Sunday, July 8, 2012

Bobby Freeman - "C'mon and Swim" (1964)

Just a few nights ago, my son introduced me to this song.  (Funny, I thought it was supposed to be the other way around.)  I cannot comprehend how I have not heard this song before.  I will make a bold and only mildly hyperbolic statement:

If you want to understand the essence of 1960s pop music in its entirety, you only need to hear and absorb one song:  Bobby Freeman's 1964 masterpiece, "C'mon and Swim".

This song is incredible.  It has as its foundation a driving surf beat.  In fact, parts of this track sound very much like surf music.  But, hark!  What is that I hear?  Sam & Dave style soul horns?  Okay, groovy combo.

The singer seems to be coming from a soul genre, too.  And he is telling us how to do a dance move, just as you'd expect from Chubby Checker or Freddy Garrity (Freddie & the Dreamers).

But wait, that's not all!  Over the surf drums and the horn section, is the wild, serpentine line of a double-time blues-derived lead guitar line that would become the mainstay of ... psychedelic music!

This track literally has the entire 1960s music scene packed into a single track.  And Bobby Freeman did it ... in 1964!!

Oh yes ... in case you have trouble imagining the Swim dance step, just watch this: