Friday, September 12, 2008

Ten years ago I heard...

A decade ago, the Monica Lewinsky Scandal blazed across newspaper front pages, Mark McGwire hit (we now suspect, chemically enhanced) home runs out of ballparks in an unprecedented fashion and a couple computer geek types founded some search engine or something called... what was it called? Oh yeah. Google.
ROUTE 1 readers recall those days by answering this week's FRIDAY QUESTION:
"What were you listening to a decade ago?"
KERSTIN H. -- Raffi and The Beatles.
RICK T. -- Good country music!
BEKAH P. -- New Kids on the Block!
MARY N.-P. -- Not much music, but in the summer, we were listening to a loud chorus of frogs every night around our little pond. It was glorious (and sometimes deafening), but they're gone now -- started disappearing about six years ago.
JIM S. -- This week's question made me curious, so I looked up the Top Songs of 1998. About the only ones on the list I remember listening to (and liking) were "Tubthumping," by Chumbawamba; "One Week," by the Barenaked Ladies; "Crush," by Jennifer Paige; and "Gettin' Jiggy With It," by Will Smith (the last one was one of my 8-year-old son Shawn's favorites at the time.) One song I definitely wasn't listening to, ranked No. 24 on this list, was "Body Bumpin' Yippie-Yi-Yo," by Public Announcement.
MIKE D. -- "Gettin' Jiggy Wit," "Walking on the Sun," "Tubthumping," "MMMBop," "Time of Your Life" and "You're Still the One."

BRIAN M. -- The period from 1997 through 1999 was a weird time in pop music, between the bland pop of people like Duncan Sheik and Celine Dion and the like in 1997, the "big band/jump blues" revival of '98 and the Britney Spears/boy band explosion of '98 and '99. Music, at the time, to me, lacked creativity and musicianship, and it was bleak.
In 1998, I was listening mostly to Dream Theater's first three studio releases and live album, which came out in the summer of '98, Dave Matthews Band's first three CDs, and "Feeling Strangely Fine," by the vastly underrated and now-forgotten Semisonic.
MIKE M. -- A decade ago I had just discovered the Smithsonian collection of classic blues singers. My favorites are Big Mama Thornton, Junior Parker, Ray Charles, Mississippi John Hurt, Blind Willie Johnson and many others.

ERIK H. -- One of my favorite singles from 1998 was “The Rockafeller Skank," by British DJ Fatboy Slim. The song was included on the album “You've Come a Long Way, Baby” and featured the line, "Right about now, the funk soul brother. Check it out now, the funk soul brother," a sample of Diggin' in the Crates Crew rapper Lord Finesse (Robert Hall). The song also features a repeated, twangy guitar riff from the obscure soul instrumental “Sliced Tomatoes” by the band the Just Brothers.


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