Sunday, November 17, 2019

Do The Do

Let's have some fun. Today I'm participating in Song Lyric Sunday, which can be found HERE. This week the theme is "Done With The Verb Do" and you can choose to feature any song with any variant of "do" in it. I've chosen Tim Hardin's "Do The Do", a lively dance tune, pretty atypical for the moody, introspective Hardin.

"Do The Do" was written by blues man Willie Dixon, a favorite songwriter of late 60's blues rockers. He also wrote "Backdoor Man" popularized by the Doors, and "Spoonful", memorably recorded by Cream and also Etta James. "Do The Do" was recorded by several people (according to internet research--I have never heard any other version but Hardin's) and the lyrics I will add at the end of the post are from Howlin' Wolf's version. 

I can't listen to Hardin's recording of "Do The Do" without wanting to get up and move, and it always puts a smile on my face. That it should have been recorded by Tim Hardin is surprising. Hardin is best known for writing and singing amazing ballads such as "If I Were A Carpenter" (made famous by Bobby Darin), "Reason To Believe" (which charted for Rod Stewart) and "How Can We Hang On To A Dream." His voice is expressive and unique. In fact, he disliked others covering his songs so much that he began making them more complex and hard to copy. The closest voice I can think of to Hardin's might be Ron Sexsmith's, but that's like saying a Focus and a Ferrari are both cars.

Tim Hardin's story is a sad one. Picking up a heroin habit while in the Marines in the early 60's, it eventually ruined his life. He had a rebellious and contrary nature, often claiming a relation to the outlaw John Wesley Harding, but there's no facts backing that up. Like Harry Nilsson, Hardin disliked performing live, even though he did release a live album. 

In the end, we are left with his hauntingly beautiful songs, voice and music. As a result of factors noted in the preceding paragraph, his album Painted Head did not contain any self-penned songs, but did include the funky, fun "Do The Do", presented here with all due flourishes and fanfare. Dig it!

the mildly sexist and beside-the-point lyrics, by Willie Dixon:

 Well I know
I've got a babe
And I know her
Love is true
But you ain't seen nothing
'Til you see her, see her
Do the do
Do the do
Shake her shoulder
Take her time
Mover her body
Like I move mine
When she's dancing
You'll love her too
When you see her
Do the do
Do the do
34 bust
22 waist
Everything
Right in place
Cool disposition
Love her too
When you see her
Do the do
Do the do
Well, well there
Ain't nothing like
When you see her
Do the do
Do the do
Well I know
I've got a babe
And I know her
Love is true
But you ain't seen nothing
'Til you see her, see her
Do the do
Do the do


6 comments:

hedgewitch said...

Man i had no idea he wrote that Doors song or Spoonful--I've heard of him, of course, but never really listened to anything but covers of his songs. You bring a lot of insight to his life and career here--and give us a very snappy little tune, too.

Fireblossom said...

Yeah, I don't think anyone except Mrs. Dixon ever heard Willie Dixon's songs firsthand, but a lot of blues rockers covered songs he wrote. As for Hardin, if you haven't heard him sing his most famous songs, you must. This song is atypical and does not show off his vocal abilities. I expect his voice was shot from hard living by the time this one was recorded.

StrokeSurvivor said...

Never heard of the guy before. A nice introduction

Unknown said...

Shay, thanks for joining in with this wonderful song. Tim Hardin played at the Woodstock festival and Dylan called him, the country’s “greatest living songwriter.”

ms_lili said...

Good write-up and you're right I had to start moving to the beat when the song started playing.
JadeLi @www.tao-talk.com

Felicia Denise said...

Don't know Tim, but awesome voice! I hear a little Joe Cocker too!

Willie Dixon is a blast from the past! My late father-also born in Mississippi- was a big fan and I'm pretty sure he teared up when Willie was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame, and posthumously into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame...but if he were here, he'd deny it! 😄

Great choice for SLS! 😊👍