‘Sweet Tomorrows Tuggin’ At My Sleeve . . .’

Having touched folk and blues in our previous two Monday Morning packages here, this morning we land on Seventies singer-songwriter pop. In the wake of the chart and critical successes of Carole King and James Taylor, Barry Mann – better known as a songwriter – laid down some tracks in 1971 for an album titled Lay It All Out on CBS’ New Design Records imprint.

Mann – working almost always with Cynthia Weil – had developed a  mind-blowing catalog of Brill Building pop and rock songs since the early 1960s, including “(You’re My) Soul and Inspiration,” “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling,” “Uptown,” “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place” and many more.

But Lay It All Out evidently tanked. I don’t know if it made the Billboard Hot 200, but I don’t think so. “When You Get Right Down To It” was the first single from the album, and it bubbled under the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 105. At the same time, CBS put another track from Lay It All Out on The Music People, a three-LP sampler intended to drum up interest by offering tracks from a wide variety of the label’s groups and artists: Heavyweights Bob Dylan, Blood Sweat & Tears and the Byrds were included on the package with lesser-known acts like Grootna, Jimmie Spheeris . . . and Barry Mann.

The track that CBS put on The Music People was the album’s lead-off track, “Too Many Mondays,” which also ended up as the flip side to the album’s second single, “Lay It All Out.” I’ve never heard “Lay It All Out,” so I can’t say how it compares, but to my mind, “Too Many Mondays” is a much better record than “When You Get Right Down To It” (although it’s miles more sad, which might have made a difference, I suppose). And it’s perfect for a Monday Morning here.

Too Many Mondays

Nothing much worth takin’
Only years of things to leave behind
Mama, quit your cryin’
Don’t keep tellin’ me I’ve lost my mind
Now I’m tired of making good and feeling bad
When I came to this morning
It came to me I had. . .

Too many Mondays in my life
Too many mornings when I hate to see the light
Too many Mondays that keep comin’ ’round too soon
And too few free and easy Sunday afternoons.

Living can be dying
When the days are only marking time
Mama, now we’ve made it,
Can’t you see it wasn’t worth the climb?
Now there’s something missin’ and I don’t know what
But the more I think about it
The more I know I’ve got . . .

Too many Mondays in my life
Too many mornings when I hate to see the light
Too many Mondays that keep comin’ ’round too soon
And too few free and easy Sunday afternoons.

There are songs and sweet tomorrows
Tuggin’ at my sleeve. Mama, don’t you see?
They’re calling me, calling me.
Got to be leaving.

Too many Mondays in my life
Too many mornings when I hate to see the light
Too many Mondays that keep comin’ ’round too soon
And too few free and easy Sunday afternoons.

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One Response to “‘Sweet Tomorrows Tuggin’ At My Sleeve . . .’”

  1. David Lenander says:

    I knew this track from Mary Travers’ cover on her 3rd solo album–nice to hear the original.

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