27 March 2006

blondie - "x offender (1976 single version)" (from the blondie lp, available for purchase here.)

in brief : blondie's criminally-neglected and, compared w/ today's headlines, quaint debut single.

how times change. in 1976, the record company was too nervous to issue a single w/ the title "sex offender." today, i don't know that we'd think anything of it--as long, of course, as the singer was an attractive woman (and had registered, natch).

"x offender" was produced by richard gottehrer, who along w/ jerry goldstein and bob feldman produced, performed or wrote singles as/for the strangeloves, the angels, the swingin' medallions, the jive five, and the mccoys. basically, it's 1962 all over again, except the only group racy enough to touch this material back then would have been the shangri-las and shadow morton. speaking of the shadow, the same question is raised here as it is w/ morton & the new york dolls : does the song sound as it does b/c of gottehrer, or did they bring in gottehrer b/c they knew how they wanted the record to sound?

no, forget that question. this is what i want to know : what offense is debbie harry guilty of? bassist gary valentine's original lyrics were taken from personal experience : when he turned 18, the parents of his girlfriend, who was still a minor, tried to get him arrested. debbie harry's lyrics, though perhaps vaguer, work better if only b/c of the use of handcuffs. anyway, my guess is prostitution, and she tried to seduce the cop--oh, what innocent times those were, when that was all that was implied by sex offense!

two more questions, in parting : is there a pop band, and i stress "pop" band, brave enough out there to rewrite this, debra lafave-style? or would that just be in bad taste?

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