“Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)” by Edison Lighthouse
The shtick of “Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)” is that the lady whom the vocalist is in love with, the titular Rosemary, is depicted as a very awkward girl. She is someone who, even under the vocalist’s own estimation, dresses “funny”, has unkept hair and “talks kinda lazy”.
She is also a mysterious figure. Furthermore, other people in the ‘hood seem to be under the impression that Rosemary is mentally challenged. Moreover, “she ain’t got no money”. So all of the above is a roundabout way of saying that conventionally speaking, she is not an ideal romantic partner.
However, as stated, the narrator has fallen in love with her nonetheless. And as explained, he is most notably smitten with the physical rapport the two of them share. Or put otherwise, love, in the eyes of many, is ultimately an inexplicable emotion.
And such is the case herein, that the best way the singer can describe his impression of Rosemary is as possessing “a magical spell” that ‘works so well’ on him. But in any event he is happy to have her. Furthermore, he intends to hold on to her forevermore, with the title pointing to the idea that his feelings for her are even growing as we speak.
So conclusively this is very much a true love song. It is one in which the vocalist is asserting, in a roundabout way, that he has no intentions of forsaking his sweetheart despite others not approving of their union.
Edison Lighthouse was a band from London that was extant for about a decade, beginning in 1969. They were fronted by Tony Burrows, who himself was a musical journeyman, concurrently being involved in at least two other groups at the time.
Facts about “Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)”
And throughout their existence Edison Lighthouse only managed to drop one true hit. The said hit is none other than “Love Grows (Where my Rosemary Goes)”.
Bell Records released this track during January of 1970 as part of the group’s first album, “Already”.
This song was a monumental success, topping the UK Singles chart for nearly five weeks. It also achieved number 1 status in Ireland and New Zealand and reached fifth place on the Billboard Hot 100, on top of being certified gold by the RIAA. Additionally it managed to chart in Sweden in early 2022. This was after it experienced a revival on TikTok.
The authors of this piece, Barry Mason (1935-2021) and Tony Macaulay, are both accomplished songwriters. Neither of them were members of Edison Lighthouse. And as the story goes, said band, who were originally called Greenfield Hammer, was actually assembled after this song had already become a hit, as sung by Tony Burrows backed by session musicians. In other words, they needed an actual group to appear on stage with Burrows when he performed Love Grows.
It has also been convincingly put forth that Sylvan Mason, whom Mason was married to at the time, contributed to the composition “Love Grows”. That said, he was never officially credited for such.
Amongst the artists who have thus far covered this song, at the top of the list in terms of notoriety would be Anni-Frid Lyngstad of ABBA fame. She did so in 1970.
“Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes)” has also been notably utilized in pop media. For example, it appeared in the 2001 Gwyneth Paltrow film Shallow Hal. It was also featured in a 2004 episode of The Sopranos.