6.06.2017

It all started with an alligator

Are you ever in a conversation with someone and then you say something out loud and the other person has no idea what made you say that? You may have been talking with your friend about mashed potatoes and then all of a sudden you mention something about having to take the car to the shop. The friend is wondering where that came from and then you have to explain that mashed potatoes reminded you of your trip to the grocery store to buy potatoes and how when you came out of the store, you discovered your check engine light was on in the car and therefore you have to take your car to the shop.

This happens to me a lot. Sometimes I'm not sure what the connection is so I try to solve it like a mystery and then when I realize the connection, I feel so excited.

Maybe it's just me.


Anyway, I've been wanting to write about this album I downloaded the other day, Billboard #1s: The '70s. I was looking for The Doobie Brothers' song, "What a Fool Believes" and couldn't believe I didn't already have it on my iPod. I debated downloading a full Doobie Bros album, but realized there were only two songs on there that I really liked, and then I came across this 70s album. When I looked at the rest of the album, I had to get it.

1. What a Fool Believes - The Doobie Brothers
2. December, 1963 (Oh What a Night) - Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons
3. Crocodile Rock - Elton John
4. You're So Vain - Carly Simon
5. Midnight Train to Georgia - Gladys Knight & The Pips
6. Lean On Me - Bill Withers
7. Then Came You - Dionne Warwick & The Spinners
8. Pick Up the Pieces - Average White Band
9. Let's Get It On - Marvin Gaye
10. Reunited - Peaches & Herb
11. Make It With You - Bread
12. Oh Girl - Chi-Lites
13. I Can See Clearly Now - Johnny Nash
14. Welcome Back (Theme from Welcome Back, Kotter)
15. Raindrops Keep Fallin' On My Head - B.J. Thomas
16. Good Times - Chic
17. Bad Girl - Donna Summer
18. Boogie Ooogie Oogie - A Taste of Honey
19. Shining Star - Earth, Wind & Fire
20. Me and Mrs. Jones - Billy Paul
21. Ain't No Mountain High Enough - Diana Ross
22. Let's Stay Together - Al Green
23. Rich Girl - Daryl Hall & John Oates
24. If You Leave Me Now - Chicago
25. Babe - Styx
26. Love Train - O'Jays
27. Three Times a Lady - The Commodores
28. Without You - Nilsson
29. You Make Me Feel Like Dancing - Leo Sayer
30. Heart of Glass - Blondie

What a list of songs! And just about all of them conjure up some image or memory from my childhood.

"I Can See Clearly Now" reminds me of a time when we lived in Bismarck, ND and my mom had the couch pulled out to vacuum and I was standing behind the couch and singing along. I was probably 4 years old.

A lot of these remind me of when we lived in Albuquerque, NM and I had won an orange transistor radio through a coloring contest. My mom used to send me to my room for afternoon naps and instead of sleeping, I'd listen to my radio with one earpiece. "Crocodile Rock," "Babe," "If You Leave Me Now"...these all remind me of those "nap" times. (Other songs that remind me of those naps, that aren't on this album, are "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" and "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.")

"You're So Vain" reminds me of Albuquerque too. I remember asking my mom what "vain" meant and when she explained it to me, the song lyrics really confused me..."You're so vain--you probably think this song is about you..." But it IS about whoever she's singing about! This still bothers me to some extent.

"Reunited" reminds me of a time when we were in Omaha and my dad had a friend nicknamed "Peaches" who was coming to the house. Debbie was taking a nap and I woke her up and told her Peaches and Herb were coming over. She was so excited. Not only did Peaches and Herb not show up, my dad's friend Peaches, turned out to be a man! Debbie was mad. I, of course, found it hilarious.

"Bad Girl" reminds me of listening to my Donna Summer album on my little record player in my room. In hindsight, Bad Girls probably isn't all that appropriate for a 7-year-old. Note: my "record player" was just like this, but I'm pretty sure mine was green.

"Midnight Train to Georgia" always reminds me of riding in the car with my dad when the song came on and he was singing all of The Pips' parts.

I've written before about Earth, Wind & Fire and "Shining Star" being on my dad's end-of-the-party album. (Actually, I just did a search, and maybe I haven't written about it before--when my parents used to throw parties in Albuquerque, my dad would put on Stevie Wonder's Songs in the Key of Life as guests were arriving. At the end of the night when people were leaving and my dad was good and "toasty," he put on Earth, Wind & Fire's That's the Way of The World. I think of it as his "drunk album" (sorry dad) and now it's one of my all-time favorites.)

This 70s album takes me all up and down memory lane and I love it for that.

Now, why was I searching for "What a Fool Believes" in the first place? It was this video.

https://www.facebook.com/ComedianTonyBaker/videos/10154645264903106/


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