Ah, 1967, the Summer of Love, when all the groovy and mellow flower children migrated to the Haight-Ashbury District of San Francisco to live, high on life, in communion with Nature and all her creatures.

Actually, not quite all of the flower children.  Perhaps the most laid-back and mellow was in the UK, a Scottish singer, songwriter and musician named Donovan Leitch, who recorded simply as Donovan.  He had first gained recognition with folk-influenced works like “Catch the Wind” and “Try for the Sun,” but became a true international superstar with his “rocking” numbers like “Sunshine Superman” and “Mellow Yellow.”  Though neither of those hits really rocks by today’s standards, the Sunshine Superman album included “Season of the “Witch,” which has been covered by many artists ranging from Dr. John to Vanilla Fudge to Brian Auger and the Trinity, and which truly can rock your socks off.

When Donovan went back to the studio to record the album to follow up Mellow Yellow, he decided to record two new albums.  One, called Wear Your Love Like Heaven, featured electric instruments and was intended for listeners of his generation who were – or would become – parents.  The other, called For Little Ones, was acoustic and meant to speak to the children.  The two were released together in a boxed set entitled A Gift from a Flower to a Garden.  It was perhaps the first rock boxed set and included not only the two albums, but also artwork, lyrics to the songs on For Little Ones, an infrared cover photo and more.

As if Donovan was not sufficiently mellow on his own, he had, by 1967, become a student and devotee of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, and a photo of the Maharishi is on the back cover of the set.  I have read that “Isle of Islay,” from For Little Ones, was the Maharishi’s favorite song.

To escape the stress of modern life, a person could sit down and listen (really LISTEN) to almost any track on either of the albums – three minutes that could save years of meditiation practice or psychotherapy.  This week’s Song of the Week is “Little Boy in Corduroy” from Wear Your Love Like Heaven.  It is the song that has been in my head, and it has a great duet between an organ and a whistler.  Although it is probably not the best song from the set, it doesn’t really get any better than this.

Little Boy In Corduroy

A little boy in corduroy
a little girl in lace
a little coy jump for joy
colour in a space

little boy in corduroy
after me say
save a sunny wish for a rainy dayhow many wishes can you wish in a day
wish i had a wish to wish a wish awaytake a seed
thread a bead
make a pretty thingin a deed plant a seed
make a daisy ring
little boy in corduroy
after me say
how many wishes can you wish in a day
i wish i had a wish to wish a wish away
little boy in corduroy

Copyright Donovan (Music) Limited



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