342) Keith Everett — “She’s the One Who Loved You”
I don’t play hometown favorites. We’ll, actually I let YouTube do the playing — witness the Del-Vetts from Highland Park, Illinois (see #250) and today’s selection — Keith Everett (real name Keith Gravenhorst) from the bordering town of Deerfield. I went to Highland Park High School. My sister went to Deerfield.
This ‘66 A-side is a very cool song, with a Greek chorus hectoring* a guy for letting the girl who truly loved him get away.
[chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, these words they keep repeating. [chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, even when I’m sleeping. They keep on taunting, these words they keep haunting. They tell me how she loved me, always thinking of me. I let her go. [chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, I know, I know it’s true. [chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, but what can I do? I got to be [?], always breaking her heart. I knew she loved me so, but still I let her go. Oh, I was such a fool. These thoughts [come] to me every night and day, like ghosts they’re haunting me, won’t go away. [chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, won’t you let me be? [chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, won’t you set me free? I made my mistakes, but now it’s too late. . . . [chorus: “She’s the one who loved you.”] Oh, leave me alone. . . .”
But whatever notoriety Everett possesses (and it ain’t much**) has come from his prior single — “Don’t You Know”/“Conscientious Objector.” Chris Bishop says that “Don’t You Know” “is a fine ballad, while the flip is an outrageous indictment of conscientious objectors . . . .” (https://garagehangover.com/keitheverett/) Man, I have never really delved into that subgenre. Here are some of the lyrics to “Conscientious Objector” —
“They call themselves the conscientious objectors. But all they’re tryin’ to do is tryin’ to infect us with their fear and their shame. They hide under the name of conscientious objectors. They might as well be defectors. The way they act, well keep it up boy the way you’ve been goin’. And who can tell son, you’ve got no way of knowin’ that tomorrow we might be the way that Vietnam is today. And you’ll be sorry you fools for the things that you do. You’re conscientious objectors. You might as well be defectors. The way you act.”
Wow, that makes “The Ballad of the Green Berets” sound like Abbie Hoffman wrote it! I checked — “Conscientious Objector” is not on Spotify. If it was, Neil Young would have to put his songs back on just so he could pull them off again!
Anyway, Bishop says that “Don’t You Know” “did well in Chicago, entering WCFL charts in March, and reaching as high as #10 two months later.” Yellow Paper Suns informs us that Everett’s “music career stalled somewhat when he was posted to Vietnam shortly after ‘Don’t You Know’ started to make inroads on the charts. Presumably, the follow up was released whilst he was fighting the yellow man.” (https://yellowpapersuns.com/2011/12/01/keith-everett-the-chant/)
* I hope you caught that I said “Greek chorus hectoring.”
** Matt Grayer has put out this desperate plea:
I ask anybody who knows anything about this artist . . . to please, PLEASE contact me or submit it to this site. I have spoken to a few old-timers in the Chicagoland area who claim to remember the record but know nothing of its history or what the deal was with Keith Everett, despite the fact that the song “Don’t You Know” appears to have charted. However, it is the “B” side that gets this collector all hot and bothered. Songs like this are what dreams are made of. I included the “A” side of the single to show that right-wing folk-rockers have feelings, too.http://wfmu.org/365/2003/175.shtml
OK, Matt is a funny guy.
Here is “Conscientious Objector” —
Here is “Don’t You Know” —