|Single by The Turtles|
|from the album The Turtles Present the Battle of the Bands|
|Writer(s)||Howard Kaylan, Mark Volman, Al Nichol, Jim Pons, John Barbata|
|The Turtles singles chronology|
"Elenore" is a 1968 song by American pop-rock group The Turtles, originally included on the album The Turtles Present the Battle of the Bands. Its writing was co-credited to the five members of the band, Howard Kaylan, Mark Volman, Al Nichol, Jim Pons and John Barbata. The song was written as a satire of one of their earlier pop hits, "Happy Together".
By 1968, The Turtles had had a number of successful pop records on the White Whale label, including Bob Dylan's "It Ain't Me Babe", "Happy Together" and "She'd Rather Be With Me", both written by Gary Bonner and Alan Gordon. The band members wanted to diversify their musical output, in parallel with more innovative musical groups of the time, and to record their own material. However, their record company were reluctant to allow them to do so.
As a demonstration of their musical versatility, The Turtles recorded the album ...the Battle of the Bands, which featured performances in a wide variety of different musical styles. The band recorded "Elenore" as a parody of the type of happy-go-lucky pop songs they themselves had been performing, but with deliberately clichéd and slapdash lyrics such as: "Your looks intoxicate me / Even though your folks hate me / There's no one like you, Elenore, really"; and "Gee, I think you're swell / And you really do me well / You're my pride and joy, et cetera..."
Howard Kaylan later said:
Elenore was a parody of "Happy Together." It was never intended to be a straight-forward song. It was meant as an anti-love letter to White Whale [Records], who were constantly on our backs to bring them another "Happy Together." So I gave them a very skewed version. Not only with the chords changed, but with all these bizarre words. It was my feeling that they would listen to how strange and stupid the song was and leave us alone. But they didn't get the joke. They thought it sounded good. Truthfully, though, the production on "Elenore" WAS so damn good. Lyrically or not, the sound of the thing was so positive that it worked. It certainly surprised me.
The song was produced by Chip Douglas and released as a single (White Whale 276). "Elenore" reached No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100, and also reached # 7 on the UK singles chart, # 6 in Canada, # 8 in Australia, and # 1 in New Zealand. It has since featured on many anthologies, and as part of the soundtrack of the 2009 film The Boat That Rocked.
The most famous cover of this song is "Scende la pioggia" by Italian singer Gianni Morandi.
- The Turtles at Allmusic
- "...Battle of the Bands" at The Rising Storm.net
- Frank Hoffmann, Survey of American Popular Music: The Turtles
- Liner notes for The Turtles' anthology Solid Zinc
- Whitburn, Joel (2003). Top Pop Singles 1955-2002 (1st ed.). Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research Inc. p. 727. ISBN 0-89820-155-1.
- Betts, Graham (2004). Complete UK Hit Singles 1952-2004 (1st ed.). London: Collins. p. 802. ISBN 0-00-717931-6.
- "Elenore" at The World's Music Charts
- The Boat That Rocked (Soundtrack) at Allmusic