Stoned Soul Picnic (song)

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"Stoned Soul Picnic"
Single by The 5th Dimension
from the album Stoned Soul Picnic
B-side "The Sailboat Song"
Released June 1968
Genre Pop
Length 3:30
Label Soul City Records
Writer(s) Laura Nyro
Producer(s) Bones Howe
The 5th Dimension singles chronology
"Carpet Man"
(1968)
"Stoned Soul Picnic"
(1968)
"Sweet Blindness"
(1968)

"Stoned Soul Picnic" is a 1968 song by Laura Nyro. The best-known version of the song was recorded by The 5th Dimension, and was the first single released from their album of the same title. It was the most successful single from that album, reaching #3 on the U.S. Pop chart[1] and #2 on the Billboard R&B chart. The song was also recorded by its composer, Nyro, and released on her Eli and the Thirteenth Confession album in the same year.

The word surry, used frequently in the lyric (e.g. "Surry down to a stoned soul picnic"), is a neologism by Nyro; its meaning is unclear. The verb surry is spelled differently from the noun surrey (an old-time carriage). When asked by producer Charlie Calello what the word meant, Nyro told him, "Oh, it's just a nice word."[2] One possible meaning is that surry is a shortening of "let's hurry."

Crystal Waters sampled the song on her single "Ghetto Day" from her 1994 album Storyteller. The British pop group Swing Out Sister recorded a cover version on their 1997 album, Shapes and Patterns. It was covered by Julie London on her 1969 album Yummy, Yummy, Yummy; and by the New York Voices on their 2007 album A Day Like This. It also appeared on the 2004 album Don't Talk, recorded by British jazz singer Claire Teal. Singer-Songwriter Jill Sobule covered it as a single in 2001.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications), page 222.
  2. ^ Kort, Michele (2003). Soul Picnic: The Music and Passion of Laura Nyro. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 58. ISBN 978-0-312-30318-1.