What a beautiful feeling … Crimson and Clover (over and over) Tommy James and the Shondells

On Feb. 1, 1969, Tommy James and the Shondells had the #1 song in the US with “Crimson and Clover.” It was the band’s second #1 single — “Hanky Panky” had topped the charts in 1966. The band had had several Top 10 hits since then, including 1967’s “I Think We’re Alone Now” (at #4) and 1968’s “Mony, Mony” (at #3).

“Crimson and Clover” is the title track to the band’s 1968 album which went to #8 on the LP charts. On this album, James worked with the Shondells to write and produce their songs (as opposed to the writing team of Bo Gentry and Ritchie Cordell who had been crafting pop songs for the group). James said he came up with the song’s title before he had the song. The band tapped into a distinct sound that played off their pop sensibilities and the psychedelia of the times.

The song entered the Billboard Hot 100 in December of ’68 and in seven weeks rose to #1. It was also a #1 hit in Canada and South Africa.

A follow-up single from the Crimson and Clover LP, “Crystal Blue Persuasion,” went to #2 in the US. The song plateaued at #2 for three weeks because it was kept out of the #1 spot by the Rolling Stones’ “Honky Tonk Women.”

One of my all-time favorite songs is “Crystal Blue Persuasion”  http://bit.ly/CrystalBluePersuasionTJnShondells


About poppaculture

I am a seasoned consumer of modern (and not so modern) culture.
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2 Responses to What a beautiful feeling … Crimson and Clover (over and over) Tommy James and the Shondells

  1. Geezer says:

    Once again, I do wonder whether I am being baited. You might know better than I do — have I written about Tommy James rather unwitting involvement with The Mob? Have I mentioned the book?

    Have you read the book?

    Do you know about Morris Levy and Roulette Records?

    The book — Me, The Mob, and The Music — has been on my wish list for months. I guess I’ve been too busy, lately, buying “pirated” music out of the UK to read the book or else, well, maybe I’m just been waiting … waiting … waiting … waiting to see if Scorsese will really turn James’ bio into a movie so I don’t have to read the book.

    What would a comment from the Geezer be without at least one link? http://goo.gl/W23W1

    • poppaculture says:

      Oh my … and a wonderful link it is, too, Mister Geezer.
      A movie and a Broadway play !

      I think of those few Roulette labeled 45rpm’s I still have in my collection. The label’s name should have tipped me off.
      I’ll have to see if my local library carries the book.

      Always a pleasure to read your thoughts, sir (even if provoked by unintended baited posts).

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