Somebody needs to hand over that pause button, STAT! Middle of June already? Say it isn’t so!
On the flip side, it’s the final Monday school day for the kids – both get to finally start their summer break later this week. While chaos will undoubtedly ensue, I’m looking forward to no commuting and car lines for 11 weeks. Bliss.
Meanwhile it’s Monday, which means time to get jammin’ with rockin’ tunes. This week’s theme is Rock’n’Roll Legends – I’m not sure if that means the old geezer variety, or simply ones inducted into the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame, so I’m winging it.
We’re going to start off with a band who was inducted in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2009. This particular song was an Aerosmith song from 1975, but this group stumbled across it during a search for breakbeats to use during DJ sets in the early 80’s.
They didn’t know who Aerosmith were and thought the band was called Toys In The Attic because that was the album title. Their producer, however, was a huge fan of Aerosmith and suggested they call to see if Perry and Tyler would play on their cover version.
Long story short, after they recorded the song together and went their separate ways, neither were aware they’d hit on something big. It opened the door to this group’s full suburban crossover, and it reminded people how great Aerosmith was.
Next up is a group that waited 16 years before they were finally inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2010. This particular song peaked at number seven on both the US Billboard Hot 100 and the UK Singles Chart and received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals in 1993.
The humorous music video illustrates the artifice and false glamour of television advertisements. The lead singer commented that the video was designed to poke fun of the models in jeans commercials, and each verse refers to things that models in these commercials do.
Here’s Genesis with “I Can’t Dance”:
Next up is an artist you cannot not have as a Rock’n’Roll Legend, considering he was the King of Rock & Roll.
Y’all already know who I’m talking about, don’t you?
The history of this particular song is quite interesting – written by Carl Perkins when he, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and other Louisiana Hayride acts toured through the South. Cash told Perkins a story of a black airman, C.V. White, whom he met when serving in the military in Germany, who had referred to his military regulation airmen shoes as “blue suede shoes”. Cash suggested that Carl write a song about the shoes, but Carl thought he was crazy since he didn’t know anything about shoes.
When Perkins was playing at a dance in December 1955, he noticed a couple dancing near the stage. Between songs, Carl heard a stern, forceful voice say, “Uh-uh, don’t step on my suedes!” Carl looked down and noted that the boy was wearing blue suede shoes and one had a scuff mark. Blue suede shoes were a luxury item in the South, stylish footwear for a night out, but hard to clean.
That night after the dance, Perkins was inspired to write a song based on the combination of Johnny Cash’s story and the incident at the dance. He wrote the song on a potato sack since there was no paper readily available when inspiration hit. He made a recording of the song with Sun Records, and planned to promote it on a tour.
As he was driving to make his first national appearance to promote it (on the Perry Como Show), he got into an accident that seriously injured him and killed his brother. He’s been quoted as saying that he was “85 miles away from being the first rockabilly on national television”. He never fully recovered – emotionally or career-wise. With him unable to tour and promote it, this artist’s version became a massive hit.
Fun Fact: Since Perkins didn’t know how to spell ‘suede’ he spelled it ‘swade’ instead.
Here’s the King of Rock & Roll himself, Elvis Presley with “Blue Suede Shoes”:
Last, but not least, is an artist who was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2008. This particular song is about a high school couple falling in love, written by the artist as a tribute to life in the rural working class, inspired by his hometown of Seymour, Indiana, which had a population of about 13,000 when it was released. The song has a very nostalgic feel, but paints a picture of a couple whose best years will soon be behind them.
Some of this artist’s high school photos and home movies were used to make the video, which was pretty much an afterthought. In 2008, a newspaper asked this artist if he was bothered that he is best-known for this song. His response is awesome:
“That song is 30 or so years old and it gets played more today in the United States than it did when it came out. As much as I am a little weary of those two, I don’t know any other two people in rock and roll who are more popular than Jack and Diane. Some people probably think there’s a place in hell for me because of those two people!
But it gave me the keys to do what I want. I’m 57 today. I’ve lived the way I wanted to live, sometimes recklessly and stupidly, but still been able to do that. I’ve been able to live on my whims, that’s what Jack and Diane gave me, so I can’t hate them too much.”
Here’s John Mellencamp with “Jack & Diane”:
And that’s a wrap – have a great Monday!
Now on to the particulars of Monday’s Music Move’s Me:
I have the supreme honor and privilege of being a co-host with the inimitable Xmas Dolly and our musical cohorts, Callie from JAmericanSpice, Cathy from Cathy Kennedy’s Blog, and Naila Moon at Just the Stuff Ya Know, and our newest awesome member, give a warm welcome to Becca of Everyday Life.
Want to join in the fun? It’s easy – just find a tune that rocks your boat, post it and link up – don’t forget to grab Xmas Dolly…er, um, I mean her button…over at her place here. Check out Xmas Dolly’s sidebar for the random themes we sport each week – and you can always ask for a specific theme of music you like, too. Check out the other music lovahs and let’s jam!
Dave of MOODY Media