Once again, a category that I find very difficult to address. How could a song make someone feel guilty, I asked myself. I started contemplating “guilty peasure” songs – the ones I like but would be embarrased to admit I like them to my friends – and came up with a few whose lyrics or pop sensibilities might qualify them. But that’s not real guilt.
I realized that in order for a song to make me feel guilty, it would have to be linked in my memory to something I had done wrong. But I have done things in the past that I’m not particularly proud of, things I feel guilty about if I stop to think about them, they aren’t really associated with music. I mean, it’s not like I killed and ate a nun in the Mojave Desert while listening to Afternoon Delight. (Why, what have you heard?)
On the other hand, I tend to hold onto things, and continue to feel bad about them long after the rest of the world has shrugged its metaphorical shoulders and moved on with its life. Things like: I never paid my friend for the damage after I got rear-ended while driving it to Disneyland. Or: I stole small amounts of money from the till in a retail establishment where I was working. Or: I owed my college roommate a significant (for me at the time) amount of money for the phone service we shared, and never paid him back.
These things are all from my young-and-stupid phase – which lasted for several decades, and may in fact still be in effect. I wouldn’t say they torment me or disturb my sleep, but when I think about them, I feel bad. Fortunately, I hardly ever think about them. But the song I chose for today reminds me of the last of them, so I guess listening to it makes me feel (a tiny bit) guilty. The Degrads were my college roommate’s band from back in his home town. They self-published one single (as far as I know, it was their only one), and I have kept it for 25 years or so. I had a DJ friend of mine convert it to mp3 format, and now, you get to hear it. (No video for this one.)
Sorry about the money, JCE, but maybe posting this will assuage my guilt. Which, I promise, is totally wracking and devastating. Ish.