October 13, 2008

The Raincoats, The Kinks//Lola

To celebrate my upcoming trip to San Francisco, America’s very own homo Mecca, One Sweet Song is getting totally gay this week. Yes, please welcome (with loving arms and lots of alcohol) OSS’s Queer Week.
Expect: raucous fun, queer action, FABULOUS!!!!!, gender bending jams, all-night parties, gay shame, hard liquor, miller high life (champagne of beers, btw).
Don’t Expect: rainbow stickers, pink triangles, the color purple, u-haul jokes, gay pride, clay aiken, miller lite.
I'll also be giving you bonus songs on some posts to make up for my upcoming "days off" from blogging.

Getting down to business:
I attended an impromptu dance party last night and, I have to say, this song about falling for a tranny woman in gay, gay ol’ Soho (this could lead to a whole world of other stories for me, so I’ll refrain) was woefully missing from the playlist (take a note on that, Mitch). While the Kinks version can definitely stand just fine on its own, it’s this version by late 70s proto-riotgrrl/post-punk group The Raincoats, that truly does the song justice. The cover relies on a more disjointed rhythm, injecting a jagged aesthetic and adding even more gender bending confusion. What better way to kick this gay week off?

Unsurprisingly, The Raincoats have big ties to that other pillar of London’s late 70s proto-riotgrrl/post-punk/new wave scene, The Slits. (remind me to tell you about my “ariupisgod” screen name from 2003). They’ve also inspired a host of much-esteemed indie/grunge icons, from Chicks on Speed to Kurt Cobain to Sonic Youth.

Lola.mp3 [Raincoats]

As an aside, Karl, his dad and I really rocked out to some Kinks in the car pre-Palmyra show on Saturday, so it makes me happy to be able to give them a shout-out today. We are the village green preservation society.

Lola.mp3 [Kinks]

You can get The Kitchen Tapes, recorded live in '82 at NYC's The Kitchen, at Other Music Digital here.

One Gay Fact: Ray Davies says that he was inspired to write this song after the band manager Robert Wace had spent the night dancing with a transvestite.

Well, I’m not the world’s most masculine man,
But I know what I am,
And I’m glad I’m a man,
And so is Lola.

1 comment:

theneedledrop said...

This has always been one of my favorite covers of all time. I recently put it on a mix CD, and I've been finding myself repeating that one track. It's like my CD player's black hole or something.