Sunday, May 08, 2005

"Louie Louie, oh, oh, me gotta headache"

A pop culture controversy that has been simmering for decades came to a head in the most unlikely of places recently when a middle school marching band was instructed not to perform the ‘ol marching band coup de tat crowd favorite, the very epitome of cultural Music Cheesedom, “Louie Louie”.


Benton Harbor Superintendent Paula Dawning citied the songs allegedly raunchy lyrics in ordering McCord Middle School not to perform in in the Grand Floral Parade, held as part of the Blossom time Festival.

How can you ban “Louie Louie”? Hasn’t she seen ‘Mr. Holland’s Opus’ for fuck sakes?

“Louie Louie”, written by Richard Berry in 1956, is one of the most recorded songs in history. The best-known, most notorious version was a hit in 1963 for the Kingsmen; subsequently, the FBI spent two years investigating the lyrics before declaring that they not only were not obscene but also were “unintelligible at any speed”.

Whew! How comforting it is to know that the Kingsmen weren’t the group of evil Nazi perverts we thought they were, Hell-bent on desecrating the very moral fabric of society and promoting demeaning taboo sexual perversities to an otherwise innocent, unassuming and impressionable youth of America!

Now there’s well-spent taxpayers dollar hard at work!

I know I will be sleeping more peacefully in my bed tonight knowing that – and still be the master of my domain, of course.

What the fuck is so “raunchy” about “Louie Louie” in the first fucking place? Surely, they are misinterpreting something in the popular garbled translation! Who could ever be so possibly turned on and subconsciously driven to such unchartered heights of sexual fervor over “Louie, Louie, oh, oh, me gotta go”?

Doesn’t exactly leave you experiencing primal instincts, other than, maybe, murder, does it?

Look at these guys - they look like a High School Glee Club. These were guys that most of us used to kick the shit out of after gym class!

Fortunately, we have a little something today that the 60’s G-men didn’t have then as an invaluable resource tool – Google. After one such quick search, I managed to procure the actual lyrics for Richard Berry’s ode-to-perverts-everywhere anthem, and I am surprised* to find that there is absolutely nothing ither suggestive, provocative, or morally corrupting about the song at all.


Now, I fully understand that it is quite impossible to follow the main topical themes in the popular Kingsmen version of the song, but when just now, after simply reading what is actually being said in the song, it becomes obvious that it is instead about taking a solo sea voyage far away from ones home and loved ones.

Nothing X-rated about that, is there?

“Fine little girl she waits for me
Me catch the ship for cross the sea
Me sail the ship all alone
Me never think me make it home”

Apart from a little lacking in vocational skills, I don’t see anything resembling raunchy yet.

“Three nights and days me sail the sea
Me think of girl constantly
On the ship I dream she there
Me smell the rose in her hair”

Danielle Steele, maybe - Penthouse Letters, NOT!

“Me see Jamaica moon above
It won’t be long, me see my love,
I take her in my arms and then
Me tell her I never leave again”

Actually, it sounds like the guy has some pretty noble intentions instead of intending to befoul his love’s virtue and chasteness. This song has no more to do with being "raunchy" than it does about smoking pot merely because it happens to make mention of a Jamaican moon.

What horseshit!

In a letter sent home with McCord students, Dawning said “Louie Louie” was not appropriate for Benton Harbor students to play while representing the district.

Wait- it’s a fucking marching band! They’re not even going to be actually singing the damn song!

How can you offend somebody by NOT singing an INOFFENSIVE song – particularly to a bunch of stupid flower blossoms?

The world is way too fucked up to even contemplate sometimes!

Band members and parents complained that it was too late to learn another song and its far too stressful to even try to come up with new songs for the band**.

Besides, if “Louie Louie” is too sinful a song to perform publicly lest it should bring everybody to fuck in the streets like dogs in heat, then a rousing marching band rendition of ‘Dr. Feelgood’ probably wouldn’t be welcomed too keenly either, would it?

Narrow-conservative-minded jugheads.

* Now surprised can be viewed in several different ways; such as a sudden rush of nerves and adrenaline as with being greeted suddenly by an assembled group of secretly invited friends and guests in your honor, or just merely surprised, as in finding out that your box of Ritz crackers are %50 Fat Free instead of the regular salted Original variety. This particular surprise was more like the second kind.

** Okay: “boo-hoo”, I admit. You’re playing in a marching band, how stressful can THAT be exactly? But for the sake of not sidelining my other grievance, I will omit this little informative tidbit.


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