Wednesday, March 09, 2011

$50,000 for a gold violin

"Check it Blade! Bro was onnnn! Didn't trip. But the folks they was freakin, man! Hey, the pilots was laid to the bone Homes, but blood hammed out and jammed. Tighten that sad sucka 'side the runway like a mutha fuhshiiit"
 Six words long...

I was listening to the radio this morning on my drive into work and I heard "Got My Mind Set on You" as sung by George Harrison (apparently according to the wikipedier he didn't write it).  Anyway, as I was listening to this song I realized that I used to dislike this song...until I found out that George Harrison was the one who sang it.  That's silly, I suppose...that my like of a song could increase based on who is singing.

That story reminds me of a particular time back in the summer of 1995 when a friend of mine and I were jamming (if you could call it that) to the newly released "Batman Forever" Soundtrack.  As was typical of the way we listened to music back then, we listened to the first track, "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me" by U2, the hit single off of the album.  Then we listened to the other hit single by Seal, "Kiss from a Rose".  Then we sort of listened to the beginning 10-15 seconds of every other track, quickly blowing past every other track on the album, until we got to the last track.  So, we listened to about 10 seconds of the last track, "Bad Days" by the Flaming Lips (you might remember their one hit, "She Don't Use Jelly") and my friend quickly forwarded to the next track.  At this point (knowing he really dug "SDUJ"), I said, "hey man, that was the flaming lips", to which he said, "oh, yeah? well put it back on then, I didn't know that was them".

After hearing that it was the Flaming Lips, he listened to the track with new ears and after about 10-15 seconds said, "you know, this song isn't too bad".  Maybe George Harrison was a guest singer on that track.

Lovely Rita & Leeshank Redemption

This story also reminds me of the time Lee and I were talking about the "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album, and I was saying how I really liked the song "Lovely Rita", and he mentioned that he'd never listened to it because he always changed it during the intro...which is funny in light of the previous story, as well as that the song has a completely different sound than the intro, which if he would have made it through, I think he would enjoy. And to bring this section full circle, George Harrison was backing vocals on this song.

Sorry Miss Jackson, whoo...

Also, incidentally, happy birthday to Chris Jackson a/k/a Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, former star guard at LSU and I think he played with the Nuggets in the NBA.  I think his claim to fame was refusing to stand for the national anthem while in the NBA because saluting the US flag conflicted with his newly islamic religious beliefs.  I'm not certain, but I think he compromised with the NBA by standing during the anthem but holding his hands up to shield his face.  I'm not 100% on that.  But in any event, happy b-day.  Something I learned today is that Mr. Rauf (or is it Abdul-Rauf?) is still playing basketball.  No longer in the NBA since 2001, I just assumed he was retired.  Oh retirement for him.  He's still playing, at age 42.  After the NBA he played in Russia, then Italy, then Greece, then Saudi Arabia and he is currently playing in Japan.  I'd have to say that the most surprising on that list is Saudi Arabia - I wouldn't have thought they'd have a pro league in Saudi Arabia. However that was quite convenient for Mr. Rauf, since all able-bodied Muslims who can afford to do so are required to make a pilgrimage to Mecca once in their life, and his team in Saudi was located about an hour from lucky!

Fillet of Soul...

Another thing I was thinking this morning as I was listening to "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" by the Charlie Daniels Band is that the devil's fiddlin' is better than Johnny's.  At the very least (if there are any fiddle players who read this), I enjoy the devil's part more...because I'll admit, since I know nothing about fiddlin', Johnny's part may be more technically precise, or require a greater level of skill or technically Johnny may be better, but if I was looking to go to a fiddlin' concert and I could choose based on what I heard behind door number 1 (devil) and door number 2 (johnny), I think I'd go with door #1. 

I'm also not sure I like Johnny's attitude in bidding the devil goodbye.  "Come on back if you ever want to try again..." - since this song was written in 1979 and the devil is immortal (at least until he's thrown into the lake of fire), it seems like Johnny might have lost a step in the last 31 years...and I don't think the devil has to sleep or raise a family or get hopped up on heroin (like Johnny might have done) I think if the devil was practicing for the past 31 or so years and he comes back for a challenge of Johnny (assuming he hasn't already done so), I think he'll be going home with Johnny's soul.  Just one man's opinion.

Title of this post comes from the idea that a golden fiddle would only be worth about $50,000 (unless it was solid gold and not a fiddle that could be played)...unless there's some intrinsic value about a fiddle made by the devil (which there's no guarantee it was...maybe the devil bought this golden fiddle off someone).  In addition to that the subheadings are easily explainable..."Six words long" is part of the title of Weird Al's spoof version of this song.  Lovely Rita & Leeshank Redemption is a play off of Rita Heyworth & Shawshank Redemption, a novella by Stephen King (on which the movie was based).  Although this has no direct connection, when I was making notes about what I wanted to write about this note started as "Lovely Rita & Lee", and when I got around to writing that bit, that was my first thought when I saw that phrase again.  "Sorry Miss Jackson, whoo..." is from an Outkast song, "Miss Jackson".  I thought this was on the clever side, since it referenced the subejct's former last name...and I figure that CJ might have gotten some grief for the name change or national anthem bit (being from Gulfport, MS, afterall) and at least once he might have had to apologize to his mom for saying, Sorry Miss Jackson (whoo optional).  Fillet of Soul is a play on the fish dish, fillet of sole, and I substituted soul for sole, because Johnny's soul was on the line - but I think that last bit is obvious.  And of course the picture and quote are from Airplane II, probably my favorite scene from the film...for no reason other than this guy has soul.

1 comment:

LBerteau said...

A couple of thoughts:

First, I really enjoyed the jive translation you provided from "Airplane II."

I find it curious that African-American slang from the 1970's is practically indecipherable to caucasians. So much so, in fact, that June Cleaver is required to translate for the stewardess in the first "Airplane" film, as she "speaks jive."

Or is it all caucasians? Having grown up with gangsta rap and movies like "Boyz in tha Hood" and "Menace II Society," I have no trouble understanding the slang of black youths today. Maybe it's just that I wasn't old enough during the 70's to get it. If I were raised on a steady diet of blaxploitation films like "Foxy Brown," would I get it?

Secondly, just to clarify, I had heard the song "Lovely Rita" in it's entirety at least once, but didn't recognize the track name because I didn't like it on the initial preview and always skipped it in subsequent listenings.