Thursday, July 28, 2016

Throwback Thursday: A Half-Century of Handbags & Gladrags

(#TBT We are kicking off a new feature here at RtBE as we look back at some of our favorite tunes from yesteryear, Throwback Thursday's are here, enjoy)

We at Rock the Body Electric consider ourselves Americans happily locked in the Twentieth Century. We like fast cars and slow cigarettes; old whiskey and young women; loud music and quiet books—and when the alien archaeologists of the future dig through the ruins of Western Civilization, we highly doubt they’ll spend much time puzzling over the iPhone or the digital artifacts of this scatterbrained new millennium.

We think they’ll instead have their first moment of awe when stumbling upon American music. America is an audio culture, the loudest and most innovative that has ever existed, which is also why it’s the most evolved. Music is the only known form of communication that inherently utilizes both sides of the human brain, fusing logic and emotion in one medium. In America, our poetry is written with a rhythm section in mind, and on the subway walls. Our saints are not found in churches, but in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And when the real history of this country is finally written—at long last—it will be through the epochal lens of music and it’s many architects…and yes, that includes the old man who just launched a standing gig in Las Vegas: Rod Stewart. A wanker from jolly old England no less.

The preposterous hair. The inexplicable fame. The line of girlfriends and supermodel wives that make Derek Jeter’s conquests seem timid. Whatever our automatic disdain for his raspy crooning of “the standards” in our youth, we were not stupid. Rod may have been a radio staple to some, elevator music to others, but mostly he was a life coach. He also brings to mind one of our favorite Hold Steady lyrics that show up in the song "Stevie Nix":
She said you remind me of Rod Stewart when he was young
You've got passion and you think that you're sexy 
and all the punks think that you're dumb
With "Maggie Mae", Rod the Mod taught young men that the best way to skip the sentimental drama of young women was to pole vault right over them and into the bed of older women. So, thank Rod, we did. And now that we periodically need a reminder to avoid the devastating smiles and sartorial splendor of young women, we simply can’t get enough of "Handbags and the Gladrags".

We love this song. And as we now approach its 50th Anniversary, it marks the perfect spot to kick off Throwback Thursday.

No comments:

Post a Comment