[The Weekly List]

Our musical embarrassments

With Limp Bizkit recently in town, we look back on the music we’re sorta ashamed to admit we once loved


Yeah, I know you still like Neil Diamond, but I have three words for you: “Song Sung Blue.” There’s a lot of old Neil Diamond that still holds up—“Kentucky Woman,” “Cherry, Cherry,” “Cracklin’ Rosie.” And then there’s “Longfellow Serenade.” Or (shudder) “I Am I Said.” Something about Diamond’s lesser songs appealed to the florid sensitivity of my mid-teen years, and I played them incessantly. I had to wash my ears out with Springsteen to finally break free. –Scott Dickensheets

Honestly, I had no idea at the time what white Canadian rapper Snow was talking about when he actually sang “Informer, you no say  that’s who I’m gonna blame/A licky boom boom down”  in 1993. Turns out it was his recent incarceration for assault. But all this eighth-grader knew was that it was naughty and adult—and I liked it! Which is why I was so surprised when my modern-dance teacher chose it for our annual recital. Hey dad! “Tectdaymansaysomebaddydohbestabdondelan, I licky boom boom down.” –Xania Woodman

Somewhere in my parents’ house is a vinyl copy of Dokken’s Under Lock and Key. Yeah, I dug hair-metal as a middle-schooler, and not just the kind that made it onto MTV. If there were dudes (or dudettes; sorry, Vixen) in spandex belting out power ballads, I was there—Keel, Fastway, Icon, some Japanese band named Loudness ... you get the idea. What can I say? Other than, hey, it was the ’80s, and I was 13. –Spencer Patterson

Okay, I confess the worst of all embarrassing music loves: Lee Greenwood. There was a time, deep in my redneck DNA where pickup trucks and moonshine live, when I loved singing that song. Because I am proud to be an American, where at least I know I’m free. –Stacy J. Willis

It’s … um … difficult to talk about, you know? Okay, okay, I used to listen to Kenny G. There. His ’80s albums, like Gravity and Duotones. I was young. I was … what’s that? Did I like Kenny G? Did I dig those super-slick smooth jazz (er, instrumental pop) hits, like “Songbird” and “Midnight Motion”? Um, can we just leave it at listen? Do we really have to talk about this? It was a long time ago. Hey, let me play you a couple of my favorite Charlie Parker tunes! How about some Coltrane? –T.R. Witcher

Actually, it was my sister that loved Captain & Tennille and bought all their records (even one in Spanish, if I recall). But as the albums continued to spin on her turntable, I found myself thinking, “This isn’t bad, actually,” and soon, I too was singing the lyrics to “Love Will Keep Us Together.” Hey, we all did stupid things in the ’70s. –Ken Miller

I’m pretty sure I could still recite most of the lyrics to DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince’s “Parents Just Don’t Understand,” which I adored in middle school, along with other Fresh Prince classics like “A Nightmare on My Street” and “I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson.” It’s a cheesy, awkward and sanitized version of hip-hop that appealed to my dorky 11-year-old self. These days, I’m just happy that Will Smith sticks mostly to acting. –Josh Bell


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