(I Knew That You Knew)

The Love Generation

Imperial 66310, 1968
Billboard: #86

How Sweet It Is was a mildly funny 1968 movie with James Garner and Debbie Reynolds doing prototype Griswolds-in-Paris shtick. Arguably the best thing about it was its love theme, written by Jimmy Webb with the Disarming Simplicity knob turned up to the max — there's even an echo of "Up, Up and Away" in the outro — and sung by The Love Generation, which started out as four men and two women who cut two albums of prime Soft Pop for Imperial. Leading the Generation were brothers John and Tom Bahler. By the time "Montage" came out, the group was apparently dissolving: the sleeve photo from the Montage album (Imperial LP 12408), the third released under the Love Generation name, features two men (the Bahlers?) facing forward, their backs turned on half a dozen other folks, and the liner notes mention the Bahlers and producer/arranger Tommy Oliver, but ignore anyone else who had ever been in the group. John and Tom Bahler went on to do lots of studio work, including background vocals for the Partridge Family. In England, the Generation was overlooked in favor of a version by former Rockin' Berries vocalist Geoff Turton under the name "Jefferson", which also stiffed, though he would go on to chart with "The Colour of My Love" and in America with "Baby Take Me in Your Arms". "Montage", with its sort-of-surreal "I knew that you knew that I knew that you knew..." chorus and its just-this-side-of-ethereal arrangement, should have been a huge hit, and why it wasn't, I can't explain; maybe too many people felt Webb's "Gee, I hope she doesn't think I'm a dork" tone hit too close to home. I know where it hit me.

Where can I get this on CD?
The lovers at Sundazed have issued a 25-track Love Generation compilation (Love and Sunshine, SC 11120).

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Copyright © 2000-02 by Charles G. Hill
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Thanks to Chris Bullard and Robrt Pela.