Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Off the Wagon

This morning on the radio I heard "Keep On Loving You," from REO Speedwagon, the finest rock & roll band ever to come out of Belleville, Illinois. Right after Kevin Cronin, in his finest downstate drawl, sings, "Instead you lay still in the grass, all coiled up and hissing," I thought I heard a faint sound effect like a rattlesnake rattling.

I've never noticed that before, but that doesn't mean a whole lot; it took me a long time to even understand what Cronin was saying in that line, so it's not like I ever went listening for a snake. It may be that the rattler had been swallowed up by the AM radio all these years - and if ever a song deserved to be heard on a staticky handheld transistor, it's "Keep On Loving You."

Most of all, if there is a little sound effect in there, it ranks by far as the most subtle thing REO Speedwagon ever did.

3 comments:

Mark Lerner said...

I think I stand second to none in my appreciation for REO Speedwagon. I think they're the best of all the Speedwagon bands. But Uncle Tupelo were from Belleville. And didn't suck. So I think the title of finest rock & roll band ever to come out of Belleville must go to Uncle Tupelo.

Tom Nawrocki said...

I should have known Belleville was a fertile area. I think I heard Uncle Tupelo refer to their hometown as "fecund Belleville."

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