So, Maria asked me this question the other day: "Dad, what was the world like when you were 9 years old?" Well, Maria, are you sure you really want to know?
Yes, Dad, I'm sure. I can take it!
I turned 9 at the end of 1972 and was 9 for most of 1973. Let's put it this way, Maria -- there were a lot of things that I didn't understand.
Like why it looks like some people got their outfits from a garbage can?
Yeah, that's one thing all right, Maria. So do you want to see some really weird stuff from around that time?
Whatever, sure I guess. Wait, I'm supposed to be enthusiastic about this, right?
If you wish.
All righty then. Yaaay! Show me the weird 70s stuff, Dad! Pysch!
While I don't want to doubt your sincerity, Maria, we have videos to show. Let's start it out with something very odd, from 1973. This is a dance craze that somehow never really made it to Wisconsin. I don't think you'll be surprised once you see Roxy Music, gently suggesting that we:
You know what I think, Dad? I think they ought to be stranded! Man, those are some weird outfits, especially that strange guy at the synthesizer in the back. Here's a helpful hint: maybe he should be way in the back, so you can't see his horrible outfit!
Maria, that's Brian Eno, who later went on to make a lot of good records with other people. Fortunately, he stopped dressing like the victim of a tragic tinsel accident!
So you do think he'll appreciate that comment, Dad?
He's too rich to care what I think, Maria. Let's move on to the next one. One thing that was really big in those days was something called progressive rock. Some of the musicians were really talented and like to play really fancy music. Like these guys. This is Yes, singing:
Dad, that guy at the keyboard looks like Hannah Montana! And also, according to my research, the band's name should be No, because no one wants to see those horrible outfits!
It was hard to explain, Maria. I'm still not sure I can.
Dad, one other thing. About those lyrics. "Mountains come out of the sky, they stand there?" Maybe they need a little help with their earth science, Dad! I thought that mountains usually stayed put!
Yeah, typically they do, Maria. I told you it was a little weird. Shall we move on?
Bring it on, Daddy-O!
You got it. So, you've been learning how to play the guitar, so I'll bet you'll recognize this next one. It's one of all-time most famous guitar riffs. It's so famous, it's deep. Deep Purple, that is.
Yep, I've heard that one, Dad. It's on KQRS about every half hour or so, right?
As a matter of fact, you're right, Maria. You could be their program director!
Well, maybe. One thing, though -- I'd sure like the lead singer guy to button up his shirt. Apparently he can hold a microphone, but he can't button his shirt! Shocker!
Believe it or not, Maria, that look was considered cool in those days.
Well, right now it's considered hairy, rude and disgusting!
Well, we'll be sure to let him know that. Anyway, here's another one from around the same time. If you thought some of the outfits you've seen before were weird, try out these guys. It's Mott the Hoople, singing:
Dad, it looks like those outfits came all the way from a garage sale! Or maybe the nearest garbage disposal! And what's with the singer wearing the huge sunglasses inside?
That's Ian Hunter, Maria. He was a very good singer, but I agree, the glasses were big enough to have windshield wipers installed on them.
Dad, so that's what it was like when you were 9?
I'm afraid so, Maria.
Maybe you should have been 12 instead!
Well, I got there eventually. And here's a song from when I was 12, in 1976. These outfits are completely different. Trust me on this. It's ABBA, performing for King Gustaf of Sweden, singing:
That's a good video, it even has the lyrics on it! So Dad, what's a "treaser?" Is that more of that creative journalism?
I think it's a typo, Maria. I don't think I've ever heard of a treaser.
Maybe it was some kind of candy that they had in Sweden that you couldn't get in Wisconsin! Because in Sweden, they consider Wisconsin a foreign country!
Heck Maria, I think some people in Minnesota consider Wisconsin a foreign country.
Well, I guess that's right. Should we have people vote?
Yes, I think we should. Any advice to our voters, Maria?
Try not to dress like anyone in those videos, otherwise you'll have to go through the side doors like the hippies do!
Good advice, Maria. Good advice.