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Thursday, September 08, 2005

Satellite Radio

One of the interesting things about having satellite radio has to do with the multiplicity of formats that the unnamed provider throws at you. There is a run of channels devoted to the music of particular decades of the previous century. There are country stations and jazz stations and rock stations. There are talk stations and spoken word and the blues. You can get kids songs and the call of the Red Sox game. It is narrowcasting at a level undreamt of even by cable TV.

The playlists that can be found on any one station are unusually deep and this can sometimes lead to interesting juxtapostions of songs. For example, yesterday morning when I started up the van, I was greeted on the '70s channel by Bob Dylan singing "You Gotta Serve Somebody." This was followed by Elton John singing "I'm Going to Foist Some Pointless Crap on You" or something. Every silver lining is surrounded by a cloud, I guess.

This morning, on the '60s channel, I was treated to Paul Revere and the Raiders performing a song called "Let Me." This song featured the lyic, "Let me, let me./Baby, you don't get me" and a blatant ripoff of the musical break from "MacArthur Park." (This is the musical equivelent of a heroin addict rolling a sterno bum.)

Now, back in the '60s, I was prepubescent and quite the fan of Paul Revere and the Raiders. They had cool blue-and-buff uniforms and tri-corn hats and an afternoon TV show called "It's Happening," of which I was an aficianado. (I kind of remember seeing The Mamas and The Papas on there. Sometimes one wishes for the onset of senility.)

After hearing "Let Me," I had to check on on Paul and the Boys. I got this picture from the website.

Apparently they've gone over to the other side, since those are definitely Redcoats they have on. If you happen to be in the Sacramento area tomorrow, You'll be able to see Paul Revere and the Traitors at the Gold county Fair in Auburn, CA.

Mark Lindsay is no longer part of the group, but, according to his wesite, he's making a rather limited comeback.

There are some anomalies with satellite radio. For example, Depeche Mode plays nearly around the clock on one channel or another. I've heard Allen Sherman a couple of times on the '60s channel (including today; apparently "Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh" was the number two song 42 years ago today), but never on the family comedy channel. And I've heard cuss words several times on the family comedy channel. From Myron Cohen, no less.

But, all-in-all, I enjoy it. I recommend it. I wouldn't even mind being on it.


Anonymous said...

I was a big Raiders fan too. Loved "Kicks" because it rocked but also really had a message. My sister was into Fang. Was "It's Happening" on the beach? I rember seeing them lyp sinking on the beach a lot. I still want to be in a band just like that, only with more forgiving pants.

Paul Reverer

Anonymous said...

If I msspell rember, how can I go back and fix it?

Drinkin' and Postin' Tom

Len said...

Unfortunately, Blogger is an unforgiving mo'fo. The options are to either keep or delete.

I think the show was set on a beach for at least one of its two seasons. I kind of remember Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons being on there a lot. I'm sure how much of these memories is correct and how much is just the result of a series of strokes.

Strokely Carmichael

Pee Jay Probe said...

Blow Grr is a Mo Fo all right. I just typed a long comment and then it went away. I guess it could've been me.

I remember It's Happening too. I miss the days when the music on the radio really had an impact on my life. Now I listen to the radio for news and the occasional mediocre local radio show.

I did hear my first satellite radio the other day in a co-workers brand new giant diesel truck. Please feel free to comment about what a mistake his large puchase was. We listened to the reggae channel. It's called The Joint. I am not kidding. Not now.

Len said...

Dear Pee--

Blogger is really a fickle mistress who sometimes shows off the gift you've given her and sometimes throws it away in a fit of pique.

The '60s had it's own version of MTV, with shows ranging from "American Bandstand" to "Hulabaloo" and "Hootenanny." One is probably hard pressed to even find "Soul Train" these days.

The lineup of the unnamed satellite radio provider is rife with cute names. The Alt rock stations are called Fred, Ethel, and Lucy, for example. There's the Mix, the Loft, and, yes, the Joint. You get show tunes "On Broadway" and acoustic sets on "XM Cafe."

There are also talk channels devoted to "The Right" and "The Left" so that the listener can be certain to never have their prejudices challenged in any way.

That's democracy in action.

I. Ben Damp

Anonymous said...

PJ Proby always had a sexy shirt. I wanted to have a sexy shirt too. But I was fat and in 7th grade so I bought a neon yellow surfer shirt with three black horizontal stripes instead. I wore it with black shoes and pants and bright yellow socks. Later on, my sister mentioned that "bumble bee" had come up in conversation at school in more than one instance. I still don't have a sexy shirt.

I. Will

A Naughty Mouse said...

The band Sonic Ordeal never had a dress code and the music was built for comfort. I think that's why I liked drumming for them. I don't remember any sexy shirts of my own except for a orange and green striped pullover with a built in dickey. I bought it at a roadside garage sale in Willits, CA. It had a crusty stain too. My wife made me throw it out. Sigh.

Len said...

The closest I come to having a sexy shirt is when I avoid wearing one of the shirts I have that reveal diamond-shaped patches of my stomach. The others may not be sexy, but at least they are not a potent antidote to sexy feelings. (On the part of the ladies, that is.)

Wright Sedfred