July 1, 2017, will be celebrated across Canada as 150 years since we, Canada, became an independent nation. There are no doubt many, besides myself, who have lived to witness not only our Centennial in 1967 but the sesquicentennial in 2017, and will no doubt look back at 1967 with fondness. I have compiled a loose list of people, places, and events from 1967 that were relevant to me and probably to many others. I hope you enjoy reading this trip down memory lane as much as I have enjoyed preparing it.
This is a composite of album covers from 1967, a very good year for new music and many of these have held up very well despite being 50 years old. For example, Joel blessed me with a copy of Sgt. Peppers remastered on CD for Fathers Day and the music still moves me much as it did 50 years ago when it was first released.
What we listened to:
“I’m a Believer” The Monkees
“Snoopy vs. the Red Baron” The Royal Guardsmen
“Georgy Girl” The Seekers
“Kind of a Drag” The Buckinghams
“Gimme Some Lovin'” Spencer Davis Group
“Baby I Need Your Lovin'” Johnny Rivers
“Penny Lane” The Beatles
“A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” The Monkees
“Canada” Young Canada Singers Canada
“Somethin’ Stupid” Nancy Sinatra & Frank Sinatra
“I’m a Man” Spencer Davis Group
“Happy Jack” The Who
“Creeque Alley” The Mamas & the Papas
“Somebody to Love” Jefferson Airplane
“Windy” The Association
“Up, Up and Away” The 5th Dimension
“White Rabbit” Jefferson Airplane
“A Whiter Shade of Pale” Procol Harum
“Pleasant Valley Sunday” The Monkees
“All You Need Is Love” The Beatles
“Ode to Billie Joe” Bobbie Gentry
“San Franciscan Nights” Eric Burdon
“The Letter” The Box Tops
“To Sir with Love” Lulu
“Never My Love” The Association
“People Are Strange” The Doors
“Daydream Believer” The Monkees
“Hello, Goodbye” The Beatles
“There Goes My Everything” Jack Greene
“Don’t Come Home A’ Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ On Your Mind)” Loretta Lynn
“Walk Through This World With Me” George Jones
“It’s Such A Pretty World Today” Wynn Stewart
“Tonight Carmen” Marty Robbins
“I’ll Never Find Another You” Sonny James
“Branded Man” Merle Haggard
“My Elusive Dreams” David Houston and Tammy Wynette
“I Don’t Wanna Play House” Tammy Wynette
“It’s The Little Things” Sonny James
“For Loving You” Bill Anderson and Jan Howard
The stereo system shown below is very similar to the one my parents owned and thus what I grew up listening to music on. Unfortunately, we do not own the original machine any longer but I did manage to find one that was close to the original.
9th Annual Grammy Awards:
March 2, 1967, in Chicago, Los Angeles, Nashville and New York
Record of the Year:
Jimmy Bowen (Producer) & Frank Sinatra for “Strangers in the Night”
Album of the Year:
Sonny Burke (producer) & Frank Sinatra for A Man and His Music
Song of the Year:
John Lennon & Paul McCartney (songwriters) for “Michelle” performed by The Beatles
Best Country & Western Vocal Performance – Female:
Jeannie Seely for “Don’t Touch Me”
Best Country and Western Vocal Performance, Male:
David Houston (singer) for “Almost Persuaded”
Best Country & Western Recording:
David Houston (singer) for “Almost Persuaded”
Best Country & Western Song:
Billy Sherrill & Glenn Sutton (songwriters) for “Almost Persuaded” performed by David Houston
Best Instrumental Jazz Performance – Group or Soloist with Group:
Wes Montgomery for “Goin’ Out of My Head”
Best Original Jazz Composition:
Duke Ellington for “In the Beginning God”
Best R&B Solo Vocal Performance, Male or Female:
Ray Charles for “Crying Time”
Best Rhythm & Blues Group Performance, Vocal or Instrumental:
Ramsey Lewis for “Hold It Right There”
Best Rhythm & Blues Recording:
Ray Charles for “Crying Time”
These large console units were also very popular in 1967, less so in 2017 because of the sheer mass of these units. I think many of them are very attractive furniture and they often had decent quality components so the sound wasn’t that bad.
The song that most Canadians associate with Expo was written by Bobby Gimby, a veteran commercial jingle writer who composed the popular Centennial tune “Ca-na-da”. I still have my copy on 45
Gimby earned the name the “Pied Piper of Canada”
One of my favorite ways of listening to music was on a jukebox. Below is one that I own, a 1954 model that would have still been working fine in 1967. Many coffee shops, bars, and restaurants had jukeboxes as well as smaller selection machines at each table.
This one is my restoration project.
What we watched on TV:
On April 27 the Expo 67 opening ceremonies were broadcast on CBC, and all around the world. An estimated 700 million people watched in over 70 countries.
Other TV shows that were popular in our household in 1967 are listed below in no particular order:
Rocket Robin Hood
The Tommy Hunter Show
On August 29 we were all glued to the TV as The Fugitive finale proves to be one of the most-watched episodes of the decade.
Hockey Night in Canada
I Dream of Jeannie
Lost in Space
The Beverly Hillbillies
The Ed Sullivan Show
Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Color (a US show so they Americanized the spelling of colour.)
The Carol Burnett Show
Don Messer’s Jubilee
The televisions of 1967 were often console models, much like the console stereos and they often had both in one cabinet. There were, of course, many different sizes available as this photo from the Consumers Electronics Show of 1967 shows very well. The very first Consumer Electronics Show wowed visitors with dazzling new gadgets. The show, like the industry, was about to grow huge.
What we watched at the movies:
Bonnie and Clyde
The Dirty Dozen
To Sir, with Love
Cool Hand Luke
Best Picture: In the Heat of the Night – Mirisch, United Artists
Best Director: Mike Nichols – The Graduate
Best Actor: Rod Steiger – In the Heat of the Night
Best Actress: Katharine Hepburn – Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner
Below is a photo of the movie theater in Wainwright were I spent many a Saturday afternoon.
What we were reading:
Barbara Gordon is introduced as Batgirl in the Detective Comics series in the United States; when not exercising her superhero powers she uses her doctorate in library science as head of Gotham City public library. A comic book that I may have read that year, Joel has it in his collection now:
On November 9th the first issue of the magazine Rolling Stone was published in San Francisco. Although I missed out on that issue I started being an avid reader of themagazine through the late 60’s to the 70’s.
Influential New Wave science fiction anthology Dangerous Visions is first published and I am still an avid fan of science fiction, speculative fiction, and science fantasy stories. I just finished reading the 35th Anniversary edition:
Richard Brautigan – Trout Fishing in America
Alistair MacLean – Where Eagles Dare
Time Magazine Person of the Year, sorry; Man of the Year: Lyndon B. Johnson
What we were doing:
The building above is the Habitat building from Expos 67 which is still in use in Montreal.
Although Montreal was in the spotlight for Expo ’67 there were celebrations of the Centennial all across Canada including the town of Viking that had a parade and fireworks. This is one of the parade entries: me on my bike, I’ve always had a fondness for cowboy hats and boots.
The picture below is of the Alberta Legislature grounds on July 1, 1967.
The Lieutenant Governor of Alberta was Grant MacEwan. MacEwan University in Edmonton, Alberta and the MacEwan Student Centre at the University of Calgary, as well as the neighborhoods of MacEwan Glen in Calgary and MacEwan in Edmonton, are named after him.
The Premier of Alberta was Ernest Manning.
The Governor General of Canada was Georges Vanier until March 5 when he passed away then Roland Michener took over the position.
Our Prime Minister was Lester B. Pearson. During Pearson’s time as Prime Minister, his Liberal minority governments introduced universal health care, student loans, the Canada Pension Plan, the Order of Canada, and the Maple Leaf flag.
On May 2 the Toronto Maple Leafs won the sixth game of the Stanley Cup final over the Montreal Canadiens to win their last Stanley Cup to date.
By 1967 the snowmobile was becoming very popular thanks to Joseph-Armand Bombardier, I spent many a winter’s days riding our friend’s machine.
The 55th Grey Cup was played between the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and the Saskatchewan Roughriders on December 2, 1967, at Lansdowne Park in Ottawa, before 31,358 fans and was won by the Tiger-Cats by a score of 24 to 1.
In 1967 we had Sears catalog’s and of course the Christmas Wish Book:
I sure “wish” I still had my guitar and hair!
1967 also had many other wonderful memories: the 1967 Rambler was to become my Mom’s car and when she sold it to me in 1973 it became my first car. Steve Miller and I drove it to Mexico and back in 1975 and then I sold it. It was a really good car to me and if I ever win the lottery I might just buy another one for old times sake.
The introduction of the Cougar in 1967 finally gave Mercury its own “pony car”. Slotted between the Ford Mustang and the Ford Thunderbird, the Cougar was the performance icon and eventually the icon for the Mercury name for several decades.
I never owned a Cougar but I did have a 1969 Mercury Montego that was basically the same platform. I hot rodded it and spent way more money on it than I should have, but I justify that because it was quick off the lights!
1967 was a very good year with many good memories, I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane as much as I enjoyed putting it together.