We here at the Cultural Music Preservation Society, (or SHASTA, for short), have become alarmed at the number of really good songs from the past several decades that may not be preserved to drive future generations crazy.
First, let me explain the purpose of the Cultural Music Preservation Society. Our, (myself, and a whole slew of non-existent people), non-profit organization spends an annual 3.9 billion federal (“taxpayer”) dollars researching which really good songs from the past few decades should be preserved for decades to come. (This is not true. The federal government, outside the IRS, has no idea that I even exist, and could not care less which songs get preserved.) (The federal government probably has no idea that these songs even exist.)
In short, we are a society dedicated to the preservation of cultural (“really good”) music. This brings me to the point of today’s column. I have found that if the public isn’t informed by someone at least pretending to be associated with the federal government which songs are good or bad, the public will go about doing extremely public things like listening to really bad songs performed by artists like Michael Bolton or Nickelback. This may have been what happened to Iron Butterfly’s classic Sixties hit “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida,” which was a good song, but unfortunately contained upwards of 14 minutes of drum solo. Even with the drum solo edited out, so the song was shortened down to less than three minutes, classic rock radio stations still wouldn’t play it because, without the drum solo, the song makes absolutely no sense. If every single person in a particular city called up requesting “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” one day, the deejay would simply make up a request for a more “reasonable” song. (“And it looks like U.S. Congressman Charles Rangel has just called in with a request fooooooorrrrrr… uuuuuuuhhhhhh… ‘The Monkees Theme,'” the deejay would say.)
I’m not saying that “The Monkees Theme” is a bad song. I’ll even admit that I sometimes sing “The Monkees Theme” while sitting in front of my computer, waiting for my brain to make up important facts about members of Congress. (“We’re the young generation, and we’ve got something to say,” I’ll sing, followed by, “I wonder if I could turn THAT into an important fact about U.S. Congressman Charles Rangel.”) Anyway, after long, difficult, and pain-staking research, we here at the Cultural Music Preservation Society have come up with a list of songs that we believe should be preserved:
- “Thriller” by Michael Jackson
- “If You Go” by John Secada
- “All She Wants to do is Dance” by Don Henley
I’ve decided that Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” should be culturally preserved. After watching various groups of people do the “Thriller” dance on YouTube — including a U.S. Marine, about 500 different wedding parties, an entire Philippine prison camp, and Darth Vader and four Stormtroopers — I started wanting to learn the “Thriller” dance myself, all 14,794,932 moves of it. You never know when it might come in handy, such as a spontaneous diversion during a mugging or hostage situation.
Also while avoiding any productive work by watching YouTube videos for “research purposes,” I came upon the video for the song “If You Go” by John Secada, whom I vaguely remember from the Nineties as having a name that sounds suspiciously like a type of insect. The video depicts an orange John Secada running down an orange highway to a yellow church where his golden girlfriend is getting married to a brown man, then it cuts to a yellow John Secada singing in front of a yellow car at an orange gas station. After a while, I found myself kind of cheering for John Secada, hoping that by the time he gets to the yellow church, the constipated look on his orange face goes away so she’ll see that she really loves him, and they can have little goldenrod children together, if the people staring at them angrily on the bus don’t eat them first.
Finally, the song “All She Wants to do is Dance” by Don Henley. It sounds sort of like what would happen if Skynet sent a group of cyborgs back to 1985 with a mission to terminate new wave music, so instead of trying to kill Sarah Connor, they formed Hewey Lewis and the News and released this song. It’s about a woman who could easily dance straight through the Third World War. If Godzilla attacked the local disco lounge, all she’d want to do is dance, dance, dance. If Godzilla asked her on a date, all she’d want to do is dance, dance, dance, and make romance. I feel that this song should be preserved so future generations will look back on us and laugh at what horrible songwriters we were.