151. Twisted Sister – Burn in Hell
Twisted Sister is one of those “I saw them back when” bands for me. They were just a bunch of goofy Long Island kids trying to get noticed when I first saw them play at a local amusement park in the late 70’s. They drew 23,000 people to that show and still couldn’t get a label interested in them. But man, did they rock the house.
I’ll still listen to Twisted Sister once in a while when I get in a reminiscing mood, but Burn in Hell will always be my favorite; not for any sentimental reason, but for this:
Also, because it’s one of those songs. You’re driving in the car, just cruising along on a beautiful day, and this comes on the classic rock radio station and all at once, as if by some devlish voodoo, everyone in the car puts their fingers up in the metal sign and starts banging their head.
152. Blue Oyster Cult – Don’t Fear the Reaper
It must be Long Island band day! This is another “back in the day” band – sometimes they would show up at local bars as Soft White Underbelly and try to play a low key gig, but everyone knew it was them and thousands of kids would show up anyhow.
I love this song not for the cowbell. I love it because it was so mysterious to us back then. Not just the lyrics, but the overall atmosphere of the song. It was spooky and creepy and gave us shivers as we played it on the car cassette as we drove to one of the supposed haunted places on Long Island. We were sure the song was about vampires or Satan.
Turns out it’s about endless love.
Which, really, could be about vampires.
153. MDC – My Family’s A Little Weird
No, they’re not technically from Long Island (they were formed in Austin, then moved to San Francisco), but their lead singer, Dave Dictor, is. So we’ll continue with that theme here.
Take about ten hits of speed, mix it with a gallon of anger and a pound of pissed off adrenaline and then light it all on fire and stand in the flames. That’s MDC. This song is typical MDC breathless vocals and speed demon music that sounds like it’s coming out of your neighbor’s garage, combined with lyrics that make you think your dysfunctional family might not be so bad. Or maybe it speaks to you, like one of those “yea man, I know exactly what he means” songs. Grandma’s selling drugs, dad’s wearing a dress, there’s dead children and lying whores and….well, maybe my family has a few of these. So I shouldn’t be too judgmental. Glass houses and all.
154. Stray Cats – Runaway Boys
Yep, another Long Island band.
A very cool bass line, some very cool hair and a great mixture of punk and rockabilly that made you want to dance and kick ass at the same time.
155. Joan Jett – Do You Want To Touch Me There
Not from Long Island, but moved here in 1980 and still lives here.
I wanted to be Joan Jett. I wanted to look like her and dress like her and talk like her and be able to rock the fuck out like her. Then I grew up. And I still wanted to be her.
This was a tequila song. Meaning, you were in small, sweaty club and you just did about ten shots of tequila and you ask the DJ to put this on and suddenly you’re standing on a table screaming out the lyrics and swinging your bra around and you end up doing some drunken version of dirty dancing with some guy you wouldn’t normally get within ten feet of and in the middle of the dance you feel a hand slide up your skirt. I did want you to touch me. Just not…there.
That’s the Long Island edition of 300 songs (though there have been other Long Island artists done here already).