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Mellow Yellow

(z albumu „Mellow Yellow” - styczeń 1967 roku)
słowa i muzyka: Donovan Phillips Leitch

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”Mellow Yellow” is a song and single release by Donovan. It reached #2 on the Billboard charts in the U.S. in 1966.
The song was rumored to be about smoking dried banana skins, which was believed to be a hallucinogenic drug in the 1960s, but this rumor has since been debunked. According to Donovan's notes accompanying the album Donovan's Greatest Hits, the rumor that one could get high from smoking dried banana skins was started by Country Joe McDonald in 1966, and Donovan heard the rumor three weeks before „Mellow Yellow” was released as a single. (According to The Rolling Stone Illustrated Encyclopedia of Rock and Roll, he admitted later the song made reference to a vibrator[citation needed]; an „electrical banana” as mentioned in the lyrics.) The phrase „mellow yellow” appears on page 719 of the first American edition of Ulysses, where it is used to refer to Mrs. Marion Bloom's buttocks, but it is not known if Donovan got the phrase from there.
The record had a „Beatlesque” feel to it, and was sometimes mistaken for a Beatles song. Donovan, in fact, was friends with the Beatles. Paul McCartney can be heard as one of the background revelers on this track — but contrary to popular belief, it is not McCartney whispering the „quite rightly” answering lines in the chorus, but rather Donovan himself. Donovan had a small part in coming up with the lyrics for „Yellow Submarine” and Paul McCartney played bass guitar (uncredited) on portions of Donovan's Mellow Yellow album.
R&B and jazz singer Georgie Fame recorded his own version with a distinctively different arrangement reminiscent of the Count Basie orchestra.
Cadbury used a modified version of the song to promote their Caramello Koala chocolates (”They call me Caramello… Koala”).
The song was also used in a series of television commercials to promote the use of butter.
In France, Lipton used a modified version of the song to promote their tea (”They call me Lipton Yellow”).
In 1999, „Mellow Yellow” was sung by a group of young adults — among which were then-unknowns Alex Greenwald, Rashida Jones and Jason Thompson — in Gap's „Everybody in Cords” commercial directed by Pedro Romhanyi. The music mix was done by the Dust Brothers.
Chart positions were #2 (USA) and #8 (UK).
One of the oldest coffeeshops in Amsterdam is called „Mellow Yellow”.
In Episode 17 of the 5th Season of Scrubs, JD figures out the Song is about liver disease (not quite rightly).
 

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