The Sixties were dominated by the Vietnam War, Civil Rights Protests, the assassinations of US President John F Kennedy and Martin Luther King, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and finally ended on a good note when the first man is landed on the moon. In between, South African surgeon doctor Christian Barnard completed the first heart transplant operation. Musically speaking, there was the infamous Woodstock Festival, and Rolling Stone Magazine published its first issue. In the early 60’s women wore miniskirts and leather boots, while men wore Paisley shirts and velvet trousers, and a brand new Volkswagen Beetle cost $1,769. During that same period, Freddie Garrity formed a group in Manchester, England, called Freddie & the Dreamers who later would have a hit with the track “Do the Freddie”, based on a style of dance.
“To do the Freddie,” according to Wiki, “simply stand in place; then, in rhythm with the music, extend the left leg and raise both arms, as if you were doing jumping jacks; then extend the right leg and raise both arms again. Repeat until the song’s conclusion.” Fifty-two years since the song’s initial success, The Roving Apatosaurus, have lovingly decided to exhume and cover the track.
The Roving Apatosaurus is a collaboration of multiple independent freelance artists from geographically disparate locations. Their goal is to create covers of fun songs that may need to be reintroduced to newer generations, or appeal to those of older generations who remember the originals, or just to provide a unique spin on a contemporary work.
This is my second experience with, The Roving Apatosaurus, and it is even more exhilarating than the first, if only for the fact that I can personally, better identify with the remake of this cracking pop song from the sixties. However the substance remains the same throughout their covers – their number one priority seems to be injecting as much joy as they possibly can into their songs.
And if you sit back for a minute, and consider our current music situation (and not only the music to be honest), you’ll find that ‘joy’ is probably the least used sentiment around. So, in my book, The Roving Apatosaurus have found a very workable niche within the music spectrum – for the young and old alike. Actually they have found a gaping hole, which is probably, in some way, a sad reflection on the rest of us.
Technically, the remake of “Do the Freddie” stands on a solid foundation of sweeping horns, a bouncy beat, and the ever present, lusciously rich harmonies behind the lead vocal. Anybody who knows the original, which you can see and hear here, will certainly appreciate The Roving Apatosaurus’ extremely enriched cover version. Those of you who are new to the song, on the other hand, will discover a deliciously uplifting tune that is a playful as it is joyful.
I’m sure you will be hard pressed to not nod your head or tap your toe on first listening to this. Though I suspect that not long after, most of you will be standing in place, and in rhythm with the music, extending your left leg and raising both arms, as if you were doing jumping jacks; then extending your right leg and raising both arms again…