It’s Monday Again

Originally posted June 15, 2008

Mondays in our culture are greeted with groans. The weekend’s over and it’s time to put on real shoes and – depending on the milieu one works in – nice clothes including that silly wardrobe piece called a necktie.

(I only ever had one job that required a necktie – when I was the main public relations writer for St. Cloud State for a couple of years in the late 1980s. When I taught college at a couple of other places, I wore a tie on occasion but not all the time. When I did, I had a pretty good collection to choose from, as I had about twenty neckties at one time. I’m down to about eight ties now, but then, I’ve worn a necktie only twice in the past five years, both times for a funeral. I do have a favorite necktie, however rarely I wear it: a blue, gold and white concoction from the Grateful Dead clothing line that I won through a radio trivia contest.)

Anyway, I never dreaded Mondays the way most folks do: When I was reporting and/or teaching, I enjoyed my work as much as I enjoyed anything, and heading to work for another week energized me. In later years – the late 1990s – when I was temping and then working in the collections field, I realize now that I looked forward to Mondays because I essentially spent my weekends by myself, and Monday meant I would see people again. I guess it’s a blessing I didn’t realize how unhappy I was during those years.

These days, being based at home and spending my time on this blog, some other writing and taking care of the apartment, Mondays are in many ways just another weekday. If we’ve had a busy weekend, Monday may find me tired, and I can sometimes find it difficult to move about. Beyond that, Monday could just as well be Thursday, except for the routine I’ve developed here.

And, holding to that routine, here’s an album for you this Monday: the Isley Brothers’ 3+3 from 1973.

I’ve shared two of the tracks from the album before, “Summer Breeze” and “Sunshine (Go Away Today),” both good tracks. The rest of the album, I think, is just as good.

The brothers had a Top Ten hit in the summer of 1973 with their own “That Lady, Pt. 1,” an edit of the album’s opening track and their four other compositions shine, too, especially the gospelish “You Walk Your Way” and the light funk of “What It Comes Down To.” But they have a sure touch with covers, as well. Along with “Summer Breeze” and “Sunshine,” the brothers – the three original Isleys joined here by two younger brothers and a cousin, explaining the album’s title – cover James Taylor’s “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight” and the Doobie Brothers’ “Listen to the Music.”

Having listened to the album as a whole a few times (and having heard the songs as they come up singly in random rotation), I have a hard time pulling out any tracks that don’t seem to work. Maybe the Doobie Brothers cover, which doesn’t seem to nestle into the Isleys’ approach quite as easily as the other covers. Overall, the album is certainly more rock oriented than the Isleys’ earlier work, but leans toward funk, too. It’s a good listen.

Who’s That Lady?
Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight
If You Were There
You Walk Your Way
Listen to the Music
What It Comes Down To
Sunshine (Go Away Today)
Summer Breeze
The Highways of My Life

Isley Brothers – 3+3 [1973]


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