Didn’t Want to Have to Do It


page originally published on 19 November 2012; latest edit: 6 December 2022



1966 Daydream-Lovin' Spoonful-Kama Sutra KLPS-8051 (1a)Lovin' Spoonful 1

Didn’t Want to Have to Do It (John Sebastian)

Lovin’ Spoonful with vocal by Cass Elliot — recorded during the Lovin’ Spoonful’s Daydream sessions, in 1965

From a comment by “iris music group,” dated Mon May 30, 2011, in a thread titled “Didn’t Want to Have to Do It – 1964-65,” at the Cass Elliot Community Forum:

Cass Elliot 1The two versions of Cass Elliot singing “Didn’t Want to Have to Do It” is an important historical story itself. In 1964 Alan Lorber developed a group called the Mugwumps, which consisted of Cass, Denny Doherty, Cass’s first husband Jim Hendricks and Zal Yanovsky, and recorded them for Warner Bros Records. The recording is historical because before they became Mamas & Papas and The Lovin’ Spoonful, they were the Mugwumps. The album was not released until 1967 after both successive groups hit [sic]. After cutting the album the Mugwumps broke up (it’s all told in “Creeque Alley”). Lorber then developed the Lovin’ Spoonful. During the “Do You Believe in Magic” session, John Sebastian asked if Cass who was leaving for L.A. could cut a recording of a new song he had written. The result is here in two versions, one with harmony, and the other without, both with Sebastian on guitar with guitar solos by him and Zal Yanofsky.

(below) presumably the “with harmony” version referred to above


1966 Did You Ever Have to Make Up Your Mind- Lovin' Spoonful-Kama Sutra KA 209 (d58)

The Lovin’ Spoonful — recorded in 1965, and released as track 2, side two of the Lovin’ Spoonful LP Daydream, Kama Sutra ‎KLPS-8051, KLPS8051 (stereo), in March 1966

In April 1966, it was also issued as the B-side of “Did You Ever Have to Make Up Your Mind” (Sebastian), on the 45rpm single Kama Sutra KA 209 (also issued with the sides reversed, according to the single cover images provided by Discogs)


Demo version, previously unreleased, from the 2002 re-release of the LP Daydream, Sundazed Music ‎LP 5160 (180 gram), which includes four bonus tracks


Julie Driscoll — issued, as “I Didn’t Want to Have to Do It,” on 6 May 1966 on the single Parlophone (UK) R 5444, b/w “Don’t Do It No More”


The Duprees — issued 6 September 1966 on the single Columbia 4-43802, b/w “It’s Not Time Now” (John Sebastian, Zal Yanovsky)


Jackie and Roy — from their 1966 album Changes, Verve Records ‎V6-8668


The Rovin’ Kind — issued in May 1967 on the single Dunwich D-154, as the B-side of “She”* (Tommy Boyce, Bobby Hart)


“She” (Boyce, Hart) — A-side of Dunwich D-154


Rotary Connection poster 1-d50

Rotary Connection — from their self-titled debut album, released in October 1967


Madeline Bell — released, under the title “I Didn’t Want to Have to Do It,” on the 1967 album Bell’s A Poppin’, (UK) Philips ‎SBL.7818


The Hangmen — previously released on the B-side of the 1967 compilation LP Battle of the Bands, Vol. I, Ren-Vell Records ‎LP-317, featuring recordings by various bands


Peggy Lee – recorded on 18 March 1968 at Sound Recorders in Hollywood, CA; issued in May 1968 as the B-side of “Reason to Believe” on the 45rpm single Capitol 2171



1968-2 Shows Nightly (LP)-Peggy Lee-Capitol Records ST 105

Peggy Lee — from the 1968 live album 2 Shows Nightly, Capitol Records ‎ST 105; all tracks recorded during 22-24 April 1968 shows at the Copacabana in NYC

From the “Notes” on the album at The Peggy Lee Bio-Discography (peggyleediscography.com)

The first edition of Peggy Lee’s autobiography includes a list of her singles and albums, compiled by Wayne Rankin. On the subject matter of Two Shows Nightly, Rankin indicates that it was recorded “live at the Copacabana, 1967.” He further adds the following comment: “LP release was withdrawn by Miss Lee immediately after initial pressings, as the artist felt that sound reproduction was inconsistent with her usual high standards. Fewer than ten copies have been traced as in existence in private collections in the USA.” Rankin gives valuable information in that quote and elsewhere, but it must be clarified that the recording date he assigned to Two Shows Nightly is erroneous. It should be 1968 instead of 1967. [read more]


Roger Nichols & the Small Circle of Friends — from the 1968 self-titled album A&M Records ‎SP 4139, SP-4139


Jackie DeShannon-5

Jackie DeShannon — included on the 1968 LP Me About You, (US) Imperial ‎LP-12386, released in March 1968, and on the 1968 UK versions of the album, Liberty LBL 83148E (Mono) and Liberty LBS 83148 (Stereo) — The same recording was evidently also chosen as the A-side of the cancelled July 1968 single Imperial 66312, b/w “Splendor in the Grass,” released in 2012 on the CD compilation Keep Me in Mind: The Complete Imperial and Liberty Singles, Volume 3, (UK) Ace CDCHD 1350.

selected Jackie DeShannon discographies:

from the 1968 album Me About You, Imperial ‎LP-12386


* “She” (Boyce, Hart) had been originally recorded by the Monkees. It was featured in Episode 11 (airdate: 21 November 1966) of the first season of their TV show, and appeared as the opening track on side A of their second album, More of the Monkees, released on 9 January 1967. It was also issued on 27 March 1967 on the “I’m A Believer” EP Colgems CGLP-102, as the last of six tracks.


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