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The Big Huerta: J. Geils (Band) vs The Human League (Can Your Heart Stand It???)

loverless town 002cd


Before we get into this battle of the heavyweights, let me spout forth some verbiage. I usually write a weekly ARTicle about my paintings and how they came to fruition. Lo and behold, I have covered almost every one of my music paintings (I am currently having several of my factory workers brainstorming feverishly, coming up with ideas, as we speak) and am buckling to the overwhelming clamor of my 5 readers now (thanks Carmen W.) to issue forth more words of insight on the way music and art affects our everyday lives. Let us begin..

(Note: From this point on when referring to the J. Geils Band, I will refer to them strictly as J. Geils. I hope this doesn’t offend the rock purists out there but surely will offend those freaky people from Boston who think the world revolves around their city known for it’s baked beans and the trading of the greatest ballplayer to ever play the game of baseball.)

  Dig, “this is about desperation…every now and then we do get desperate…it’s about L-O-V-E and if you abuse it you’re gonna lose it and if you lose it you’re gonna abuse it, if you abuse it you ain’t gonna be able to choose it  cuz you ain’t gonna have it further on down the line and things ain’t gonna be so fine, you’re’ gonna be sitting there on your little machine trying to look it and keep it clean, you gonna be playing bingo all night all alone that’s why you’re sitting there by the telephone and you know that she ain’t going to call you…so you put on the TV and you watching Johnny Carson segueing right into the Tomorrow Show but that ain’t got the go so you turn it off and turn on the radio but the radio don’t seem to get to click so you turn it off and so you say hey man I can’t lickety split so you start to open up a little book and there’s something there that you gotta overlook and you say “BABY! there’s something on my mind, baby there’s something on my mind. I know you’re home and you ain’t all alone”….so you start walking over to her house, you get to her house, you start pounding on her door, you say “Open up the door bitch, this is the whooba gooba with the green teeth let me in!” Well, she opens up the door and you just kind of walk up to her and say “baby”, you look up way up into her green mascara and say, “oh my darlin’, ya know her and me were at the party as friends do not believe it’s only gossip and they just telling you a wise crack of lies”…you say “darlin’ take your big curls and just squeeze ‘em down Ratumba…Hey Rapunzel, hey Raputa, hey Raputa the Buta, Raputa the Buta let down your hair and let me climb up the ladder of your love because this whooba gooba’s sayin’ to ya…love comes once and when it comes ya better grab it fast because sometimes the love you grab ain’t gonna last and I believe I musta, you know I think I musta, you know baby I musta, I think I musta, I musta got lost”….

Is that not the most amazing rap in all of rock music? Peter Wolf and company laid it down for us in one of the greatest songs of lost love to ever be put down, “Musta Got Lost”. We all get lost. Often times there are no reasons that one can pinpoint. This band, in their prime, was arguably one of the best live bands to hit a stage. I can attest. I knew nothing about them when I saw them back in the late 70’s possibly early 80’s before the Centerfold crap. The energy, raw blues, showmanship, beatlike hipsterism and pure rock, left me like a slack jawed yokel.

On the other side of the pond, Phil Oakley and company hits us with one of the catchiest techno songs to have ever been written, They kick Soft Cells’ butt back and forth and to and fro, peeps, and leave poor Marc Almond running home and crying for mama. They had a great run of hits, especially the song in review here, “Don’t You Want Me”, “Love Action” and the perennial new wave fave “Fascination”.

Now, what is the similarity or battle vs  J.Geils? Dig holmes, “Don’t You Want Me” starts with “You were working as a waitress in a cocktail bar when I met you”..(GREAT line btw) etc…”Now 5 years later on, you’ve got the world at your feet, success has been so easy for you. But don’t forget it’s me who put you where you are now and I can put you back down too. Don’t, don’t you want me? You know I can’t believe it when I hear that you won’t see me. Don’t, don’t you want me, you know I don’t believe you when you say that you don’t need me.” J. Geils didn’t understand why his girl ain’t around anymore either.

Now her rebuttal, “I was working as a waitress in a cocktail bar, that much is true. But even then I knew I’d find a much better place, either with or without you. The 5 years we have had have been such good times. I still love you. But now I think it’s time I live my life on my own, I guess it’s just what I must do.

Well, there you have it. Two different bands must have gotten lost in the name of L-O-V-E. Who is to say what the better song is? J. Geils admits in a roundabout way that the dude was sidetracked and learned his lesson the hard way, he’s down on his knees, pleading and wants to come back into the folds of love. The Human League song is all posturing on both sides. Oakley claims he has made the girl what she is today but comes out looking like a dominating male chauvinist pig. The female, on the other hand, the hand he won’t be using everyday for awhile, claims that she loves her man still but wants to go forth into bigger and better riches. Women seem to always want and need a relationship to keep progressing. Guys have no idea how to do that. We can’t understand if you still love us then why do you not want us still. This has been the way of love since time out of mind. A great point made in this Human League song and it has a groovy beat that you can dance to.

Two brilliant songs by two great bands, in two different genres, both exposing the weaknesses and desires in the human condition. Ain’t music wonderful..

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