…I might be prejudiced but it’s true, I love New England best

Known for its rolling hills, majestic mountains and jagged coastline, not to mention its colorful autumns, brisk winters and sultry summers, New England is the only multi-state region (the U.S. Census Bureau acknowledges nine regional divisions) that does not derive its name from its geography.  With the Mayflower Compact serving as its first governing document, its name was officially sanctioned in 1620 when a Royal Charter for the Plymouth Council of New England was established to govern and colonize the region.

When all six states are combined, the region is larger than (Olde) England, but just barely bigger than the state of Washington. Making up nearly half of the total area, Maine is only the 39th largest state, just behind Indiana.  The remaining five New England states are among the nation’s smallest, including Little Rhodey, “the” smallest.

And yet this New England is big on cultural identity, with a unique blend of agrarianism and industrialism, Puritanism and liberalism, isolationism and open mindedness. Although now considered to be the least religious region in the United States, as some of us are sure to remind you, it was here that some of the great movements in literature, education and philosophy found their origins.  Many a song of praise has been written about the splendid allure of this Old Yankee (as opposed to ‘Damn Yankee”) land, including today’s selection.

When last we looked in on Jonathan Richman (born in Natick, Massachusetts in 1951) he and his Velvet Underground inspired Modern Lovers were going “faster miles an hour” with “the radio on!” as they performed “Roadrunner”, recorded in various versions (but not released) in the early ‘70s. Eventually the band collapsed over musical differences and an inability to land a record contract and their best recordings didn’t come to light until 1976 with the release of a post-breakup-debut album “The Modern Lovers” with several tracks becoming Top Ten hits in the (New-Wave era) UK, where Richman was celebrated as a punk rock progenitor.

By this time Richman had moved to Berkeley, California and put together a new, mellower, more-acoustic version of the Modern Lovers, that combined calypso lyricism with ‘50s era Rock n Roll. With the critical attention received by the original band’s album, he and the new group released the 1977 album “Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers” only a few months later. Recorded far from Richman’s “home”, today’s selection with sentiments shared by many a New Englander, was one of the featured tracks.

 LISTEN TO TODAY’S SELECTION – Monday 16 July

New England

 See, I come from Boston

I’m gonna tell you about how I love New England

It’s my favorite place

I’ve been all around the world, but I love New England best

I might be prejudiced

But it’s true, I love New England best

Well, now…

You know, ladies and gentlemen, I’ve already been to Paris, I already been to Rome

And what did I do but miss my home?

I have been out west to Californ’.

But I miss the land where I was born.

I can’t help it.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

I have seen old Israel’s arid plain.

It’s magnificent, but so’s Maine.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Doddly-doodly-do-do-doo-do-do

Doddly-doodly-do-do-doo-do-do

Doddly-doodly-do-do-doo-do-do

Doddly-doodly-do-do-doo-do-do Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, I love New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

Dum-de-dum-de-dum-dum-da-dum-day

Oh, New England.

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