Monday, April 08, 2002

Took a long drive with the family last week. Most disputed aspect? What to listen to in the car's CD player. (The Honda came with a 6-CD changer, stuffed in the trunk, so you've got to load before you go). We tried to have a little something for everyone: On the way out of town: "Now 8," (Virgin America). You know, the hits from MTV Nation: Destiny's Child, J-Lo, Janet, Christina, Mandy, Aaliyah, Jessica (Simpson)...the purpose of which was to keep the girls in back seat bopping until we could air it out on the highway. Funny that another of their favorite CD's is a similar compilation: "A Child's Celebration of Rock n Roll" (1986, Music for Little People label, then a division of Warners). This one didn't have a loser: from "Yakkety Yak" and "Charlie Brown" by the Coasters to "Name Game," by Shirley Ellis, though the kids know the latter from a pretty good version by the hipper-than-most kid singer Joanie Bartels. "La Bamba," "Splish Splash," even Johnny Otis' "Willie and the Hand Jive." Even Sheb Wooley's novelty "Purple People Eater," which at the time (1958) served as evidence to the record industry that teens were so moronic they'd buy anything stands the test of time better than Usher or (you name the current chart topper) ever will. And by the way, there was nothing moronic about "Purple People Eater." I'd say that a Martian who could play saxophone from a horn in his head had to be some kind of genius.

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