Friday, January 27, 2017

Joan Jett & the Blackhearts: I Love Rock 'N Roll (1981)

I remember my cousin telling me, oh so long ago, that he hated female singers. He felt that singing should be entirely in the domain of men. Not too long after that conversation, something happened. Let's call that something puberty. Suddenly, he was totally enamoured with the likes of Girlschool and Lee Aaron. I was there long before him, having secret crushes on Pat Benatar and Joan Jett. He caught up quickly, even though he is a year older than me.

I think that most people assume that the title track, I Love Rock 'N Roll, was written by Jett. Alas, she did not write it. It's originally a tune by The Arrows, but I think Jett does an admirable version. It's too bad more people aren't familiar with the original. By the way, Cyndi Lauper did not write Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. In fact, I don't think Lauper wrote a single song on her debut record.

The only problem I have with this record is that some versions contain Little Drummer Boy, that little turd of a song. You now how I feel about Xmas music. Besides hating insipid music (which includes most Christmas music), Little Drummer Boy simply destroys the record. Imagine an adolescent boy listening to Joan in his room, having all sorts of sexual fantasies. Just when he is imagining picking up Joan and throwing her on the bed, this buzz-kill song comes on. It ruins the mood; it ruins the record. The record ends in a confusing mess, especially if you are listening outside the Christmas season.

The video for the titular track is interesting because it includes a segue from Bad Reputation.

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