Whiter Shade of Pale

Is anybody familiar with this Procul Harum song? I know the lyrics but have never been able to understand the meaning. Please help this old man.

Try here for a discussion with the band about the song.

And try Cafe Society for a group of posters more focussed on matters artistic.

When did tomndebb get a Mod hat? I tell ya, I need to start paying closer attention…

So anyway, speaking of WSOP (huh, nope, that abbreviation is World Series of Poker), so speaking of Whiter Shade of Pale, what’s up with that video? The one I assume made decades after the song appeared, with Harry Dean Stanton dealing solitaire and some womn who looks like Beverly D’Angelo yet is not Beverly D’Angelo?

Serious confession here. When I was a teenager, the first rock band I ever saw in concert was Procol Harum. I snuck out of the house to see them. I doubt now if I had asked my mother would have cared, but I was a kid then. :slight_smile: My mother to this day doesn’t know I did this. And she doesn’t know as I post this I am listening to a MP3 of that song.

[thread=293536]Christmas Eve[/thread].

It is a series of images. They’re meant to be evocative, not literal.

The band was in a promotional “video” of the song shot when it was a hit for the short-lived French video jukebox known as a Scopitone. I’ve seen it at a local rare film series called Secret Cinema; very trippy, PH wearing Sgt. Pepper-type outfits, lip synching in a typical pscych-era English garden, looking very stoned. Not helpful in deciphering the song, but cool.

I understand some of the Scopitone music videos are posted on the web & possibly available on DVD; I suggest a Google search.

AFAIK the band did not appear in this version. I don’t remember anyone in Sgt Pepper type clothing but it’s been a while. There was HDS seeming like a business mogul of some sort, and the B D’A-looking woman as I assume his wife. There were several images of people playing solitaire and the final image was HDS being driven off in a chauffered limo and playing solitaire in the back seat.

I’ve seen it twice; they do. In fact, the video features nothing else. No story, no characters, no other people aside from the band. Staring forward in Pepper-duds, lip synching, most of the band staring forward, a few cuts to different angles. That’s it.

Aha, here it is!

No, you and Otto are talking about two completely different videos. The Harry Dean Stanton interpretation dates from the late '80s (according to imdb); the promo clip featuring the band is some 20 years older.

My apologies if this is the case, but Otto’s comment on mine quoted my reference to the Scopitone film, which was long gone by the '80s.

… ah, and I see my original comment quoted his. For clarification: I have never seen the Stanton video and have nothing to add about it; I was just commenting that, in general, there was a video shot of the song back in '67 or possibly '68.
Any of my comments referencing “the video” are about that earlier one.