You are watching: Who wrote the song those were the days
If you like your nostalgia tinged v a dose of world-weariness, “Those to be the Days” is guaranteed to send you right into a reverie occupied by your own loved and lost, tempered through a dark veneer of experience.
It’s a individual survival anthem in a minor key, sometimes betraying its rather lugubrious, fatalistic Russian roots before rallying chin for the instantly recognizable, bittersweet refrain that harks back to much more carefree times.
“Those to be the Days”
Originally a Russian romantic song, “Those to be the Days” was credited toGene Raskin, who put a brand-new English lyric come theRussian version“Dorogoi dlinnoyu” (literally “By the long road“). Written byBoris Fomin(1900–1948), the song was penned through the poetKonstantin Podrevsky.
The song faces reminiscence ~ above youth and romantic idealism.
However, Welsh folk singer mar Hopkin made the popular and introduced it to the English world.
Mary Hopkin’s Recording
Produced byPaul McCartney, mar Hopkin’s 1968 version became a number one struggle on theUK Singles Chart.With an arrangement byRichard Hewson, it ended up being a number one hit on theUK Singles Chart. Moreover, the song got to number two on theBillboardHot 100, behind McCartney’s very own bandThe Beatles‘ fight “Hey Jude.“
In the joined States, Hopkin’s recording got to number 2 on theBillboardHot 100. Moreover, ittopped the BillboardEasy Listeningcharts for 6 weeks.
Armed with a voice as pure and true as anything that has actually graced the charts in the decades since, and a plangent plan that featured miscellaneous strings – including a Hungarian version of the dulcimer – and a boys’ choir, Hopkin scored a huge international hit and also secured she own place in popular music history.
Mary Hopkin play acoustic etc on the recording, andPaul McCartneyalso play acoustic guitar and possibly percussion. The hammered dulcimer, orcimbalom, to be played by Gilbert Webster. Nevertheless, the is unknown who played the banjo despite McCartney is well-known to it is in a banjoist.
Hopkin’s version was released on the ago of her success on the tv talent showOpportunity Knocks. Approximately the time of its release, well-known singer Sandie Shaw was additionally asked to document the song by her management. They felt that it should be excellent by a “real” singer. Shaw’s variation was released as a single. However, it did not complement the success the Hopkin’s version.
The song in various other countries
The Russian beginning of the melody was accentuated by an instrumentation that was inexplicable for a top-ten popular music record, includingbalalaika,clarinet,hammered dulcimer, tenor banjo and children’s chorus, providing aklezmerfeel to the song.
On the various other hand, In France, the track was in ~ no. 1 in the very very first edition the the singles sales chart. That was introduced by the Centre d’Information et de Documentation du Disque in October 1968.
In the Netherlands, the topped the charts for two consecutive weeks.
Versions the the track were additionally recorded in Spanish, French, Italian and also German by Hopkin and McCartney. Man Lennon’s very first wife, Cynthia, also recorded a version.
The beginnings of the melody show up to it is in strongly claimed by the Russians. In addition, Russian gypsies think about it their song.
The surname of this song appears to it is in “Dorogo’ Dlinnoyu” as soon as translated means “By a lengthy road (or way)” or “Along a lengthy road (or way)” or “On a lengthy way.” some sources claim it was composed at the finish of the 19th century or in ~ the start of 20th century.
There is one more song, Russian title offered “Darogoi Dli Mayou” calling itself “Dear come Me.” This, too, is an alleged to be a version of “Dorogo Dlinnoyu,” very first recorded by Alexander Wertinsky in the 1920s.
But the track was probably an initial heard more widely when it was sung by Maria Schell in the 1958 film adaptation ofThe brother Karamazov. About the exact same time, the good American folk composer and also songwriter, Gene Raskin, encountered it and produced the English text we understand today.
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