It’ll take time, I know it

Goldmine’s annual Rock & Roll Hall of Fame issue duly profiles this year’s inductees, and then spends three pages arguing that Donovan ought to have been among them.

It is undoubtedly true that Donovan turned out some transcendent records, though “Mellow Yellow” really isn’t one of them. And the article trots out the old myth about three-quarters of Led Zeppelin playing on “Hurdy Gurdy Man.” John Paul Jones, who was there, and who, in his capacity as arranger for producer Mickie Most, had actually hired the session musicians, begs to differ.

Still, the man did have a unique vision, broad enough to include the wispiest folk and the jangliest blues-rock. (For a sample of the latter, see “Barabajagal,” which he cut with the Jeff Beck Group.) And if he occasionally veered off into the twee — or, in the case of “The Intergalactic Laxative,” the pee — well, his influence remains considerable, even if you don’t count being Diane Court’s dad.

So one of these days, the call will come in from Cleveland: “Good morning, Mr Leitch, are you having a busy day?” Heck, they might even get around to Rush. Or Paul Revere and the Raiders.


  1. Don »

    6 April 2011 · 8:05 am

    Induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is the Nobel Prize for rock and is only slightly more meaningful than the peace prize. It’s a greater honor to be overlooked.

  2. Jeff Brokaw »

    6 April 2011 · 8:37 am

    Not a big Donovan fan, and not sure why he belongs in any Hall of Fame, but maybe I haven’t dug deep enough into his catalogue. Never saw any reason to, really, and most of his singles and “radio-friendly” album cuts have aged badly, to my ears. Compare against Motown, for instance, which sounds as ageless and fresh as ever. Night and day.

    “E-leck-TRICK-al ba-NAN-a” … Have another hit on that bong, Dono. Maybe some more acid too. In 1967, there was no such thing as too weird.

    There was lots of great rock and pop music in the 60s, and then there was some pretty weird stuff, and Donovan is pretty much the poster child for that last category.

    So I guess you could put me down as a “no” on that question. In case it wasn’t clear. ;-)

  3. Charles Pergiel »

    6 April 2011 · 7:14 pm

    YouTube tells me that Donovan does the intro for “Weeds”, which my daughter recommends. I haven’t watched it. Curious.

  4. Charles Pergiel »

    6 April 2011 · 7:21 pm

    Looks like they get somebody different to do the intro for each episode, including a band called The Crackheads. Could this be the same as Judy and The Crackheads from Holland?

  5. CGHill »

    6 April 2011 · 7:56 pm

    I don’t think so: there are a couple of live YouTubings of Judy and the Crackheads, and they don’t sound like the same band.

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