1977


I hope everyone has had / is having a Happy Merry and at the very least enjoyed some days off! We’re on our way to 15 inches of snow overall, but the Lord was kind enough to send it in waves so we could clear out some before the next blast.

Title: Roller Skating Child

Artist: The Beach Boys

Album: The Beach Boys Love You

Year Released: 1977

What It Is: A silly trifle of a tune with incredible Beach Boy harmonies. It’s really just a fun excuse of a song, and at this point, it was great that Brian was just writing again.

Riffage / Hookage: Brian Wilson hooks.

Cowbell?: No, but it’s got handclaps and a calliope. I think.

Words Of Wisdom: “And we’ll make sweet lovin’ when the sun goes down
We’ll even do more when your her mama’s not around
Well oh my oh gosh oh gee
She really send chills inside of me “

Ok, for one, the third line of the chorus is either ridiculous or brilliant. Or both! (I find myself saying that when I don’t want to curse in front of the kidlets)

But I want to concentrate on lines one and two. If they’re making sweet lovin’ when the sun goes down – and I assume this is with Mom’s approval (it being California in the 70’s, anything’s possible) – then what are they doing when Mom leaves the house? Does she have a bondage hood with a zipper? Do they cross dress? Play roles? Are there apparati? Answers, please?

Mixology Report: This is a song that could either get you a hearty laugh or a punch in the face. Mix wisely!

Top Five Genius Results: Dennis Wilson – Friday Night
The Hollies – Bus Stop
The Zombies – Care Of Cell 44
The Byrds – Set You Free This Time
The Rolling Stones – Rocks Off

Genius started well, but then, WTF?

For The Good Of The Order: Brian had seemingly (!) recovered from his first couple three breakdowns and was back in the songwriting saddle, kinda sorta. Even though Dennis and Carl had proven their stripes on earlier records, the powers-that-be (record company) knew Brian was their meal ticket. (It sure as hell wasn’t going to be any of Mike Love or Alan Jardine’s songs about TM!) But their last record, even though it was a hit, was tentative, and Brian wanted to put out this one as a solo album. But the band prevailed. Brian again retreated and the band commenced to make some awful albums at the end of the 70’s and the beginning of the 80’s. So basically this was the last decent Beach Boys album (of course, Wilson has carried on and at least has released some listenable stuff besides his live work on Pet Sounds and Smile).

Here’s a trib video:

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Title: Stairway To The Stars

Artist: Sweet

Album: Off The Record

Year Released: 1977

What It Is: Are you familiar with the rest of the Sweet catalog? Well, for the most part, it’s the same. Which means, it’s SWEET! (Hah, hah, little funny there. I said little…)

Riffage / Hookage: It’s got a great intro riff and a great hook, complete with airy harmonies (in a sub-Queen vibe). Well, it IS a Sweet song, and even though it wasn’t that popular (it didn’t chart on either side of the Atlantic, according to my research) it still is a classic bubblegum glam tune.

Cowbell?: I think so. There are snapping fingers, woodblock and I believe a cowbell sneaks in there. Of course, there’s the famous “Sweet triplet fill” that pops up on most of their songs.

Words Of Wisdom: “Girls in your condition

they ain’t in no position

to do the things you’re doing to me

you opened like a flower

you filled my head with power

you boys get avaricious

feeling pretty vicious

so don’t you paint your fingers for me

no no you’ll never get to heaven with me.

Now there may be meaning there, or it just may sound cool on the radio. I’m voting the latter.

Mixology Report: I would put it in places where a good up tempo and fun rock song would fit. It SOUNDS familiar enough that most will think they heard it on the radio (and it was on a few Sweet compliations since it was their final British 45 for RCA.)

For The Good Of The Order: Sweet’s discography was a mess in the 70’s, thanks two Capitol having most of the USA rights. They cherry-picked the RCA British albums, and released them sometimes 18-24 months later (such as “Desolation Boulevard” which saw a US release only after “Ballroom Blitz” was added). The UK version of this record excluded this song (you know, since it was a single…) but in the US this wasn’t the lead single. However, it would have been a perfect follow up to “Blitz” and “Fox On The Run”, I think.

No performance vid or anything, but at least you can HEAR it on You Tube. Yay for that!