“Tin Man” – America (Holiday, 1974)
For the fourth of July I wanted to honor America somehow in a unique way, so I settled on doing my favorite song by 1970’s stalwarts, the band America (who ironically are from London, England). This little diddy was produced by none other than George Martin of the Beatles fame. Not only did Mr. Martin produce the tune he also plays the piano part as well. So good on him :).
As for the song proper, it’s a slice of easy-listening heaven written by multi-instrumentalist Dewey Bunnell who’s lyrics were inspired by childhood favorite movie “The Wizard of Oz”. The track starts off with an unassuming acoustic guitar that quickly kicks into gear. The sugary-sweet vocals come on soon thereafter with the brilliant lines:
“Sometimes when things are real and the people share the gift of gab between themselves. Some are quick to take the bait and catch the perfect prize that waits among the shelves”.
I have no idea what he was talking about exactly but it sounds great! What also sounds great is the subtle musical flourishes like the cymbals in the mix. I also like the pre-chorus part where he sings “So please believe in me, when I say I’m spinnin’ round, round. Smoke glass-stained bright colors, image going down, down, down” which narrates how the song is whisking me away in its unexpected brilliance as the harmonies keep things moving splendidly along.
Also of note is the piano playing by George Martin really does add to the power and beauty of the track overall. Chartwise this song was a big hit in the US reaching #4 on Billboard Chart and the top spot on the Easy-Listening Chart.
The whole thing feels like curling up to the fireplace with hot chocolate on a cold winter’s day. I remember really loving this song as a small child and as I hit 40 years old, it is cherished like a great childhood memory. God bless America!