Thursday, January 29, 2009

Chuck Berry - Johnny B. Goode

Chuck Berry – Johnny B. Goode

Pickwick/Mercury, 1972

Acquired: Love Garden, Used, 2008

Price: $4

So, this record is completely awesome all around, if only because it doesn’t have the terrible novelty track “My Ding-a-Ling” which plagues many a great Chuck Berry compilation record. I was raised on Oldies 95 in Kansas City, so when I first saw Back to the Future I immediately tracked down a cassette tape copy of the soundtrack because it had Johnny B. Goode on it. While playing it on a boombox in my room, I cite rocking out to Johnny B. Goode as the first time I ever air guitared and pretended that I was in a band. It’s one of my favorite songs of all time, so good. Since then, I’ve written two papers for two separate classes about the bewildering nature of rock and roll and how it seems strange when African Americans want to rock out these days, and Chuck Berry has also played a crucial role in these papers. But mostly because I think that scene at the end of Back to the Future is perplexing (“Your cousin. Marvin Berry”), and also because it gave me an excuse to listen to a lot of Chuck Berry. Anyway, this record rules. The cover features Berry in a weird 3D-ish image and the font they use on the cover is totally awesome. Sure, it’s a pretty weak compilation thrown at the public by a label to make some money, but man, all of the songs are so good and it was four bucks and I can listen to Johnny B. Goode anytime I want, so I’m fine with that!

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