Top 5 at 5: My Favorite Five Songs as a Five-Year-Old

Scan_20160316 (20)As a preschooler with eight elder siblings, I had already acquired a modest collection of 45 rpm records and even a nice little assortment of LP’s–mostly cast-offs from my oldest brother’s collection.

When I got bored with my own collection I began playing those of my sibs while they were at school. I remember my mom giving me the heads-up when they were due home so I could replace The Buckinghams and Jay & The Americans and the rest of my sister’s collection and avoid incrimination.

Though I’ve grown a bit in terms of my sophistication as a listener, I can still hear in these songs the things that pulled me in as a youngster. Buoyant vocal performances, spritely melodies, transcendently beautiful arrangements or an aching romanticism in the lyric–these are things that still resonate with me in the music I prefer to listen to today.

In a sense, exposure to these songs and others like them did help form the template of music appreciation for me. And their qualities are the qualities I still search for and enjoy in more contemporary music.

So by way of introducing you to my five-year-old self, here are (as near as I can recall) my five absolute favorite songs at that age:

“Little Arrows” by Leapy Lee

What can I say? I was hip to how cool Leapy Lee was and the rest of the world still hasn’t caught on. I just about wore out this 45.

“Tracy” by the Cuff Links

Featuring lead vocals by one Ron Dante, who also served in that role for the Archies. The Cuff Links were every bit as fictitious as that cartoon band. But I found the bubblegum sound irresistible.

“Love is Blue” by Paul Mauriat

This one sounds nearly as good today as it did to me then. A great orchestral pop arrangement by a true master.

“A Groovy Kind Of Love” by the Mindbenders

One of the two above songs was the first 45 I actually owned, although I’m not certain which it was. This one clocks in at under 2 minutes, which a great pop song could do in those days.

This song remained so dear to me that when Phil Collins released his dour, lethargic cover version I actually harbored a bit of resentment about it for years. It seemed he’d sucked all the goosebump qualities from the original.

“Indian Lake” by the Cowsills

There’s no doubt that I pestered my dad to play this song more than any other in his collection, since unlike the above songs he owned this 45 and I didn’t. And given that accommodating my request would have meant removing a stack of a half-dozen LP’s from the spindle of his living room stereo, well…I usually didn’t get my request. Today I own it on a CD and rarely play it.

As Mr. Spock would say, having is not so fine a thing after all as wanting.

12/11/22 addendum: Happy to report that my granddaughter, who nears her fifth birthday, now loves the Cowsills and so “Indian Lake” is back on heavy rotation on her playlist (and consequently mine).

See also:

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. peace1971
    Apr 16, 2016 @ 09:28:19

    Great post Ed!



  2. Ed Cyphers
    Apr 16, 2016 @ 09:29:08

    Thank you sit. I wanna know what toddler Dave was listening to!


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