Monday, August 04, 2008

Daddy, What's An ' 8-Track' ?

I used to plug the Charlie Daniels Band 8-track into the player of my dad's truck, and turn it up loud as I drove to my girlfriends house. Sixteen years old, full of sass and pretending I lived every lyric of the song "Long Haired Country Boy. "

Listening to a song over and over on the 8-track was no easy feat, but I wore that tape out in just a few short months. So I felt a surge of nostalgic excitement when I read The Charlie Daniels Band will be playing at the West Virginia State Fair on August 14th.

Then I remembered: These days, I'm pissed at Charlie Daniels.

My frustration has nothing to do with Daniels being an ultra-conservative who appears regularly on various Fox News shows, and who shares the stage once in a while with Sean Hannity. Nope, I don't begrudge anyone their politics, regardless. My frustration has to do with the idiotic tinkering Daniels did several years ago to my favorite of his songs.

The original contained the lines: "I get stoned in the morning, I get drunk in the afternoon," and later "I don't want much of nothing at all, but I will take another toke."

Daniels cleaned it up. He now sings "I get up in the morning, I get down in the afternoon." And instead of taking another toke, he sings about telling "another joke."

"But I will tell another joke." What the fuck?

Every time I hear the new version, I want to scream. It's Charlie's song, of course, and he can do with it what he wants. But when he changed it, he changed my memory.


Changin' lyrics of a decades-old hit song to reflect a change in personal values...
And you never did think that it ever would happen again, in America, did you?


Chris James said...

My pet peeve in the same vein is when some church groups change the lyric to "if the LORD allows" rather than "if the FATES allow" in "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas."

Predesitnation shmredestination.

Spike Nesmith said...

Spielberg making a movie of a Charlie Daniels concert was a weird enough combination to start off with, but when he sang "Pat Garrett's got your name on every battery in your flashlight" during 'Billy The Kid', I tuned out.

(tell me that wasn't too obscure, TFG!)