It all started with the best of intentions.
I didn’t mean to cause any harm.
In retrospect, I blame my daughter and her oh so “innocent” questions. “Where did you hear that song Daddy?”, she asked. Innocent indeed!
I had made her a sandwich with the crusts cut off and she had said, “that’s the way I like it!”, to which I replied: “that’s the way, uh-huh, uh-huh, I like it, uh-huh, uh-huh!”. If none of that made any sense to you, check with your parents. If they don’t understand, check with your grandparents.
And then she asked the fateful question, “Where did you hear that song Daddy?” As if she wouldn’t be familiar with a forty year-old pop song.
Without thinking I went onto Youtube and introduced her to disco.
Next she wanted to hear other songs, like Boogie Oogie Oogie. If there’s no disdain when you say that, you’re not reading it right.
We kept going but then we had to stop at The Hustle, because eventually you end up at Donna Summer’s version of Jimmy Webb’s self-indulgent, hot mess of a song MacArthur Park. I’ve been forced to sing that song. (No, I mean literally forced. It was for an elementary school assembly, and the version of the song we were forced to sing was the 1968 Richard Harris version, not the 1978 Donna Summer version. This was in 1978, when the song was a hit and received almost constant airplay on CFUN and CKLG [That’s right, I’m old so old I remember when AM radio in Vancouver played music all day!] If you’re not musically inclined you may not understand the big deal, after all the words are all the same and Summer’s interpretation isn’t a complete departure from Harris’s, however they are different in both tempo and rhythm. Summer’s song is much faster and discofied [Yeah, that’s right, I’m making up my own words. Repello Muggletum!]. This left a poor teacher with a room full of kids trying to run away with the with the tempo and putting emphasis on the wrong beat.) I can’t let my beloved child listen to this eccentric piece of chaos in 4/4 time, because inevitably I’ll have to explain, “no, no, no, you can’t leave your cake out in the rain!”, and then I’ll have to try to explain what the hell Webb meant and her poor little brain will explode and she won’t get in McGill, or her second choice, U of T. If you think I’m exaggerating, read the lyrics.
Absolutely unrelated video
Lyrics [Jimmy Webb official site]