Small Pleasures

ELDER MUSIC: Doctor, Doctor Give Me the News

Tibbles1SM100x130This Sunday Elder Music column was launched in December of 2008. By May of the following year, one commenter, Peter Tibbles, had added so much knowledge and value to my poor attempts at musical presentations that I asked him to take over the column. He's been here each week ever since delighting us with his astonishing grasp of just about everything musical, his humor and sense of fun. You can read Peter's bio here and find links to all his columns here.

* * *

Ronni was the inspiration for this column. I hope she doesn't mind. (Ronni here: Of course, I don't mind.)

I'll start with the song that provided the column's name. The song isn't actually called that, it's part of the lyrics, but I'm sure that if asked, most people who know the song would refer to it that way. It's by ROBERT PALMER.

Robert Palmer

The official title is Bad Case of Loving You, but you can call it anything you want. I know I do.

♫ Robert Palmer - Bad Case Of Loving You

The two best albums THE BEATLES recorded were "Rubber Soul" and "Revolver". From the latter one we have Doctor Robert.


I always think of them as part 1 and 2 of the same album because I didn't buy them when they came out. It was later when I got them on CD at the same time, thus my conflating them that way. Here is that song.

♫ The Beatles - Doctor Robert

It seems only fair that we follow that one with the ROLLING STONES. Something from their best album "Beggars Banquet".

Rolling Stones

It's far from the best song on the album but it fits this column’s requirement. The song is Dear Doctor.

♫ Rolling Stones - Dear Doctor

Unlike everyone else today, RAY CHARLES doesn’t need any medical advice.

Ray Charles

Ray says that I Don't Need No Doctor. Well, I suppose he doesn’t anymore.

♫ Ray Charles - I Don't Need No Doctor

From very early in his career, indeed from his first album, JACKSON BROWNE gives us Doctor My Eyes.

Jackson Browne

This made the pointy end of the hit parade (something that seldom happened for Jackson) and besides that, it was covered by quite a few other artists, so it turned into a nice little earner for him.

♫ Jackson Browne - Doctor My Eyes

I thought of Doctor Jazz before I even started searching for songs. I remember back in the fifties’ and sixties’ trad jazz revival it was almost de rigueur to include it in every concert. I knew I had quite a few versions. When I spotted JELLY ROLL MORTON, I decided it had to be the one.

Jelly Roll Morton

His was the earliest version I have. It was written by King Oliver in 1926 and Jelly recorded it the same year. As far as I can tell this was the first recording of the tune.

♫ Jelly Roll Morton - Doctor Jazz

JOHN D. LOUDERMILK was mostly a songwriter, he wrote many hits for others in the fifties and sixties.

John D Loudermilk

He also liked to record some of his own songs, several of which did really well on the charts. One of those, in our category today, is Callin' Doctor Casey. Those who watched TV in the early sixties will know of whom he sings.

♫ John D. Loudermilk - Callin' Doctor Casey

I’m quite a fan of MILLIE JACKSON, so I was surprised to find I have only included her in a column once before. So, here she is again.

Millie Jackson

This is far from her best, but even ordinary Millie is well worth a listen. She’s calling for a Love Doctor.

♫ Millie Jackson - Love Doctor

Rather surprisingly, I was unfamiliar with the GUY CLARK song I selected. I thought I knew them all, but there it was on one of his albums ("Old Friends").

Guy Clark

Norma, the Assistant Musicologist didn't know it either but when I played it we both agreed that it should be included. Well, we pretty much think that anything Guy did was okay with us. The song is Doctor Good Doctor.

♫ Guy Clark - Doctor Good Doctor

Rather than, as with everyone else, going to the doc, MUDDY WATERS has decided that he’s one himself.

Muddy Waters

I don’t know if I’d want him to operate on me, but if he played and sang for me I’d be all for it. Here he is telling us that I'm Your Doctor.

♫ Muddy Waters - I'm Your Doctor

...and last and certainly least we have DAVID SEVILLE.

David Seville

This was the recording name of Ross Bagdasarian who was a noted songwriter. He was also responsible for the Alvin and the Chipmunks songs, films, TV programs and what not. Let's hope that Ronni doesn't visit the Witch Doctor.

♫ David Seville - Witch Doctor


I have to thank you again for your Sunday musical discoveries. DOCTOR GOOD DOCTOR (today) is spot on , in my little neck of the woods . Listening to the lyrics, I found myself smiling (the first in many weeks). The idea of straightening up and flying right is worth a big grin, and a challenge.

I enjoyed all of these. I have to admit the one I played first was "Witch Doctor". As a snobby teen who preferred classical music, I turned up my nose at nearly all the pop music of the time, but I did listen to the radio sometimes, and went to a few school dances. "Witch Doctor" got past my defenses by being over-the-top silly -- to the point where I actually went out and bought the 45.

It still makes me smile.

Oh, I know... the lyrics haven't worn well. In 2018 I can hear the racism, and some part of me is horrified that I ever liked it. But teen-Sylvia didn't know. She was me, a long time ago. My tastes in music have changed, widened by a lot. What I used to like, back then? I mostly like now because I used to like it.

(Though, Jascha Heifetz still rules.)

Oh - I listened to Witch Doctor first, too!
Loved 'em all.
And smiled because it is such a great music blog for Ronni's great news!

I also listened to Witch Doctor first. That song always makes me laugh.

A fun idea, Peter! Honestly, the first doctor song that occurred to me would fall into the same category as the first -- no doctor in title, but all kinds of doctor stuff in the lyrics --
The Rascals - "Good Lovin'" Not only a big hit, but also was used as the theme song of an early 90's TV show, 'Doctor Doctor'.

You’re right Geez, "Good Lovin’" should have been present. I missed it completely.

Have to say that 'witch doctor' bring back some real memories and one huge smile!

Thank you for all the work you do here.

Some great tunes. I was also thinking about "Dr. Feelgood" by Aretha Franklin.

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