Friday, October 7, 2011


One of the reasons I like country music so much is that it never lost its sense of humor. Rock and pop lost that a loooong time ago. Now what passes for humor in pop music is nothing but insults to one's intelligence. Now, instead of truly funny records like "Ahab The Arab" or "Transfusion" or "Does Your Chewing Gum Lose Its Flavor On The Bed Post Over Night", we get records like "Fuck You" by Cee Lo. Wow. "Fuck You". Brilliant. Wonder how long Cee Lo worked on that idea to develop it into such a powerful statement. Ten, maybe twelve seconds? Country, on the other hand, still has some pretty funny tunes, like "Bobby With An 'I'" by Phil Vassar (about a big, bench-pressing dude who just happens to like dressing up as a woman and going to bars), or "Fish" by Craig Campbell (about a girl who likes to drive out to the lake in her boyfriend's truck, gee that girl loves to f-f-f-f-f-fish - rather sophomoric, really, but still a LOT funnier than "Fuck You"). I also like the fact that country music can have really, really warped subject matter - murder (I've often wondered which form of music has more guns and shootings - country or rap), mental illness, in-breeding (see "I'm My Own Grandpaw"), oddball couples ("You're The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly" by Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty comes to mind), good times spent in jail, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera....

Today's selection is one of the funniest cheating songs ever waxed. Ferlin Husky had been a country hitmaker for Capitol since the early 1950s, not just under his own name, but also under his humorous alter ego, Simon Crum. On this record, the two facets of this great singer came together. Basically, the guy's wife is cheating on him, and he keeps warning her, "someday you'll push me too far". Well, one day, ol' Ferlin snaps (or maybe it was Simon) . He coaxes his wife to their old make-out spot - at the top of a mountain. You can guess what happens next. If this sounds like a much more ridiculous version of Porter Wagoner's "The Cold Hard Facts Of Life" (released just a couple of months before this record), it should.

The man who wrote this song, Bobby Braddock, became a very in-demand songwriter (though I'd guess not because of this record), writing country classics such as "D-I-V-O-R-C-E" by Tammy Wynette, "Georgia In A Jug" by Johnny Paycheck, and the ultimate country weeper "He Stopped Loving Her Today" by George Jones. Amazingly, he's still writing big country hits, like "I Wanna Talk About Me" by Toby Keith, and "God Is Great, Beer Is Good, People Are Crazy" by Billy Currington.

Ferlin Husky - You Pushed Me Too Far (Capitol 5938) - 1967

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