Thursday, August 31, 2006

Freeze Frame!

One of the most endearing things about Rexburg is what I like to call their "vintage" radio. When I lived there from '02 to '03, I was astonished at the love affair Rexburg seemed to be having with Billy Idol. I must have heard "Eyes Without a Face" one hundred times during the year that I lived there. This summer it seemed that vintage radio had moved on a litte, its latest darling being a circa 1989 Madonna--"Like a Prayer" Madonna. But really the obsession doesn't stop at Madonna: songs like "Tainted Love" or "Ice Ice Baby" are played over and over again, as if they are among the current top twenty songs in the nation. It's as if Flock of Seagulls is taking the country by storm. This is your hard-core, Pat Benatar playing, "Footloose" soundtrack loving, vintage eighties radio, my friends. And it's not for the faint of heart.

People give Utah radio a hard time, and I admit it: there's a lot of old timey eighties stuff on Utah radio stations. But at least Utah has other things to choose from, or they limit the air time of their vintage music to one or two hours, maybe an entire Saturday. When it comes to Idaho radio, you have three choices: 1. Country (and I mean BAD country, not Johnny Cash or Bonnie Raitt country), 2. Christian rock (which always sounds deceptively acceptable until I hear the word "Lord" in the chorus. I mean, I am a Christian, but it's creepy to hear that), and 3. Gary Numan

One time I was talking to Marcy Dibbleblotts about the vintage radio in Idaho. "I love living in Rexburg because every time I turn on the radio, it's a walk down memory lane," I told her. "I feel the same way in Utah," said she, "I turn on the radio and it's like 'oh, yeah, Semisonic! Better than Ezra!'" To which I responded, "I turn on the radio here, and it's like 'oh, yeah, 'Freeze Frame'!'" I don't even know who sings 'Freeze Frame,' but I have a feeling it might be the same people who sing 'Centerfold.' You know the song:

My blood runs cold
My memory has just been sold
My angel is the centerfold
Angel is the centerfold

And you remember the video, too, with all those high school girls parading around? I don't remember the video for 'Freeze Frame' but who can forget that catchy chorus?

Freeze frame, freeze frame
Freeze frame, freeze frame
Freeze frame, freeze frame
Freeze frame, whoo, and I freeze

It makes me want to raise a fake camera up to my face and do a clicking motion with my right index finger.

Upon consulting Google, I found that my instinct was right--the same band DOES sing both songs! And I'll tell you what, the J. Geils band seems to have an obsession with photography.

Anybody who grew up on MTV as I did would remember this character:

Maybe my MTV upbringing is why I am so fond of Rexburg? Maybe it's the reason why I almost bought a best of the Cars CD, or why I have seriously been considering downloading all of the Talking Heads songs. Whatever the reason, heaven bless you, MTV. Thanks for so many beautiful years together....


  1. The 80's DID produce some fabulous lyrics. I mean, do you get to hear Jessie's Girl?? "She's lovin' him with that body I just know it."

    I think there is something to vintage radio. I mean, it is nice not to hear new music ALL the time. I like being able to turn on the radio and sing along. Like when the man across the hall from me at work turns on his radio and we party to Livin' On a Prayer and You Shook Me All Night Long. That really gets my motor runnin'.

  2. Oh, yes. "Jesse's Girl," "867-5309," and "Roseanna" are also favorites of Rexburg radio.

  3. J Geils should be a producer for the Disney channel. He "gets" high school anxst.

  4. I think I could get behind that Rexburg station. I have yet to find many stations out here that are not rap or country. Yet there is one that is strikingly intuitive. They claim that they are a station that feels like you're listening to your dream CD collection, and it's true!

    Except for all the Depeche Mode.

  5. Alright, you're moved and in the rut. How about a new post?