- Album name: The Rockin’ Originals
- Group name: Various Artists (including The Dixie Cups, The Jelly Beans, Carl Perkins, The Shangri-Las, Jerry Lee Lewis, Bill Justis, The Ad Libs)
- Year: 1972
- Number of discs: one
- Label: Pickwick
- Collection: Brenner / Gessner
- Buy it on Amazon: $4.95
Level of familiarity before listening
I know almost all of these songs, and I’m a big Shangri-Las fan.
What I expected
Oldies (and some not-quite-as-oldies)!
What it was actually like
I completely understand what it is about Leader of the Pack that makes people consider it the Shangri-Las’ best song and why it gets included in every compilation, but it’s not really one of my favorites! I love Remember (Walking in the Sand), though – it’s like two songs in one, and some years ago, the “Oh, no, no, no, no, no” line from it must have gotten sampled in a pop song, because I suddenly started hearing it all the time in office lobbies and public transportation. If I were going to include that and another song by the Shangri-Las, I’d probably make it Give Him a Great Big Kiss (“When I say I’m in love, you best believe I’m in love, L-U-V”).
Every part of this record was wonderful and it reminds me so much of when I was young and my father used to listen to the oldies station on the car radio. I wonder what that station was, and whether it still even exists, with such a diminished population of oldies fans. And what is the thematic connection between the nine songs that got included here? And perhaps even more importantly, what exactly is “raunchy” about Raunchy, the instrumental eighth track by Bill Justis, which is the only one that I didn’t recognize? It didn’t strike me as particularly raunchy, but who am I to say?
Finally, though Lightnin’ Strikes by Lou Christie and It’s My Party by Lesley Gore are really his favorites, I can definitely envision my father blasting Chapel of Love and singing along to it, so that makes it the best song on the record for me.
5/5: love it