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Mrs Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter - Herman's Hermits

I had an American friend in those days, Dougie, and even he was not immune to the "British Invasion" that swept the USA in the early sixties. He loved the Beatles, but eschewed the likes of the Kinks and the Animals and even his own Beach Boys in favour of Herman's Hermits. The Hermits were extraordinarily pronounced "the most successful band in America" in 1965, - largely because the Beatles had given up touring - and represented an Englishness that was neither threatening nor alien. To Dougie and I, they articulated our pre-pubescent love for our female classmates - let's face it, lead singer Peter Noone looked as though he didn't have pubes either - and this song expresses this innocence perfectly.

Curiously, Carole King and Gerry Goffin wrote their most famous song, "I'm into Something Good", Ray Davies of the Kinks wrote another US chartbuster for them - "Dandy" - and Jimmy Page played on many of their hits as a session musician. None of this can rescue them from their current relative (and once again deserved) obscurity. But for us isolated ten year olds, they were just the ticket we needed to take us to the suburbs of Toy Town.

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