Psychedelic Lunch

Welcome to our “Psychedelic Lunch” series where we find out how deep the rabbit hole really goes and explore psychedelic tunes from the 60’s to today. Weekdays At Noon EST. Enjoy the trip!

The Yardbirds, Over Under Sideways Down. Album: Over Under Sideways Down (1966)

“Over Under Sideways Down’ was about the situation of having a good time – a bit of decadence, really – in the ’60s. Cars and girls are easy to come by in this day and age, and laughing, drinking, smoking, whatever, till I’ve spent my wages, having fun.”

The Yardbirds, who were one of the most famous British bands of the ’60s and employed at various times Jeff Beck (who played on this), Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton, certainly did enjoy some rock and roll hedonism, but as McCarty explains, it wasn’t all fun. He told us: “It’s very much up and down. Yeah, it was very much like a microcosm of a life, really. Very extreme, because we’d go from being on top of the charts and going to fantastic places and traveling to places like California that were just our dream after being in a sort of post-war London, which was rather dismal and rather miserable. Suddenly we were going to sunny California where things were happening and things were rich and there were lovely girls and cars and everything. From that to sitting all night in a bus driving to a gig and not being able to stop and feeling absolutely wretched from being so tired. And getting on each other’s nerves and arguing. (laughing) So it’s very much the extreme life.”

Three of The Yardbirds hits were written by Graham Gouldman “For Your Love,” “Evil Hearted You” and “Heart Full of Soul”), but most of their songs were group compositions, including this one. McCarty told Songfacts: “On ‘Over Under Sideways Down’ I think we all put in our bit. I put in a tune, somebody else said, ‘How about the state of things at the moment, it’s all over the place, so it’s sort of over, under, Sideways, down.'”

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