Flowers in the Rain

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"Flowers in the Rain"
Single by The Move
from the album Move
B-side "(Here We Go Round) the Lemon Tree"
Released 1967
Format 7" single
Recorded 6 July 1967, at Advision Sound Studios, London
Genre Psychedelic pop
Length 2:29 (original version)
2:41 (2007 remastered version)
Label Regal Zonophone (UK)
A&M (US)
Writer(s) Roy Wood
Producer(s) Denny Cordell
The Move singles chronology
"I Can Hear the Grass Grow"
(1967)
"Flowers in the Rain"
(1967)
"Fire Brigade"
(1968)

"Flowers in the Rain" is a song by the sixties rock band The Move. The song was released as a single and reached number two in 1967 on the UK Singles Chart, and number four in Ireland.

It achieved its own place in pop history by being the first record[1] to be played on Radio 1 when the station was launched in 1967 (though technically Johnny Dankworth's "Beefeaters" was the first track to be heard, since Tony Blackburn chose it as the theme tune for his Daily Disc Delivery,[1] and so it was heard before "Flowers in the Rain"[2]). "Flowers in the Rain" was also the last single by The Move to have Carl Wayne on lead vocals before Roy Wood took over as the band's lead vocalist for "Fire Brigade".

The distinctive instrumental arrangement, including oboe, clarinet, cor anglais and French horn, was suggested by assistant producer Tony Visconti.[1]

Promotional stunt[edit]

In a promotional stunt, for the record—typical of the band's manager Tony Secunda—a postcard was released with a cartoon of a naked Harold Wilson, linking him to his secretary Marcia Williams. Wilson sued, and the High Court ordered that all royalties from the song were donated to a charity of Wilson's choice. This legal arrangement remains in force to this day and is thought to have cost the group millions of pounds in royalties over the years. During the single's chart success, most of the money went to the Spastics Society and Stoke Mandeville Hospital. In the 1990s, The Observer newspaper reported the royalties had exceeded £200,000 and found that The Harold Wilson Charitable Trust had extended the range of beneficiaries to include, among others, the Oxford Operatic Society, Bolton Lads Club and the Jewish National Fund for Israel.[1]

Covers[edit]

The song has been covered by Nancy Sinatra. The Kaiser Chiefs also covered this for the Radio 1 Established 1967 CD.[3] In 1997 it was covered by Arjen Anthony Lucassen for his anonymously released album Strange Hobby.

On 25 September 2007, BBC Radio 4 featured a programme called The Story of Flowers in the Rain, hosted by Tony Blackburn, on the court action and its related history, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the song.[4] In the programme, the band said that although they still play the song regularly, they are beginning to get fed up with it.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Flower Power". BBC News. 24 August 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-25. 
  2. ^ Another school of thought cites Julie Andrews' "The Sound of Music" as the first track since this was played at 5:30am when the new Radio One frequency opened up with a shared programme, heard simultaneously on Radio Two, hosted by Paul Hollingdale (The Weekly News, Issue 7,946, 29 September 2007)
  3. ^ "Radio 1 Established 1967". BBC Radio 1. September 2007. Retrieved 20 February 2013. 
  4. ^ "The Story of Flowers in the Rain". BBC Radio 4. 25 September 2007. Retrieved 20 February 2013.