Apr 062020

Remember Cabbage Patch Kids, those creepy (or so I thought, in my early 30s, or whenever those things were popular) stuffed dolls that were all the rage for a couple of years? I thought about them this weekend, while listening to The Many Moods of Ben Vaughn, a favorite syndicated radio show hosted by the longtime music-scene friend and all-around great guy whose moods make up the flow of each episode.

This week, Ben did a second edition of his highly appreciated “Comfort Zone” theme from a few weeks back. It was as enjoyable and comfortable an episode as Ben is known to deliver regularly, pushed along gently by his dry wit. The appearance of the Beach Boys‘ “Sail on Sailor” was no surprise. His love for later period Beach Boys far exceeds my own. I won’t get into a whole Please Explain discuss on that song right now, but feel free to explain, as a side topic, why that song is any more loved by hipsters than Pablo Cruise‘s “Love Will Find a Way.”


  10 Responses to “Rock ‘n Roll Cabbage Patch Kids”

  1. diskojoe

    I remember “Get Together” when it was a hit in ’69 & I was 7 @ the time. I remember liking it a lot & I still do. I also remember hearing “Sail on Sailor” a lot on the radio back in ’75 & was later surprised that it only reached # 49 or so in the charts the 2nd time around (it went to #89 I think in ’73).

    So what you’re saying is what songs from our generation have the same resonance as those you mentioned? Do you mean songs from 1976-1984 or so? I would hazard a guess & say something like Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” or REO Speedwagon’s “Keep on Loving You”.

  2. diskojoe, we’re in the same age bracket, so yes, you get the gist of what I’m asking. I so despise those Journey and REO Speedwagon songs, but my tastes aside, they were such massive hits that won’t go away that I don’t think they get to what I’m asking about. Generations since ours are still subjected to those songs, they way we were Frank Sinatra’s hits and forever will be. I’m wondering, for each generation represented here, what nearly forgotten, under-the-radar songs might be our Delaney & Bonnie trifle that mean something to us but may cause subsequent generations to scratch their head over.

  3. diskojoe

    If your meaning of “us” means the sort of people that would read/comment on this site, would something by TMBG or Mojo Nixon & Skid Roper be closer to the mark? Another song that I remember from back in the day had “All I want was a Pepsi” in the refrain.

  4. I spent three weeks in Australia in February and musically it seemed like a time warp. Just about every restaurant – fancy, casual, breakfast, cafe – was playing an ’80 playlist (and 9 times out of 10 it was way too loud). The reason for the trip was our niece’s wedding and at the reception is was the same thing and everyone of that early 30s age group new every lyric to every song.

    One song I didn’t hear that might fit the bill is “Senses Working Overtime” by XTC.

    Ah, I confess, maybe it doesn’t but it gives me an excuse to shoehorn this bit about Mr. Mod’s old sparring partner, Andy Partridge


    One other thing about Australia. While in Melbourne our Airbnb was actually located on AC/DC Lane, one of several streets turned over to graffiti artists. Mr. Mod, how can I upload the Malcolm Young street mural in a comment?

  5. Al, I’m not sure if you can load an image into a comment at this stripped-down community healing version of the site, but feel free to send it my way and I may be able to do so from The Back Office. Thanks.

  6. alexmagic

    Sticking to songs from the hippie era…Mod, am I on the right track with, say a “Reach Out of the Darkness” by Friend & Lover? There’s not a whole lot on the surface that would differentiate it from the kind of song Sonny & Cher might have done while dressed in some kind of problematic costumes as part of a skit on their old variety show. And yet, it’s got something to it that kind of pushes it out further into that “hippie cool” vibe, and I’d imagine it making the cut of an “aw, maaaan, you don’t know that one?” list for someone from that generation.

  7. Good one, alexmagic! Is there something that will emerge as this sort of surprisingly essential song from your generation? Please tell me it’s NOT that big song by 4 Non Blondes.

  8. I am about ten years older than you Mr. Mod, and Friend and Lover is definitely one that lights me up.

    I also always thought that the D&B song was a cover intended to resurrect a song that came off cheesey in its original incarnation, but which they thought had hidden value. I even looked up the song when you referenced it and was surprised to see that Delaney wrote it.

  9. diskojoe

    Here’s another song from back in the day that I think fits into the catagory, “Yellow River”:


  10. alexmagic

    Been thinking on this one, Mod. Luckily the 4 Non Blondes song seems to have already completed the cycle from “maybe this was important?” to “No, it’s still annoying, no critical upgrade needed.”

    I would instead throw something out there like Technotronic’s “Pump Up The Jam”, which was a big hit, but feels incredibly of its time now and hasn’t necessarily been rediscovered/elevated in anyway, and yet straddles a few emerging and converging genres (house, pop, hip hop and being a European act, I suspect has more impact on what was going on in the UK musically than would be immediately evident). Historically speaking, it’s settled comfortably into an eternal home as music to watch people in mascot costumes dunk basketballs to.

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