Songs About Fights, Games People Play by Rolling Stones, B-52’s + Others: Odd Couples

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The last few weeks in the rock ‘n’ roll business have been tough with all the high profile stars taking long term leave as it were, so hopefully things will settle down and we can all get back to enjoying some tunes without having to watch anymore marathon tributes and relive our delinquent childhoods …

ROLLING STONES, “EMOTIONAL RESCUE” (1980) VS. B-52’s, “GIVE ME BACK MY MAN” (1980): The first time I heard the B-52’s, I laughed. The first time I heard the Rolling Stones’ “Emotional Rescue,” I laughed — but not for the same reasons. “I’ll give you fish! I’ll give you candy … give me back my man!” pines Cindy Wilson over the patented B-52’s alt/surf new wave beat. “I will be your knight in shining armor, coming to your emotional rescue,” smugly replies Mick Jagger as he and the other Stones slum around looking for a new genre to pilfer. Oh, this is gonna hurt.

Winner: The B-52’s, right after Cindy deals a straight right hammer that clocks Mick right back into 1965. I can’t get no satisfaction, indeed.

OSMONDS, “YO-YO” (1971) VS. DAN BAIRD, “HUSH” (1996): Don’t chuckle. Both of these are Joe South compositions that did their first tour of duty as ’60s singles by Billy Joe Royal. And though the Osmonds drove a serviceable song all the way up to the No. 3 position on the hit parade, Dan Baird turns his version of “Hush” into a monster that crushes all other Joe South cover versions — or any others.

Winner: Dan Baird – before the vocal hook comes around the second time.

CAT STEVENS, “I LOVE MY DOG” (1966) VS. LOCAL H, “CHA! SAID THE KITTY” (1998): Yep – “Cha! Said the Kitty” is certainly a goofy title, and even Local H’s Cheap Trick-via-the Black Keys musical muscle can’t guarantee a win if the paying customers don’t hit the “PLAY” button. But Cat Stevens is just asking for trouble with an opening line like “I love my dog, as much as I love you.” That’s an accident waiting to happen.

Winner: Local H – and the local headlines read: “Cat Stevens plus cha cha cha equals Cat chow chow chow!”

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