Meat & Potatoes #50

Aired Sunday October 2nd.

This week's show was inspired by the 1980s dance movie, Shag.  Set in 1963, four girls head off for a weekend of fun in Myrtle Beach and get into all sorts of trouble with boys.  I hadn't seen this movie until recently; I saw Vogue's Dress the Part slideshow this past summer and was instantly enamoured (although in retrospect I disagree with their assessment of Pudge as a tomboy.  She's really not).  It's actually a pretty awful movie in a lot of ways, but the Pudge and Chip storyline makes it worth watching for me.  They're the dancers.

Their big dance at the end of the movie--with Pudge looking so happy and so in love it just kills me--is set to a Lloyd Price song by the name of "Stagger Lee", and when I was getting music together for a Shag-themed show, I discovered that there is a whole lot of history and folklore surrounding this song, and many other songs about Stagger Lee.  To begin with, there are two versions of the Lloyd Price song.  One version has Stagger Lee killing Billy over a gambling dispute; in the other version, Stagger Lee and Billy argue over a girl, then sort out their differences and become friends.  This non-murder version was recorded at the request of American Bandstand, who thought the murder version was not appropriate for their audience.  This is the version that plays in Shag, although it's the murder version that hit #1 on the Billboard Chart.

Lloyd Price's Stagger Lees are just two versions of the story out of about 400 different interpretations; the real-life murder of Billy Lyons at the hands of "Stag" Lee Shelton has inspired many artists in the 115 years since it occurred.  The Wikipedia page and associated links are pretty interesting--but certainly need to be taken with the usual grain of salt.

Having somewhat obsesssed over Shag and Stagger Lee for a week, I devoted this radio show to music either on the Shag soundtrack or from the same era (with maybe a dash of Dirty Dancing and a pinch of Joe Versus the Volcano), as well as to some of the different versions of the Stagger Lee legend (tracks #2, and #28 through #35 below).

  1. Jakki O--Ooo-Aah
  2. Lloyd Price--Stagger Lee (American Bandstand Version)
  3. Maurice Williams & the Zodiacs--Stay
  4. The Contours--Do You Love Me
  5. Archie Bell & the Drells--Monkey Time
  6. Del Vikings--Come Go With Me
  7. Dionne Warwick--Walk On By
  8. The Four Tops--It's the Same Old Song
  9. Martha & the Vandellas--Dancing in the Streets
  10. The Coasters--Young Blood
  11. Tennessee Ernie Ford--Sixteen Tons
  12. Herman's Hermits--(What a) Wonderful World
  13. The Dominoes--Sixty Minute Man
  14. Lloyd Price--Personality
  15. Bob & Earl--Harlem Shuffle
  16. The Freshmen--Go Granny Go
  17. The Hollywood Argyles--Alley-Oop
  18. The Heptones--Our Day Will Come
  19. Elvis Presley--Blue Hawaii
  20. The Animals--I'm in Love Again
  21. General Johnson & the Chairmen of the Board--On the Beach
  22. The Tams--What Kind of Fool (Do You Think I Am)
  23. The Sensations--Let Me In
  24. Aretha Franklin--Baby I Love You
  25. Brook Benton & Dinah Washington--Baby (You've Got What It Takes0
  26. Jackie Wilson--Baby Workout
  27. The Ronnettes--Be My Baby
  28. Lloyd Price--Stagger Lee (murder version)
  29. Mississippi John Hurt--Stackolee
  30. Ma Rainey--Stack o' Lee Blues
  31. Josh Ritter--Folk Bloodbath
  32. The Clash--Wrong 'em Boyo
  33. The Black Keys--Stack Shot Billy
  34. The Grateful Dead--Stagger Lee
  35. Beck--Devils Haircut
  36. Barry White--Oooo-Aaah

No comments:

Post a Comment