It is taking longer than expected to fetch the next song to play. The music should be playing soon. If you get tired of waiting, you can try reloading your browser.


Please check our Help page for information about troubleshooting Pandora on your browser.

Please ensure you are using the latest Flash Player.


If you are unable or do not wish to upgrade your Flash Player,
please try a different browser.


Please check our Help page for information about troubleshooting Pandora on your browser.
Your Pandora One subscription will expire shortly.
More Info
No Thanks
Your Pandora One trial will expire shortly.
Restore
Close
close
Your Pandora One trial subscription will expire shortly. Upgrade to continue unlimited, ad-free listening.
Upgrade Now
You've listened to hours of Pandora this month. Consider upgrading to Pandora One.
More Info
No Thanks
Close
Hi . Pandora is using Facebook to personalize your experience. Learn MoreNo Thanks
 Upgrade  sign up   |   help   |  
-0:00
0:00
Change Skin

Free personalized radio that
plays the music you love

Now Playing
Music Feed
My Profile
Create a Station
People who also like this

Shel Silverstein

Shel Silverstein was one of those rare "multi-threat" artists -- composer, singer, cartoonist, illustrator, author -- with popular successes in all of those areas. Born in Chicago in 1930, Sheldon Alan Silverstein first attracted notice during his army service, in Japan and Korea, when he became a cartoonist for the U.S. Army publication Stars & Stripes. After returning to civilian life, he made a part of his living selling hot dogs at Chicago's two ballparks, and, according to a 1961 publisher's biography, set a record for the number of hot dogs sold at Thursday night games. He also began drawing cartoons for magazines such as Look, Sports Illustrated, and This Week, but it was when he joined Playboy magazine in mid-'50s that his name started getting known nationally. The magazine was then on the cutting edge of popular culture, and Silverstein's cartoons, which appeared in every issue from 1957 through the mid-'70s, with their satirical and provocative content, were some of the sharpest work in there.

During the late '50s, Silverstein also began exploring other areas of creativity, including writing and music. He recorded an LP, Hairy Jazz, for Elektra Records, which featured two original songs as well as his interpretations, as a singer, of a brace of jazz standards. It was the first of a dozen albums that Silverstein would cut in the course of an active career of more than two decades in music, cutting across all genres -- his next album, Inside Folk Songs, was a sharply comedic look at the early-'60s folk music boom and all of its attendant absurdities, which included the original version of "The Unicorn Song," and he followed that up with a trio of LPs for Chess Records' progressive label, Cadet Records. During this period, apart from his work as a magazine illustrator, Silverstein was busy as an author -- his cartoons appeared in book form, including Now Here's My Plan (Simon & Schuster) and Grab Your Socks (Ballantine), and he wrote a successful children's book, The Lion Book. Additionally, he appeared regularly on radio as a musician and actor on The Jean Shephard Show, and as a regular with Roger Price on television. He also performed, as a singer and banjo player, as part of Papa Bue's Danish Viking New Orleans Jazz Band and as a solo act.

Amid his literary successes, which included Uncle Shelby ABZ Book, Uncle Shelby's Zoo, and Giraffe and a Half, all of which were aimed at children, Silverstein also established himself as a songwriter. A pair of his compositions, "The First Battalion" and "You're Wasting Your Time Trying to Make Me Settle Down," were recorded by Bob Gibson and Hamilton Camp, during the early '60s, but "The Unicorn Song," from his own Inside Folk Songs album, quickly achieved a life of its own when the Irish Rovers turned it into a huge international hit. The Brothers Four also found success recording Silverstein's "25 Minutes to Go," but it was in 1967, when Johnny Cash enjoyed massive success with his version of Silverstein's "A Boy Named Sue," that he achieved stardom as a songwriter. RCA Records subsequently issued an album of Silverstein's music using that song as the title track. Silverstein's most important album from this period, however, and his most successful was Freakin' at the Freakers Ball, released in 1973, in which he turned his jaundiced, satirical eyes toward the counterculture, hippies, and radicals of all stripes. A year before that, however, he saw a new round of success begin as a songwriter with "Sylvia's Mother," an over-the-top romantic lament that reached number five on the charts and turned its artists, Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show, into stars; the group, who played on Freakin' at the Freaker's Ball, subsequently hit even bigger with the satiric "The Cover of the Rolling Stone," also written by Silverstein, and the group was the major vehicle for Silverstein's music for the rest of the 1970s. His song "Don't Give a Dose to the One You Love Most," from Freakin' at the Freakers Ball, was later adopted as a theme in different anti-venereal disease campaigns.

Even as he was celebrated in sophisticated musical circles for his satirical and adult-oriented songs, however, Silverstein was a best-selling author of children's books, including Falling Up (1996), The Missing Piece (1982), Where the Sidewalk Ends (1981), A Light in the Attic (1981), and most enduring of all, The Giving Tree (1964), which has remained in print almost continuously for close to 40 years. He also wrote a play, Wild Life, that had its off-Broadway debut in 1983 to rave reviews, and he earned an Oscar nomination as a songwriter for "I'm Checking Out," which he wrote for the 1990 Mike Nichols film Postcards from the Edge. His songs were also used in such movies as Ned Kelly, Coal Miner's Daughter, Hearts of Fire, and Things Change. The world lost a unique and talented artist when Silverstein died of a heart attack at his home in Key West in May 1999. ~ Bruce Eder
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Creative Outlaws - US Underground 1962-1970

1. Star Spangled Banner

7. Turn On

8. Kick Out The Jams

9. The Garden Is Open

11. Summertime Blues

12. Have Another Expresso

13. Uncle John

14. Suppose They Give A War And No One Comes

15. Cocaine Blues

16. Keep Your Mind Open

17. Somebody To Love

18. Hey Joe

21. Mississippi Goddam

22. 1969

x

Track List: Dr. Demento 20th Anniversary Collection

Disc 1

1. Delicious!

2. The Scotsman

3. Junk Food Junkie

4. Eat It

5. Does Your Chewing Gum Lose Its Flavour (On The Bedpost Overnight)

7. Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah! (A Letter From Camp)

9. The Purple People Eater

10. Monster Mash

11. Cocktails For Two

12. Transfusion

13. Beep Beep

14. St. George And The Dragonet

16. Gitarzan

17. Earache My Eye

Disc 2

1. Dancin' Fool

2. Star Trekkin'

4. Masochism Tango

5. The Homecoming Queen's Got A Gun

7. The Battle Of Kookamonga

9. Der Fuehrer's Face

10. Fish Heads

11. Poisoning Pigeons In The Park

12. Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take The Garbage Out

14. Surfin' Bird

x

Track List: The Best of Shel Silverstein: His Words, His Songs, His Friends

1. A Light in The Attic

3. Freakin' At The Freakers' Ball

4. Monsters I've Met

5. The Unicorn

6. The Dragon Of Grindly Grun

9. Sylvia's Mother

10. The Taker

11. Homework Machine

12. Ickle Me, Pickle Me, Tickle Me Too

13. Crowded Tub

14. Rock 'N' Roll Band

15. Cover Of The Rolling Stone

16. Daddy What If

17. Zebra Question

18. Plastic

20. Peanut-Butter Sandwich

21. Queen Of The Silver Dollar

22. The Generals

24. A Boy Named Sue (Live)

25. Boa Constrictor

Comments

Report as inappropriate
love shel starting when young one of my absolute favorites :)
Report as inappropriate
Shel, what if I stopped loving you?
Report as inappropriate
barbara.roch e
I have an autographed copy of Uncle Shelby's ABZs. It was my pleasure to meet him at a John Hartford show at NYC's Bottom Line! What a treat to see them on stage together!
Report as inappropriate
He showed us all how to turn the light in our attics. He was a genius. He made a huge impact on me. Wish I could have told him in person.
Report as inappropriate
jeanfarrel
He was my friend and I miss him. So brilliant.
Report as inappropriate
Mind was endless ...left us way too soon
Report as inappropriate
I got stoned stoned and I missed it.
Report as inappropriate
I know where the sidewalk ends!

Don't have a Pandora account? Sign up

We're sorry, but a browser plugin or firewall may be preventing Pandora from loading.

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please upgrade to a more current browser.

Please check our Help page for more information.

It looks like your browser does not support modern SSL/TLS. Please upgrade your browser.

If you need help, please email: pandora-support@pandora.com.

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please upgrade to a more current browser
or install a newer version of Flash (v.10 or later).

In order to use Pandora internet radio, please install Adobe Flash (v.10 or later).

[124, 73, 107, 81, 111, 116, 111, 107, 90, 75, 120, 71, 72, 108, 122, 95, 88, 71, 119, 116, 72, 71, 103, 95, 111, 107, 82, 96, 70, 82, 83, 66, 93, 106, 95, 77, 114, 109, 72, 74, 125, 111, 84, 67, 78, 82, 71, 108, 101, 99, 125, 87, 80, 83, 81, 74, 76, 98, 85, 118, 119, 95, 106, 74, 80, 108, 76, 78, 112, 118, 80, 127, 72, 99, 77, 73, 91, 92, 75, 73, 93, 98, 125, 113, 68, 127, 102, 113, 104, 115, 105, 91, 91, 124, 127, 75, 117, 123, 104, 110, 104, 65, 74, 115, 67, 108, 118, 79, 73, 89, 75, 76, 116, 86, 77, 108, 99, 113, 97, 71, 89, 123, 112, 71, 64, 89, 70, 95, 119, 81, 66, 98, 125, 97, 81, 100, 115, 111, 84, 112, 115, 69, 116, 77, 83, 111, 112, 120, 88, 125, 64, 114, 108, 82, 103, 100, 73, 69, 127, 81, 103, 102, 78, 73, 94, 121, 93, 67, 64, 83, 87, 113, 68, 68, 123, 114, 80, 70, 98, 99, 89, 68, 107, 75, 67, 72, 98, 67, 86, 89, 119, 118, 68, 96, 90, 69, 75, 87, 78, 97, 122, 105, 116, 94, 84, 73, 100, 103, 125, 71, 93, 69, 77, 82, 64, 72, 105, 65, 92, 113, 67, 105, 125, 127, 101, 113, 80, 76, 112, 90, 73, 86, 92, 65, 94, 102, 126, 84, 76, 75, 73, 126, 64, 115, 123, 82, 118, 98, 111, 84, 85, 82, 117, 83, 105, 76, 81, 113, 95, 66, 101, 125, 88, 114, 111, 82, 101, 66, 65, 91, 88, 116, 124, 81, 97, 80, 69, 126, 92, 99, 124, 126, 69, 107, 67, 81, 91, 114, 116, 102, 112, 76, 124, 113, 107, 114, 108, 80, 118, 95, 95, 83, 107, 126, 80, 90, 71, 98, 114, 104, 67, 123, 105, 96, 92, 110, 104, 113, 82, 75, 74, 81, 123, 101, 123, 100, 81, 120, 125, 76, 114, 96, 67, 90, 66, 100, 80, 106, 83, 127, 123, 64, 108, 113, 80, 80, 92, 116, 81, 76, 115, 115, 95, 94, 115, 119, 95, 70, 74, 69, 126, 69, 123, 80, 103, 64, 81, 102, 102, 122, 71, 65, 113, 113, 112, 99, 100, 108, 115, 123, 118, 96, 100, 78, 75, 96, 82, 111, 72, 72, 99, 126, 94, 72, 72, 116, 69, 126, 75, 64, 104, 107, 66, 92, 92, 119, 109, 99, 68, 83, 125, 77, 80, 107, 102, 127, 127, 108, 112, 85, 123, 91, 101, 108, 124, 126, 115, 83, 123, 64, 105, 95, 83, 79, 94, 109, 122, 89, 100, 86, 77, 78, 68, 114, 86, 106, 123, 107, 79, 127, 67, 99, 65, 91, 67, 74, 102, 67, 84, 85, 69, 92, 92, 123, 70, 114, 124, 108, 113, 80, 96, 68, 107, 97, 92, 68, 93, 91, 66, 97, 78, 75, 106, 90, 89, 70, 104, 79, 88, 119, 80, 93, 111, 103, 67, 97, 109, 109, 112, 100, 102, 79, 79, 90, 110, 91, 74, 86, 121, 94, 110, 89]