Covered With Honey

Poking my way through the Billboard Hot 100 from April 14, 1973, I saw, unsurprisingly, lots of records I knew back then and I saw lots of records I’ve learned about in the forty-two years since.

Among those I’ve learned about in the years since is Judy Collins’ “Cook With Honey,” which was sitting at No. 35 in that long-ago Hot 100, having – as I noted just about two years ago – peaked at No. 32.

The song came from the pen of Valerie Carter, whose name shows up as a backup singer on a multitude of Los Angeles sessions, especially from the mid- to the late 1970s. She’s released several albums under her own name, one of which – 1977’s Just A Stone’s Throw Awayshowed up in this blog’s first iteration. It was the names of the musicians who helped Carter on that album — Linda Ronstadt, Deniece Williams, Maurice White, Lowell George, Tom Jans, John Sebastian and Jackson Browne, among others – that caught my interest at the time.

And somewhere along the line, as I dug around in the rich veins of California 1970s music, I came across Howdy Moon, Carter’s folk-rock group, which released one self-titled album in 1974, produced by Lowell George (with backing help from, again among others, several members of Little Feat). And there sat Howdy Moon’s take on “Cook With Honey.” It’s a cover, as Collins recorded the song first, but it is the writer’s version of the song (as recorded with her bandmates Richard Hovey and Jon Lind).

There’s no sign of Howdy Moon on the Billboard charts, and the band called it quits after that one album. But the album is a decent piece of work, if you like Southern California post-hippie folk rock (and I clearly do). So here, for a Tuesday morning, is Howdy Moon’s “Cook With Honey.”

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One Response to “Covered With Honey”

  1. Tim McMullen says:

    Very cool find. As you say, Valerie Carter was all over the Southern California music scene with excellent backup and up front vocals. I had never heard of this album. Well done.

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