Tuesday, January 10, 2006

"No more secret songs."

I got to use one of my favorite lines from SCHOOL OF ROCK (a film pissing favorite lines) and for once, it was entirely appropriate (sadly, not many scenarios call for a response of "Uh, we're not goofing off; we're creating musical fusion").

So I finish my blog, right, and proud of the results, I show the Mr.

Me: Look. Here's my top 100 singles of the 1980s list.

Mr. (barely a nanosecond later and not even really looking): Oh, does it have Nolan Thomas' "Yo' Little Brother" on it?

Huh? So I did a little search (actually, he fucked up little Nolan's name a bit) and whaddyaknow? Pulled a forgotten 1980s pebble right out of his ass (and here I thought I knew them all).

As we know, pebbles don't make big waves and indeed "Yo' Little Brother" apparently stalled at #57 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1985. That seems just - it's a catchy but unmomentous cautionary tale with just the slightest touch of Cat Stevens' odious "Wild World" in the lyrics. One website called it crossover freestyle which I admit I didn't hear at first. Too slow, I guess. And too crossover too. Definitely diluted although why freestyle needed diluting is beyond me. Was Debbie Deb ever so avant or Latin to require it (oooh - avant freestyle - someone run with that)? Did anyone ever call successes like Exposé or The Cover Girls "crossover freestyle?" "Yo' Little Brother" came out on Mirage (home of greatest single EVAH "Bon Bon Vie") so clearly the label was aiming to build on the Shannon momentum. But "Give Me Tonight" and "Let The Music Play" (originally on Emergency, I know, which had something to do with "Yo' Little Brother" too; check out the 45 here) were waaay more freestyle than this and managed to "crossover" something fierce. "Crossover" simply doesn't sound right as a freestyle m.o. It was never content to attentuate in some purist underground. Music of such dazzling eaux d'artifice was bound to explode forth and get someone, anyone wet.

The real treat with "Yo' Little Brother" is the video which you can watch on this very gay website. I immediately knew why it stuck in the Mr.'s craw - two young boys somersaulting around for his fabulous fourteen year old delectation. I sincerely hope they're both enjoying life as homosexuals as much as we are.

With that, he went to work and I told him "no more secret songs." Although I can understand why it was a secret to begin with.


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