Monday, June 11, 2012
Immortal Songs of the 1970s - Woo! Yeah!
Ah, the 1970s. Breathe in, breathe out. I know. I know. It seems like every middle-aged person these days has some remote area of nostalgia/expertise that no one else on the planet really cares about or regards as anything but the most irrelevant minutiae...BUT... for better or worse...that was my decade.... the 1970s....Breathe in, breathe out. That wacky, wondrous, frizzy, outrageous, cheesy, gritty, sadly depressing, shockingly freakish time when all of the fallout from the 1960s suddenly started coming home to roost (for many of us who, at the time, were too young to know that we were the "guinea pigs" of a new age ...) Granted, the food was processed and unhealthy (we didn't know, we just didn't know), the air-quality (where I grew up) toxic and asthma-inducing, the hair-styles feathered and relentlessly blow-dried, the furniture inexpensive and amazingly drab, the carpet thick, plush and foot-friendly, the sporting events inspiring and quasi-religious, the schools regimented yet experimental (and filled to the brim with bullies, preps, jocks, smokers, stoners, rejects, social climbers, rebels and "sarcastic future bloggers"), the radio stations mesmerizing and oracular, the tv shows monolithic and insipid, the relationships (or should I say gender roles): fleeting and peripatetic, the drugs (or should I say "medications") sadly ubiquitous and entirely unoriginal (fie! fie! la bourgeoisie!), the clothing (or should I say "threads") loud and somewhat dysfunctional, the family units loud and somewhat dysfunctional, the political and economic trends dismal and not worth mentioning. But hey....we'll always have the MUSIC! Right? That was OUR DECADE - folks. Hello? Anyone? This may sound pathetic, but please understand. I'm not trying to win any converts here - you're either with us or agin' us as far as that goes. I mean, I could rattle off some obscure titles that time keeps on pushing into the fog: "Jive Talkin'... "Rainy Days and Mondays"..."I Saw the Light" ... "Sister Golden Hair"...."Babe"..."Funeral for a Friend"... "(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden"... "Disco Inferno"..."Cruel to be Kind"... "Bad Time"... "Ain't No Sunshine"... "So Far Away"... "You're So Vain"..."Time in a Bottle"..."Fire and Rain"... "Oh Very Young"... "Heart of Gold"... "American Pie"... "Vincent"... "Seasons in the Sun"... "Let's Stay Together"... "I Love Music"..."Saturday in the Park"..."Peace Train"... "Love Train"... "Jet"... "#9 Dream"..."This Masquerade"... "Another Star"... "Don't Let Nothing Get You Down"... "Low Rider"..."Superstition"..."Bad Sneakers"... "Oh What a Lonely Boy"... "Meeting Across the River"..."Could It Be I'm Falling in Love?"... "999 Arguments"... "It Never Rains in (Southern) California"... "Dust in the Wind"..."Love Will Keep Us Together"... "Let It Rain"... "Stairway to..." (what is the name of that song?) and you'd either nod your head in the affirmative or you wouldn't. It's that simple. So just for starters, I'm going to ask you to think of a song that you have probably heard at least on a subliminal level (in a store, an elevator, a car, a dental office, a rock-n-roll museum)... It's a song by ELO from back in the day. ELO - for those of you who don't listen to oldies stations or classic rock outlets - stands for Electric Light Orchestra. A fact that none of our parents would have known or ever cared to know. But you remember. Or else you have an older sibling who remembers, or you have parents who remember, or a guidance counselor who remembers, or the old guy on the park bench who remembers! Good grief. I feel old. Now just follow me here. I want you to just start humming this tune gently to yourself. "Sun is shining in the sky/There ain't a cloud in sight/ It's stopped rainin' /Everybody's in a play and don't you know/ it's a beautiful new day/ hey-eh-yay." Great poetry, I know. But just keep going until you get to the chorus: "Mr Blue Sky/Please tell us why/You had to stay away for so long..." and see if IT (the song, the feeling, the decade) doesn't stay with you (refusing to leave your thoughts) for the next month or so. I myself can't get it out of my head! (Another of ELO's big hits. Look it up.)
Posted by T.W.S. at 4:53 PM