About the song

Ah, Yesterday Once More by the Carpenters. A veritable cornerstone of 1970s soft rock, this 1973 hit isn’t just a catchy tune – it’s a poignant reflection on the power of music to evoke nostalgia.

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Now, the Carpenters themselves need little introduction. This brother-sister duo, Richard on piano and Karen on drums and vocals, carved a unique niche in the often-raucous world of 70s rock. Their sound was characterized by Karen’s impeccably sweet vocals, Richard’s lush arrangements, and a focus on melody that resonated with a generation yearning for something comforting amidst the social and musical upheaval of the times.

Yesterday Once More perfectly encapsulates this signature Carpenters style. Released on their album Now & Then, the song takes the listener on a journey through memory lane, sparked by the simple act of listening to the radio. The opening lines paint a vivid picture: “When I was young I’d listen to the radio / Waitin’ for my favorite songs / Waiting they played I’d sing along / It made me smile.” We can almost feel the anticipation of a young music fan, eagerly awaiting that perfect song to transport them.

The lyrics then take a beautiful turn. As the familiar melodies return, they’re not just songs – they’re “long lost friends.” Every “sha-la-la-la” and “wo-wo-wo” becomes a touchstone, transporting the narrator back to a happier time. The music “melts the years away,” and the past floods back with vivid detail.

Yesterday Once More isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, though. The bittersweet nature of nostalgia creeps in with the line, “It can really make me cry / Just like before / It’s yesterday once more.” The joy of reliving cherished memories is tinged with a touch of sadness for a time gone by. “So much has changed,” the song acknowledges, and the present can feel a little less vibrant in comparison.

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This interplay between happy memories and the inevitable passage of time is what elevates Yesterday Once More beyond a simple pop song. It’s a relatable experience, a tug-of-war between the warmth of the familiar and the bittersweet pang of what can never be recaptured. The song’s enduring popularity is a testament to its ability to tap into that universal human emotion – the desire to revisit the joys of our past, even as we acknowledge that time keeps moving forward.

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Lyrics

“Yesterday Once More”

When I was young
I’d listen to the radio
Waitin’ for my favorite songs
When they played I’d sing along
It made me smile

Those were such happy times
And not so long ago
How I wondered where they’d gone
But they’re back again
Just like a long lost friend
All the songs I loved so well

Every Sha-la-la-la
Every Wo-o-wo-o
Still shines
Every shing-a-ling-a-ling
That they’re startin’ to sing’s
So fine

When they get to the part
Where he’s breakin’ her heart
It can really make me cry
Just like before
It’s yesterday once more

Lookin’ back on how it was
In years gone by
And the good times that I had
Makes today seem rather sad
So much has changed

It was songs of love that
I would sing to then
And I’d memorize each word
Those old melodies
Still sound so good to me
As they melt the years away

Every Sha-la-la-la
Every Wo-o-wo-o
Still shines
Every shing-a-ling-a-ling
That they’re startin’ to sing’s
So fine

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All my best memories
Come back clearly to me
Some can even make me cry
Just like before
It’s yesterday once more

Every Sha-la-la-la
Every Wo-o-wo-o
Still shines
Every shing-a-ling-a-ling
That they’re startin’ to sing’s
So fine

Every Sha-la-la-la
Every Wo-o-wo-o
Still shines
Every shing-a-ling-a-ling
That they’re startin’ to sing’s
So fine