Turn, Turn, Turn (The Byrds)

4 JANUARY 1966

The Byrd’s ‘Turn, Turn, Turn’ was still in the UK Top 50 charts. It had peaked at a surprisingly low #26 there, and had been #1 on the US Billboard charts.

This song was written by the great Pete Seeger in the late 1950s. The lyrics, except for the title, and the final verse of the song, are adapted word-for-word from Chapter 3 of the Book of Ecclesiastes in the Old Testament. It holds a record as being the US #1 hit with the oldest lyrics, theoretically being authored by King Solomon himself.

The ‘Turn, Turn, Turn’ album was their second album after ‘Mr Tambourine Man’ and their last 'straight' folk-rock album in that style. After this time the band personnel changed with vocalist and chief songwriter Gene Clark leaving, and the band exploring new sounds, most notably psychedelia and country-rock. They did turn out some excellent songs later, but 1965-'66 was their commercial peak and the time when they made some of the most gorgeous folk-rock jangle music of the 1960s. And they looked great, too.

Released: October 1, 1965
Highest chart position: #26 (UK), #1 (US)
Recorded: September 1, 10, 14–16, 1965, Columbia Studios, Hollywood, California
Length: 3:49
Label: Columbia
Writer: Pete Seeger (words from the Book of Ecclesiastes)
Producer: Terry Melcher

Turn, Turn, Turn (The Byrds)