Saturday, February 21, 2015

Newbeats – "Bread and Butter" (1964)

I like bread and butter
I like toast and jam
That's what my baby feeds me
I'm her loving man

Obviously, the singer's girlfriend can't cook worth a damn.  

It's a good thing he's happy with his diet of bread and butter and toast and jam because meat and potatoes is not an option:

She don't cook mashed potatoes
She don't cook T-bone steaks

The singer's diet is further limited by a severe allergy to peanuts:

Don't feed me peanut butter
She knows that I can't take

We learn later in the song that the girlfriend not only can't cook, but can't keep her legs closed:

Got home early one morning
Much to my surprise
She was eating chicken and dumplings
With some other guy

(If those were really good chicken and dumplings, it might have been worth it for the singer to overlook the little slut's infidelity.)

The lead singer of the Newbeats was Larry Henley, the pride of Arp, Texas– population 976.  He met brothers Dean and Mark Mathis in Shreveport, Louisiana, and the three young men formed the Newbeats in 1964.  (Don't confuse the Newbeats with the Easybeats, an Australian pop group best known for "Friday on My Mind," who formed in Sydney the same year.)

"Bread and Butter" was the Newbeats' first hit, climbing all the way to #2 on the Billboard "Hot 100" chart.    The Newbeats had a couple of other top-20 singles, but never matched the success of "Bread and Butter."  Henley and the Mathis brothers finally decided to go their separate ways in 1974.

Henley wrote #1 country hits for Tammy Wynette, Tanya Tucker, Janie Fricke, and Randy Travis.  But the success of those Henley compositions was dwarfed by the success of the hugely popular "Wind Beneath My Wings," which was co-written by Henley and Jeff Silbar.

Jeff Silbar, Bette Midler,
and Larry Henley in 1989
"Wind Beneath My Wings" was originally recorded by Roger Whittaker in 1982, but the version you no doubt remember was Bette Midler's, which won the "Record of the Year' Grammy in 1989. 

Larry Henley, who suffered from Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, died in Nashville two months ago.  He was 77.

Here's "Bread and Butter":

Click below to buy the song from Amazon:

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