WFMU Ichiban, Rock and Soul with Debbie D

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Joe Tex month day 21: JT and the sons of a gun from next door

Howdy, neighbor, howdy!
ca. the early 50s

If there was one thing that Joe Tex didn't much care for, it was somebody dippin' in his business. From as early as his King-era cover of "Ain't Nobody's Business What I Do", Joe made it loud and clear, again and again, that your business was yours and his business was his, so take your nose and put it somewhere else, thanks.

And who knows your business better than anyone? Those nosey nosey neighbors! 

Joe's adversarial relationship with his neighbors began in earnest when he was confronted on an early Dial side by that "Hand Shakin, Love Makin, Girl Talkin, Son-of-a-Gun from Next Door". Admittedly, the HSLMGTSOG from next door seemed to be dippin' in more than Joe's business, so Joe had every right to be perturbed.

Further evidence that JT had a less than kindly disposition towards his fellow tenants comes in the hilarious Drifters parody "You Can Stay". One glance at the title and you'd think it was a welcoming song, but the implied parenthetical title is "(But that noise has got to go)". Maybe Joe's lived next door to Mouse and the Traps.

As much as the neighbors drove him crazy, their antics also amused him - he always got a kick out of  petty jealousies and social climbing antics, like in this oddball fuzz 'n' harmonica waltz, "Funny Bone".

How, exactly, do you sit on your elbows?

But the last thing in the world you want to do to Joe if you're a neighbor is to try and borry something. This time-honored complaint has been the subject of many a classic tune since even before Jerry McCain had to loan his neighbor a suit to bury grandpa in. Here's Joe's take, from the Different Strokes, the 1975 winner "My Neighbor's Got the Gimmes".  And this is no funny business: "If Jesus would've have lived around neighbors like y'all, y'all would make the man hate you himself!"

But is it me, or does he borrow from (of all people!) Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons for the slowed down middle section of that song?



2 Comments:

domino9 said...

Joe didn't even want his left hand to know what his right hand was doing so it's not surprising he didn't want the neighbors involved!

Debbie D said...

Perfect song for the Marathon! WFMU Got the Gimmes!!

Pony up!

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