I took last week off in hopes of getting some other things done in my life as well as trying to focus a little on this stupid book that I have been struggling to write for several years. The notion about using some of the experiences that I gained as a former teacher and coach coupled with memories from my own books might make for an interesting story, but I continue to have problems with peripheral characters popping up when I am not ready for them in my plan. I bet I have dozens of characters running around the few chapters I have written with numbers instead of names. What kind of storytelling is that? Hell, it comes off as a cross between a lame attempt at John Irving writing a complex quadratic equation to balance a chemical equation. That’s truly how much sense it makes at this time. Then, you throw in a mind that’s totally ADHD and suffering from “Pain Brain,” and you’ve got a literary mess on your hands.
So, in order to gain some concrete sequential writing back in my life, I return to this blog, with yet another mixed up entry, with today’s topic an attempt at the sublime but it probably just end up in the profane. So, let’s just do this!
Those of you who are conservative in nature are going to hate this statement, but it’s the truth. Progressive ideas win out over time. That’s called evolution. What was once an acceptable idea for a joke is no longer acceptable. Seriously, when was the last time you heard an ethnic joke? Those things flew around at light speed in the Seventies and Eighties with little regard to the feelings of those from the ethnicity in the butt of the joke. So, now, we don’t really tell jokes based in those demeaning stereotypes. I call that evolution, while others call that being politically correct. I heard that political correctness is a bad term to conservatives, but I like the fact that we are being cognizant of the feelings of others.
With that said, have you noticed that there are several songs from the years 1974 through 1990 that are no longer played on the radio? Last week, I had this kicking around in my mind after listening to an album with some questionable lyrics for today’s climate. So, I bring to you my list of 30 Insensitive Hit Songs That Would Never Get Played Today. I list the songs chronologically.
- Carl Douglas – “Kung Fu Fighting” (1974). Recorded at the height of the kung fu craze, this song’s lyrics are wildly racist. Full disclosure: I own the single.
- Elton John – “Island Girl” (1975). Sir Elton has not played this live since 1990.
- Loretta Lynn – “The Pill” (1975). Don’t worried, the government is not paying for this song to be played. Still, it was HUGE on the Country chart back in the day.
- ABBA – “When I Kissed the Teacher” (1976). You read that correctly! Back in the day, no one worried too much about age differences, but now they do! I don’t think this one would have ever made it to vinyl.
- Joe Tex – “Ain’t Gonna Bump No More (With No Big Fat Woman)” (1976). Nope.
- KISS – “Christine Sixteen” (1977). Of course, the guys from KISS were, uh, hanging out with underage girls. Do you think any band would admit that today? Uh, I don’t think so.
- Ram Jam – “Black Betty” (1977). This rollicking song has some of rock’s catchiest guitar riffs known to man, but the lyrics are totally another thing altogether.
- Sex Pistols – “Go Save the Queen” (1977). Released during Queen Elizabeth’s Silver Jubilee, this anti-monarchy song was censored then and probably would be now.
- Ted Nugent – “Cat Scratch Fever” (1977). Nugent’s always been a walking perv with underage girls. But, did he have to put it in his lyrics?
- Eric Clapton – “Cocaine” (1978). People may age were complaining about N.W.A and other gangsta rappers “glorifying” drugs in the late Eighties and early-Nineties, but they were the same people yelling “Cocaine!” throughout this song at parties and concerts.
- Nick Gilder – “Hot Child in the City” (1978). This number one hit is about an underage prostitute. Think it would fly today?
- Queen – “Fat Bottomed Girls” (1978). Rock’s most flamboyant lead singer, the openly gay Freddie Mercury, singing about women with large derrieres was funny at the time, but probably would be considered body shaming today.
- The Cure – “Killing an Arab” (1979). The Cure’s anti-racism song probably would have to use a different title, whether people knew they were referencing a book or not.
- The Knack – “Good Girls Don’t” (1979). Once again, a song about an underage girl having sex. My question, as a former frustrated teen male, is, “Where were these girls in real life?”
- Benny Mardonnes – “Into the Night” (1980). The opening lyrics say, “She was sixteen years old/Leave her alone, they said.” Well, Benny? DUH! But, guess what? This was a Top 10 hit all over again in 1988! America must have loved their pervs in the Eighties.
- Ozzy Osbourne – “Suicide Solution” (1980). This anti-suicide song is often misinterpreted.
- The Police – “Don’t Stand So Close to Me” (1980). Yes, I love this song, BUT it is the whole Lolita-thing come to life in a song. That male teacher is pleading with his female student to stay away.
- The Vapors – “Turning Japanese” (1980). This song has nothing to do with becoming a Japanese person. Unfortunately, it’s about masturbation and the face one makes during said event. In the future, guys, let’s describe it in a less offensive manner. Still, the song was big in Japan. Go figure.
- AC/DC – “Big Balls” (1981). AC/DC has always been the master of the double entendre. But, we might have to use one that is more difficult to decipher. I told my mom it was about parties. Her response? “Right!”
- Josie Cotton – “Johnny, Are You Queer?” (1981). I told you things were different back in the Eighties. Poor Josie was throwing herself at this guy, and he would not respond. So, Josie asked the age-old question. Not in this day and age.
- Cyndi Lauper – “She Bop” (1983). One of the first hit songs about female masturbation. Surely, the girls weren’t doing it too?!?! How dare we have a song about it, written by a woman, no less!
- David Bowie – “China Girl” (1983). This remake of Iggy Pop’s 1977 song, was a hit despite the misogynistic and racist lyrics.
- Genesis – “Illegal Alien” (1983). Here’s the song that got me thinking. I was just thinking that I had not heard this played on the radio in decades. And, there’s a good reason. It’s a very racist song. I’m surprised Trump hasn’t made it his campaign song, though Genesis probably wants to forget they ever recorded it.
- Frankie Goes to Hollywood – “Relax” (1983). This song is totally about sex, and fairly blunt about it.
- Van Halen – “Hot for Teacher” (1984). What used to be every teenage boy’s fantasy is now a culture no-no. Probably should stop glorifying it.
- Madonna – “Papa Don’t Preach” (1986). This one upset everyone surrounding teen pregnancy. And, it peaked at number one.
- XTC – “Dear God” (1986). An atheist’s statement about God went Top 40 in 1986, and few batted an eye. I wonder what kind of protests would happen today?
- George Michael – “Father Figure” (1987). Sex with an underage girl again? Wrong! Did anyone remind George that he was gay?
- Billy Idol – “Cradle of Love” (1990). Of course, Billy Idol was in the underage girl sex club. These guys would have all be prosecuted today.
- Madonna – “Justify My Love” (1990). Madonna was always pushing buttons back then. But, this song covered more sexual taboos than a pornographic movie probably does. Leave it to Madonna to stir up problems AND score big hits. Even though this song was huge, where is it on today’s radio formats?
There are 30 of my favorites for this category. What songs for this time period did I forget? I want some suggestions!