Scott McKenzie very recently passed away. He was ill. At least he didn’t die from a drug overdose. He had such a lovely clear voice. It awakened some of us living during “the summer of love.”
This was the anthem song of the 60’s. It made us all want to leave our safe lives and venture out to San Francisco to become “hippies”.
The dream eventually turned into a nightmare. We were to discover that drugs didn’t really bring peace, love and happiness. When I was recently in San Francisco, there were a few pathetic people hanging around Haight/ Ashbury . Some people got caught up in the drug scene and never left.
One of the writers of the song, John Phillips, of “The Mama and Papa’s got caught up in the drug lifestyle. His autobiography, Papa John, talked about the endless drugs, and his decadent lifestyle. He wrote the book while he was still using drugs.
Mckenzie traveled around in one of the later “Mama and Papa tours.” That tour included MacKenzie Philips who accused Papa John of some unspeakable acts in her autobiography, High on Arrival. It also included Elaine McFarlane from Spanky and Our Gang.
But, for some of us hearing this song, brings back that idealistic hopeful feeling. It seemed like life was really going to change for the better. Sometimes, I think we unleashed a Pandora’s Box of drug use.
But maybe you caught up in the 60’s and escaped without wounds. I’d love to hear your story. If you got caught up in the drug scene, I’d love to hear about that too.
- Scott McKenzie, singer of ‘San Francisco,’ dies (sacbee.com)
- Scott McKenzie, singer of ‘San Francisco,’ dies (miamiherald.com)
- Singer Scott McKenzie dies aged 73 (independent.co.uk)
- Scott McKenzie, ’60s pop singer, dies (sfgate.com)