Friday, April 23, 2010

Naming Names, Part 1: Females

One of the grand traditions of pop songcraft is the "direct address" lyric: songs dramatically emoted to a specific person, whose name is typically found in the title of the piece. Although the following selections are from a wide variety of genres, they share an overwhelming sense of affective urgency. Love songs on the verge of obsession, they plead with the addressee (us, by means of interpellation) to come around to the speaker's point of view. Enjoy:

"Sadie" - the Fun & Games

A surprisingly minor-keyed, slightly creepy track from the folks who brought you "Elephant Candy" and "The Grooviest Girl in the World."

"Jennifer" - Junior Soul

Jennifer, darling Jennifer/Please don't leave. Beautifully plaintive reggae from the future Junior Murvin.

"Cathy, Come Home" - the Twilights

An everything-but-the-kitchen-sink production from the year of same, 1967.

"Alison, Please" - Geno Washington & the Ram Jam Band

Geno's recorded output is uneven, to say the least, but this lovely piece of bubblegum-soul deserved a greater hearing back in 1971.


Stay tuned for our next installment.

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