Thursday, December 31, 2009

A few more answers...

A couple weeks back, Rockmocker Central Command asked readers to contribute their own answers to the lyrical questions posed by classic rockers. Submissions have fairly streamed in. Below, a few of our favorites thus far. (Have some answers of your own? Send 'em in and we'll continue this thread in a future post.) 

Two answers for Chicago... (submitted by D.C.)
1. Yes. Not just anybody, but with modern technology, I'm pretty sure that almost everybody really knows what time it is.
2. 25. It's just a guess, but I know what that number is. If 6 to 4 is supposed to be 6 'til 4, then that is one of my least favorite times of the day, because I usually start to get really groggy around 4.

Three answers for the Eagles...(submitted by D.R.)
1. I don't see anything particularly nonsensical about riding fences. Somebody's got to do it, and I got my reasons, as you know.
2. My feet do occasionally get cold in the winter time, yes. Life in the Midwest, what are you gonna do? My trick knee hurts when it rains, too.
3. No, I don't think it's especially funny how the feeling goes away. I find it a little alarming in fact and will seek medical attention if it happens.

(Desperado lyrics here.)
Thanks D.C. and D.R.! Your Junior Rockmocker badges are in the mail!
That's it for 2009. Tune in next week for further adventures in mockery and rockery.
One more thing...
Don't trust that rock-addled memory of yours...Sign up for automatic email posts from the Rockmocker in the right-hand column!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Another question for Ozzie...

If you're on a "crazy train," wouldn't going off the rails be a good thing, tantamount to regaining your sanity? (Assuming you don't go off the rails while going over a river or something?)

Lyrics to Crazy Train here.

Got questions or answers for a classic rocker?
Don't delay! Get thee to a rockmocker.

Monday, December 28, 2009

A question for Black Sabbath...

Rockmocker reader D.V. writes:
If Iron Man is made of iron, why does he have boots of lead? Are they somehow more frightening than boots of iron?

Well put, D.V., and thanks for submitting the first of what will surely be many questions for Satan’s favorite underlords, the gentlemen of Black Sabbath.

“Are lead boots somehow more frightening?” you ask.
Consider this. Iron, while it can be forged into some scary things (knives, cannons, maidens, giants…) is essential for effective cell growth and development. An iron deficiency results in low energy, poor work performance, and decreased immunity.
Lead, on the other hand, despite having its productive uses (batteries, radiation shields, zeppelins), is nonetheless a potent neurotoxin that accumulates in the body’s soft tissue and bone marrow. If a developing body accumulates enough of it, junior is looking at a permanent seat on the short bus.
Bottom line, a child might actually benefit from licking Iron Man’s bare feet, but once he puts on those lead boots…he becomes an I.Q.-destroying colossus.

Also, “boots of lead” conveniently rhymes with, “fills his victims full of dread,” and let’s be frank—you just don’t pass on a divinely inspired lyric like that.

The apocalyptic song ends, of course, thusly:
Heavy boots of lead
Fills his victims full of dread
Running as fast as they can
Iron Man lives again!

And it’s really that last line that makes the up-to-this-point pretty ominous song much less scary to the rockmocker. I mean, how fast do you really have run to escape a guy wearing lead boots?

Seriously, Iron Man, you could "unfurl" (rhymes with "world") a lot more vengeance if you would go with some kind of cross-training shoe.

Got a question for a classic rocker? Send it to the rockmocker!
Brilliant lyrics to Iron Man here.
Below, a pre- purple Lennon glasses Ozzie does his thing…

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A question for Kansas...

from your wayward son:
Make up your mind. Do you want me to carry on or lay my weary head to rest? Two very different things.

Lyrics to Carry On My Wayward Son here.
Got a question for a Classic Rocker? Send it to the Rockmocker.

Don't forget! We're also currently accepting answers to lyrical questions to be included in an upcoming post. (See original call for contributions.)

Questions like:
1. Do you believe in rock and roll?
2. Can music save your mortal soul?
3. Can you teach me how to dance real slow?

To which my answers would be:
1. Beyond all reason.
2. Actually, I'm immortal.
3. Coincidentally, that is the only kind of dancing I'm qualified to teach. 

Keep those answers coming!

Monday, December 21, 2009

A question for Lynyrd Skynyrd...

re: Gimme Three Steps

Linda Lou's boyfriend has a gun in his hand. Do you honestly think three steps toward the door is going to make much of a difference?

ATTN ROCKOSPHERE: The Rockmocker has stockings to stuff and chestnuts to roast. Posts are likely to be spotty and short this week.

Got a question for a classic rocker? Send it to the rockmocker!

Lynyrd Skynyrd. Because sometimes two guitars just isn't enough.
(Can you find 1) three guitars 2) a really stoned guy 2) a London bobby???)

Friday, December 18, 2009

A few answers...

Last week's question for Pete Townshend got me thinking about songs that pose lyrical questions. So today, something different. A few answers... 

An answer for Peter Frampton…
Maybe, on rare occasion. But most of the time I would have to say, no. No, we do not feel like you do.

An answer for Aldo Nova…
Yes, I believe I can live this fantasy life. In fact, sign me up immediately.

An answer for Joan Jett…
Did then, not so much now. (Want to touch you there, that is.)

Two answers for Creedence Clearwater Revival, re: the rain
1. Of course I’ve seen it. What the hell kind of question is that?
2. Despite having seen it, I have no idea who'll stop it.

How about it? Got an answer for a classic rocker? Send it in and we’ll revisit this thread in a future post.

Oh, what the hell…here’s Joan Jett. (What, you'd rather Aldo Nova?)
(Flashes open overcoat at 0:26, Knocks out muscley guy at 0:45)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

A question for Head East...

"I've been walking behind you since you've been able to see.
There's never been any reason for you to think about me."

Never been any reason for me to think about you? 
Dude, you have been walking behind me since I’ve been able to see. Do you appreciate how that could freak a person out after a few decades. I’d say there are plenty of reasons for me to think about you. And, quite frankly, probably grounds for a restraining order.

Btw, I crashed my mom’s oldsmobile to this song in 1987. On a date with Cecilia. Not important, really. Just sharing. Guess that’s why every time it comes on the radio I want to steer into something.

Full lyrics to Never Been Any Reason here.
Sign up to get email updates over there.
Got a question for a classic rocker? Send it to the Rockmocker, and we'll pass it along.

Ladies and gentlemen, the pride of South Central Illinois...Head East! (The video is crappy but the audio's okay.)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A quick one for John Mellencamp...

"Suckin' on chili dogs"?
Why you not bite, my friend?
Must be an Indiana thing.

Got a question for a classic rocker? Share it with the class.
Lyrics to Jack 'n Diane here.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A question for Steely Dan...

Rockmocker reader, M.A., writes:
How exactly does one stow away time? I'm not sure I get "reelin' in the years" either.
Excellent question, M.A.! Becker and Fagen were always a tad too cerebral for the rockmocker (other than naming their band after a strap-on dildo--that I understand.) I can only posit that the song has something to do with fishing. As for time-stowing devices, see Jim Croce. (not to worry, both links above are SFW)

Got a question for "the Dan" or another classic rocker? 
Send it to the rockmocker. We'll pass it along.

Reelin' In the Years, live from '78
(BTW, that's "Skunk" Baxter on guitar, ex-Steely Dan, ex-Doobie Brother, current member of Congressional Advisory Board on missle defense. Huh?)

Monday, December 14, 2009

A question for Elton John...

Be honest now. Have you ever in your life used a little muscle to get what you need?
If so, which little muscle was it?

Lyrics to Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting) here.

Got a question for a classic rocker? Query the rockmocker.

Friday, December 11, 2009

A question for Pete Townshend...

re: Who Are You?
I took the tube back out of town
Back to the Rollin' Pin
I felt a little like a dying clown
With a streak of Rin Tin Tin

So, how exactly does that feel?
Straight off the bat, I’ve got to think that a dying clown would have some profound regrets about his or her career choice. (A clown, for god’s sake…one chance at life and this is what I came up with…). Overlay that with the bitter irony of an entertainer dying alone, on the tube, heart like a broken cup, greasepaint smeared, big floppy shoes stained with God knows what. All I ever wanted was to make the children laugh…
But, HEY! Wait a minute…what’s this feeling??? It’s a twinge of something…something different. Can’t be sure but…woof! WOOF! Whoa. Hey! I feel like…like…like a Teutonic Hero Dog! YES! "Achtung! Fellow riders of the London mass transit…It’s me, Rin Tin Tin! To the rescue!!... What’s with the drunk clown over there?"
I guess, Pete, maybe what you’re really saying is, you were feeling a little conflicted. I understand completely.

Got a question for a classic rocker? Ask the rockmocker.
And don’t forget to sign up for the handy email feed.

 Who Are You? From The Kids Are Alright (’78)
“Dying clown” line at 1:44
“F-bomb” dropped at 2:04
Silly handclapping at 4:33
Keith Moon being a goofball throughout. His last studio performance. Damn.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A follow-up question for Bob Seger...

Sorry to bother you twice in one week, Mr. Seger, but this one has puzzled me for a long time...
"Like a rock, chargin' from the gate."

Seriously? You couldn't think of anything else to rhyme with "standin' arrow straight" (which rocks also don't typically do)?

A few alternatives for your consideration...
Like a rock, hard to penetrate.

Like a rock, puttin' on some weight.

Like a rock, very much like slate.

Like a rock, pointless to debate.

Like a rock, from the granite state.

Like a rock...crushin' scissors is my fate.

That's it for now. We'll discuss Turn The Page another day.

Really need to see the lyrics to Like A Rock? Here.
Got a question for a classic rocker? Here.
Sign up to get rockmocker posts via email over there. Don't cost nuthin'.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A question for Kevin Cronin, from the subject of "Keep on Lovin' You"...

Kevin, you make it perfectly clear that you’re going to keep on loving me, that it’s the only thing you want to do, that you don’t want to sleep, etc. I appreciate that.
That said, do you really think it was necessary to remind me, again, that you know “all about those men” and allude to me as a snake in the grass “all coiled up and hissin(g)?”  In other words, even though I’m a whore and snake, you’re gonna keep on loving me. Thanks. Love you, too. Ass.

Do yourself a HUGE favor and watch this vid w/in a vid. It will be the best 3 minutes, 51 seconds of your day. Trust me. 
 Kevin Cronin=Least Masculine Rock Frontman Ever (Freddie Mercury included.)

Keep On Lovin' You lyrics here.
Got a question for a classic rocker? Send it to the rockmocker.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Where Night Moves loses me...

It actually starts pretty well.

I was a little too tall
Coulda used a few pounds.

A concise, evocative summation of adolescent self-doubt. I like it.
(Also, I too was a little too tall and could've used a few pounds.)

Next line:
Tight pants points hardly renown.

Wha? I keep reading those words trying to make them make some kind of sense. Can't do it. I'm not even sure which word is the verb. Or if there is a verb.
Do the tight pants have points? Are they pointing at something?
Have they earned points?

"Renown" means acclaim, honor, or fame. At the very least, if the word is modifying "pants," it should be "renowned." But that doesn't really help much either. Maybe he's saying his pants are hardly famous. Maybe it's a veiled (really veiled) allusion to Leonard Cohen's famous blue raincoat. Bob Seger's non-famous tight pants.

As the oldsters say, it's Greek to me. So I translated it into Greek, and then back into English. I actually like it better the way it came out.

Original line:
Tight pants points hardly renown.

Greek translation:
τα σφιχτά εσώρουχα δείχνουν μετά βίας τη φήμη.

Retranslated to English:
the tight underwears show afterwards violence the fame

Huh. Ain't it funny how the night moves?

lyrics to Night Moves here

Bob Seger, more recently.
(no longer in need of a few pounds)

Got a question for a purveyor of that old-time rock and roll?
Send it to the rockmocker. We'll pass it along.

Sign up for rockmocker emails in the column at right.

Monday, December 7, 2009

A question for Jim Morrison...

Rockmocker reader, F.P., has a question for Mr. Mojo Rising himself. He writes:
If there's a killer on the road and his brain is squirmin' like a toad, is this really the best time to take a long holiday and let your children play? Wouldn't this be a better time to, I don't know, keep the kids inside away from the road and cancel your holiday plans? At least the ones that involve traveling along that particular road?

Thanks for that fine question, F.P. The Lizard King left us with so many unanswered questions when he died in 1971. IF he died in 1971.

Read about the ghost of Jim Morrison here.
Lyrics to Riders on the Storm here.

Got a question for a classic rocker? Send it to the rockmocker and we'll pass it along. Sign up to receive rockmocker posts via email at the column on the right.

Friday, December 4, 2009

A question for Messrs. Frey and Henley...

Roughly how many debutantes are there in Houston, baby?

The Long Run lyrics here.
Got a question for a classic rocker? Send it to the rockmocker.

A question for The Hollies...

re: Hey Carrie Anne
When we were at school our games were simple.
I played the janitor, you played a monitor.

What the hell kind of game is that?

Simple games:
1. Checkers
2. Candyland
3. Chutes and Ladders

More complex games:
1. Chess
2. Stratego
3. Janitor/Monitor (A role-playing game wherein a "schoolgirl" who mistakes a randy "maintenance man" for a truant student must chase him down and administer cloakroom discipline of a decidedly non-parochial nature.)

"You're like a woman to me." 
I love that line. So like a woman, and actual fact, what? A yeti?

Lyrics to Hey Carrie Anne here.
Got a question for a rocker? Send it to the rockmocker!
Sign up for daily-ish email posts over there. 

Ladies and gentlemen, The Hollies!  (1969, post Graham Nash)

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Oh, Boston. Where do we begin?

How about here...

I looked out this morning 
and the sun was gone.
Turned on some music to start my day...

Let me get this right. You roll over in bed, peek out the window, and find that the sun is gone. Not "obscured by clouds." Not "not yet risen." But gone. The solar system has ceased to exist as its eponymous center is no longer present. Do you panic? You do not. Do you cry out, your face instantaneously frozen in a hideous death mask? Hardly. What you do do is put on some music to start your day. That, ladies and gentlemen, is how real rockers roll.

More Than a Feeling lyrics here.

Know this, Boston, this conversation is far from over.

Got a question for a classic rocker?
Send it to the rockmocker and we'll pass it along.

Click on the email box over there to get rockmocker posts delivered fresh to your inbox every day!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

A couple questions for Golden Earring

About Radar Love...
First, why are your hands wet?
Second, you've been driving all night. It's now 4:30 in the morning and you are just now shifting gears? Dude, your transmission...never mind.

Four things I bet you didn't know about Golden Earring.
1. They're from the Netherlands.
2. Between 1965 and 2003, the band released 24 studio albums--and you thought all they ever sang was Radar Love and that When the Bullet Hits the Bone song. (I know I did.)
3. Their first #1 hit in the Netherlands was titled Dong Dong Diki Digi Dong.
4. Formed in 1961 and still performing with the same core lineup, they are considered the longest continuously performing band in rock and roll history. WFK? (I think I just coined that acronym--can you figure it out?)

BTW, that's Brenda Lee pictured above--coming on strong.

It's a fickle hellcat, rock and roll classicism. Why did the song Radar Love enter into that relatively small pantheon of songs deemed worthy of ad nauseum play on classic rock stations across America while millions of other perfectly fine songs do not?  MTV surely had a lot to do with it in this case. But Radar Love came out in '73--eight years before the network launched. Makes one ponder. Anyway, today the Rockmocker salutes Golden Earring, who, it turns out is not a one-hit (or even two-hit) wonder after all--not in the global rockosphere, at least. Still rockin' after 48 years. Kind of hard to mock, actually.

Who's up for a little Tuesday morning (pre-MTV) Radar Love ?
(If nothing else, watch the first 16 seconds. Really, classic.)

Got a burning question for a classic rocker? 
Send it to the Rockmocker and you might see it posted here.

Monday, November 30, 2009

A question for Bob Dylan...

Rockmocker reader R.R. writes:

Still watching the parking meters...nothing yet. What exactly am I watching for?

R.R. is talking, of course, about Bob's cryptic admonition in the song Subterranean Homesick Blues. 

Thanks for the question, R.R.--and thanks to you, Bob, 
for providing a lifetime's worth of puzzling lyrics for the 
rockmocker to ponder. 

Here's Bob, layin' it all out on paper from the 1967 documentary film Don't Look Back.

Got a question for a rocker? Send it to the rockmocker.