If you grew up in the Bugs Bunny era, chances are that you’re always going to love Bugs Bunny cartoons. I suppose the same is true for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles era (the poor bastards) and Pokémon. Stuff that we loved when we were young usually sticks with us for life.
In 1970, I was eleven years old, and like most kids, I watched a lot of television, but I also listened to a lot of music. At some point, I heard a new song called “Me and My Arrow” and it had a jaunty positivity to it that made me feel good, so I bought it. I loved that song as well as its B-side, “Are You Sleeping”. Around that same time, I heard that a cartoon movie was being made that utilized the songs, and I was excited to learn that the movie, titled “The Point”, was going to be on network TV.
I bought the album with some hard-earned cash, and learned to love the album even more than the single. I still own it to this day, and play it frequently. The album came with a cool comic book that accompanied the album’s storyline, so when I laid down in front of our TV to watch the movie, I knew what to expect and I was not disappointed. Notwithstanding the seemingly infinite number of double entendres the storyline provided (a literal point vs. a sense or purpose), I loved the movie as much as I already loved the record. I still watch it whenever I get the chance, but it’s the album that really sticks with me.
Nilsson’s writing is playful and yet deadly serious, providing a wealth of ideas about the ways we all find meaning for our own existence. It still holds up as a wondrously beautiful piece of existentialism, upholding individuality, moralism and decency as ideals to strive for. On its surface, it may seem like a child’s tale, but the story’s message applies much more to adults who still need to learn the primary lessons of life presented in Harry Nilsson’s “The Point.” With this show, we’ll play the entire album, including Nilsson’s dialog.
Featured tracks are:
Everything’s Got ‘Em
Me and My Arrow
Think About Your Troubles
Are You Sleeping
December 1970 - Billboard Charted #25
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