine is still there, so I’m puzzled.  Perhaps the light has a short.  This is completely apropos of nothing except that this morning, as I headed out to the grocery hoping to beat the heat, I once again checked to ensure that the engine was right where it was supposed to be, and I had a little chat with the van … whose name is Socrates … and I said, “Look, Sock … if you would just settle down, stop that stupid thumping noise every time you shift gears, and turn off that little light, we could be so Happy Together.”  And that, naturally, put this song into my head.

Despite what the title implies, this is not a song about a couple in love. According to Gary Bonner, who wrote the song with Alan Gordon, the song is about unrequited love. Our desperate singer wants the girl to “imagine how the world could be so very fine,” proposing what would happen “if I should call you up.” The line in the fadeout, “How is the weather?” is when he realizes they will never be more than passing acquaintances, as he resorts to small talk to keep from bursting into tears.  Who knew?

The song’s composers Gary Bonner and Alan Gordon were the bass player and drummer of the Boston area group The Magicians. Bonner became a regular member of Kenny Vance and the Planotones. Gordon, who died in 2008 at the age of 64, had songs recorded by Alice Cooper, Frank Zappa and The Lovin’ Spoonful.

Talking about how the song came together, Alan Gordon said …

“I had nearly half a song already written, mostly lyric ideas, but couldn’t find the right melodic concept. The Magicians were in the middle of a week-long engagement at the Unicorn Club in Boston, and one early morning I was visiting my divorced father in nearby Ayer, Massachusetts after being up all night. I had stopped to have breakfast at the Park Street Diner in the town and was miserable with no sleep, the endless dumb gigs we were playing and having a songwriter’s block. About the only melody that was throbbing in my tired, fried brain at that hour was the time-immemorial repeated open string pattern that Allen (Jake) Jacobs, the Magician’s lead guitarist, would use as he incessantly tuned and retuned after, before, and frequently during each piece we played. Suddenly, some words began to fit and literally minutes later music and lyrics started to take shape. I excitedly and in fairness asked Jake to complete the song with me as co-writer, but he refused, saying it was all ‘too simple’ for him to be involved, so my regular partner Gary then helped me with the finishing touches. When Gary Klein at the Koppleman/Rubin office heard the result, he immediately knew the song would be perfect for the new and upbeat image being created for The Turtles, and it was his continued enthusiasm that convinced the group to record it.”

In the three years after The Turtles recorded this, they had several other hits, but disbanded in 1970. Volman and Kaylan joined Frank Zappa And The Mothers Of Invention as “Phlorescent Leech and Eddie.” Seriously??? After a few years with Zappa, they started recording as Flo And Eddie. They wrote music for the animated movies Dirty Duck, Strawberry Shortcake and The Care Bears, and hosted their own nationally syndicated radio show. They also played on many famous songs by John Lennon, Roger McGuinn, Hoyt Axton, Alice Cooper, Blondie, Bruce Springsteen, The Psychedelic Furs (Again … seriously???), Sammy Hagar, Duran Duran, and The Ramones. In 1984, they went on their “Happy Together Tour” as The Turtles Featuring Flo And Eddie.

Happy Together
The Turtles

Imagine me and you, I do
I think about you day and night, it’s only right
To think about the girl you love and hold her tight
So happy together

If I should call you up, invest a dime
And you say you belong to me and ease my mind
Imagine how the world could be, so very fine
So happy together

I can’t see me lovin’ nobody but you
For all my life
When you’re with me, baby the skies’ll be blue
For all my life

Me and you and you and me
No matter how they toss the dice, it had to be
The only one for me is you, and you for me
So happy together

I can’t see me lovin’ nobody but you
For all my life
When you’re with me, baby the skies’ll be blue
For all my life

Me and you and you and me
No matter how they toss the dice, it had to be
The only one for me is you, and you for me
So happy together

Ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba
Ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba

Me and you and you and me
No matter how they toss the dice, it had to be
The only one for me is you, and you for me
So happy together

So happy together
How is the weather
So happy together
We’re happy together
So happy together
Happy together
So happy together
So happy together (ba-ba-ba-ba ba-ba-ba-ba)

Songwriters: Alan Gordon / Garry Bonner
Happy Together lyrics © Round Hill Music Big Loud Songs, BMG Rights Management, Carlin America Inc

50 thoughts on “♫ Happy Together ♫

  1. You find the best songs! Don’t worry about your check engine light coming on (after the car shop has assured you it’s okay). Mine comes on often, and it’s a quirk in the car’s computer system.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Damn, I hate Word Press.
    The Turtles started their path to fame with the 1965 Dylan cover, It Ain’t Me, Babe. The music was upbeat, I thought, in contrast to the morose lyrics. The lyrics were from what I called Dylan’s morose period. His genius just hid his sadness. It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue and Leopardskin Pillbox Hat were good examples of that Dylan period, as was Like a Rolling Stone.
    The Turtles raised the bar in 1966 with their second hit You, Baby which climaxed in the trio of hitsHappy Together 1967, She’d Rather Be With Me 1968, and Elenore. 1968. When The Turtles broke up, Mark and Howard joined Frank Zappa for a few years, then began a long series of stints as Flo and Eddy.
    But let Mark tell you their story, he knows it better than I do.
    https://tinnitist.com/2020/07/21/back-stories-my-2002-interview-with-mark-volman-of-turtles-flo-eddie-moi/
    (Please note, different sites gives different dates, possibly according to release date and highest chart date. I have to admit I was shocked Happy Together did not hit #1 in Canada, only #2. But She’d Rather Be With Me did hit #1 in Canads, as did Elenore, while neither hit the top in the US.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow … you provided much better info that I found elsewhere! I was never much of a Bob Dylan fan, but I liked the Turtles — they just weren’t my favourite. I’m almost surprised that you like them, for your tastes generally tend to somewhat darker music than the Turtles. Thanks for the added info!

      Like

      • In 1965 my tastes were still developing. The Turtles made me happy. They still do. I used to watch Flo and Eddie on the Canadian late night talk show Ninety Minutes Live, hosted by Peter Gzoski. Frequent guest, besides Flo and Eddie, included Tom Waits and Father Sarducci. It beat Johnny Carson all to hell, and was a rival to Dick Cavett. Probably you never heard of it.
        The Turtles were, for me, Califorbia’s version of the Beatles.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Oh great … and now I have “Elenore gee I think you’re swell, and you ring me like a bell …” going through my little bitty brain! Sigh. Anyway, I’m glad you enjoyed this one … you needed a “happy break” today.
      Cwtch xx

      Liked by 1 person

    • I originally named him Bozo or Bonzo — I don’t remember which — but he took umbrage and didn’t like his name, so I gave him one more dignified … a philosopher. He and I have many intellectual discussions on our way to and from the grocery store! And, when we get there, I always try to park him next to some cute little sports car so he can have some fun flirting with them! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

        • Ah, well … I need him, for he is my sole form of transportation, so I treat him well! His transmission is shot, only one window works, the battery dies every other day if I forget to start him, and the steering is going out, but … he gets me to the grocery store! Meanwhile, I am hoping my daughter will buy herself a new car, and I can inherit her Saturn, which is only about 10 years old!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Sounds like my old Golf, i had given away five years in the past. 😉 For sure, without a car its sometimes very difficult taking meetings. At the moment I’m thinking about getting myself another vehicle. At least before there were only remote-controlled electric vehicles. I still want to change gear and steer myself, and sometimes driving a little bit faster too. Lol

            Liked by 1 person

            • Where I live, there is no mass transit, no buses or trains, so you almost have to have a car. If I had the money to buy a new car, I would seriously be considering an electric car … so much better for the environment! But alas, I must wait for somebody’s hand-me-downs 😉

              Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: ♫ Happy Together ♫ — Filosofa’s Word – Ninnys Nest

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