Debunking the "50 greatest conservative songs", part 13

After a well deserved holiday break yesterday, we are back in action with more debunking. We are in the home stretch so stick with us for a few more songs.

10. “20th Century Man” – The Kinks

NRO Take: “You keep all your smart modern writers / Give me William Shakespeare / You keep all your smart modern painters / I’ll take Rembrandt, Titian, da Vinci, and Gainsborough. . . . I was born in a welfare state / Ruled by bureaucracy / Controlled by civil servants / And people dressed in grey / Got no privacy got no liberty / ’Cause the 20th-century people / Took it all away from me.”

DL Take: Once again, he’s got nothing. He doesn’t even attempt to explain why he considers this song, “conservative.” In fact, the lyrics he quoted sound more like a man who was born into a world with problems created by conservative policies. The song is about all of the troubles and struggles in the world and how he wants to escape from this insanity because it’s making him insane. The lyrics are very clear on this, and if Ray Davies wanted to, he could perform this today and change the name to “21st Century Man.” The lyrics would still hold true.

21. “Heroes” – David Bowie

NRO Take: A Cold War love song about a man and a woman divided by the Berlin Wall. No moral equivalence here: “I can remember / Standing / By the wall / And the guns / Shot above our heads / And we kissed / As though nothing could fall / And the shame / Was on the other side / Oh we can beat them / For ever and ever.”

DL Take: See, I think he’s wrong here. I don’t think that it’s a song about the Cold War and the Berlin Wall. I think it’s a song about the Great Wall of China. It’s a true story taken from Bowie’s life. He was living in China at the time and was in love (some may call it a, “Modern Love”) with his little, “China Girl” and was going through some, “Changes”. Back then, he and his girlfriend were very outspoken and radical. Funny story, he and his girlfriend has the same nicknames and were often referred to as, “Rebel Rebel.” So, they lived in a small village near the wall. The name of the city, loosely translated to English was, “Suffragette City” and they often hung out at the wall, “Day In Day Out.” After the love went away he spent, “Seven Years In Tibet.”

So I made that up but you have to admit that it was more creative than anything Miller could say. Miller is close in his assessment of it but he doesn’t tell the whole story. It is about a man and woman divided by the Berlin Wall and they both get shot during their attempts to reunite with one another.

Just because it is a song about the Cold War, does not make automatically make it a conservative song. And as I have said before, look at the artist and their views.

40. “Wake Up Little Susie” – Everly Brothers

NRO Take: A smash hit in 1957, back when high-school social pressures were rather different from what they have become: “We fell asleep, our goose is cooked, our reputation is shot.”

DL Take: The greatest thing about this song is that there is a rumor that this song was about, “roofies.” Even today, a song about date rape would be disturbing. It is actually a song where the couple fell asleep at the movies and woke up late. They are worried about what people may think. They both perhaps suffer from narcolepsy because as one line in the song states, “Well, Susie baby, looks like we goofed again” which means that this has happened before. Of course back in those days they didn’t have ways to diagnose problems such as this and well, they probably got home only to find themselves in deep shit.

Or perhaps the movie was just an excuse for them having teen sex. Either way, how does this reflect some kind of conservative viewpoint?

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