Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday Night Videos

Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show had a string of catchy hits, but never managed to earn the album sales or fan following they deserved. Maybe that's because their drunken stoner antics prevented people from taking them seriously. Or maybe the fact that they didn't write much of their own material in the era of singer-songwriters had the same effect. I don't know. What I do know is that the late, great Shel Silverstein wrote a whole heck of a lot of their songs, including the heartbreaking "Sylvia's Mother." This single, based on an actual incident Silverstein experienced in his younger days, is deceptively simple but lays out a complete, multilayered narrative using an economy of words. The lyrics are masterful, and a fantastic example of concise writing. Enjoy.

Previously on Friday Night Videos... The Beastie Boys.

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