California Stars

I’ve mentioned before what a music snob I am. I prefer anything recorded pre-1971 or so. And very rarely does any modern-day music strike my fancy.

Last week, Motor Man and I took his mom to dinner, and although I usually suffer through the “music” played at most restaurants these days, one song that night caught my ear.  I could hear just enough to know that I liked the melody, but could only make out two words of the song: California Stars.

Isn’t the internet a wonderful thing?  Back home, in less than a minute at the computer, I had found that song. It’s rare that a song sticks with me like this one has. The last time that happened, the song was Jimmy Buffett’s “It’s Been A Lovely Cruise”, which I first heard a couple of years ago as part of a memorial video for friend.

The song “California Stars” has an interesting history. The lyrics were written by the late Woody Guthrie, but the words weren’t put to music during his lifetime.  After his death in 1967, his daughter, Nora, discovered thousands of his unrecorded lyrics. She contacted the English folk singer, Billy Bragg, who, along with the American group, Wilco, wrote music to many of those lyrics.  The song was included in an album titled Mermaid Avenue, released in 1998.

And for those of you already familiar with this song who might ask (about me): “Where’s SHE been not to have heard this before?”…..remember, as far as music goes, I’m stuck in the 60’s.

~These Days Of Mine~

20 responses to “California Stars

  1. Have never heard the song but the history is indeed interesting. Creative video too!!!


  2. I’ve never heard of this song either, but I like it. Thanks for sharing! I love music from the 60’s as well, Dianna.

  3. I love all good music and know it when I hear it. We all just have our own definition of “good” I think 🙂
    No rap for me though!

  4. Now I’m curious…..I’ll have to check the link later when I get a minute. My music snobbery does NOT include rap either! LOVE GOOD music!

  5. I love 60’s, 70’s and early 80’s. Any tune can catch my ear but rarely is it any music done now. I have never heard California Stars or It’s Been a Lovely Cruise. I fell in love with the video and song of Jimmy Buffett’s you linked to this morning!!! No rap here either!

  6. Thanks for these beautiful songs. Since we love the same music, I always know I’ll like whatever you do! I’ve always been a Jimmy Buffett fan. I’ve never heard one of his songs that I didn’t like! Rap and hip hop is just plain NOISE!

  7. oops, should have been: ‘rap and hip hop ARE just plain noise’. Grammar may be terrible but the meaning should be clear!

  8. Great post, Dianna! I love Wilco and California Stars has a kind of ’60s vibe to it. I actually love a lot of today’s music and I’m totally with you about the power of the internet. If you can catch a snippet of the lyrics and remember it long enough to google when you get home, you can find the song!!

  9. You are so great at researching anything. My music is James Taylor and anything mellow!

  10. OK, I’ve now listened to it three times. Just saying. Hello, iTunes, I’ll be downloading this morning.

  11. Hadn’t heard that song before either. No wonder you liked it, it definitely has a 60’s folksy feel to it. I like it! Of course, I’m stuck in the oldies too. 😉

  12. A great song and a great find! They did a fantastic job putting music with the lyrics .. I love the ones you don’t hear very often!
    That internet ! 😉

  13. What a great day! Mes learned something me did not know before and discovered a NEW song! (Mommy is a hopeless heavy metal freak!)

  14. Shirley Matthews Dunn

    Wonderful song! First time to hear it. Thanks for sharing, Dianna.

  15. I like Wilco too. Glad you discovered them 🙂

  16. There’s an app–Shazam–that can identify a song for you. Open the app while the song is playing–it will amaze you.

  17. Thanks. Always great to make a musical discovery! Regards from Thom at the immortal jukebox (where you should find many familiar artists and some surprises).

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