Boomers Listened Eight Days A Week

When we take a look back at music of the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s, various themes crop up, like love found and love lost. Along with these themes, there are repeated conveyances used to illustrate and push the point forward. For example, crying comes up often enough. Another is days of the week. In fact, there have been numerous songs throughout the boomer years that cite a day of the week, either as a conveyance or as a theme.

Here are a few select songs that Mister Boomer recalls, many of which became hits:

Sunday and Me by Jay and the Americans (1965)

Sunday Morning by the Velvet Underground (1967)
Pleasant Valley Sunday by The Monkees (1967)

Blue Monday by Fats Domino (1957)

Monday, Monday by the Mamas & the Papas (1966)
Rainy Days and Mondays by the Carpenters (1971)

Tuesday Afternoon by the Moody Blues (1967)
Ruby Tuesday by the Rolling Stones (1967)
Tuesday’s Dead by Cat Stevens (1971)

Wednesday Morning, 3 a.m. by Simon & Garfunkel (1964)
Any Wednesday by The Royal Guardsmen (1967)

Sweet Thursday by Johnny Mathis (1962)

Jersey Thursday by Donovan (1965)
Thursday by Country Joe and the Fish (1967)
Thursday by Jim Croce (1970)

Friday on My Mind by the Easybeats (1966)
Friday’s Child by Nancy Sinatra (1966)

Saturday Night at the Movies by The Drifters (1964)

Saturday In the Park by Chicago (1972)
Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting by Elton John (1973)

Mister Boomer remembers hearing most of these on his transistor — or later, car radio. Whether it was his own radio or others playing in the neighborhood, there was one tuned in, every day of the week. If he had to pick one or two or three favorites, he would go with Friday On My Mind, Monday, Monday and Tuesday Afternoon, in no particular order. He has 45 RPMs of several in this selection, and others on albums, too … and the days go by …

Did you have a favorite day-of-the-week song, boomers?

Boomers Were Ready To Fly

Like television, air travel had been around a couple of decades before the Boomer Generation, but it took until then to be practical for the everyday family. Commercial air travel began in the 1920s, but it was almost exclusively a resource for the wealthy. After the war, two things changed the equation: the availability of surplus aircraft from the war launched dozens of regional airlines, plus the introduction of commercial jet travel. Domestic and international airlines competed with each other and a modern industry was born.

Just two short years after the beginning of the Boomer Generation, in 1948, the first coach fares were introduced. Taking its cue from the railroad industry, airline coach fares offered a more economical ticket price to a destination. Nonetheless, by the mid-50s, the National Air and Space Museum states the number of passengers that flew by air per year hovered around 100,000 … worldwide! At this time, Dwight Eisenhower was president, but the national freeway system was not yet built, so the major mode of transportation for long distances was by train.

In 1959, the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) was formed to address a series of airline accidents over the preceding decade, in order to make flying a safer endeavor for passengers. This FAA became the Federal Aviation Administration in 1967, when the Department of Transportation was created by an act of Congress the previous year.

At the beginning of the 1960s, air travel infrastructure became more advanced, with air traffic control towers and radar becoming commonplace. Along with the technology came the modern airport. By the 1970s, the number of passengers that flew in airplanes tripled to more than 300,000. Today, more than 4 billion passengers travel by air each year.

View this video on YouTube:

It is always fascinating to Mister B that so many technological and social advancements happened in the early days of our youth. In a completely unscientific, anecdotal survey done within his circle of boomer friends and family, Mister B can report that middle class families known to him tended to take their first flights somewhere in the 1970s. Mister Boomer knows one person, an early-year boomer, whose first flight was in the late 60s; he was flying to attend a university in another state. Meanwhile, a boomer born at the end of the generation in 1964 relayed that he flew with his family on a vacation in the mid-1970s. The first-flight age difference between the early-year boomer and later-year boomer is striking; one was college-aged, in his late teens, and the other under ten years old.

In the early 1960s, the national highway system had been built, and commercials invited people to “… see the USA in your Chevrolet.” That was the case for Mister Boomer’s family (except it was in a Ford). For the decade of the 1960s, his family drove on vacation, ultimately criss-crossing the country to destinations from coast to coast, a week or two each summer.

Mister Boomer’s first flight occurred courtesy of a high school senior class trip. He knew of no one in his class who had been on an airplane before that flight. His parents didn’t take their first flight until years later, to see their first grandchild, born to Brother Boomer, who was living in another state. As far as Mister B knows, both his paternal and maternal grandparents never flew in an airplane. There is your generational difference.

How about you, boomers? When did you take your first airplane flight?