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IWBWY from the Tube


Kirk

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I've had a copy of the "Lemon Go Lightly" commercial for almost 30 years. There's only one other person I know that has a copy—the person I originally got it from. So, it's a bit of a head-scratcher when something that I believed had never been shared gets, well, shared. Is this new for you, Kirk, or did you already have a copy?

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Bernie, 

I don't know who Roots66 is, but he/she/they have posted other Raspberries/Eric stuff before. I'm thinking this may have been a Santa Bernie item because the copy I have shows a Jan. 4, 2010 date on the download. Looks like it might have originated on an Apple device- it shows Itunes in the properties. If it was a Santa Bernie item from 2010 there are probably more people out there that have it.

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Sorry this clip was swiped, but glad I got to hear it.

My eldest sister, the blue eyed blonde like Mom, used this product to be as blonde as possible.

Bernie, was the jingle used in an actual campaign for the product?  I believe I remember it, but that could be wishful thinking on my part.  

🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋

 

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What a sweet little tune. We all know Eric can sing the phone book and we would buy the record . He makes anything believable... even the words  Lemon Go Lightly LOL. If I would have heard him singing that jingle,  I think I would have bought the product and I don't even have blonde hair!

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Bernie, one of my Raspbuddies got Lemon Go Lightly from here:

Wilfully Obscure: The Raspberries - From the Vault (1969-74). It won't copy and paste the link- is that because it's a blog?

I think it's more common than you think...

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Bernie- see #5 below:

The Raspberries - From the Vault (1969-74)

Can a direct link be derived from power-pop progenitors The Raspberries to all bands and singer/songwriters who subsequently took up the craft?  On the face of it groups like the Rubinoos and even the Pezband have the Cleveland, OH legend's influence steeped all over them, whereas with Teenage Fanclub all the way up to more current practitioners Pugwash, the lines of inspirational genealogy are considerably more blurry. 

Good thing for the quartet of Eric Carmen, Wally Bryson, David Smalley and Jim Bonfanti, their reputation is unequivocally and undisputedly sealed, whether they were the collective brainchildren of a musical movement or otherwise.  They may not have been poster-boys for the pop charts, but with four near-perfect albums to their credit the Raspberries legacy is still ripe for discovery for the yet-to-be-converted, and for continued exhalation for those already familiar with their music.  They played in the mold of the Beatles at time when it was unambiguously uncool to trapise down that path, and a lot of listeners didn't really appreciate the 'berries until both bands had long been put to pasture.  Frustratingly, beyond their four LPs: Raspberries (1972), Fresh (1972), Side 3 (1973) and Starting Over (1974) the group left behind little to no aftertaste to savor, save for the typical allotment of best-of compilations.  No glorified reissues with expanded bonus material, and nothing in the way of outtakes or live performances from the band's heyday have hit the market to my knowledge. From my vantage point there have been no rumblings about anything of the sort surfacing in the future.  Even what I'm offering here may seem scant, but it's the best I was able to scrounge up.  A big thanks in advance to the fans that made this material available in one guise or another.

This collection starts out appropriately enough with a pair of 1969 singles from two precursors to the Raspberries, Cyrus Erie and The Quick, both of whom featured Eric Carmen prominently in their lineups.  The Cyrus Erie cuts exude a more than discernible Brit-invasion tincture, and though removed from the Raspberries I enjoy these songs tremendously.  The Quick was the shorter lived of the two bands, but despite their lifespan, there's some development that bled over to Carmen's more renown successor band.  A related band called The Choir factors substantially into the Raspberries pre-history.  Since I'm limited on time, please check out the hyperlinks at the beginning of this paragraph as well as here and here.

A piano-laded, but ultimately rejected commercial jingle (track five if you're playing along at home) leads into a cluster of four Raspberries demos that predate the band's debut.  These were apparently sourced from vinyl, but the audio is fairly pristine.  We're treated to subdued previews of "I Saw the Light" and "Come Around and See Me," along with two other songs that I don't believe cropped up on later records ("Of Tonight" is not the same piece as the band's soon-to-come anthem "Tonight"). 

A good chunk of this tracklist is taken from a myriad of live performances including the fabled Agora Theatre in the band's home turf of Cleveland.  Granted, we aren't offered a cohesive set from one venue on one evening, but the fact is live Raspberries recordings are non-existent save for a couple reunion concert albums, and the occasional live clip on YouTube.  I'm not saying any of these in-concert renditions will make your hair stand on end, but you do get a bit of a rush hearing a vigorous run through "Play On" and "Ecstasy."  Like any band worth their salt, the Raspberries in a live setting outpaced and out-energized their studio acumen.  Needless to see these live tracks are the reason you're downloading this.

Towards the end of this smorgasbord are a couple of informally recorded Eric Carmen demos, tracked at the residence of Michael McBride, one of Carmen's former bandmates in Cyrus Erie.  Both songs, "Starting Over" and "I Can Hardly Believe Your Mine" would be re-cut for the 'berries swan song, Starting Over.  These aren't mere rough sketches, so much as revealing alternate takes illustrating how they sounded outside the realm of the band.  Pop craftsmanship to the hilt, even if Carmen is wont to channel Paul McCartney now and then.

This set concludes with a 1973 live medley of *sigh* two pop standards, "The Locomotion" and "Be My Baby."  Forgivable, if only for the fact it's Raspberries covering them.  A full tracklist with sources is below.  There is a FLAC version, however some of the Cyrus Erie/Quick songs were only available on MP3.  BTW, if you're looking for one stop shopping for the entire Raspberries catalog, check out this handy mini box set with remastered versions of all four albums.

01. Cyrus Erie - Sparrow (single a-side, 1969)
02. Cyrus Erie - Get the Message (single b-side, 1969)
03. The Quick - Ain't Nothing Gonna Stop Me (single a-side, 1969)
04. The Quick -  Southern Comfort (single b-side, 1969)
05. Lemon Go Lightly
06. I Saw the Light
07. Please Let Me Come Back Home
08. Oh Tonight
09. Come Around and See Me
10. Go All the Way
11. Nobody Knows
12. If You Can Change Your Mind
13. I Wanna Be With You
14. Let's Pretend
15. Last Dance
16. Tonight
17. Ecstacy
18. Play On
19. Cry
20. Overnight Sensation
21. I Don't Know What I Want
22. I Can Hardly Believe You're Mine
23. Starting Over
24. The Locomotion/Be My Baby

1 & 2 Cyrus Erie 7" (1969) - featuring Eric and Wally
3 & 4 The Quick 7" (1969, Epic) - featurng Eric
5. unreleased commerical jingle
6-9 1971 demos
10-12 recorded live for "Nightside," Germany 1973
13-15 live at the Agora, Cleveland, OH 11/13/73
16. from Don Kirshner's Rock Concert, 1973
17. live Panama City, FL 9/6/73
18-20 live at Sir Morgans Cove, Worcester, MA 6/29/74
21. live at The Joint in the Woods, Parsippany, NJ 10/18/74
22 & 23 Eric Carmen home demos recorded at Michael McBride's house, Willoughby, OH 1974
24. live medley from The Agora, Cleveland 11/18/73

MP3  or  FLAC

 

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Maybe my original source made copies for others. Regardless, it out there.

Here's the back story from Eric Carmen: Marathon Man:

“Elan Associates called Eric and asked him to write a song to be used in a commercial for Clairol,” recalls John Aleksic. "Elan was a small artist management company run by two young guys who also represented pop singer Oliver. It was for a product called ‘Lemon Go Lightly.’ Eric came up with the music and we laid down a pretty quick demo.”

“We didn’t write the lyrics,” adds Eric. “They were submitted to us as ‘copy.’ I fit my music to the ‘copy’ and we recorded it. It was supposed to be a commercial for some new hair-highlighting product. My level of discomfort trying to sing that drivel was right on the edge of nausea. The whole episode gives me a case of the heebie-jeebies!”

“Eric may have had a sore throat at the time,” continues Aleksic, “because he was having difficulty projecting his voice. Wally and Jim both suggested that I sing it. I sensed that this didn’t go over too well with Eric. It intensified the professional rivalry we already had going and I believe it later convinced Eric to go along with Jim’s plan to get Dave into the group. We sent the demo to Elan in New York and apparently the Clairol people didn’t think the song was right. It was trite, but that’s the way commercials are."

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I was able to download that "From the Vault" thing a while ago, but it wasn't easy. The file sharing site that blog uses is kind of sketchy and most of the attempts I made only led to annoying (and sometimes porn-y) pop-ups. Random persistence eventually paid off but not without some trepidation.

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Bernie,

Here's a bunch of people on the message board that heard or had Lemon Go Lightly years ago...

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"Lemon Go Lightly" - Go All The Way - EricCarmen.com Community

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DON KRIDER — Posted June 25, 2006

Something I've always been curious about is what became of the "Lemon Go Lightly" commercial jingle Raspberries submitted for the Clairol product of the same name pre-"Go All The Way." I know it wasn't used by Clairol, so I haven't a clue as to what it may have sounded like, but I am curious. It's briefly mentioned on page 72 of Bernie and Ken's "Marathon Man" book in comments by John Aleksic. Eric, I was wondering what memories you may have of creating the song and of the recording (kind of a lost Raspberries treasure).

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RASPBERNIE — Posted June 26, 2006

Lemon Go Lightly,
Lemon Go Lightly,
Lemon Go Lightly
in my true love's hair.

That special glow.
That was meant to be there.
was Lemon Go Lightly
in my true love's hair.

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ERIC CARMEN — Posted June 26, 2006

Awful, truly awful. ec

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TOMMY TUNES — Posted June 26, 2006

Lemon Go Lightly. Wasn't that the name of one of Holly's step daughter's she left behind in "Breakfast At Tiffany's"

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RON SUTTON — Posted June 26, 2006

Its a cute little song.

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MYMOOLADI — Posted June 26, 2006

Eric I love your voice in that song, it's just done beautifully. Ron in right, it's a cute little ditty!

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ERIC CARMEN — Posted June 26, 2006

Ssssshhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh....le'ts keep this "our little secret." ec

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DANMICHEL — Posted June 26, 2006

Lemon Go Lightly...That sounds like a potential hit...As a feminine hygiene product.

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DON KRIDER — Posted June 27, 2006

A friend sent me an .mp3, so now that I've heard it, it is an interesting ditty, but those lyrics... eek! What were you guys thinking? I have wondered why Maybelline didn't jump on "I Wanna Hear It From Your Lips" as a lipstick commercial ("Hi, I'm Jessica Simpson, and I wanna hear it from your lips..." she says, as she smacks her Raspberry lipstick coated lips together). I checked the old search engines to see if Clairol still made the product --- all I could find were recipes for "Lemon-Go-Lightly" cookies!

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ERIC CARMEN — Posted June 27, 2006

We didn't write the lyrics. They were submitted to us as "copy". I fit my music to the "copy" and we recorded it (Blecchhh, I don't even remember where, must have blotted it out of my mind). It was supposed to be commercial for some new hair highlighting product. My level of discomfort trying to sing that drivel was right on the edge of nausea.The whole episode gives me a case of the heebie-jeebies! ec

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TOMY CARTMILL — Posted June 27, 2006

How about now? Would you be open to writing a catchy, 20 year royalty residual commercial jingle for a popular product? Doesn't Barry Manilow still get checks for the, "And like a good neighbor, State Farm is there..." jingle?

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DON KRIDER — Posted June 27, 2006

Sorry, Eric. I was going by page 72 of "Marathon Man" where Aleksic says, "It was for a product called 'Lemon Go Lightly.' Eric came up with the music and lyrics and we laid down a pretty quick demo." I like your music on it, and I'm glad to know you didn't write those lyrics. My favorite music of your's has always been where *you* do write your own lyrics.

Don (who loves lyrics like "sippin' on a scotch and soda, a shadow in the corner booth, so philosophic and drunk on grown-up truth...")

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ARSPOETICA — Posted June 28, 2006

While on the subject of ads, is Eric getting paid for the rip off of "Hit Record" (I'll use his title) in the accompaniment to the current Downy Fabric Softener commercial? Every time I hear it, I wonder how they get away with it. The number of times they've aired it should amount to something.

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DARLENE — Posted June 29, 2006

Bernie, do you have an mp3 of this? I would LOVE to hear "Lemon Go Lightly."

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JOHN SHAFT — Posted June 29, 2006

That makes two of us! Please?

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DARLENE — Posted June 29, 2006

Thanks, John! I haven't heard the Downy commercial? Which one is that? The little girl in the white dress playing "angel"?

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On 1/11/2022 at 7:13 AM, Raspbernie said:

We didn’t write the lyrics,” adds Eric. “They were submitted to us as ‘copy.’ I fit my music to the ‘copy’ and we recorded it. It was supposed to be a commercial for some new hair-highlighting product. My level of discomfort trying to sing that drivel was right on the edge of nausea. The whole episode gives me a case of the heebie-jeebies!”

Bernie, glad you added this quote from Eric that you took from your book  Marathon Man, which I still don't have, so this is the first time I'm hearing of the commercial of course. But as soon as I heard the recording I had to wonder, it must be killing Eric inside just singing these words as the perfectionist he is.  I still think it's a cute little tune.

 

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My $.02 on the Agora track - it sure seems like someone threw a DAT recorder on the mixing board, capturing all the mics cleanly. Maybe Roots66 was the soundboard tech? 😉 

Lemon Go Lightly - I remember the product being on the market, but, as a natural redhead (not a carrot-y red, though) I was never inclined to use products made for blondes. 🙂 My husband wrote music for jingles in the Chicago market and sang on many. He called them "Take the money and run!" gigs - i.e. not exactly music "opus" level but definitely profitable for the overall bottom line. In fact, one time, his barbershop quartet was doing a gig near to a studio run by the tenor singer's good buddy, who was desperate to finish out (get this.....) a dog food commercial and needed some quick vocals, so the studio guy begged them to drop in and help out. Since the ad went big nationally, my husband and his buddies got something like $5000 each for singing a few notes on a DOG FOOD commercial! Yeah, like I said..... "Take the money and run!" 😉🤣🎤💲

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In a perfect world, Eric would take that seed of a song and work it over, and finish crafting a piece that would make a pretty nice ballad. It has the innocent '60s feel... just needs lyrics that don't deal with lather-rinse-repeat. 

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