Thursday, March 31, 2005

Erotic Blues
Robert Christgau's reviews of Sarah Vaughan's Love Songs and Lucille Bogan's The Best of Lucille Bogan: Shave 'Em Dry seem a bit unusual compared to the typical album review. Knowing very little of either artist, the tone of the reviews made little sense to me, though they're both an entertaining read.
Thanks to ILM , the content of the reviews is now very clear. And I'm fascinated by Bogan's song "Shave 'Em Dry," based on the lyrics which are posted on the board. Bogan opens with the lines:

"I got nipples on my titties, big as the end of my thumb,
I got somethin' between my legs'll make a dead man come,
Oh daddy, baby won't you shave 'em dry?"

Later in the song, she admits:

"Now if fuckin' was the thing, that would take me to heaven,
I'd be fuckin' in the studio, till the clock strike eleven.
Oh daddy, daddy shave 'em dry,
I would fuck you baby, honey I'd make you cry."

So I know, you're thinking, why is this guy so fascinated by raunchy lyrics. Well, the song was recorded between 1933 - 1935, and this compilation of songs from that period has a parental advisory sticker on it.

Something about that seems very humorous though intriguing to me. And as other critics have mentioned in their reviews, Logan's lurid lyrics pre-date the likes of Missy Elliott, Ludacris and others by about 60 years. I'm not sure what kind of following Bogan has (or had at the time), but it appears she recorded a number of sides between 1927-1935, though the above-mentioned song appears to be her best known number, which is hardly surprising.
posted by Jonathan


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