How about yet another musical rambling? Aimless as the other ramblings, but sometimes with melody.
Want to be an avowed enemy of Talmadge Q. Gleck? Send me a mix tape consisting of the below:
Positions 5,427 through 20) JUST ABOUT ANY CONTEMPORARY CHRISTIAN SONG EVER RECORDED
Nettiemac has a great name for this genre: "Yippy Skippy for Jesus." I can take the more peaceful hymns, raucous black gospel, and even some Florida Boys-style Southern gospel during those rare moments the mood hits. But I completely, unabashedly and wholeheartedly r-e-v-i-l-e "contemporary christian music." It's like diet soda -- taste resembles regular cola, but the saccharine leaves that awful aftertaste -- in CCM's case, the music SOUNDS like rock 'n' roll and/or pop melodies, but something's just not right. And I get a terrible aftertaste when I have to listen to it.
If I want positive, inspiring music, I'll pull out a Van Morrison album, thank you.
19) WALKING ON SUNSHINE / Katrina & The Waves (1985)
Asbestos Nikes, anyone? If I want a happy song, I'll take another Van Morrison track: "Back on Top." (After that 'unpleasantry' two years ago, I get the feeling one won't be hearing this song much anymore ... or at least nobody'll dare backannounce the artist.) Played backwards: "Stop shaking our FEMA trailer with your dancing, young lady!"
18) WE'VE ONLY JUST BEGUN / The Carpenters (1970)
Karen and Richard's harmonies, like ABBA's, seep into my head and feels to my brain like tiny, yet horrendously painful pinpricks. Picking just one Carpenters record was not easy. But I eventually settled on is this #2 hit (in more ways than one), a knock-off from a bank commercial. Played backwards: "Must ... have ... EX-LAX....."
In all fairness, tho', as with ABBA, there are isolated exceptions where I can actually tolerate the song. And I do feel for poor Karen -- check out the bootleg film Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story ... in a way, it's a vicious parody of the whole "clean-cut" life of the Carpenter siblings; the movie is acted out with Barbie dolls! But deep inside the film's plotline, it paints a very sympathetic portrait of Karen, and the demons eating at her. Richard was a big @#$%, and they had repressive parents -- geeez, even amidst their biggest fame in the early '70s, they still lived at home with Mom and Dad ... and had a curfew!!
17) PLAYGROUND IN MY MIND / Clint Holmes (1975)
Michael & Cindy did get married. They did have a baby or two. They got divorced. Now, the kids not just visit their grandma ... SHE has custody! Played backwards: "My name is Michael. I've got a nickel. Will that help toward all that back child support I owe?"
16) WAITING FOR A GIRL LIKE YOU / Foreigner (1981)
Foreigner fell victim to what I call Gleck's Rule of Ballads and Downfall ... a normally hard-edged and/or uptempo pop-rock outfit recording a ballad, hitting paydirt, chart success, followed by one or more of the members turning greedy and changing the group's musical course, alienating the loyal fans in favor of "selling out" for the soccer moms.
Want a couple of fer-instances? Look no further than "Babe" by Styx - the moment a great Midwest rock band jumped the shark and became Dennis DeYoung's vehicle for recording proto-Delilah pap .... or Chicago. While they had ballads from the beginning -- "Colour My World" (Seraphim's favorite) and "Wishing You Were Here" are truly beautiful pop records -- there was the small matter of "If You Leave Me Now", the musical anti-epiphany of Peter Cetera. I swear in the bridge of this song visions of a young Amy Grant appeared. From there, the brass and kick-ass were gradually attrition'ed from Chicago, and before we knew it, it was "You're the Inspiration" city!
Foreigner, granted, wasn't quite as afflicted here, but WFAGLY did lead to "I Want to Know What Love Is" and "I Don't Want to Live Without You" -- songs I admit to actually liking okay. Key word = "okay"
Played backwards: "Mick, when you said 'Head Games', I thought you were referring to that new Parker Brothers board game. Just play with my mind .... ahhhh, you mean THAT 'head.' Oh."
In 1998, I was waiting for a girl like Seraphim. But I didn't sing this to her; I knew better.
15) DON'T WORRY, BE HAPPY / Bobby McFerrin (1988)
A record so beautifully and mercilessly tweaked one 1989 Sunday in Berke Breathed's long-departed strip Bloom County. There's nothing wrong with being happy; heck, I prefer happiness to the alternative any ol' day. Still, there's a fine line between being happy and being a g(BLEEP)ddamned Pollyanna! People like that make me want to swig Pepto. Played backwar ---hey, if I play this backwards, does that mean I don't have to be a Pollyanna anymore? You know, like you play a country song backwards, and your wife comes back, you get out of prison and your teeth grow back in.
14) BROWN-EYED GIRL / Van Morrison (1967)
There's only one Van Morrison song I don't like. And it's more than "don't like"; try REVILE! There's nothing like playing it 13 times during the course of an evening while DJ'ing a dance at a country club -- while the city fathers and mothers of Troy, Alabama are getting drunk and belligerent -- to destroy a song.
That person stalking out the green grass behind the stadium with a high-power rifle? Yep, that's ME! Played backwards: "Colored contacts, please."
13) DO YA THINK I'M SEXY? / Rod Stewart (1978)
a/k/a "Selling My Soul and Credibility To Get A #1 Hit" Proving once and for all that Never a Dull Moment and Every Picture Tells a Story were looooong ago. Played backwards: "Maggie May DID make a first-class fool out of me."
12) WALKING ON THE SUN / Smashmouth (1999)
Could this band be less subtle in angling for corporate shillhood?? Songs like this and "All Star" were written with the complete intent of eventually reaping a profit from selling out to advertisers. WOTS has the line "so don't delay, act now" -- perfectly cut out for use in a car commercial (which, indeed, it eventually was). And today, the opening organ riff from "Can't Get Enough of You Baby" (itself a bad cover) is being played to death in current Pizza Hut commercials Played backwards: "2.9% APR financing, with approved credit."
11) WE ARE THE WORLD / USA For Africa (1985)
Musical madness from the pen of Michael Jackson. First time I heard it, my impression was that it sounded like the jingle for a friggin' PSA! Played backwards: "A message from the AD COUNCIL." .......Or "We are the Ethiopians. Leave us alone. Let us starve to death. But please cut off our ears first."
10) SUGAR, SUGAR / The Archies (1969)
The lamest record ever "sung" that year. Vocals in actuality were provided by Midge and Big Moose. Played backwards: "I can't make it to band practice today -- Mr. Weatherbee gave me detention for calling Sabrina a witch to her face."
9) I WRITE THE SONGS / Barry Manilow (1976)
Do you have to REMIND us??!! Why didn't you just run off with Lola from the Copacabana?? Oh yeah, that's right, I forgot ...
Played backwards: "Like a good neighbor, I don't have to pay another @#$%ing penny for car insurance as long as I live."
8) I'M HENRY THE VIII, I AM / Herman's Hermits (1965)
...Second verse, stupid as the first. Played backwards: "Dumb, gullible Yankees will buy ANYTHING!"
7) GIRLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN / Cyndi Lauper (1983)
Note to self: Take rubber band from Captain Lou Albano's beard, fire point-blank at Cyndi.
Played backwards: That stupid "HAH! HAH!" laugh toward the end of the record still sounds the same. Damned palindromic interjections......
6) IT HAD TO BE YOU / Harry Connick, Jr. (1989)
If I want something that sounds like Frank Sinatra, I'd rather have Sinatra.
5) MACHO MAN / Village People (1978)
...I should have a bumper sticker on my car: I SURVIVED 1978-1979 TOP 40 RADIO. This record is a big reason I went toward AOR during my junior-high years.
4) SWEET HOME ALABAMA / Lynyrd Skynyrd (1975)
...Then again, AOR (album rock) radio wasn't all that and an Iron Butterfly LP, either. Case in point.
3) BILLIE JEAN / Michael Jackson (1982)
...The kid is not my son. He's my lover. Played backwards: "Voulez vous coucher avec moi ce soir, le infante"
2) KARMA CHAMELEON / Culture Club (1984)
...I truly cannot stomach this song. I don't know why, but I completely detest it. Played backwards: "Yes, I really want to hurt you. But after I put on my foundation and eye shadow."
1) YOU LIGHT UP MY LIFE / Debbie Boone (1977)
...Helen Keller should've gotten a larnyx transplant from Miz Deb. She needed the voice much more. Played backwards: "My daddy is Satan. What part of 'AIN'T that a shame' don't you understand??!!"
Boy, I could use some Maalox. Sam's Club size, please.
Ciao for Niao.
--Talmadge "I feel a song comin' on" Gleck
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