Oldies Vault: Happy, Bouncy, Feel Good Music!

There’s no doubt about it – happy, bouncy music can uplift spirits and get you out of a down sliding funk.  One of my favorite “peppy” songs peaked only at #41 on Billboard’s Hot 100 in 1996 – literally a one hit wonder by The WondersThat Thing You Do! is just plain fun and infectious.  It’s also the title of the movie.  Want an entertaining, fun comedy with a terrific 60’s style soundtrack?  Then check out That Thing You Do!.

Produced by Tom Hanks, it showcases stars like Liv Tyler and Tom Everett Scott.  It’s the story of the rise and fall of a fictitious 60’s pop band (created for the movie), The Wonders.  The song was a hit for the late Emmy and Grammy-winning songwriter, Adam Schlesinger.

Sadly, Adam recently passed away, but his catchy tunes will live on.  In addition to his 60’s sounding That Thing You Do!, he was also co-founder of Fountains of Wayne who gave us:  Stacy’s Mom (and yeah, she’s got it going on)!  His songs are bound to “stick in your head” (and that’s a good thing).

Speaking of happy, infectious tunes, in 1981 the forgotten Dutch novelty pop group, Stars on 45, gave us their Stars On 45 Hits. The Stars on 45 took some of the best pop hits of our time by the Beatles, Stevie Wonder and other artists, then mixed them with a pumping disco beat.  For a quick dose of retro madness, check them out on You Tube — they’ll still have you dancing (no disco ball needed).

Put some of these infectious, happy go-lucky, sing-along songs on your favorite listening devices to enjoy at home or in the car. Little Richard will help you Rip It Up, Kool and the Gang will help you Jungle Boogie, Peaches and Herb will have you shaking your groove thing, and Isaac Hayes will have you saying “I can dig it”.  Need to get away?  Head out to Woodstock, Indian Lake or let Steppenwolf take you away on a Magic Carpet Ride:

Let the Good Times Roll – Shirley & Lee  ‘56

Jim Dandy – Lavern Baker  ‘56

The Girl Can’t Help It – Little Richard  ’56  (my favorite Little Richard song, from the movie)

Rip It Up – Little Richard  ‘56

Roll Over Beethoven – Chuck Berry ’56      Beatles  ‘63

Jump Jivin’ an Wail – Louis Prima  ’56     Brian Setzer Orchestra  ‘98

Shout – Isley Brothers  ‘59

Shop Around –  The Miracles  ‘61

Spinout – Elvis  ‘66

Jenny Take a Ride/CC Rider – Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels  ‘66

Shake, Rattle and Roll – Arthur Conley  ‘67

Magic Carpet Ride – Steppenwolf  ‘68

Indian Lake – Cowills  ‘68

Woodstock – Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young ’70     Matthew’s Southern Comfort  ‘71

Spirit in the Sky – Norman Greenbaum  ‘70

Theme from Shaft – Isaac Hayes ‘71

One Toke Over the Line – Brewer and Shipley  ‘71

Jungle Boogie – Kool and the Gang  ‘74

Mocking Bird – Carly Simon and James Taylor  ‘74

Don’t You Worry Bout’ a Thing – Stevie Wonder  ‘74

Shining Star – Earth, Wind and Fire  ‘75

Car Wash – Rolls Royce  ‘77

Born to Be Alive – Patrick Hernandez  ‘79

Shake Your Groove Thing – Peaches and Herb  ‘79

What I Like About You – The Romantics  ‘79

Call Me – Blondie  ‘80

Stars on 45 – Stars on 45  ‘81

**Jessie’s Girl – Rick Springfield  ‘81

**867-5309/Jenny – Tommy Tutone  ‘82

Conga – Miami Sound Machine  ‘86

Hot Hot Hot – Buster Poindexter ‘87

Rock This Town – Stray Cats  ‘87

Just Got Paid – Johnny Kemp ‘88

Escapade – Janet Jackson  ‘90

Jump – Kriss Kross  ‘92

Get the Party Started – Pink 2001

**Stacy’s Mom (has got it going on) – Fountains of Wayne  2003


**SOMETHING TO PONDER:  Rick Springfield pointed out at his 2019 Wolftrap concert that Stacy’s Mom could be Jessie’s Girl (the timeline works!).  The name of Jessie’s GirlJenny — and her number was 867-5309! 

 OLDIES TRIVIA:  Nothing is more serious or stressful than these times of Covid.  But sometimes you have to find fun in the worst of times.  I chuckled (to myself) the other day when I realized that the perfect song title to sum up Covid is George Benson’s Masquerade.  And the best song title for social distancing:  Don’t Stand So Close To Me by the Police.   I came up with several more titles that seemed perfect for these challenging times.   See how many can you come up, then see if you matched any of my song titles below.



TRIVIA ANSWERS (I’m betting you found a few not on this list):  Something in the Air – Thunderclap Newman (’69), Nowhere To Run – Martha & the Vandellas (’65), In The Air Tonight – Phil Collins (’81), Stayin’ Alive – Bee Gees (’78), Shape of Things To Come – Max Frost (’68), Run Run, Run – Jo Jo Gunne (’72), No Way Out – Jefferson Starship (’84), What the Hell Is Going On? – Paul Thorn (2012), S.O.S. – Abba (’75), Help! – Beatles (’65), Rescue Me – Fontana Bass (’65), Far From Over – Frank Stallone (’83). 


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