Sunday, January 21, 2007

All your songs are belong to us

I wrote previously that there are only 30 songs you'll hear on classic rock radio. I must apologize for exaggerating.

It's really more like 90.

Still, out of 30 years, that's still averages three songs per year. My god, what did these artists do with the rest of their time? Trashing hotel rooms can only account for so much of it.

Here is the complete list of songs you'll hear on classic rock radio. The reason these are the only ones played is because there are no other classic rock songs in the universe. Or at least, they must be. Otherwise, you'd think radio stations would think a little variety might attract more listeners. But, nah, that's crazy talk.

The Beatles
A Day in the Life
Hey Jude
Come Together

More Than A Feeling

The Cars
Just What I Needed (yes, those Circuit City ads count)

Creedence Clearwater Revival
Have You Ever Seen The Rain
Bad Moon Risin'
Down on the Corner

Deep Purple
Smoke on the Water

Derek and the Dominos

The Doors
Light My Fire

The Eagles
Every freakin' song on the first greatest hits album
Hotel California
Life in the Fast Lane

Fleetwood Mac
Go Your Own Way

Feels Like The First Time
Hot Blooded
Jukebox Hero

Golden Earring
Radar Love

Jimi Hendrix
All Along the Watchtower

Elton John
Every song on the first greatest hits album, except for Border Song

Led Zeppelin
Stairway to Heaven
Rock N' Roll
Fool In The Rain

John Lennon

Lynyrd Skynyrd
Sweet Home Alabama
Simple Man
and, of course ... FREEBIIIIRD!!!

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
(you may think you've heard "Free Fallin'" but you haven't. The song's too new for classic rock radio ... it's only 17 years old at this point. Go figure.)

Pink Floyd
All of "Dark Side of the Moon," except out of order and without "Great Gig In the Sky" or that "Doot-doodle-doot-doodle" synthesizer track that's really the soundtrack for the part where Dorothy falls in the pigpen and is rescued by the guy who turns out to be the Cowardly Lion
All of "Wish You Were Here," except the last part of "Shine On You Crazy Diamond"
The five real songs on "The Wall," a.k.a. the ones that don't have to do with the "plot"

Bohemian Rhapsody
Fat Bottomed Girls

The Rolling Stones
You Can't Always Get What You Want
Jumpin' Jack Flash
Brown Sugar
Miss You

Tom Sawyer
Spirit of Radio

Bob Seger
Night Moves
Hollywood Nights
Turn the Page

Bruce Springsteen
Born To Run
Born in the USA
Glory Days

The Steve Miller Band
Take the Money and Run
Jet Airliner (usually substituting the line "Funky sh*t going down in the city" to "Funky kicks going down in the city")

Rod Stewart
Maggie Mae

Come Sail Away

Get It On (Bang a Gong)

The Who
My Generation
Pinball Wizard
Baba O'Reilly
Behind Blue Eyes
Won't Get Fooled Again
Who Are You (swapping the "Who the f**k are you" line for another line in the song)

ZZ Top
La Grange
Give Me All Your Lovin
Sharp Dressed Man

You may have thought you heard songs by the Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, Simon and Garfunkel, The Kinks, Elvis Presley, the Beach Boys, Neil Young, Van Morrison or Steely Dan, and you may even thought you have heard other songs by the acts mentioned above, but it was just the stuff you were smoking at the time.

After all, we all know Bruce Springsteen didn't do any more albums after "Born in the USA" in 1984. And John Lennon only wrote one song after he left the Beatles.

Those other songs don't exist. Classic rock radio says so.

8 Things I picked up on my cruise to the Carribean

1. A cold.
2. The constant feeling of the earth lurching under my feet, even though I'm back on solid earth.
3. Overpriced T-shirts.
4. Conch shells directly off the beach of Grand Turks.
5. A persistent ringing in my left ear.
6. No women.
7. The deep desire not to see "My Cousin Vinny," the only thing playing on the onboard TVs, ever again.

But it was worth it.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Fun with classic rock radio

(this column has been rated R, for adult content, language and sheer stupidity)

If you're like me (and all my sympathies if you are), you're stuck listening to classic rock radio. I don't have a CD player in the car, and the cassette player is only for long trips. I'm only 10 minutes from work, so it doesn't make sense to get satellite radio. AM radio skews so far to the right that I'm afraid the car will tip over if I switch it on. That leaves FM, and that leaves me with about 10 stations, two of which are classic rock.

The other FM choices really aren't choices at all. They include:

* Public radio (I can think, and I can drive, but I can't do both at the same time)
* Country music (I like country music, just not the music of this particular country)
* Top 40 (which by the time you turn 40 no longer is your top 40)
* Rap (listening to someone complain about how lousy their life is, how many people they've shot or have shot at them, how much more bling they have than me or how many babes they can bag ain't my bag)

So that leaves classic rock. Yes, the best of the '60s, the '70s and occasionally the '80s. So how come in 30 years, all that seems to have been produced is the same 30 or so songs? That averages 3 songs a year, and I know Springsteen's "Born In The USA" alone is responsible for at leave a third of them.

Literally, I was bouncing through channels and both classic rock stations were playing "Another Brick In The Wall" at the same time. A couple of minutes later, the '80's channel was doing it too.

Sooner or later, someone's going to realize that since most of the song really isn't sung as much as spoken and the major instrument on the track is the bass, it qualifies as a rap song, and it will turn up on the rap station. Then public radio will realize it's part of an opera (OK, a ROCK opera, but still an opera) and it will turn up there.

After hearing it a few hundred times, you start playing with the words, and remembering a long-forgotten dirty version we sang in high school, whenever the song comes on now, the only way I can get through it is to sing it this way:

We don't need no masturbation
We don't need no birth control
No fornication in the classroom
Teacher leave those t*ts alone
Hey, Teacher, leave those t*ts alone

All in all it's just another d**k in a hole

Then at the end when the guy is saying "If you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding/How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat," substitute the word "Beat" for "Eat."

Instant comedy!

Here, practice:

Another trick I have is whenever "Anyway You Want It" by Journey comes on, I sing along with the guitar riff between lines in the song. This is how it goes (sing the bolded words)

She loves to dance
To dance
She loves to sing
To sing
She does everything
Oh, she does just everything
She loves to move
To move
She loves to groove
To groove
She loves a lot of things
Oh, she does a lot of things

All night
All night
All night
All night
Oh every night
Oh, she does it every night
So hold tight
Hold tight
Hold tight
Hold tight
Oh baby hold tight
Oh, so won't you hold it tight

She said any way you want it
That's the way you need it
Any way you want it

Any way you want it
That's the way you need it
Any way you want it

I was alone
I never knew
Not knew
What good love could do
Oh, I knew not good love could do
Then we touched
We touched
And we sang
We sang
About the lovely things
Oh, about a lot of things

All night
All night
All night
All night
Oh every night
Oh, she does it every night
So hold tight
Hold tight
Hold tight
Hold tight
Oh baby hold tight
Oh, so won't you hold it tight

You're on your own for the rest of the song. Here, practice:

It's like "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" in your own car!

One more: Whenever there's a song with a lengthy "Na-na-na" section, at the end of each "na-na" chorus, use the words "Hey Jude" instead of the last "na-na." It works especially well with "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'" by Journey and "Cuts Like A Knife" by Bryan Adams.

Here, try it:

So instead of letting your mind being battered into peanut butter by classic rock radio, fight back with comedy!

Monday, January 08, 2007

The strangest thing that ever happened to me

This is a true story.

In the late 1980s, I was a student at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. I was waiting in a hallway in the Arts and Communications Building for a friend when a door opened. A guy who looked somewhat familiar looked up at clock in the hallway and asked, "Is that the correct time?"

I looked at my watch and said, "Yeah."

"Thanks," he said, and ducked back in.

I then remembered that Robert Shields, of Shields and Yarnell, a pantomime team, was performing that night on campus, and I remembered his face from their 1970s TV show.

It then struck me what I had done.

I had given the time of day to a mime.

Never done it since.

Introducing more of the same

I've decided the best way to handle the "how to I use this blog for goofy stuff AND the serious stuff about Deb" dilemma is to diversify.

I am moving all the stuff about Deb to a new blog, "Boy Loses Girl." The address is I will also be adding things to it about dealing with her loss, photos of her, things she would have liked, and whatever else seems appropriate.

Think of this blog as my brain -- the creative, unpredictable part -- and Boy Loses Girl as my heart -- the part I gave to Debra and reluctantly had to take back.


Sunday, January 07, 2007

Dorothy Parker Y2K7

Girls seldom make passes
At guys with big asses.