James Leroy Wilson's blog

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Mommy's Alright, Daddy's Alright

If you listen to classic rock radio - and if you don't I'm not reccommending that you do - you will come to love some songs as guilty pleasures. I'm not talking about "Stairway to Heaven," "Hey Jude," or "Hotel California." Or even Steve Miller's "The Joker." Or Lynnyrd Skynnyrd's "Free Bird" or "Sweet Home Alabama." I'm not talking about great songs, or even signature songs.

Rather, I'm referring to Skynnyrd's "Gimme Three Steps." Or Steve Miller's "Big Old Jet Airliner." Or Journey's "Lovin' Touchin' Squeezin'."

The best of this group is Cheap Trick's "Surrender." But when it came out, it was censored. This is how the song was recorded, under pressure from the record company:

Father says, your mother’s right, she’s really up on things.
Before we married, mommy served in the wacs in the philippines.
Now, I had heard the wacs recruited old maids for the war.
But mommy isn’t one of those, I’ve known her all these years.

The line was supposed to go like this:

Now, I had heard the Wacs recruited old maids, dykes and whores,
But mommy isn’t one of those, I’ve known her all these years.

Either way, it's a silly line for a silly but great song. But the original, uncensored version, was a funny line. The modified line was just stupid.

In spite of the modified line, "Surrender" is still one of my all-time favorite rock songs.

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