Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Rednecks, White Socks, and Blue Ribbon Beer
How things change, and how poor memory is. I could swear I first heard this song at Frank's Truck Stop on Rte 143 outside Williamsburg in early 1973, but Wikipedia tells me it didn't come out until October of that year, so I am wrong on that. I first went to Frank's in late 1971, my freshman year at William and Mary. It was my introduction to any real southern culture, as Williamsburg was 70% college/Mid-Atlantic bubble. I went with Sam Jones, Don Harvey, and John Daniel Porter, all of them Virginians who objected to my talking too fast and putting maple syrup on grits. "Dayviyd! Yer roonin' 'em!"
I thought all of us were going in mockery, but I gradually learned that this was only partly true for the Virginians, and not true at all for those from farther south, who relished this chance to get something much like what they grew up with. (William & Mary was/is a state school of 80% Virginians. At the time it drew very few students from New England or west of the Appalachians. North Florida to North Jersey was its out-of-state draw.) I saw this title and had to include it among my three choices for a quarter at the table jukebox.
I was in a band, Carroll County, which was following CSN&Y, the Eagles, Loggins & Messina, and a host of others deeper into country music. This was still too far ridiculous for us, and we never quite embraced this, but the irony was gone almost as soon as we sniggered. Stephen Still's Manassas had long been out and the Flying Burrito Brothers were on our turntable nightly.
I went back anti-country after the 70's, because too much of evangelical culture seemed to regard that as God's True Music. Still, I do like close harmony, and country music has always been strong on that. Bluegrass, anything with a fiddle, and anything that hearkens back to Scots-Irish roots are about as far as I'll follow now. Creedence Clearwater Revival seems to have won the day, bringing rock into country and country into mainstream, which persists to this day. Okay, until the year 2000 anyway, because I don't really have much solid information after that.
To top it all off, PBR is fashionable now. Oh, and you know Russell from an earlier song, covered by the Beatles, "Act Naturally."
Posted by Assistant Village Idiot at 10:53 PM