October 23, 2008


One weird thing about having been in the fifth grade in 1975 is that you end up having memories of things like the "cool kids" standing around at recess air-keyboarding the Daryl Dragon *wow* sound from the chorus of "Love Will Keep Us Together" and arguing about who's cooler: Neil Sedaka or Elton John.

That Neil Sedaka was in the mix at that late date, a full seventeen years after "The Diary," was mostly because of the song "Bad Blood," a #1 hit on which Elton John sang the response vocal to Neil's "call." I'm pretty sure that much of the nine-year-old interest in that song derived from the fact that it had the word "bitch" in the chorus. (They probably had no idea that Sedaka co-wrote "Love Will Keep Us Together," too, but he did.)

This unlikely latter-day wave of Neil-mania was as genuine as that kind of thing ever is, though. Several girls in my class took the time to write Neil's name in glitter-decorated balloon letters on their paperbag-covered math textbooks. And actually, the dance he's doing here looks a lot like the dance the fifth-grade girls used to do when they gathered around their cassette players at recess to work on "cheers" and other routines. Their jeans were similar, too:

Posted by Dr. Frank at October 23, 2008 11:46 PM | TrackBack

I was in sixth grade in 1975. I remember this era with great clarity.

Neil was a product of the pre-video era. The song was a hit on the radio, first. In those days if the guy with the hit 45 looked like a total dorkball, which Neil emphatically does, it was already too late to prevent him from guest-hosting the Sonny & Cher show (I have no specific recollection of that, but he must have done so.)

His background singers are, of course, very cute.

Neil figures prominently in Always Magic in the Air, which is about the Brill Building and is brilliant.


(I tried to do the html thing for the link and it wouldn't work.)

Posted by: Lexington Green at October 24, 2008 04:06 PM

"Smoke The Best - Columbian". Indeed.

Posted by: Mike NYC at October 24, 2008 05:54 PM

There is simply no way that what you say is true. Girls did not have crushes on this man.

That makes you a liar too, Lexington Green.

Posted by: josh at October 24, 2008 10:58 PM

I just want to punch him the entire video. and I like him.

Posted by: Jonathan at October 24, 2008 11:19 PM

I may be a liar, but I would never lie about Niel Sedaka.

I do have a specific recollection of this song being a hit. I do not recall whether or not the girls had crushes on him.

Posted by: Lexington Green at October 26, 2008 05:42 AM