I’m a retired federal narcotics agent and in 1966 or so I was assigned to investigate a young man who was a backing player with the M&Ps. I don’t want to intrude upon his privacy so I won’t give you the name.
He sold me a lot of LSD and I got to know him and his girlfriend and other friends quite well. Eventually, however, we had to bust him. I remember taking him to court on a Saturday morning and the magistrate on duty was an elderly gent who was hard of hearing. When the young man’s case was called, as is customary, the magistrate asked him some questions, including his ability and wherewithal to hire an attorney. The magistrate at one point asked him if he was working and the young man replied “yes.” The magistrate then asked him who he worked for and the young man replied, “the Mommas and Pappas.” At the time, the group had the number one song in America but I’m sure the magistrate was unaware of this or the name of the group. The magistrate shot back, “Speak up, young man, what did you say? You work for your mother and father? What do you do?” The courtroom cracked up and even the bailiffs were laughing.
Back in the 1960s, the laws on drugs like LSD were misdemeanors and being that it was his first offence, he was placed on probation. Despite his hippie-like existence he was a very likable fellow and I think this helped his situation a lot. We remained friends in a strange way even though I busted him.
About six months later, he sent me an invitation to his wedding but I didn’t attend. We had one conversation after this and it was when he called me to say that there was a line in Creeque Alley that was a reference to me and it was, “Broke, Busted, Disgusted, Agents can’t be trusted….” We laughed about it.
It was a different world back then and things like this could happen. I was pleased that this individual had apparently straightened out his life and settled down, as best he could, given the business he was in.
I’ve never told this story to anyone but my family and closest friends but since you’ve done this great analysis of the song, I thought you should know about it. I suppose most people who hear it may think it refers to someone’s theatrical agent but now you know the rest of the story.