Saturday, May 27, 2017
This one is stuck in my head a lot these days, because it plays at least once a day in the Peddlers Mall. I chose this version over the others on YouTube because of the "enthusiastic" hand clappers in the background. Can you imagine putting "Back Up Hand Clapper" on your resume? (Although I do have a secret fantasy of shaking a mad tambourine onstage with a happening band for one special performance. Too bad I have no sense of rhythm.)
By the way, as much as I love Madonna, we'll not ever talk about her cover version. Talk about something that should have been shot down as soon as it was proposed. Some songs are sacrosanct classics, you know.
I have memories of being about fourth or fifth grade and getting an LP for Christmas--one of those educational types--that was all original songs for kids about American history. I can still remember snippets of the songs. The one about the stock market crash in 1929 had a chanted refrain ("Stocks are going up! Going up!") that kept building and building until the crash happens. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the album or who put it out. Of course, my copy is long, long gone.
It's one of those things I would love to find one day at a thrift, if only to prove to myself that I am not hallucinating and that the opening song really, inexplicably, was......American Pie! Surely, I cannot be misremembering something as bizarre at that. Surely.
The reason this sticks out in my mind is because I remember having to ask my mother what "rye" was the first couple of times I heard it. I thought that the good old boys were drinking whiskey and eating bread, but since the song said they were "drinking whiskey and rye" I thought they were putting the bread into the whiskey. YUCK!
I also had to ask what a "levee" was.
I've never been able to turn up anything on the internet about this album. I just keep running into references to Don McLean, Madonna, or that damn movie. Anyone who could help me prove that I'm not insane would be much appreciated. I know I'm not making this up in my head.
If you need or would like to read an interpretation of the lyrics, you can start here. There are several others out there.