“Rock and Roll Love Letter”
Bay City Rollers (1976)
Recommended source: The Definitive Collection
Well, we could all use a little happy. If you need a sign that the Apocalypse didn’t exactly start yesterday, though, consider that this not only stalled outside the top twenty in America, but some fool saw fit to not even release it in the UK, or half the other countries where Rollermania was a real thing.
That’s exactly the kind of stupidity that causes empires to fall.
This song has a lot of personal relevance for me because it contains my favorite misheard lyric. My original angst was bad enough, but now I find that “keep on rock and rollin’ till my jeans explode” was really “till my genes explode.”
I had feared as much, but now the internet has confirmed it.
Not that either could replace “to my Jesus soul,” which was what I heard throughout my blissfully ignorant youth.
Oh, well, at least the Rollers (or their producer) had the decency to slur the blasphemy (and I don’t mean the part about Jesus, which was holy).
There are at lest half a dozen hipper–i.e., more clearly enunciated versions–on YouTube, including the original by the song’s writer, Tim Moore. This smokes them all. You really can’t beat the pros for this sort of thing. And, just on another personal note, I can state with complete certainty that if you segue this on a properly made mix-disc and bleed it out of Madonna’s laugh at the end of “Where’s the Party” it will make your head explode.
In a good, healthy, life-affirming, purely therapeutic way.
Smile and be well.
And, yeah, I thought about doing this as a two-fer with “Yesterday’s Hero,”–the greatest “all glory is fleeting” record ever made–but, what with so many people on Suicide Watch just now, I didn’t want to be held responsible for some kind of wrist-slitting epidemic in case this went viral. The brave can find it easily enough.