Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Standells: Dirty Water

It’s been a while since I featured a one hit wonder from the 1960s, so I decided to feature one of the greatest garage bands of the era – The Standells and their only Top 40 hit “Dirty Water.” The song peaked at #11 on Billboard’s Hot 100 in 1966 and was released on Capitol Record’s Tower subsidiary label.

The song was composed by the band’s producer Ed Cobb who based the lyrics on his own experiences in Boston – including being mugged. The song pays homage to the Charles River and its pollution, Boston University’s 12:00 curfew for coeds, and even the Boston Strangler gets a passing reference. As you can image, the song has been immortalized in “Beantown.”

Boston University taken by the author in July 2007

Besides The Standells stab at the Top 40 charts, they made some cameo TV appearances. If you watch any old reruns of “The Munsters,” you’ll occasionally see The Standells playing at 1313 Mockingbird Lane. As for their only hit, Drummer Dick Dodd sang the lead vocals.

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