And everybody here knows the rest, right?
Thassright. Because “Staying Alive” is one of the greatest songs ever written.
“But it’s disco!” you cry. (Or okay, maybe you don’t, but for my purposes you do.) “And December, you’re into stuff like the Stones and the Devil Dogs! How can you think a Bee Gees song is so great!”
It doesn’t matter how or why. It just is, baby. It just is. Trust me, I know what I’m talking about. I know who The Seeds and The Sonics are, and I own a copy of The Great Twenty-Eight, which if you don’t have one you’re missing out on some of the best rock n roll ever created.
Who can honestly listen to Staying Alive–with lyrics like “Well now, I get low and I get high/And if I can’t get either I really try”, or “Life goin’ nowhere/Somebody help me/Somebody help me, yeah” and not be totally overwhelmed with a sense of emotions and thoughts beneath the surface? The way the beat and that guitar line drives the whole thing and makes your blood race?
That’s what a song should do. It should make you feel connected to it. It should make you feel less alone.
I firmly believe “Staying Alive” is one of those litmus tests. If you’re on my side and think it’s a great song (or at least that there’s something special about it), we can relate. If not…well, I just don’t know. (It’s like asking a woman if she’s ever wanted to fuck Mick Jagger. Which, for the record, HELL yeah. I don’t care how old he is, he’s Mick fucking Jagger. I’d be up for Keith, too. Just sayin’.)
I think we all have certain songs or movies or of course books that we see that way, although I do think songs tend to be more visceral for us. I’m friends with people who didn’t think Free Enterprise was a hysterical movie. I’m friends with people who preferred “Catch-22” to The Caine Mutiny, which is my favorite book. And yes, I can be friends with people who don’t like Staying Alive. My husband doesn’t agree with me that it’s one of the greatest songs ever written (although he does like it, and we both firmly believe that there is at least some god out there who looks like Barry Gibb did in 1977. Because if you were god, wouldn’t you?)
But c’mon…you have to admit, the song has style.
What are your litmus tests?
A few end notes: One, the website is in the process of switching over. The url should work but there may be some glitches in the next week or so. FYI. The link in the sidebar should always work.
Two, the Smart Bitches are doing an onomatopoeiac cover contest. I can’t decide if I want to vote for #7 or #10, because they both make me giggle like a fiend. Seriously, go check them out.