15
Nov 04

FRANK IFIELD – “The Wayward Wind”

Popular3 comments • 1,626 views

#147, 23rd February 1963

The wayward wind was no longer all blowing in Frank Ifield’s direction. The harmonica splashed all over this track is surely a response to the Beatles’ liberal use of same on October’s “Love Me Do”. On both songs the instrument stands for freedom – romantic in the Beatles’ case, metaphysical in this ode to wanderlust. Unfortunately Ifield sings the song like a suspiciously butch scoutmaster – you half-expect a percussion track of slapped thighs, and when his voice breaks into a yodel the effect is rather unfortunate. That’s not to say “The Wayward Wind” isn’t good. In fact it’s a very funny record: Ifield’s hearty bellow, the yodelling, the hostage-to-fortune title and the stirring music make for a preposterous package. Campy fun now, but this is where Ifield (ahem) blew it.

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Comments

  1. 1
    AJ on 14 Jan 2006 #

    The use of harmonica on this track is not a response to the Beatles. “Love Me Do” only made number 17 so why would a chart-topper like Ifield even bother responding to it? I don’t think he, or the other balladeers of the period, even considered the Beatles as a threat at that point.
    The use of harmonica in “Love Me Do” came from Frank Ifield’s “I Remember You”. Of course both were following Bruce Channel’s “Hey Baby”.
    But the point is- the Beatles were influenced by Frank Ifield, not the other way round.

  2. 2
    Paulito on 21 Jan 2012 #

    In fairness to Frankie (and his arranger), I imagine that the harmonica in this recording is inspired less by “Love Me Do” than by Frank’s own “I Remember You”, which preceded the Fabs’ first. The origin of the ’62/’63 harmonica mini-craze lay, of course, in Bruce Channel’s “Hey Baby”.

  3. 3
    lonepilgrim on 23 Jan 2015 #

    Do you suffer from Wayward Wind? Tom’s comments deserve a wider audience as he puts his finger on the underlying absurdity of this song which Frank’s performance only inflates to even more hilarious proportions. When the lyrics that speak of ‘the sound of the outward bound’ and leave us waiting for a rhyme for ‘part’ one begins to suspect that the writers may have known what they were doing all along.

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If this was number 1 when you were born paste [stork-boy] or [stork-girl] into the start of your comment :)

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