"Bueno," I said, not looking up from my muffin.
"But I have to choose..." he said, a little perplexed.
"I want the newest Diana Krall," I announced, "And maybe something else, I don't know," I said, making a grab for the catalog.
"Uh uh uh," he evaded me, "I'm not giving up custody of this yet...have you heard any of this Amy Winehouse?"
"I've heard of her, R&B, more my thing than yours," I told him.
"You can't say that; I don't dislike any genre, just sometimes a lot of the artists in it," he protested.
"Name me one R&B artist you like," I challenged.
"Give me a second...okay Sade. I bet I can get a list of more if you give me a minute."
I took advantage of his distraction to snatch the catalog.
"Robin Thicke...wasn't that an 80s actor, from that show about the family...?"
"What?" asked my husband, who apparently never watched television (excepting sports) before 1991.
"Oh, wait no that was Alan Thicke. With or without an e, I can't recall," I said, a little absently, thinking.
"That's be a first, Queen of Trivial Pursuit."
"Who is this guy, he's ringing a bell, Robin Thicke, hmmm...wait wasn't he that completely horrible skinny guy in the pencil suit who came onto some show, maybe the dance one or Idol and just made us wish we had lots of wax in our ears or something...?"
My husband shuddered and looked at the prominent photo, "Oh yeah him...yuck."
I flipped back over to Amy Winehouse, "Come on, let's go search YouTube."
We listened to several tunes, growing to like it more and more.
"She's like a David Bowie in his Absolute Beginner's phase," I said, delightedly.
"God, that was a horrible movie," my husband said.
"I know, I never got why the theater and film majors loved it so well...when was that?"
"I guess. You know, this one is so Diana Ross, so Supremes. I bet she says those are artists that influenced her."
"Diana Ross?" my husband said, disgust lacing his voice and decorating his face.
"Look, you know I'm a Motown and R&B fan...I want that Motown Gold album by the way, Stevie Wonder, mmmm," I said.
"Stevie Wonder, now there's another musician with a terrible voice."
"I must just like that style," I told him, "Maybe I'm a bigger fan of musicians than singers. Like Janis Joplin."
"That's what I'm talking about!" he said, "That's like Amy Winehouse, not the greatest voice ever, but digging deep, reaching some emotion or something."
We clicked on one last song, F*#k Me Pumps.
"She's got attitude, for sure," I said.
We were silent for a minute listening.
"You know what? Her music. I swear she lifts pieces of old songs, their chorus or something," I said, "It's so familiar. I know this riff. It'll come to me, what it's from."
My brain struggled through cold-induced thickness and lack of coffee sluggishness.
"HA!" I cried triumphantly a minute later, "I've got it! La Boum, French, 1982."
"You totally just made that up, pulled it out of your ass."
"No, honest to god, it's a real movie, I saw it in France, it's famous!"
I clicked open a new tab, "Look, see, oh, whoops, okay one came out in 1980, two came out in 1982, my bad, but geez, not bad!"
I felt a little older suddenly. 1980. Wow. That trip to France was 1980? I thought back to my Kristy MacNichol hairdo with wings, yeah must have been 1980. I bought Anais Anais perfume in Paris, before it was hot in the US, where the name was always mispronounced. Oh wow, was I wearing hang Ten clothes then? I was. Matching Hang Ten outfits. Wait, wait, more mortified memories flooding in...yes, I had that embarrassing crush on that boy from Alaska that summer in France. I could have sworn that was 1982. Hmm, maybe it was. Who knows, it's all so long ago. Let me go get my walker.
"I watched it in French," I added, "I don't know if there is an English version. I thought it was an awesome movie at the time."
"If you can prove any of this I will be totally impressed," my husband said, somewhere between potential awe and dubiousness.
I searched YouTube, but could only find Richard Sanderson's Reality/Go On Forever, which wasn't quite the song I meant. I wanted the instrumental tune, which may have been based on this song, but I wasn't convinced.
So I had no proof. But I think he believes me in a little tiny corner of his mind.
But I do have proof of my poor musical taste 27 years ago:
While we're doing slightly obscure really old music, let me throw out a few more...
This may slightly redeem my musical taste from the 80s. In 1985 The Waterboys put out the angsty ballad The Whole of the Moon:
A decade earlier, I was doing a jazz number to King Harvest's Dancing in the Moonlight, which I still like to this day (and I think I still recall a smidgen of that routine):
This is not so obscure, but my it's old and scratchy. It's the very first song I ever loved (and still do): Astrud Gilberto and Joao Gilberto singing Antonio Carlos Jobim's song The Girl from Ipanema. My dad claims from earliest infancy I'd freeze to listen and then began swaying every time this song came on.
Love those Gilbertos...Joao, Astrud, or (more modern) Bebel Gilberto.
Copyright 2007 Julie Pippert
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