IT’S TUESDAY AFTERNOON, OR MAYBE NOT

            I have finally decided to tackle a vital issue, one which should be of concern to all right thinking Americans. We have an unsolvable crisis. For some unknown reason, rock and pop songs that include specific mentions of time such as day, month or season are never heard on the radio at those times. That is very disconcerting. (And is a musical group that quits halfway through a performance disconcerting?)

         Take for instance right now. It is Tuesday afternoon, Sept 14, 2010. But do you hear a Moody Blues tune in the background? Hell no. Tuesday Afternoon, that gem from Days of Future Passed won’t be played today, but check back late Wednesday evening when some young stud plays that entire album just to get to Nights in White Satin when he will make love to his girlfriend.

              Monday Monday by the Mamas and Papas is really more of a Tuesday song. Rainy Days and Mondays by the Carpenters is hardly ever heard on a rainy day let alone Monday. A sunny Friday morning is ideal for it but you may be fortunate enough to catch it when the sky is at least somewhat overcast.

                 I have never heard Summer Breeze by Seals and Crofts in summer. I first was exposed to it the fall of 1972 and there’s a good chance it will be on your local FM station next March. But the perfect time for it is in the middle of winter to encourage wishful thinking, or to torture listeners.

                  Sundays Will Never Be The Same by Spanky and Our Gang is definitely a Monday a.m. tune, perhaps recalling the previous day with regret.

                   The old pop tune September Song with a memorable version by Jimmy Durante kind of fits a late fall evening spent reminiscing while in a room with a cozy fire going and the room lights dimmed. And tell the truth, don’t you think there are likely to be no months when a DJ will back announce “You have just heard September Song, the Jimmy Durante classic. Now who the hell is Jimmy Durante?”

                   Speaking of seasons in every picture of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons I have seen there is Frankie and three other guys, Which Season is missing and why? How has this escaped the attention of investigative reporters over the years? Given the group’s mob connections, was the fourth Season whacked? Sure hope it was winter.

                Sunday Morning Coming Down by Johnnie Cash just means more on a rough Saturday night. Simon and Garfunkle’s album Wednesday Morning 3 A.M. is an excellent listen in the evening, before bedtime, even more so on the weekend, but you will never hear it at the specific time.

                 Manic Monday by the Bangles has a catchy, danceable tune which means DJ’s play it for party time on Fridays and Saturdays. Saturday Night At The Movies by The Drifters would be a cinch for Saturday night but everyone who would listen is out at the movies, so you’ll hear it Thursday or Friday to get you psyched for Saturday. And oh yeah. You ain’t gonna listen to Under The Boardwalk when you are under the boardwalk on a blanket with your baby. You’ll be making your own music not listening to some tinny sounding AM radio station. Nor will you hear Expressway To Your Heart by The Soul Survivors while you’re driving on an expressway. The beat is too infectious and too much a distraction to your behind the wheel responsibilities. No, you’ll catch it on your little portable as you hit the beach but before you get under the boardwalk on a blanket with your baby where you’ll make your own music.

            Back in the fifties Patti Page had a hit with Tennessee Waltz. Have you ever watched anyone waltzing in Nashville or Memphis? Hell, no. I have stayed in Tennessee and driven through it many times and have yet to hear a peep out of Patti.

            In ’72 when I was hitchhiking across the country I actually stood on a corner in Winslow, Arizona and sang those lyrics from the Eagles’ Take It Easy with the fellow who had given me a ride, but that was a personal live performance and no radio DJ had a part in that experience. We were, however, such a fine sight to see. And later when we crossed the desert in California, do you think some DJ at some station would have had the courtesy to play Horse With No Name by America. Again disappointment. No song and we weren’t even certain we were still in America!

              The one song I can think of that ever broke this rule is Morning Morgantown by Joni Mitchell. I lived in Morgantown and it was morning 20 odd years ago (you have no idea how odd) the last time I heard it. It was probably a request from a non-ironic listener……………….Wait a minute!!! I had an apartment across the river from Morgantown in Westover at that time! A completely different city. Sorry folks, the song has to meet ALL conditions or be eliminated.

           I do have to concede that that damned Italian Vivaldi played the percentages with his The Four Seasons, none of which, to my knowledge, is missing or potentially whacked by the mob. But don’t expect it to reach Billboard’s top 100 any time soon.

                 Gotta wrap this up. Till another time and another place, though I guarantee a song about that time or place will not be on the radio at that time or place.

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