SONGS ABOUT SHOPPING

What’s captalism’s favourite pastime? Well, SHOPPING of course! Some of the songs in this week’s list were critical of the commodification of our society while others celebrated shopping as retail therapy.  Objects of desire included everything from clothes and cars to food and liquor and we shopped in that threatened species, the little corner store, as well as their replacements, the supermarkets and malls. We gave away tickets to local charity event, The Spring Into Bangalow Fashion Parade, and welcomed local girl-group The Swinging Cowgirls into the studio for a live performance. All in all, a fun show.

The program kicked off at a rather luxurious looking pet shop, where Patti Page asks HOW MUCH IS THAT DOGGIE IN THE WINDOW? Let’s face it, if you’re a shop-a-holic you could do a lot worse than rescue a pup from being a living and breathing window display. I call that charity work myself.

The Coasters sang of being in a high-end department store without any credit on SHOPPING FOR CLOTHES. And we followed with Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, whose Mum told them to always SHOP AROUND when it comes to looking for love. Not bad advice actually.

Ben Folds does a great cover of the Clash song LOST IN THE SUPERMARKET for the kids film Over the Hedge, which had to make the list. As did The Kinks with the very appropriate DEDICATED FOLLOWER OF FASHION. Check this clip from 1973. I love Ray Davies: “Let’s have a laugh, because no-one’s here for art.” Genius.

Chuck Berry refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive, with lyrics focusing on teen life and consumerism. On this week’s show he went shopping for a car on NO MONEY DOWN.

Here’s De La Soul with their critique of hip-hoppin’, gold-diggin’ girlfriends on SHOPPING BAGS. Its from the underrated album The Grind Date:

Up here in the village of  Mullumbimby, the locals have lost the fight to stop a large Woolworths complex from being built in town. So I included a couple of songs for all those activists who are trying to preserve their quality of life.  First up, Jonathan Richman bemoans the disappearance of the CORNER STORE. We followed with a perfect partner, Eugene McDaniels with SUPERMARKET BLUES: “I’ve got the supermarket blues, If I could choose, its really them I’d like to lose.” Yes, indeedy.

Two very funny tunes on the list are They Might Be Giants’ I AM A GROCERY BAG and TOO HIGH FOR THE SUPERMARKET from The Uninvited. It’s tough finding the ingredients for a simple tuna sandwich in a huge supermarket, especially when focus is a problem. Hilarious.

Fergie knows that shopping for labels is just shopping for affection on LABELS OF LOVE, from the soundtrack to the film Sex & The City, which is basically just a big ad for Manola’s etc.  The Beatles have a bit of advice for the shopaholic in all of us on CAN’T BUY ME LOVE.

I’m not a big fan of The Pet Shop Boys but their 1987 techno-pop tune SHOPPING, which is more about political corruption than a day in the mall, proved to be especially suitable for this week’s show.

Margo Timmins, of The Cowboy Junkies, is going to buy you something small and frail and plastic. As she puts it: ‘CAUSE CHEAP IS HOW I FEEL. Brilliant.

Dolly Parton is also a bit partial to a little metaphor on THE BARGAIN STORE. And lending a little gravity to the list was good ol’ boy Bruce Springsteen with QUEEN OF THE SUPERMARKET.

Jonathan Richman championed the LONELY LITTLE THRIFT STORE and Bruno Mars, with a little help from Damian Marley, sang about the LIQUOR STORE BLUES.

And then I happily welcomed the Swingin’ Cowgirls into the studio for a bit of a jam and a singalong. They are going to be performing at the upcoming charity fashion event, Spring into Bangalow, and going by what we saw on the show, it will be a great night. Here they are performing at another local event, earlier this year:

We said goodbye to the Swingin’ Cowgirls with an equally sassy dame, Lily Allen. She’s giving her granny a hard time on NAN, YOU’RE A WINDOW SHOPPER.

The Replacements’ punk rock defense of the CUSTOMER was followed by Paul Weller and The Jam with MAN IN THE CORNER SHOP, a song about some middle-class punk rockers who suddenly have a whole lot of money but nothing substantial to spend it on.

Before Steven Patrick Morrissey was simply Morrissey, he was lead singer of The Smiths, a band who never charted higher than #10 but who nevertheless generated a cult following. Here they are with SHOPLIFTERS OF THE WORLD UNITE:

Sublime’s influences were reggae, punk and ska and our final track was an old ska song that they recorded a version of in 1996 called  PAWN SHOP. The story goes that lead singer Brad Nowell’s raging addiction saw his guitar being pawned quite often, with their manager having to pay to get it out before their gigs. Sort of puts all those songs about SHOPPING into perspective doesn’t it?

Next week the show will be one of pure joy. Every song will feature HANDCLAPPING. I’d  love to hear from you if you would like to request a track, or you may have an idea for a theme for an upcoming show. Let me know! Love to have your input.

Big thanks to Kathryn and Anna from The Swinging Cowgirls.

Here’s this week’s playlist:

How Much Is That Doggie In The Window – Everlasting In Original 125 Golden Oldies (Vol.3), Patti Page

Shopping for Clothes – Atlantic Rhythm & Blues (1958-62) Vol. 4, The Coasters

Shop Around – The Ultimate Collection, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

Lost In The Supermarket (Clash cover) – Over The Hedge soundtrack,  Ben Folds

Dedicated Follower Of Fashion – The Complete Collection, The Kinks

No Money Down – After School Session, Chuck Berry

Shopping Bags (She Got from You) – The Grind Date, De La Soul

Corner Store – Jonathan Goes Country, Jonathan Richman

Supermarket Blues – Headless Heroes of the Apocalypse, Eugene McDaniels

I Am A Grocery Bag – TMBG UnLtd April, They Might Be Giants

Too High for the Supermarket. – Too High, The Uninvited

Labels Or Love – Sex And The City, Fergie

Shopping – Actually, Pet Shop Boys

‘Cause Cheap Is How I Feel – The Caution Horses, Cowboy Junkies

Can’t Buy Me Love – Hey Jude, The Beatles

Shopping Carts – (comedy skit), Steven Wright

The Bargain Store – The RCA Years 1967-1986 [Disc 2], Dolly Parton

Queen Of The Supermarket – Working On A Dream, Bruce Springsteen

Liquor Store Blues (feat. Damian Marley) – Single, Bruno Mars

The Lonely Little Thrift Store – I’m So Confused, Jonathan Richman

Nan You’re A Window Shopper – Alright, Still Lily Allen

Customer – Sorry Ma, Forgot To Take Out the Trash, The Replacements

Man In The Corner Shop – Direction, Reaction, Creation, The Jam

Shoplifters Of The World Unite – The Best Of Part 1, The Smiths

Pawn Shop – Sublime, Sublime

Next week:  SONGS WITH HANDCLAPPING!

Listen to Lyn McCarthy at the Theme Park on BayFM, Tuesdays 4-6pm, Sydney time
Also streaming via BayFM
Tragically also on Facebook and Twitter
Email me at: lyn.themeparkradio@gmail.com

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About Lyn McCarthy

Lyn presents a weekly radio show at BayFM 99.9 in beautiful Byron Bay in New South Wales, Australia

Posted on October 6, 2010, in Broadcasting and media, community radio, music - nostalgia, music, blues, music, country, music, r&b, music, soul, Radio Program, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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