SLS: School

School bus

Thanks go out to Jim Adams, our tuneful host of Song Lyric Sunday. This week I chose “To Sir With Love” for the school prompt. The song was written by Don Black and Mark London, and it was first recorded by Lulu in 1967 as the theme song for the movie with the same name. Lulu also acted in the film, along with members of her band, the Mindbenders. The song was a smash hit, reaching No. 1 on Billboard Hot 100, where it remained for 5 weeks, and became the best-selling single of 1967 in the US. “I’m a Believer” by the Monkees turned out to be a bigger hit overall, as it had come out in December 1966, hit No. 1 also, and was a huge hit overseas, while TSWL was not and didn’t even chart in the UK. Note for the record that “I’m a Believer” was written by Neil Diamond.

The lyrics to TSWL tell the story of a girl who became an adult during her time at a particular school. She credits the headmaster “Sir” with her success, as he helped take her “from crayons to perfume,” and she sounds very emotional at the thought of leaving him. She wonders what she can do, what gift she can give him, to express her gratitude to this man.

The time has come, for closing books and long last looks must end,
And as I leave I know that I am leaving my best friend,
A friend who taught me right from wrong, and weak from strong.
That’s a lot to learn.
What! What can I give you in return?
If you wanted the moon I would try to make a start
But I would rather, you let me give my heart,
To Sir, With Love.

It almost sounds as if she’s fallen in love with the guy, or at least has been nurturing some romantic fantasy/crush, doesn’t it? Speaking from personal experience, it’s not unusual to fantasize about a teacher, male or female. I haven’t seen the film (it’s in my watchlist), so I don’t know one way or the other in this case, but I’ve always liked the song. Hope you enjoy it too!


Image from Happy Color.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

18 responses to “SLS: School

  1. I loved the film, though it’s a bit dated now.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. One of those songs that for me has a tremendous nostalgic pull to it. All the more so, maybe, because I haven’t thought about it at all for decades, probably. It’s difficult to sort out whether the lyrics had anything to do with this or if the music/instrumentation simply appealed to me. I hate to say it, but almost everything the Monkees did has a similar effect. I think I liked the raw British-style electric guitar parts, but that’s another story.

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  3. Love this song and love the movie. I’ve seen it a bunch of times. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sidney Poitier is a great actor and his performance in To Sir With Love saved this film from becoming a disaster. I really enjoyed your post on this song Paula.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Beautiful song and a classic film. Great choice.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I do love this song. Glad it’s on repeat today 😎🎶

    Liked by 1 person

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  8. I haven’t heard this song in ages. Great choice, Paula.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. One of Lulu’s best songs. It really showcases her melodious, husky voice ☺️💕

    Liked by 1 person

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  11. Love that song, and the singer…

    Liked by 1 person