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Nancy and Lee Week No 7: If it's Monday Morning / Love and Other Crimes

Lee Hazelwood

If it's Monday morning.....which indeed it is, and I thought it would be appropriate. And Lee Hazelwood solo. Everyone's heard Nancy solo, but not many have heard Lee and this is because, I suspect, some of this best work was with her. He tended to get a bit lugubrious on his own, which isn't necessarily a bad thing: we all sometimes get those gloomy moments when a bit of Lee would be just the trick.

Like on a Monday morning. Something to cheer you down, these two tracks are some of the best he's done, (some of the other stuff isn't too bad), but I like these, as they are typically Lee in that they have a whiff of wistful, thoughtful enigma about them.

"There were times when being together was fun

there were times when being apart was more fun

and there were times when there was nothing but time

and that was no fun."

We're not sure where or who "the narrator" is, but there's a hint he may just have been let out of an "instution" for the day; I definitely have the sense of white coats in the background

"well the men just let me out

and I think it's Monday morning"

He talks about the taste in his mouth, which might be some kind or oral medication, and he suggests that his problem is that he's trying to get over "you", his love,

"...well I could be doing fine

when I get you off my mind

if it's Monday morning..."

"Won't someone help me quick

I'm down and I'm feeling sick

there's too much of my head that's showing"

Know how he feels

"Well I know I should go home

if it's Monday morning

'cause our room is all alone

if it's Monday morning

but I'll probably get stoned

if it's Monday morning

then I'll think I'm doing fine

but I'll bet you're on my mind

come next Monday morning."

"well the men just let me out

and I think it's Monday morning

there's a taste here in my mouth

that tastes like Monday morning"

Lee uses the universal "Monday morning feeling" as a metaphor for how he feels because his lover has left him, suggesting it has wrecked him psychologically (hence the institution), balancing the song between wishing she was with him, wishing she wasn't and wishing he was over her and knowing he isn't. And of all course at the heart there is the age old concept of being in love as a malady, a sickness subtly played out.

I don't know, but hearing Lee sounding so low, with the subdued backing vocal joining him fleetingly and sometimes on the words "Monday morning" lending him an air of gentle schizophrenia, always cheers me up.

As does this next (very short) confessional track "Love and other Crimes".

Here Lee succinctly articulates the pathetic and noble truth that is at the heart of many (if not all) of us:

"Inside this house called me, I live,

trying trying trying to learn to give

I've taken much that never was mine

but baby I'll do my best

and baby I will confess

I've committed love and other crimes."

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