Song Of The Day 7/22/2014: Jimmy Webb & Keith Urban - "Where's the Playground, Suzie"

Fun With Spotify -- The "Appears On" Game (What This Is): And from razorblade-sharp avant-rock we go straight to adult contemporary. That's kind of how this thing works. Stiff necks are just part of the price we pay. Anyway, before he blew out of town for the warm confines of Nashville, Jamie Leslie had me look up David Crosby, well-known harmonizer, guitarist and surrogate family consultant/contributor. I admit, I've never sat through the first album or Déjà Vu, being just enough outside my cultural frame of reference that we've never had occasion to shake hands. My favorite Crosby song might be "Traction In the Rain" from the Crosby solo album If I Could Only Remember My Name, which he did just in time for the album pressing. I knew you could do it!

Crosby was one of the guest artists on Still Within The Sound Of My Voice, the 2013 duet album by Jimmy Webb, a most competent songwriter whose signature tunes include "By the Time I Get to Phoenix," "Highwayman," "P.F. Sloan," "Wichita Lineman" and... well, um, "MacArthur Park." For some reason I thought that one was Rod McKuen's doing for the longest time. Anyway, Crosby and his car pool partner Graham Nash tripled up with Webb on a version of "If These Walls Could Speak," which came two songs after "Where's The Playground, Suzie," in which he gets an assist from underrated country-pop star Keith Urban.

"Suzie" is one of Webb's most heart-wrenching songs, one of many originally done by his main '60s muse Glen Campbell. In my younger years I thought it was a sad reminiscence of childhood innocence gone by the wayside, which is a song topic that will typically get me blubbering. But then I realized it was just a metaphor about sexual panoply and its emotional pitfalls. Which can happen. Especially on the seesaw, sometimes inadvertently. All right, well, let's move off this line of thought, shall we?

Thanks, David. Careful where you point that thing.

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