HERC's Hideaway is located on the eastern edge of the city limits - when he takes walks, HERC often leaves and re-enters the city limits. There are retail and housing developments springing up all around (Five Guys - "YAY!", Wal-Mart - "boo!") on what was desert and ranch land just 20 years ago. Still, it's a 20-25 minute drive to the nearest Whataburger, so when MRS. HERC and daughter Dev put in a request for a meal from Whataburger this past weekend, HERC hit the road! These are the five songs that soundtracked his drive home, with the aroma of fried onion rings wafting in The Blueberry.
Whataburger Drive-Thru Suffle
1. "Livin' In The Limelight" -- Peter Cetera, Peter Cetera (1981):
Chicago bassist Cetera recorded his first solo album after fourteen years with the group. When Chicago was dropped from Columbia, Cetera bought the rights to his solo album and released it on a subsidiary of Chicago's new label, Warner Brothers. According to Peter, the album failed to sell because the label was hesitant to promote it out of fear he would leave Chicago, which is just what he did... four years later. This song was played a lot on the local rock station in 1981-1982 and HERC liked it for at least a year before he found out it was by that Peter Cetera. He hadn't heard it in a while when it came on so he's calling SHUFFLE GOODNESS.
2. "The Big Beat" -- Billy Squier, The Tale Of The Tape (1980):
Another early 80s radio-rocker, that kicks off with what else, a big beat. Drummer Bobby Chouinard's beat was so big in fact it has been sampled and emulated hundreds of times by hip-hop artists. [The site Who Sampled Who lists 161 songs that sample "The Big Beat" - ed.] Squier's crunchy, stomping guitar sound and kinda whiny vocals gets kind of old quick on this one. You know HERC likes him some Billy Squier but he's feeling NO SHAME by default since HERC does not put songs he doesn't like on his iPhone.
3. "Safe and Sound" -- Capital Cities, In A Tidal Wave Of Mystery (2013):
Wow, this one certainly picked the mood back up after that last song. A bright and bubbly rockin' pop song that reminds HERC of the equally dazzling "Take A Walk" by Passion Pit. On the advice of a friend, HERC sought out the video and found it to be even more entertaining and creative than the song itself. The guys get extra credit for these two song titles from the same album: "I Sold My Bed, But Not My Stereo" and "Farrah Fawcett Hair". SHUFFLE GOODNESS.
4. "Smoky Mountain Rain" -- Ronnie Milsap, Greatest Hits (1980):
Great story song, easy to sing along to while driving and that's just what HERC does. Milsap tickled the ivories on Elvis's similar-themed "Kentucky Rain" a decade earlier. While a lot of listeners would shut it down with this one, HERC actually enjoys the variety and any song he sings along with rates at least SHUFFLE GOODNESS. If "Kentucky Rain" plays next, it'll be serendipitous SHUFFLE GOLD!
5. "Sail (Unlimited Gravity Remix)" -- AWOLNATION, RE/Sail [single] (2012):
This song sneaks up on the listener with plodding bassdrops, a metronomic beat and glitchy, distorted synths. The original song was released in 2011 then fell off and back on the charts in 2012 before eventually peaking at #25 nearly 30 months after its release. HERC is calling this one SHUFFLE GOLD! and closing out the set.