The Mamas & The Papas

Another great 1960s folk/pop group that I really enjoy is The Mamas & The Papas. They had great vocal arrangements, sublime harmonies and were a cohesive group.

My favorite song of theirs is “Dedicated to The One I Love” (1967). This haunting song echoes the pain of being separated from the one we love and worrying about their safety. I kept thinking of a couple with the girl in America and the man a soldier fighting in Vietnam. Unlike other songs where Cass has the lead, here Michelle Philips has the lead vocal. Her more delicate soprano voice was just perfect for this song.

My second favorite song is “California Dreamin’” (1965). It’s crazy to realize this group was only together for 3 years, yet left such a lasting legacy. The lyrics of the song, written by John Phillips and Michelle Phillips, express the narrator’s longing for the warmth of Los Angeles during a cold winter in New York City. The church referenced in the song is St. Patrick’s Cathedral which John and Michelle visited on that cold winter day. This song is associated with the California budding counterculture and hippie movement, but I don’t see that strong of a connection. I think it works best as a straight folk/pop song.

My third favorite song by this group is “Monday, Monday” (1966). Beautiful harmonies in this song.

I know it doesn’t relate to their music, but I must say that Michelle Philips was one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever seen! Wow. Incidentally, Michelle is the last surviving member of the group who is still alive.

8 responses to “The Mamas & The Papas”

  1. Hi Zach! Just wanted to say hi. I subscribed to your blog a few days ago. I haven’t read every post (you post a heck of a lot, haha) but I find your reflections related to Christianity to be very interesting and intelligent. Also, wanted to let you know I saw Brian Wilson perform in London as part of the Smile tour. It was a joyful evening. Also, like you, I have struggled with mental health problems. I am particularly interested in interfaith dialogue, because I have a love and appreciation for the Qur’an. I come from a Christian background and I still read the Bible, especially the Psalms. God bless you!

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    • Hi Steven! Thanks, I appreciate that! Wow, that must have been quite the performance. Thanks for being open about your mental health struggles. Oh yes, I’m also interested in interfaith dialogue as well. Awesome keep reading! 🙂 Thanks brother God bless you!

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      • Thank you also, Zach! It was your openness that caused me to be open 😊 That’s awesome that you’re interested in interfaith dialogue as well. Have you read the Quran, and if so, what were your impressions (as much as you can fit in a WordPress comment!)? We could always have an email discussion if you prefer. God bless you too kind sir!

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  2. Welcome! Oh how nice. Yes, I read the Quran and I like some parts of the earlier half of the book. The latter half was more intolerant and hateful and urged Muslims to kill Christians and Jews, to engage in Jihad, not to befriend Christians, etc. It was pretty bad. Sadly due to the principle of abrogation, some Muslims believe the later hateful parts of the Quran are to be followed rather than the more tolerant and peaceful earlier verses.

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