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Diva / Mensch pair for Jan 12, 2022

Today I'm giving you a pair by Jim Croce.

Diva: "Bad Bad Leroy Brown"

Mensch: "Operator"

I don't have anything to say about "Bad Bad Leroy Brown" but have quite the treatise on "Operator." I've had that song stuck in my head for a while. It's always totally broken my heart - - I think it's the fact that he's pretending to be stronger than he is but finally admits that he's a mess. That speaks to me.

I was out on Long Island with my in-laws for Thanksgiving. My brother-in-law Robert had Sirius on what he called a "70s AM Radio Station." Lots of great songs, a few clunkers, but mostly good stuff. And wouldn't you know that "Operator" came on. It was a good exercise in inner strength to sit there and NOT collapse in heaving sobs. NOT quietly leave the room, go to the bathroom, and collapse in heaving sobs. Just sit there, listen to the conversation, listen to the song but only with one ear, and not let on how much that song means to me. Hm, pretending to be stronger than I am, and doing a good job of it!

The chorus is so fascinating, the harmonies and the way the melody roams around rhythmically in a way that makes perfect sense but is completely unlike any other song I know. And the vocal arrangement is supreme. This live performance is a treat because it shows that it's two voices in the first chorus but three in the other choruses.

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Jan 12, 2022

Great songs. I remember us playing the heck out of that LP as very young lads. I need to find it again on vinyl.

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