California Dreamin' lyric question

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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Sportguynj1 » Mon Nov 30, 2009 10:22 am

I have always wanted to ask that same question because it's obvious that, for the most part, you can't hear Michelle at all and yet, from watching the DVD it's obvious that she's singing along. I heard that the reason you can't hear Michelle singing at Monterey was because the previous 2 performances of the Who and Jimi Hendrix had caused some damage to the microphones and sound system (monitors) since both groups were destroying their instruments which knocked over microphones etc. If you watch the Mamas and Papas come on stage for their set to "Straight Shooter" you can see Lou Adler on stage trying to adjust the monitors and microphones because even Denny's microphone wasn't working at first - and you can actually see him trying to sing into the microphone when he first picked it up and it wasn't working. Obviously, they didn't have enough time to adjust the volumes of the microphones and make sure everything was in working order between Hendrix's set and the Mamas and Papas set. You can here faint snippets of Michelle singing when she's in close proximity of either Cass or Denny because their microphones are obviously working but her's obviously was not working which is too bad. It's a shame that Monterey is the only real live concert recording available because it was - by their own admission - their worst live performance. I can't believe they never recorded other live appearances like Carnegie Hall or the Hollywood Bowl?!

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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Papa J » Mon Nov 30, 2009 8:59 pm

Good post, Rob! Yes, it is a shame that we don't have more live performances from the Mamas and Papas. Even though they were clearly unrehearsed, I think they were too hard on themselves for describing it as their worst performance. Despite sounding tired in spots, their harmonies and enthusiasm shine through most of the set, and Denny gave a flawless performance. I also really like some of Cass' vocals, especially on "Got a Feelin."
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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Sportguynj1 » Tue Dec 01, 2009 9:04 am

Thanks Papa J - I agree with you, even though the group considered Monterey their worst live performance, there are still some nice moments. My favorite is Cass's vocal on "I Call Your Name" - this was one of her favorite songs and she always sang her heart out on it. My parents saw them at Carnegie Hall the year before and they remember one of the best moments of the show when Cass got down on her knees and sang that song from the edge of the stage and got a standing ovation! It's obvious that the Monterey performance suffered from inadequate rehearsal and not having the audio equipment working properly. The group hadn't rehearsed in months due to all the planning that went into the Monterey Pop Festival as well as Cass having her baby.

It's really a shame that they didn't record any of their other live performances because I'm sure they would be amazing to listen to now!

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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Papa J » Fri Dec 04, 2009 5:39 pm

Wow, that must have been so exciting for your parents to see them. I wasn't born when the group existed, but would love to go back in time to see them live! Speaking of seeing them live, does anyone know the name of the other female singer in the New Mamas and Papas, besides Spanky McFarlane, who performed with the group in August 1992? I remember seeing them at Berwyn Fest in Illinois at that time. I know Mackenzie was definitely not there, but Spanky, Scott McKenzie, and Denny were there (John was recovering from his liver transplant at that time). I was just starting to get into the group when I saw them, and I'm sure I would have appreciated them a bit more if I knew their song catalog like I do now. I can't seem to find any information on any other female singers in the group.
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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Ars_Nova_Chris » Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:09 pm

Might it have been Laurie Lewis (Seaman)?

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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Papa J » Sat Dec 05, 2009 5:13 pm

It was probably her, although my memory is kind of hazy about what she looked like. All I remember is I had never heard of or seen her before the concert. Thanks - it was driving me crazy trying to figure out who she was, because I knew it was not Mackenzie or Michelle!
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Re: California Dreamin' lyric question

Postby Rbcsoup » Fri Feb 26, 2010 9:10 am

I asked Michelle about this recently and she is on the same page as Owen. She said “Everyone is right!" Cass and Michelle were singing different lyrics and it wasn’t for "quite a while" until they realized that. She believes that she and John wrote the song with “preacher likes the cold” (which is consistent with Barry McGuire's recollection) but then the more she said that, it was really funny, she started saying, “I think….I think that’s right. I think so….” :)

Reminds me of Cass' declaration, "In the end, we're the ones who will have the legend."
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