New lyric video for everyone’s favorite surf-style rock song “Driving With Grandpa”! It’s the second lyric video for my new live comedy concert album Rob P. Rocks A Jazz Club and it’s a song that’s been well-received from Brooklyn to Europe!
And like the first lyric video from RPRaJC it features a retro pic of a 10-ish-year-old Rob P.!
I brought back my “Oof, Who Charted?” series for a new installment on songs about songs! Some songwriters run out of ideas for their songs so they just write about a different song, or maybe even the song they’re writing, like some kind of musical Escher drawing. In the video I break down some recent offenders.
First we get into Selena Gomez’ “Love You Like a Love Song” in which she basically admits there are already enough love songs out there. Unfortunately that doesn’t stop her from attempting this one. Then we get into Kid Rock’s nostalgia track “All Summer Long” in which he reminisces about singing “Sweet Home Alabama.” What happens in 20 years when someone writes a song about how great it was to sing “All Summer Long”? Thankfully, that will never happen.
Next is Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song” which cracks me up because she just flat out says “this is my fight song” in the chorus. She should do a whole album of songs that just tell us what they are: “This is my workout jam!” ”This is my song for rainy Sundays.”
And then there’s a country song by Brett Eldredge called “Wanna Be That Song” which, as far as I can tell, is told from the point of view of the song itself expressing the desire to be a popular song. And the only reason I know about this song is because the video was shot at Wrigley Field and as a long-suffering Cubs fan the internet algorithms threw it at me several times.
There are many more examples but I kept it to these 4 for the sake of video brevity. Hope you like it!
Contrarian is track 2 on 2013’s Keep Your Jazz Hand Strong! and I think it’s a really fun, upbeat tune. When I was recording it (here at my Brooklyn HQ) I was having a hard time really getting the energy up where I wanted it. I knew I had the right tempo but something was missing. Then I realized: I needed a hype man!
Every good ska band has a hype man! I was pressed for time though so I had to step in and be my own hype man (Be Your Own Hype Man is going to be the title of the self-help book I write in my retirement). I know I must have looked a fool jumping around my apartment trying to hype up a band that was also me, but it was a lot of fun and I hope that comes through on the track.
Lyrics-wise it’s a subject I’ve always wanted to tackle as I’ve had many friends over the years who have relished the role of contrarian, of finding out what everyone likes and decided to dislike it and like something else. Not because they truly like things, they just like liking what others don’t like.
O.K., now I’ve confused myself. Here are the lyrics:
You always disagree!
I know a guy, he makes me quite irate
Anything I like he automatically hates
He’s a contrarian, You can never be right! He’s a contrarian
If all of his friends say they like a flick
He’ll say it was lame just to be a dick
He’s a contrarian, “I don’t have to see the movie.” He’s a contrarian
He’ll argue for days on end
Just because to him that’s fun Never ending! He’s a contrarian
He’ll say the opposite thing just to egg you on
If the whole room is pro, you know he’s gonna be con… Khan!! He’s a contrarian, Everybody’s always wrong! He’s a contrarian
He never takes time to think things through Automatic!
He just disagrees because he thinks he’s better than you
He’s a contrarian, “Pfff, yeah, you’d think that.” He’s a contrarian
He could score less points than you and somehow say he won “I played smarter.” He’s a contrarian
Watch him now!
None of his beliefs are held deeply It’s all on the surface!
Blindly choosing the opposite takes no thought It’s so predictable!
If all of his friends became contrarians like him
He’d say, “oh, that’s what you are? Then I’m not.”
He’ll spend all day quoting useless facts,
All of his videos are Betamax Betamax! He’s a contrarian, “It’s a superior technology” He’s a contrarian “It’s not that inconvenient.”
Any agreement just makes him tense
So he’ll argue things that don’t make sense
He’s a contrarian, “I just don’t think puppies are that cute.” No! He’s a contrarian “Sunshine? Bah!”
He would join the NRA just to say he doesn’t like guns Bwoh! Bwoh! Bwoh! He’s a contrary…
He’s a contrary…
A very, very contrarian Contrarian!
Hello my friend, how are you
Good evening, day or morning.
I’m as excited to see you as the last time you were here
Because this is a recording
I’ll always be here for you
I’ll never get tired of you
You just must push play
I’m here to distract you with colorful things
To help Mommy get through her day.
Because Mommy needs some time to herself
That’s why you’re here right now with me
Sometimes she gets a little overwhelmed
So she puts you in front of the t.v.
It’s not your fault, you’re a normal kid
Full of energy and life
Believe it or not, Mommy was just like you
Before she became some a-hole’s wife
Now she’s stuck in the house
She can’t work or get out
Because she never has the time
That’s why I’m here to distract you
So she can get back to
Working on her degree online
I think she’s studying psychology!
Don’t worry, just because Mommy’s lying on her bed with a cold towel on her head doesn’t mean she doesn’t love you. Mommies always scream into their pillows when they’re happy.
Would you like to try to cheer her up? You would? Then sing after me:
I love you Mommy—
You’re the prettiest Mommy—
And even though you’ve had kids—
and your body’s stretched out—
you still have value as a woman—
Excellent job, I think that worked
But now we must sit still
We have to be quiet for the next little while
So Mommy won’t need her pills
Now I’ve got to go
but I want you to know
I’ll be back again soon my friend
When Daddy gets home tonight and he and Mommy have a fight
You’ll be back with me again
My cell phone rings, I check the I.D.
I see that it’s you calling me,
I’m busy so I let it go but you don’t leave a message.
You call right back so I guess I better get it.
I pick up the phone and say, “what’s wrong?”
You say “nothing” then go into a long
Story about your new boss man.
I don’t think you understand that
Girl, I got my cell phone for emergencies,
Not to talk about your day. Can’t you see
You’re wasting my minutes
You’re wasting my minutes
My plan does not have much time in it
And you’re wasting my minutes
Now the cell phone is a great innovation
But it wasn’t made for idle conversation
It’s for information that just can’t wait
So let me relate so you can get it straight
If you’re running late for a date that would be a great
Time. Or if I’m in line and you need to remind me
To buy some items of personal hygiene
These are the kinds of things I mean
As long as you’ve got something urgent to say
Not to tell me you’re having a bad hair day
Just because I don’t pick up
doesn’t mean I’m not in love
We should be above this, don’t shove this
in my face, there’s a time and place for everything
you know what I mean?
Like sometimes I’m drivin’
I want to get home alive and well
So I can tell you I love you in person
Instead of cursin’ my luck stuck in a ditch
‘cause I was talkin to my [bleep] on a car phone
And when I say you’re wasting my battery
you get mad at me and say what’s the matter with me
And when you hear my call waiting beeping
you think I’m sleepin’ around and cheatin’
But it’s all in your mind you’re calling me time and time again when’s this trend gonna end?
You say if I don’t spend more time with you we’re through?
Well, what are you gonna do?
Do you think you can leave me
for another man with a better plan?
One who answers his phone and one who won’t
Get upset when you don’t have anything to say, hey!
Believe me girl he will promise you the world
But everyone’s got limits, especially with minutes
And if you’re in it for the long haul
You don’t need to call every second of the day
Sure the new guy will start out fine but I don’t have any doubt
As soon as he gets his bill he’ll say, “you know things aren’t working out.”