Saturday, June 07, 2008

You don't really care for cowbell, do you?

Come on, people: can I not get any takers on my cowbell questions? No one is willing to help me with my mix?


I got thinking about it again this morning during a spinning class, where the instructor really had a better than usual array of musical choices for my morning torment. To me, it is the music that really makes a spinning class. Too many instructors choose the a boringly typical array of musical choices. I remember back when I got certified to be a spinning instructor (certification has since lapsed), the teacher made a point of saying "Pick good music." She recommended variety, things with different levels of beats that participants could connect to, not just pop music but surprising choices.

I thought to myself, This is the job for me, because I could not only get paid for getting a workout but also apply my DJ'ing skills. Who could ask for more?

But the instructor today gave me an hour of listening pleasure. Granted, there were a few tracks in there I did not recognize, but mostly it was stuff I knew but did not expect to hear--some Ramones, the theme song to Mortal Kombat (test your might!), a medley of songs with "Jump" in the lyrics, some Shania Twayne, but then, she even included the song that I thought would be the best spinning song of all time.

Can you guess what it was?

"Sing Sing Sing" by Benny Goodman. (Luckily for us she had a shorter 6-minute version, so we did not have to spring for the full 12 minutes and 15 seconds. I have done that on my own, and it is no picnic.)

But back to the cowbell. I was trucking along, maintaining a decent cadence, enjoying the hell out of it, and when suddenly WHAMMO! I realized that Gene Krupa is a mad user of the cowbell!

Who would have guessed?

Well, really if you have ever heard the man whale on a drum set, you should have guessed. I should have guessed, because back in about 1987 I saw a film of the Benny Goodman Orchestra performing the song, and the image of him playing has not left my mind since. Let me tell you: no drummer in rock 'n' roll has anything on Gene Krupa.

The down side is that it might be tough to fit a song lasting 12:15 on my cowbell mix.

Now seriously, if you have any opinions about cowbell mixes, won't you please answer my questions?

1 comment:

Tim Jarrett said...

I left my comments on the other post, but man, you've inspired me to ... well, something:

Now I've heard there was a secret bell

That Frenkel played, and it pleased him well

But you don't really care for cowbell, do you?

It goes like this

The moo, the clang

The heady sound, galangalang

Blue Oyster Cult were playing cowbell booyah

Cowbell booyah...

Perhaps I should just stop there.