Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Brothers Johnson -- "Strawberry Letter 23" (1977)

Feel sunshine sparkle pink and blue
Playgrounds will laugh
If you try to ask, 
"Is it cool? Is it cool?"
Yes, it's cool -- very cool, in fact -- but what the hell does it mean?

"Strawberry Letter 23" was written in 1972 by Shuggie Otis.  He had a girlfriend who wrote letters to him on strawberry-scented paper.  So the title sort of makes sense.  The rest of the song doesn't make sense on any level whatsoever.

The Brothers Johnson had a hit with the song in 1977.  The producer was the legendary Quincy Jones, who produced a cover version of the song featuring Akon in 2010.  Like the covers by Digital Underground and Tevin Campbell, it can't hold a candle to the Brothers Johnson version.  

Here are two other interesting facts about the song:

1.  The song's lyrics never mention the number 23, but do mention the number 22.

2.  The song was featured on the soundtrack of Quentin Tarantino's wonderful 1997 movie, Jackie Brown.  Here's a scene from that movie that featured Samuel L. Jackson, Robert DeNiro, and "Strawberry Letter 23":  

Here's "Strawberry Letter 23":

Click here if you'd like to buy the song from Amazon:

No comments:

Post a Comment