5/1/09

Music Lists #6: Gastro-Melodies: 25 Songs About Food and Drink

Songs about sex are a dime a dozen, but what about that other bodily urge? This time around we're looking at songs about food/drink. Hey, any excuse to do another music list is cool with me - my obsessive-compulsive urge to put the entire universe into neat little lists must be satisfied!

Of course, musicians being the sexaholic bastards that they are, often use food as a flimsy euphamism for sex. So, most of these songs are about food in name only. So please don't criticize the list for containing songs not actually about food - we're going simply on titles here. Let's give it a try...

1. Brown Sugar - The Rolling StonesIs it about a black woman or heroine? Or both? No one knows for sure.

2. Cheeseburger in Paradise - Jimmy BuffetThis is about an actual location near Key West accessible only by boat. Buffet was livin' the dream, baby!

3. Coconut - Harry Nilsson



4. Brandy (You're a Fine Girl) - Looking Glass
Looking glass was the definition of a one hit wonder. Two members went on to form the heavy metal band Starz and one is a chorus teacher at a middle school.

5. Escape (The Pina Colada Song) - Rupert Holmes
Great story to this song if you listen to the lyrics. Loved Rick Moranis' impersonation of Rupert on SCTV.

6. Sugar, Sugar - The Archies
Originally intended for The Monkees, but the band fired their music supervisor Don Kirchner and took control of their own musical direction. Instead, the song went to an even more manufactured group than the Monkees - the cartoon band, The Archies.

7. Red, Red Wine - Neil Diamond
Obscure Diamond tune that seemed tailor made for UB40 many years later.

8. Savoy Truffle - The BeatlesWhat the hell is a Montélimar or a ginger sling? I'm too lazy to look it up.

9. Cold Gin - KISSAccording to Wikipedia, Ace Frehley wrote this song about the stimulating effect that cold gin supposedly has on the male sex drive. Question: Other than their epic failure at a concept album (The Elder), is there a single KISS song not about sex?

10. Popcorn - Hot Butter
Love the moog.

11. Coffy is the Color - Coffy Sountrack
Lyrics: "... She's as sweet as a chocolate bar..." God, I love Pam Grier.

12. The Lemon Song - Led Zeppelin
Is there a song in existence with more graphic sexual innuendo than this one? "Squeeze me, babe, 'till the juice runs down my leg..."

13. American Pie - Don McLean
Worst cover versions of this song by Madonna and The Brady Bunch. Both versions have made me throw up in my mouth.

14. A Taste of Honey - Herb Alpert
Alpert's album Whipped Cream & Other Delights is often described as the sound of the sexual revolution hitting the suburbs. Given the provacative album cover, this should be of no surprise.

15. Cherry, Cherry - Neil Diamond
"One of the greatest three-chord songs of all time" according to Rolling Stone.

16. Cinnamon Girl - Neil YoungKnocked off the top of the charts by America's "A Horse with No Name" which sounded exactly like a Neil Young song. America was widely criticized at the time for copying the Neil Young sound.

17. I'm a Tangerine - Tommy James and the ShondellsI think "Strawbery Fields" made it trendy to sing about fruit. It should never be okay to sing about fruit. Only the Beatles can get away with it.

18. I Want Candy - The Strangeloves
Yeah, the Bow Wow Wow version is better, but this is a list of food/drink songs from the 60's and 70's. So, we're just going to have to deal.

19. No Sugar Tonight - The Guess Who
I love how the song blends into "New Mother Nature".

20. Junk Food Junkie - Larry Groce
This is a comedy song on the same intellectual level and wit as Gallagher (remember him? the guy who smashed watermelons?). It used to drive me crazy as a kid. It is so not funny and abrasive. I hate it with ever fiber of my body, yet include it on this list to spread the misery so that I won't suffer alone.

21. The Spam Song - Monty PythonCustomer: What have you got?
Waitress: Well, there's egg, bacon and spam,... egg, bacon, sausage and spam,... spam, bacon, sausage and spam...
Customer: Have you got anything without spam?
Waitress: Well, the spam, eggs, sausage and spam - that's not got much spam in it
Customer: I don't want any spam!

etc., etc., you know the rest. Classic.

22. Rubber Biscuit - The Blues BrothersOriginally recorded by The Chips in 1956, the song fit perfectly with the Aykroyd and Belushi routine. "Have you ever heard of a wish sandwich? ... A wish sandwich is the kind of sandwich where you have two slices of bread and wish you had some meat!"

23. Rainy Day, Mushroom Pillow - Strawberry Alarm Clock
Used in the Jack Nicholson hippie drug film Psyche-Out produced by Dick Clark.

24. The Candy Man - Sammy Davis, Jr.I think this was recorded during Sammy's dark period. When he was getting into LeVay's church of satan and snorting coke with Maureen McCormick (it's true - it's in her book!).

25. Spill the Wine - Eric Burdon & WarI don't actually remember this song from childhood, but rather from MTV. The channel used to have a short show that played oldies - I think it was called "My Generation". Anyway, they played the same damn videos over and over, and this was one of them. Burdon looks high as a kite and is sweating like he's about to O.D.


I know there's a lot of other songs from the 60's and 70's about food/drink out there; however, this isn't meant to be comprehensive - just a list of 25. If there's a glaring omission of a great food/drink song, please put it in the comments. Don't say "One Bad Apple" by The Osmonds - I hate them.

18 comments:

  1. The Lemon Song, yes, subltly is not Led Zeppelin's strong point.

    I've never heard a remake of American Pie and I don't ever want to.

    The Guess Who are an excellent, excellent band.

    I've got Junk Food Junkie on one of my K-Tel or Ronco albums, Goofy Greats or Funky Favorites. I hate that song.

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  2. I never realized there were so many songs that mentioned food. I guess it is definitely an important part of our lives. We crave it. Plus we need it. Have a great weekend.

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  3. Of all of them, Brandy's my favorite. I love that song. I'm not ashamed to say it..

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  4. ... btw, Sammy was into the church of satan??? for real?

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  5. "Brown Sugar" was originally called "Black Pussy", which should, in itself answer the question presented, although the lyrics also make it pretty clear.

    The Monkees didn't actually break-up before recording "Sugar, Sugar", they had music supervisor Don Kirchner fired and took control of their own musical output. They were together for another 2 years after that as a quartet and another year or two as a trio.

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  6. I stand corrected Neil. Thanks for the information... I think I deserve partial credit.

    And yes, Joe, Sammy was into the satan thing for a little while; in fact, I've got a picture of him with Anton Le Vay on this post.

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  7. AnonymousMay 01, 2009

    My parents used to put the smack down on me or my sister for singing, "Yummy, yummy yummy, I've got love in my tummy..."

    I dunno...weird, oppressive Catholic upbringing...I guess they thought the song was about pregnancy???

    Anyway, I'm living it up in Las Vegas now...7 Deadly Sins...1 Convenient Location...and I've never ever been pregnant,yay!

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  8. Also, Peter Tork actually left the Monkees BEFORE Michael Nesmith did...just FYI ;)

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  9. Wow. Neil and now Catherine have pointed out how completely incorrect my Monkees statement was...Allow me to change this asap before I set the blogosphere aflame with false Monkees information.

    What's up there now should be fine.

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  10. After reading this list, I'm now hungry. The only song I can think of that you missed was "A Taste of Honey" by The Beatles. It's about a girl, but does reference food in the lyrics.

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  11. Thanks Mikey. Yeah, I actually thought about including it, but never really liked the song.

    What would be cool is a list of groups with food/drink names. A Taste of Honey was a great disco group (Boogie Oogie Oogie). Wild Cherry, Moby Grape, The Raspberries, Hot Chocolate, Hot Tuna, Strawberry Alarm Clock, etc.

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  12. Te recomiendo Banana de Ed Kassner, is a Reggae 69 song. in Jamaican music theres a lot songs about food.

    saludos

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  13. TNT - A lot of Jamaican songs about weed too. Perhaps I could do the top 250,000 Reggae songs about marijuana. :-)

    Seriously though, I respect the Jamaican music, although my knowledge of it doesn't extend much farther than "Pass the Dutche" by Musical Youth and Bob Marley. I do like what Damian Marley is doing these days... WELCOME TO JAMROCK!

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  14. I always thought "Cheeseburger in Paradise" was inspired by the Dew Drop Inn, in Mobile, Alabama.

    http://www.alabama.travel/places-to-eat/alabama-restaurants/dew_drop_inn.html

    Or maybe that's just wishful thinking.

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  15. Been to the Dew Drop Inn actually - nice little nondescript hole in the wall with good hot dogs... but not the basis of "Cheeseburger in Paradise". That honor goes to a spot in the British Virgin Islands,

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  16. I certainly didn't mean to be too smart. It just happens that obscene original titles and The Monkees are two of five subjects I know way too much about.

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  17. Mmmm, Cinnamon Girl. Great song.

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  18. My dad has a whole blog of themed songlists, here's his food one:
    http://ericssonglists.blogspot.com/2006/09/erics-songlist-food-drink.html

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