Thursday, November 13, 2008

Vinyl: Rickie Lee Jones

I'm having a hard time breaking up with Rickie Lee Jones.

In the effort to get rid of more stuff, I'm going through a box of old vinyls which haven't seen daylight in years. I repeat: years. But I'm having a hard time letting go of Miss Rickie on vinyl. I am still loving on this cool chica's music style and street attitude.

I remember seeing her on SNL in 1982, performing Chuck E.'s in Love. I was blown away. I could hardly breathe. It was so different than anything else going on at the time: different from what my friends and I heard played on KJR radio and the like.

And what a cool-headed performer she was. After singing Chuck E., she was unexpected signaled by the producer to play another song because the producers had mis-calculated the show's running time. Seven minutes remained before the end of the show and they were out of material. (That's the "live" part of SNL, kids.) She and her band quickly rolled into Woody and Dutch on the slow train to Peking and filled in another 5 minutes of the show. Woody and Dutch was later released on her second album, Pirates.

I was a youngster and a music neophyte back then. My friends did not understand why I liked her music nor could they see how she was disrupting the pop nonsense of the time. The SNL version of her (stoned?) performance isn't available online, but here's the next best thing: a music video of Chuck E.'s in Love. Stands the test of time, doesn't it? As do several of her other tracks.

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