Not So Silly Love Songs

I had a fascinating conversation with a philosophy professor friend recently whose contention it was that the decline of our American culture could be observed by noting the acute lack of good love songs being written. I would have forgotten the conversation if it were not for my wife. She was watching a “chick movie” on the “Chick Channel” and the music at the end was Michael Bublé singing “Save the Last Dance for Me”.
She asked me, from the other room, “Do you remember who first sang that?” I didn’t, so I Googled it and learned that it was first recorded in 1960 by Ben E. King with The Drifters. Now, that’s not to say that Michael, with the funny last name, doesn’t do a beautiful job with it and I strongly suggest that the reader listen to the words on YouTube , especially if you are not of a generation who knows them by heart. They are beautiful.

Michael Bublé – Save the Last Dance for Me
The point of me telling you this, besides offering an example of how things have changed for the worse, is this. It was written by a man who had polio and used crutches to get around and could not dance. He wrote it for his wife who was a Broadway actress and dancer.

Now, I don’t know what that makes you think, but, every time I listen to what’s playing on the radio today it makes me think that, somehow, people have gotten the idea in their heads that the words sex and love are synonymous. Especially young people.

That is, I think, a clear sign of two things.
1.  A culture past its peak.
2.  In spite of every effort on my part, I must have grown up.



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5 responses to “Not So Silly Love Songs

  1. freeze43

    I try and think of culture like rocks eroding. We always have this idea that the years past were amazing and culturally significant and all the rest of it because all the crap culture had eroded in time, leaving the good stuff to stay on as classic. I don’t think, for instance, that the radio stations in the 50s were filled with genius all the time, nor do I think the same for the Baroque period or today.
    In the coming years I think we’ll look back at what we have now and say with a sneer “this was what it was like in the good old days”

  2. And yet freeze, there are times that stand heads above the rest with respect to creativity, change and excitement. I honestly believe the 60’s will be remembered for those things… LONG after those of us who lived them are dust.

    • freeze43

      I think Ancient Greece will trump all of that. Followed by maybe circa 50 years from now when space travel gets a bit more legit.

  3. brent mosher

    I’ve been away for two months treeplanting and am just getting to your posts now. I liked this one. I was treeplanting with university kids much my junior and was expecting to be cringing at a lot of bad rap and dance music, which to an extent I was. But many of them were listening to a lot of 60’s and 70’s music because, they said, today’s music sucks.

    There is always good music around, it’s just that nowadays there is so much music, and so many delivery platforms, it can be hard to sort through it all to find the good stuff. Check out Tallest Man On Earth. I’d agree the 60’s and early 70’s were a fertile time. When I was 18, NOBODY listened to music that was 30 or 40 years old. Now you’ve got kids listening to Led Zeppelin and saying they are their favourite band. That’s saying a lot.

    Michael Buble sucks, by the way. Nobody who is cool likes him. He’s a bit of a joke here in Canada. Music for uptight conservative types.

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