Memorial Day Weekend Barbecue Disaster ’88

23-82 Welcoming Picnic

Don Henley - All She Wants To Do Is Dance

Billy Idol - Mony Mony

The Bangles - Walk Like An Egyptian

Steely Dan - Reelin' In The Years

Over the last decade or so, I have occasionally put up a Labor Day mix (actually the same mix a couple times--since the end of summer is such a downer, it's the 'Dentist's Office' mix, which is all soft, numbing, deathly anodyne rock), but I don't think I've ever done a Memorial Day mix. So here's that.

The only organizing theme for this one is 'songs that you might have heard at a mid-80s family barbecue/company picnic.' I can attest to having personally heard and danced to all of these songs when I was a kid (at my dad's company's picnic/summer celebration), much as it pains me to say that, and particularly in the case of the Don Henley song, because that one is--like much of Don's work--unspeakably gross (c.f. my previous self-therapy re: Don Henley). I have some vivid and bizarre memories of drunk adults going fucking wild for "Mony Mony." Same with "Walk Like An Egyptian," a truly awesome song anyway and one that started an insane dance (though I don't know how long that lasted. Not long, I would guess).

The only song in here I actually love is Steely Dan's Reelin' In The Years, which, jeeze, I don't know if it gets much better--if you fantasize about ferocious riffs, or ever say the word 'riffs' to anyone, you will love this song. Fagen's lyrics are so good here too, just a great mix of cutting observations, smiling wistfulness, etc. Every couple years I'm reminded of how much I love this band and how rich and freaky their music is. Anyway, while caught in a Steely Dan fugue the other night, I stumbled across this amazing video of them playing Reelin' In The Years live (they look impossibly young--also this was when they still had David Palmer with the band, before Fagen took over all vocal duties), and they're introduced by Bill Cosby, who is casually smoking a cigar. Check it out:

[BUY The Very Best of Don Henley, if you must]

[BUY The Very Best of Billy Idol]

[BUY The Essential Bangles]

[BUY A Decade of Steely Dan]

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  1. The Coz? (or is it The Cos?) I’ll surely have to see this after I’m done listening to Stagnant Ponds. I meen Pools. I mean ‘mean’.

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