Flipping through the mp3s on my laptop, I find that I’ve stashed away plenty of guilty pleasures. They seem to fall in three general categories: bubblegum, disco, or sappy love songs. Since we took care of the disco and bubblegum yesterday, here are two from column 3.
“The Other Side of the Sun”/Janis Ian. This seems pretty insubstantial, a generic example of the sort of thing that would pop up on adult-contemporary radio in the early 80s and then disappear just as quickly—in this case, without ever making the Hot 100. But I was hooked by it then (and still get hooked now) in about half-a-dozen different ways, from its dreamy keyboard intro to the inevitable saxophone solo—played by Clarence Clemons.
Lobo. It was the decade of the sensitive male, but Lobo was a bit of a wuss even by 1970s standards, making a career out of songs about being in love with unattainable girls. Two of his three Top-10 hits, “I’d Love You to Want Me” and “Don’t Expect Me to Be Your Friend,” came back-to-back in the fall of 1972 and the winter of 1973—the precise moment at which I was in love with an unattainable girl. Thus, there was never a chance that I wouldn’t become a Lobo fan.
My thanks to those of you who have shared some of your own guilty pleasures so far. If you’ve got more, add ’em in the comments.