Wednesday, August 3, 2016

SHG: Bill Justis: "Raunchy"

Bill Justis: “Raunchy”
Entered the chart on: 11/18/1957
Peaked on: 12/16/1957
Weeks at #2: 1 week
Song at #1: “April Love” by Pat Boone

Man, there sure were a lot more instrumentals on the charts back in the 50s. I have to wonder what changed between now and then to wipe the instrumental almost completely off the face of the pop music charts. My hypothesis is that it’s another victim of the change to music being a visual medium in the wake of MTV and the rise of music video. Unless you have a group of sexy bikini babes playing, nobody’s interested in instrumental music these days. And that’s a shame.

Here we have what I assume is another rockabilly number, considering sax player Bill Justis was the musical director for Sun Records. Also featuring Sid Manker on guitar, so Joel Whitburn informs me. I expect this to actually be raunchy, so don’t let me down guys:

Some of that rubber-band-y guitar I associate with Duane Eddy on this. I get the feeling he probably listened to this. The sax seems to be an alto, as it’s a really trebly and high-pitched melody line. Sid Manker’s guitar is the highlight of this for me, he has a nice chord-heavy guitar solo in the middle. I wonder if Robert Fripp was inspired by this for his guitar solo on King Crimson’s “A Sailor’s Tale.”

It’s all right. I’m not in love with this tune, it’s a tad repetitive, but the excellent guitar work keeps it chugging along, and there’s an unexpected piano solo about two-thirds of the way through that’s rather nice.

Oh, and I see that Billy Vaughn covered this. [covers mouth and snorts with derisive laughter]

Rating: 3

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