Friday, December 25, 2009

Holiday Weekend Listomania (Special How Odd of God to Choose the Jews! Audio/Video Edition)

Well, it's Friday, and you know what that means. Yes, my Oriental Delta of Venus coiffeur Fah Lo Suee and I will be off to Wasilla, Alaska, for a Christmas party with former Gov. Sarah Palin and brood. I understand that former First Dude Todd Palin (Secessionist-Hell) will be carving the traditional Xmas moose while dressed as the beloved cartoon character Bullwinkle, which I think shows an interesting sense of irony on his part.

But in any case, further posting by moi will necessarily be sporadic for a day or two.

In the meantime, then, here's a hopefully fun little holiday project for us all:

Best or Worst Post-Elvis Pop/Rock Song or Album That's Written or Performed By (or Simply References) My Fellow Red Sea Pedestrians!!!

That's "Red Sea Pedestrians" as in Jews, in case you didn't catch the reference.

In other words, if it's by or sung by a Jew, or vaguely alludes to the whole Jewish thing, it's good to go.

And no arbitrary rules whatsoever that I can think of, except you can't eat dairy with meat. And shellfish is right out.

Oh, and nothing from Jesus Christ Superstar or Godspell. Seriously -- you try to slip some of that crap into the list and I will come to your house and rip your heart out of its chest cavity with a pair of pinking shears.

Okay, my top of my head Top Nine is:

9. The Blues Project -- I Can't Keep From Cryin' Sometimes

Messrs Kooper, Kulberg, Blumenfeld, Kalb and Katz; not for nothing did people call them "The Jewish Beatles." I saw them at one of their reunion shows in the early 90s, and they actually came onstage to a recording of the theme from Exodus. Heh.

8. Brandon Walker -- Chinese Food on Christmas

I eat Chinese food on Christmas
Go to the movie theater too
Cause there just ain't much else to do on Christmas
If you're a Jew.

This is actually true, by the way.

7. Procol Harum -- Strong as Samson

Psychiatrists and Lawyers destroying mankind
Drivin' 'em crazy...and stealing 'em blind
Bankers and Brokers ruling the world
Storing the silver and hoarding the gold

'Nuff said. And that's even before the verse specifically referencing the Chosen People.

6. Cream -- Disraeli Gears

Named after the 19th century Brit novelist, prime minister and (feh) Conservative. Few things, then as now, annoy me more than a right-wing Jew. Benjy, Benjy, Benjy, remember where you came from, boychik.

5. Tom Lehrer -- I'm Spending Hanukkah in Santa Monica

A previously unreleased track from Rhino's terrific box-set retrospective The Remains of Tom Lehrer from 2000. It boggles my mind, but until I read the biographical essay with the set, it had never occurred to me that Lehrer was, in fact, Jewish. And with a punim like that...

4 The Beatles -- Rabbi Saul

From their brief and little known Orthodox Jewish period. Unreleased songs rumoured to exist in the EMI vaults include "Sexy Seder," "Mocky Raccoon," "P.S. I Owe You," "The Shul on the Hill," and "Your Mother Should Only Know."

3. Matisyahau -- King Without a Crown

Matisyahu: Oy gevalt, what will the goyim think? Seriously -- a Hasidic Jewish reggae musician has got, for want of a better word, issues. That said, I couldn't find a Killers song that fits this week's theme, and as you know I always like to include a tune recorded in the current century.

2. Marc Cohn -- Walking in Memphis

Now Muriel plays piano
Every Friday at the Hollywood.
And they brought me down to see her
And they asked me if I would
Do a little number
And I sang with all my might.
She said "Tell me, are you a Christian, child?"
And I said "Ma'am I am tonight"

Okay, so a nice Jewish boy temporarily recants his faith. I still think the song is a masterpiece.

And the numero uno Jewbie Doobie Doo ditty of all time obviously, I can't believe you're even hocking me about this, has to be --

1. The J. Geils Band -- First I Look at the Purse

Yeah, Smokey Robinson wrote it (for The Contours, of "Do You Love Me?" fame), but it took five scrawny jewboys from Boston to do the definitive version of the definitively crass song about looking out for number one.

"A woman can be
As fine as can be.
With kisses sweet as honey.
But that don't mean a thing to me...
If she ain't got no money."

Alrighty, then -- what would your choices be?

[Shamless Blogwhore: My parallel Xmas Cinemania -- featuring a certain rodent trio remaking their signature in the company of a band that played at Woodstock -- is now up over at Box Office, courtesy of our bud Dave™©. It being the holiday and all, it would really get me in good with management if you could see your way to going over there and leaving some sort of snarky little seasonal comment. Thanks!]


Anonymous said...

Everything by Peter Himmelman.


Brooklyn Girl said...

"Slum Goddess of the Lower East Side" - The Fugs. And speaking of Tuli Kupferberg:

Tuli Kupferberg, who has just turned 86!!!, is an American treasure, a National wonder, a Gaian glory, a genius in the footsteps of Stephen Foster and other major tunesmiths, for songs such as “Nothing,” “Morning Morning, “ “Carpe Diem,” “Kill for Peace,” “The Ten Commandments,” “When the Mode of the Music Changes,” and, of course, “CIA Man,” which was featured on the recent Coen Brothers movie, Burn After Reading.

He just had a stroke, for those of you who might be interested. More at the Fugs official website.

ninotchka said...

dick dale and the deltones= hava nagila
beastie boys- shadrack
serge gainsbourg-rock around the bunker
pre elvis
matzoh balls- slim & slam
the ravens- mazel means good luck

MBowen said...

Age-Old Story by NYC's 5 Chinese Brothers - a Hanukkah carol in a country gospel style. I think lead singer/songwriter Tom Meltzer is a landsman, too.

MBowen said...

Oh, I just found out about this on dKos: Christmastime For The Jews - and yes, the singer is who you think it is!

steve simels said...

Oh god, I'd forgotten that Darlene Love clip.

Libby Spencer said...

Geez. I never think of people in terms of their ethnic origins. But I guess I'll go with Leonard Cohen's latest album that he was touring on a while back. Really loved it. He IS jewish, right?

Gummo said...

Well, there's always this from Bob D. --

Edward said...

Well, if we're just going for mentions:

Buffy St Marie/Donovan: Universal Soldier

Tom Lehrer: National Brotherhood Week

As for a whole song: Tom Waits: Road To Peace.

Then there's the musical: When you're in love everybody's Jewish

A nice picture book came out in the last couple of years and I can't remember the title, but it is a collection of Jewish/Yiddish LP covers and a history thereof. Check it out.

Edward said...

Christ, how could I (or you!) forget:

Desmond Dekker and the Aces: The Israelites

steve simels said...

Edward said...
Christ, how could I (or you!) forget:

Desmond Dekker and the Aces: The Israelites

Oy gevalt.

The Phantom Creep said...

Well, if nobody else is going to mention it, how about the entire ouevre of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller?

Which is to say just about every great rock song of the 50s not written by African-Americans.

See: Smokey Joe's Cafe.

dave™© said...

So everyone knows Dylan stole "Must Be Santa" from Brave Combo, right?

Including, apparently, Dylan. So I guess that makes it a "homage"...

dave™© said...

I'd never seen that Lehrer number before - thanks!

Anonymous said...

How could our ancestors fail to have glommed that Lehrer was the Messiah. Or at least the proto-Costello. He deserves a museum, at least.

Noam Sane said...

"Three thousand years of beautiful tradition, from Moses to Sandy Koufax..."

- Walter Sobchak

"The Christians and the Jews were having a jamboree
The Buddhists and the Hindus joined on satellite TV"

- "God's Song"

dSmith said...

"Not odd of God,
the goyim

danny1959 said...

Which one of J. Geils is not Jewish? There are six of them, right?

The Kenosha Kid said...

Songs written by Graham Gouldman:
For Your Love
Heart Full of Soul
Evil Hearted You
Bus Stop

and speaking of 'oeuvres,' Lou Reed is MOT.

"He's a Jew!" - Jack Jack, the Idiot Dunce by The Kinks

Anonymous said...

The Dictators

"The Next Big Thing"

"I knocked 'em dead in Dallas
And I didn't pay my dues
Yeah, I knocked 'em dead in Dallas
They didn't know we were Jews
I sock 'em everywhere that I sing
Cause you know baby
I'm the Next Big Thing"

Dave said...

"Mother" (John Lennon)
"Mother-in-Law" (Ernie K-Doe)

Anonymous said...

Walking In Memphis? Masterpiece??