Scolding the Oldies
I dont mean laughs, farts, belches, sneezes, and hacks; you can get those anywhere. I mean sound as in music.
Why didnt you turn on the radio?
Oh officer, it was terrible, just awful. They wouldnt stop. I heard My Love by Paul McCartney six times in 12 hours. Then I got car sick. I kept thinking, Why doesnt God stop them?. Oh no, not the Beatles again, oh no, the third time for Hang on Sloopy, I I
Certainly, you couldve tried another station
We did, we did, but it wouldnt stop. Not only was the music horrible, but if you hated that, all you had left was blockheaded sports talk, guys who couldnt speak English, and some pile of leaves called Rush Limbaugh. And this went on for three days. TTTHHHREEEE DAAYYYSS!!!!!
Three days in a tightly-packed, no-room-to-move Ford Taurus. Jeff and I tried rock, scissors, paper and other desperate diversionary tactics to kill the cramp time, but invariably our hands would work back to the radios Seek button. Man, weve gone 100 miles, maybe we can pick up some new stations. We did and until we hit Missouri, they all sucked and you can put Sucked in capital letters. (In the Show Me state, we heard an entertaining old guy who played everything from 1920s gut bucket jazz to modern rock. Out of his house yet.)
I mean What is the Deal there.
Who are the radio programmers in northern Arizona and New Mexico? Do they come to Earth with powers and abilities far below those of mortal men and who, described as dockers-wearing dweebs, fight a never ending battle for mediocrity, deafness, and USA Today?
Im sorry and I dont mean to offend anyones tastes, but goddamit how many times do you have to hear, the aforementioned My Love, Takin Care of Business, Penny Lane, Baby Love, The Rain, the Park, and Other Things, Hang on Sloopy, and stuff by hair-spray hippie wanna-bes like Tommy James and Chicago, before you crack up.
Most of the southwests radio rock (Boy, is that a swing and a miss term) is couched in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and somehow, as if by magic, these oldies radio programmers manage to miss the essence of this seminal period by a few million light years.
Why do they have to play the most sacchrine, sappy, punchless music of the period over and over and over again? Ill tell you why because they were hits. The majority of these songs were promoted by the biggest kingmakers in the record industry and came right after the Beatles and Rolling Stones and San Francisco scene exploded in the middle-to-late 1960s. In their infinite wisdom, they threw aside content and went 100% for form, realizing that this era was really all about bell-bottoms and carefully coiffed long hair and not the huge artistic and political breakthrough period of the last half of the century that it was. Spontaneity took it in the shorts, and hits were manufactured. I mean Baby Loves a good enough record, but after hearing it 1,000 times, cmon. And as for Yummy, Yummy by the 1910 Fruitgum Company, it was released as a novelty record for Chrissakes. Gee Mr. Cleaver, why dont they play Alvins Harmonica or Disco Duck? Those are oldies rock records, arent they? Rock records, like hell.
Todays programmers keep alive that profit-oriented attitude. Sgt. Friday wanted just the facts, they want just the hits. They are so gutless, so artistically spineless, that rather than expose the listener to material they might really dig or draw a favorable response like, Hey I forgot all about that band; thats hot, these road apples chicken out and go with whats safe, the same lame drool day in and day out. Consequently, Id rather be caught schmoozing with the Flat Earth Society rather than listening to an Oldies station.
I love old records, too. I have somewhere between 10,000 and 15,000 of the little devils, so I have a rough idea of what I am talking about. While my tastes now go more towards hip hop, hardcore punk, and spoken word, I can say without fear of contradiction that there are thousands of gems being missed by these Coke bottle-goggled oldies programmers.
I like the Beatles, but lets hear For No One, or Across the Universe.
I like the Stones, but lets hear Parachute Woman.
I like the Supremes, but lets hear When the Love Light Starts Shinin Through His Eyes.
I like Marvin Gaye. How about instead of Whats Going On, we hear One More Heartache.
I like car songs, but kill Little Old Lady From Pasadena. Gimme Scattershield by the Surfaris, Hot Rod Lincoln by Johnny Bond, or how about Route 66 by Bobby Troup, or even the Route 66 TV theme by Nelson Riddle.
Ever hear of Jim Hendrix?
And if you want to get a little adventurous, why not try the fans out on White Light, White Heat by the Velvet Underground? How about the Stooges and Search and Destroy? Trash by the New York Dolls? Amphetamine Gazelle by Mad River? It Didnt Even Bring Me Down by Sir Douglas? Jack Daniels Old No. 7 by Jerry Lee Lewis? There are tons of fabulous old songs waiting in the wings and gathering dust. A pox on these modern-day bean counters and graph-watchers who dare utter the word: rock. You wouldnt recognize rock if it struck you between the running lights.
And on the subject of running lights, that brings me back to cars and the noise inside. Two quick rants and Im gone. Southwestern sports talk radio, go die! Its okay to worship Tiger Woods, but not Dennis Rodman. Its okay to bash the hell out of spoiled $50-million a year .250 hitters, but you can only love tap the greedbag owners. Its okay to get pissed at spoiled rotten, professional non-students getting fat with under the table gratuities, but not at the universities and the agents who set the game up in the first place. Its cool to stand up for Michael Jordan, Kurt Warner, and Mark McGwire, but you are really out of line if you think Mike Tyson, Lawrence Taylor, or Rodman have any redeeming qualities. Only the most reactionary, dim-witted callers that agree with us will be treated civilly. So please call-in, wed like your comments. Okay, heres a comment, Ive come for your FCC license for your role in the dumbing of America. Hit the bricks, birdbrain!
And Rush Limbaugh? No question about it, the greatest political mind since Dan Quail ... er Quayle.
I realize the above isnt heavily car-ish, but most of you have radios in them and besides this is Drag Racing Online, soooo if what Ive offered does make some sense, heres a suggestion for your next long car trip ... learn to sing.
Copyright 1999-2001, Drag Racing Online and Racing Net Source