On 11 February 2019 I set myself the challenging of reading 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery (ed.) and following the book’s advice to the letter. I’ve previously read 1001 Films… and started 1001 Albums… but felt 1001 Songs… would be a sensible place to start for what I have in mind here.
My challenge is to read about one song per day and listen to it (YouTube and Spotify, I need you tonight!) before sharing my own thoughts. Some songs I will love, others I’ll hate, and I’m sure there will be those that leave me perplexed but listen to them I shall.
I’ll also try, and most likely fail, to pinpoint the best song from the 1001 on offer but I’m nothing if not foolhardy. Instead of one song, I’m predicting I’ll have about 100 favourites by the end and may have to resort to a Top 10 so far to maintain any semblance of sanity.
So long as I post everyday (including Christmas) then this challenge should come to an end on Wednesday 8 November 2021. Staying with the Barney Stinson theme I am hoping that the whole experience will prove to be…
The Easybeats – Friday on My Mind (1966)
Well, from Scotland in the UK we’re heading on a very long flight down to Australia, dear reader, but we’re bringing a touch of Scottish with us for the journey. Brothers and founding members of AC/DC – Angus and Malcolm Young – emigrated with their family from Scotland to Australia and would later form their legendary rock group in the 1970s. In the 1960s, their older brother, George Young, was a guitarist in the band – The Easybeats – who are our guests today. Their career was sadly brief, a big contrast to AC/DC, but one of their songs has been deemed worthy of our illustrious list – Friday on My Mind.
Friday on My Mind immediately made me think of The Cure’s Friday I’m In Love which was released in the 1990s and follows a similar vein to this track. Lead singer, Steve Wright, takes us through the slog that is the Monday-Friday work routine that many people are faced with in their jobs. The narrator here tells us that the weekdays are a drag but as he gets through each day his mind starts to wander to Friday, in particular, Friday evening. That, for him, is the best part of the week because he will be hitting the town, partying, being with his girl and spending his hard-earned cash. Come Monday the cycle begins again and our narrator begins the countdown to Friday.
I don’t recall hearing about The Easybeats but Friday on My Mind does ring a faint bell in the darker recesses of my brain. It’s a catchy song, tapping in perfectly to the work routine that millions of people across the world will adhere to and when you’re there you do long for Friday. Spare a thought for the many people who work seven days a week! I was not aware that the Young family had three musical siblings but, sadly, George would not enjoy the same acclaim as his brothers. He did work with them in the 1970s as a producer on AC/DC’s early albums which you have to say is a nice touch, likely offering insight and guidance. As with many artists on our list, The Easybeats had a brief but memorable spell in the limelight.
Favourite songs so far:
Ben E. King – Stand By Me (1961)
The Animals – House of the Rising Sun (1964)
Simon & Garfunkel – The Sounds of Silence (1965)
The Righteous Brothers – Unchained Melody (1965)
The Who – Substitute (1966)
The Kinks – Sunny Afternoon (1966)
The Rolling Stones – Paint It Black (1966)
The Beach Boys – God Only Knows (1966)
The Beatles – Eleanor Rigby (1966)
The Four Tops – Reach Out (I’ll Be There) (1966)