Thursday, January 22, 2009

Slapp Happy - "Blue Flower" (the song remains the same)

This installment of "the song remains the same" is based on a suggestion from Danette. The focus is on the song "Blue Flower" which first appeared on the 1972 LP "Sort Of" from Slapp Happy. Haven't heard of them? Well, don't feel bad because nobody else has heard of them either. In fact, although this entry is about Slapp Happy's song, I've never actually heard the original. I can't find any trace of the song online and I'm unwilling to spend the money to purchase the LP. has some of their material online and you can get an idea of what it might sound like, but they don't have "Blue Flower". (edit: via crescentius, there is a version on

However, most people probably have heard the Mazzy Star version from their 1990 debut LP "She Hangs Brightly". Despite being best well-known for their lazy "dream pop", Mazzy Star gives a jangly, straight ahead version that is probably close to the original. There is a good live version on YouTube as well as the studio version.

In 1992, Pale Saints also covered the song on their "Throwing Back the Apple" EP (and at least one version of the "In Ribbons" LP released on Warner Brothers). The Pale Saints cover the song in the typical early 90s style of fellow 4AD artists: lush and epic -- very much in the shoegazing style. The studio version can be found on YouTube (a 1991 live version is also available).

A great song regardless of arrangement.


  1. i'm glad to find your post about blue flower. Amazing song, i've tried to find the original with no sucess. i play in a rock band and one day i started to play and sing the song because the drummer was sad and i knew he likes that song, and it was like magic. now they make me sing it every time we're together but we don't get tired of it, it's so easy to play and creates a dream atmosphere. as you say great song.

  2. You can hear the Slapp Happy version on