1/29/2007

Who's This Art Guy?

Have you ever found yourself singing along to a song and realized you have no idea what it’s about? It might be that you’d never stopped to really think about the lyrics or maybe you were just young and innocent.

I can still remember the look on my mother’s face as I walked around the house singing along with Afternoon Delight. What’s wrong Maw? That’s a dirty song and I don’t want you singing it! Oh Maw, you don’t know what you’re talking about.

When I eventually did realize she knew what she was talking about, I was suitably horrified and wondered how my mother, Edith Bunker had figured out what it was about. My guess is she was tipped off by one of her priest friends; I mean they’re a pretty sexually aware group right?

When Elvis Costello came to my attention, I'd just begun to realize there was more to musical life than the local AM radio station was telling me. The album My Aim Is True was just the sound salvation I needed. I was so happy as I watched Elvis go all punk and disobey the powers that ruled SNL by launching into Radio, Radio when he'd been told not to.

One of the songs from that album, I enjoyed for the quirky organ and beat. I had no clue what it was about even though the title might have tipped me off. Pump It Up.

When I saw in a rock book of lists that it was one of the top 10 songs about masturbation, I was shocked. Then I realized the instructional power or art and began practicing furiously. Pump it up until you can feel it, pump it up when you don’t really need it. Oh yeah.

And for you ladies? She Bop by the tricky Cyndi Lauper. Oh Cyndi!

29 comments:

Angela said...

I love Cyndi Lauper, She-Bop is one of my favourite videos! Loved the raw hamburger in it.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

12 years! Man those SNL dudes know how to hold a grudge!

I am shocked, shocked I tell you about Pump It Up. I mean, I used to sing that to my baby! No wonder I kep getting funny looks at the playgroup.

Allison said...

And I innocently danced to Cyndi as a tot.

Thanks for the mp3, and again, fine label use.

larry h. said...

Of course, nothing's more traumatic to one's memory when you remember singing Frankie Goes To hollywood's "Relax" and The Vapors "Turning Japanese" very loud in public on many occasions. Once tried to do that Afternoon Delight at my former job's Christmas karaoke, and many decided that it was probably not a good thing. Of course, I had just seen the Legend of Ron Burgundy.

X. Dell said...

Lemme guess..."Turning Japanese" was number one on the list, right?

I always liked "Afternoon Delight" precisely because it was a dirty little ditty cloaked in a disguise of poppiness.

Just to say, it took a little more imagination to get past the FCC in those days.

mellowlee said...

excellent! and I loved the link to the radio radio story! Thanks Dale!

lulu said...

I was always a fan of "I Touch Myself" by the Divinyls.

Dale said...

I wonder what the raw hamburger symbolizes, hmmm.

Isn't that ridiculous Barbara? You maybe thought it was about pumping breast milk for the baby? If you didn't know though, I'm sure the playgroup was just gently mystified.

Oh sure Allison, what was with the 7 veils then?

I'm worried Larry H. that it wasn't just once for you but more than one song and on many occasions and in public. You're a daredevil!

It probably was #1 X. Dell. You're right about Afternoon Delight though, clever.

At the time watching it Mel, I thought, what's he doing? Oh cool, he's changing his tune, har har. And he did.

Damn, I wish I'd thought of that Lulu. Great song. That one was good for multiple plays. Ok, that was weak.

Jill said...

Lulu makes me realise that I forgot about "when I touch myself"!! The first time I've heard that song I was in university!!
We have some of those song too, but we are not asking ourself about what it is, it's very clear!!
An example?
"Comme j'ai envi de toi"

Holly said...

Huh. I knew about "She Bop" but I confess I always got hung up on the "you want to torture her/ you want to talk to her" lines in "Pump it Up" and figured it was just about a conventional relationship.

I guess I can thank you yet again for enlightening and education me, Dale.Holly

Malnurtured Snay said...

Isn't REM's "Losing my Religion" about self-pleasuring, too?

Berry said...

If you intentionally referred to the "organ and beat" in your "Pump it Up" paragraph, then you are a genius, Dale. Pure genius.

Johnny Yen said...

Wasn't "Pump It Up" what Elvis wanted to play on his first appearance on Saturday Night Live? I thought I remembered that they said no, and he played "Radio, Radio" instead.

Johnny Yen said...

Wasn't "Pump It Up" what Elvis wanted to play on his first appearance on Saturday Night Live? I thought I remembered that they said no, and he played "Radio, Radio" instead.

Coaster Punchman said...

My favorite part of the story is how you call her "Maw."

justacoolcat said...

My favorite song about stroking it would be He's my best friend by Jellyfish.

It has a catchy melody and a meaning I can really get into.

RC said...

on the boardwalk was the first song i realized what not about simply having fun as most understand it.

Chancelucky said...

Okay, so I should think about songs like "All by myself" and "The Beat goes on"?

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

Have you ever watched Arrested Development? There's a great scene featuring "Afternoon Delight"

wonderturtle said...

Surreptitious songs about masturbation are fantastic. Almost as great as surreptitious masturbation!

Dale said...

Jill you naughty little Frinx. Is that the term for a French minx?

I'm all about torture, talking and education Holly. Sounds like a good personal ad.

I always thought it was about Mr. Stipe losing his hair M. Snay.

It was something I just had to work out Berry.

Radio Radio was what he wanted to play so he started off with Less Than Zero and then launched into R.R. Johnny.

It's even funnier if I black out one of my front teeth and say it CP.

You're a vile and disgusting sort Justacoolcat. Thanks for being there.

Under The Boardwalk RC? Was it the 'makin' love' lyric that tipped you off? :-)

Well Chancelucky, if you're starting off with 'when I was young, I never needed anyone...' I'm worried for you.

Thanks for reminding me of that Monkey! I had to think for a bit and then YouTube it but I do remember cringing and laughing my head off at the time.

Who knew there were so many of them around Wonderturtle? Well, all of us I guess.

Old Lady said...

Okay, how about 'Start Me Up', 'Louie, Louie', 'Moni, Moni', Horizontal Bop' and many more. I love the ennuendo played out in songs. 'Strangers in the Night' There's a million of 'em I tell ya!

Bubs said...

Johnny, the song Elvis started to play was "Less than Zero" when he decided it had no meaning for American audiences.

Dale, great list. I'm...touched.

Shroom-Monkey said...

There is nothing better than a song about jacking off!!! seriously.... it is the only way to go...

Dale said...

I know Old Lady and I love them all too, at least when I'm smart enough to figure out there is some innuendo.

Right you are about the song Bubs. Everything else, well, that's between you and you, haha.

Seriously? You're right Shroom-Monkey. My right too.

Writeprocrastinator said...

I didn't know the whole lore behind Mr. McManus's first American appearance and boy, can Lorne Michaels hold a grudge. Fascinating stuff!

Dale said...

Pretty interesting stuff eh WP? Poor Lorne, a misguided Canadian with dreams of being taller.

darling24_7 said...

lol I could go for some afternoon delight about now :) lol

How does it go again?

Dale said...

Come here and we can practice together darling.