• Crush

Behind the Music: "International Women's Day Hullabaloo" on Crush's Zoo

Brigitte Bardot & Serge Gainsbourg

The theme of Crush's Zoo, as much as there is one, is a wild collection of off the wall stuff every week ... I basically play what I'm into, and that somehow shakes into little sets of new wave or novelty songs, songs about animals, international pop, punk rock, funk, etc. Within those little sets, I try to mix in a healthy amount of female artists -- not necessarily intentionally, but over the last decade or so I've really been trying to challenge my own listening habits to be more inclusive and less reliant on the old white men of rock bit. That stuff gets corny quick, but juicing my listening with stuff from other countries or under-repped musicians is a great way to breathe new energy into tired genres.

Anyway, I'm not here to tell you how #woke I am. But a 20+ year love of girl groups has definitely been a part of that larger journey. (Sheesh, 20 years? Sadly, it's probably closer to 25...). The idea of a set dedicated to girl group and girl group adjacent tracks really set it off for me, so I was excited to pull tracks all week for this show. A lot of obscure 50s and 60s songs, to be sure...a few familiar names, some french pop I already had in the studio for my show, some girl punk rock...baby, you got a stew going! A few quick bites from history before I post the show...

My first real introduction to girl groups (not counting the inclusion of stuff on soundtracks or in ads that I'd been tuning out for years) came somewhat early in my career as a snooty record store clerk. One of my co-workers threw on "A Phil Specter Christmas" and as those versions of X-mas songs started to pour out of the speakers, I started running around in circles screaming with joy. My intro to Phil Specter as well ... and for the next year I just spazzed out on anything I could find. I remember giving my parents a copy of "Specter Christmas" that year, and getting strange looks. "Whaddy mean 'is this it?!?' This is *IT*, mom and pop!"

A couple years later, a friend called and asked if he could come over and play some records at my place. This guy was a cowpunk singer who'd had mild access abroad, but when we got together we ended up talking about the Beach Boys or Buck Owens long into the night. He'd just come back from a tour, and really wanted to hep me to things he'd gotten turned onto along the way. When he arrived, he said "you're gonna love these" and pulled out a few LPs of Brigitte Bardot songs. I was skeptical. I hadn't even seen any Bardot movies, how could her music be anything interesting?? It didn't take long for my to feel stupid, I soaked in those Serge Gainsbourg ditties and felt the world shifting under my feet. I never worried about language barriers or context again, the only language you need to speak is sweet, sweet pop.

Welp, hope you like this week's show...feel free to comment here or on drop me a note on the KBCZ FB page and lemme know what you think. Let's talk about girls!!

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