Saturday, May 29, 2021

Dancing and Surfing Birds - Hippie Love Turbo Radio Show - Code Word "Date"

On this week's episode of Hippie Love Turbo, (totally not a repeat!) on KUCR 88.3 FM I talked about the third episode of the early 2000s television show Grounded For Life and how one scene in particular stood out for its honest take on a problem many music lovers have had to deal with over the years. I'm not talking about scratched records, warped tapes, or broken jewel cases but rather that moment where you hear a new or different song from an artist that you love and you can't help but think to yourself; "This sounds a lot like another one of their songs." Ah yes, the dreaded filler song. Nowadays it's not so much of a problem. You can pretty much find anything online for free or nearly free but back when you had to buy physical media it was a bummer hearing multiple tracks with the same melody or similar lyrics etc. 

A valid argument.

The example I gave on the show was The Trashmen's song Bird Dance Beat which is a near carbon copy of their hit song Surfin' Bird. In fact, they even reference Surfin' Bird in the lyrics!

Well, the kids here are a wailin' so let's do it now.
'Cause the Birdman's singing papa ooh mow mow.
If you've heard the Surfin' Bird you can't go wrong.
'Cause they're playin' and a singin' with a Bird Dance song.

However, I must admit that I forgot to talk about an even more blatant example in ? & The Mysterians' version of Can't Get Enough Of You, Baby which came out a year after their biggest hit 96 Tears. The two songs' intros are exactly, note for note, the same and the way the organ's chords pulse couldn't be more similar. 
In the end, there are probably dozens of other examples of soundalikes but when you listen to this sort of music you have to keep in mind that there are only so many chords that you can use in rock n roll and the number of those chords are probably cut in half when you factor in amateur musicians playing open chords in their parents' basement/garage/shed. If you know of more artists that recycled their hits feel free to list them below and thanks for listening!

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