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The frightful loss of faculty

April 7th, 2008 · 8 Comments

This afternoon, I found myself driving on my errand round with no CDs or iPod to listen to, so I did the unspeakable.  I dug under the back seat, found the dusty case full of mix cassettes, and put one in the tape player.  You know what?…

IT SOUNDED GREAT!!

Only Side A was labelled, and it contained that rarest of rare Jonathan Richman albums, It’s Time for Jonathan and the Modern Lovers.  More about that later (most likely).  But what snagged my curiousity was Side B – it was not labelled.  Now, I know me, and I have never, ever, left a blank spot on a recordable tape for want of music.  My tapes have always been filled, from start to finish.  So, I rewound Side B and listened.  First song by the Jayhawks.  Okay.  Then, the second song.

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My Mystery Mix Cassette, Side B: Song Two

Oh my God, I didn’t know it!  Did I make this tape or not?  I am the proud, and proudly annoyed, owner of a helluva lot of music, and I have never thought that my library’s contents would ever overrun my memory.  I could not, for the life of me, figure out what this song was.  And I liked it quite a lot.  The three and a half minutes passed and the song ended.  Then came song #3.

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MMMC, Side B: Song Three

It was such a groovy song, but, again, I COULDN’T IDENTIFY IT!  I knew that I’d heard it, and the memory of liking it and the feeling of liking it now were palpable.  But I would never have known who the artist was.  It was a kickass song for driving, though.  I did know that.  Elisa M will be reminded of G. Love, as I was, but we’re only geographically correct.

Then, Song Number Four.  Same damn thing.

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MMMC, Side B: Song Four. (Check out that hilarious “chicken bone” spoken intro!)

Was I having a stroke?  I’m the guy who’s supposed to know this stuff inside and out.  Did I lose access to that part of my brain since leaving the protected confines of my music store?  Was I finally on the music geek downslope?  I feared that I had exposed my Achilles Heel.

By the time Song Five came on, I was in a cold sweat.  And by the time Song Five ended – by the slimmest of time margins – I had identified it.  But I was shaken, and badly.

Thank God, the next song on the tape was “Love Shack.”  What a totally awesome song.  Whew!  It made me feel that the past 15 minutes had just been a bad dream.

I got home and did some music sleuthing, and identified the mystery tracks. And, well…

You’ve got to be nuts if you think I’m going to just tell you what those songs are!  Suffer a little yourself!  Today I’m feeling like sharing the pain.  Or identify them yourself on the first listen and gloat at me!! ( I won’t care; I’ll be really proud of ya.)

Oh, by the way, Song Five was “I Die a Little More Each Day” by Gino Vannelli.  Who knew that I had that guilty pleasure in my collection?  Major flashback shockwave.

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MMMC, Side B: Song Five (“I Die a Little More Each Day” by Gino Vannelli)

Addendum:

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MMMC, Side B: Song One (“When I Ran Off & Left Her” by Soul Asylum)

Tags: music

8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Elisa M // Apr 10, 2008 at 8:58 AM

    I just spent an hour trying to find song 3, to no avail. I wave my white flag of surrender…help!

  • 2 Brentski // Apr 10, 2008 at 6:05 PM

    song one [“song two”]… that’s the unmistakeable voice of Vic Chesnutt…. right? (hehehehehe)

  • 3 Winston Smith // Apr 14, 2008 at 9:35 PM

    I’ve been working on Song #3 myself. The “Smoke Sense” part is firing all the right synapses in my brain but I can’t come up with it.

    My Google Fu turned up this nice lyric by Soul Coughing that almost fits though:

    Theme From Rachel’s Sitcom
    [This Song’s Background]

    Rachel’s on the phone
    talking to her Mom
    Just to wish her a happy Mother’s Day

    Rachel’s on the couch
    Suckin’ on the bong
    Just so she can call her Mom

    Rachel’s on the phone
    talking to her Mom
    “Hi, Mom, it’s me, Rachel.”

  • 4 Winston Smith // Apr 14, 2008 at 9:37 PM

    Supernatural – Vic Chesnutt – yes.

  • 5 spitballarmy // Apr 14, 2008 at 9:52 PM

    Dig the lyric, WS.

    Song Three is indeed by Soul Coughing. See, Elisa, Google Fu can solve anything!!

    …and I screwed up, so apologies to Brentski and Winston. I put the wrong version of that Vic Chesnutt song in as Song Two. So, yes, the song is written by Vic Chesnutt, but someone else is singing it on this track (I’ve changed the audio file to be correct). And it’s not a band that I would have gone on record as liking.

    Another flub up, my bad: that Jayhawks song at Song One was really by Soul Asylum, and it was called “When I Ran Off & Left Her.” Please tell me you guys think they sound like the Jayhawks (I’ve placed the audio file at the bottom of the post). I fear my credibility is getting pretty thin.

  • 6 Winston Smith // Apr 16, 2008 at 2:48 PM

    That’s “Live” doing that Vic Chestnutt song from the Sweet Relief compilation correct? I thought you loved Live? No? Weird.

    I also suspect “La Casa” from the “Blue in the Face Soundtrack” for Song #4

    Song #3 is “Soul Coughing” doing “The Brooklynites” also from the “Blue In The Face” Soundtrack

    I’m a little saddened that we did not get to hear “Let’s Get Ready to Rhumba” from The John Lurie Orchestra.

    I do not give up on these things easily – plus I know how to cheat. If you can figure out how I cheated (and no, it ain’t Google) then you win a big “cool beans” from me.

  • 7 Winston Smith // Apr 16, 2008 at 2:50 PM

    Plus, Soul Asylum sounds nothing like the Jayhawks although I think Winona Ryder dated the lead singers of both bands. I may be wrong there.

  • 8 spitballarmy // Apr 16, 2008 at 9:37 PM

    Winston, sir –

    Yes, the songs are from the Sweet Relief II album and the Blue in the Face soundtrack. I must have been into those at the time I made the tape.

    I wouldn’t dare be brazen enough to hazard a guess about the nature of your wily cheating ways. Anyone who is too good for Google Fu is well advanced beyond my sphere of knowledge and experience. Maybe you asked someone? Maybe you have those CDs in your collection? Maybe you called up a former American Idol contestant and got the answers? Maybe Winona Ryder was visiting and helped you out?

    You really don’t think that song sounds like the Jayhawks??

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