Monday, December 29, 2008

Me First and the Gimme Gimmes

Left the neighborhood today; sitting at Coffee House NW on W. Burnside. The cute boys working are listening enthusiastically to Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, and one is trying hard not to sing along--though several patrons keep breaking into song, perhaps unconsciously.

I didn't know this band before today--they make me think of the Langley School kids, since they're singing a couple of the same songs ("Sweet Caroline," "Desperado") and covering many of the same or similar artists (the Beach Boys, Elton John). Langley School never took on Simon & Garfunkel, and they were before Billy Joel's time, but I have a feeling they would've had just as much enthusiasm for "The Boxer" or "Uptown Girl" them as they had for Barry Manilow and the Carpenters. There were also no show tunes in the Langley kids' repertoire, at least not to my knowledge--but their versions of "Rainbow Connection" or "Don't Cry for Me Argentina" would've been just as moving as Me First and the Gimme Gimmes'. Or maybe not--there's no irony in a school choir singing "Rainbow Connection," or any show tunes and the shared appeal here is largely the unironic enthusiasm and utter joy for music made ironic by being covered, in either context: whether it's school kids singing "Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft (The Recognized Anthem of World Contact Day)" or punk kids singing about "A Few of My Favorite Things."

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