Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Music on My Mind

Dr. Hook and The Medicine Show, "Sylvia's Mother". This song was written by Shel Silverstein, who is better known for his comic poetry. It's probably the second or third most widely known song written by Silverstein (the most widely known is surely "A Boy Named Sue", and "Cover of The Rolling Stone" is arguably second), but I think it's his best. This is how you evoke a story in song; and it's how you manage to convey something timeless even if you are doing it with timebound lines like, "And the operator says, 'Forty cents more for the next three minutes.'"


  1. branemrys7:57 AM

    I think it's widely known; but I don't know that it has quite that much fame. But it's always difficult to tell with Silverstein, because his comic poetry was so widely known as well; and "The Unicorn" was also in Where the Sidewalk Ends, so people who haven't heard the song would still have been exposed to it.

  2. Of course, since the most popular version was by the New Irish Rovers, most people who know it think it's an Irish Traditional Ballad...


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