Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Monkees "Pleasant Valley Sunday"

When you're a kid, your world is very small.

So why wouldn't The Monkees write a song about the greater Haverhill area?

It seemed perfectly logical.

We'd pass the highway sign for "Pleasant Valley" while headed down 495 to go to my Uncle Joe's house, and though I couldn't see if from the back seat of our wood-paneled station wagon (or our yellow Dodge Dart), I knew, via the lyrics, that a very wonderful town lived just beyond the tree-line.

Kids don't know much about irony either. I thought they were singing about a simple, happy place, not a deathbed of conformity.

Anyway, now when I travel down Route 495, I smile and remember a less cynical place off the exit, that only existed in a elementary school kid's head.

Hear the song on Youtube.

1 comment:

  1. Still one of my all-time favorite songs, and yes that's Mike Nesmith playing that classic guitar lick.

    Like you, I had the same initial thought about the song - "a simple, happy place, not a deathbed of conformity." As a kid, I lived on a street called "Hidden Valley Way" so we changed the lyrics whenever we'd sing along.

    Years later, I dated a girl who lived near the Pleasant Valley section of West Orange, NJ where Carole King and Gerry Goffin once lived.