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May 6, 2005

Louie, Louie banned in Michigan

-- by Gary Boatwright

Hat tip to Salon for an article, Band banned from performing 'Louie Louie' that describes why "Benton Harbor Superintendent Paula Dawning cited the song's allegedly raunchy lyrics in ordering the McCord Middle School band not to perform it in Saturday's Grand Floral Parade, held as part of the Blossomtime Festival."

Am I the only one who was not aware that a "pop culture controversy" has been simmering for decades over the lyrics to Louie, Louie ? Fortunately, an alert parent notified Supt. Paula Dawning of their concern and Dawning answered the clarion call to protect our children:

In a letter sent home with McCord students, Dawning said "Louie Louie" was not appropriate for Benton Harbor students to play while representing the district -- even though the marching band wasn't going to sing it.

Fortunately for us all, the FBI has been on the job:

The best-known, most notorious version was a hit in 1963 for the Kingsmen; the FBI spent two years investigating the lyrics before declaring they not only were not obscene but also were "unintelligible at any speed."

Two years? The FBI spent two years investigating the lyrics of a song? We can only hope President Bush awards the agents a Medal of Freedom.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at May 6, 2005 7:01 AM

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Comments

Jesus H. Christ on a cheese sandwich. This fucking country has gone certifiably rat-shit, bat-shit, cat-shit fucking insane. A church ex-communicates folks in NC for voting against Bush, now music, Fucking music, no lyrics, just the fucking music is banned? There is very little hope for this country I am afraid.

Posted by: Vinnie at May 6, 2005 9:30 AM

Just noticed?

Posted by: richard at May 6, 2005 10:19 AM

Dave Marsh's Louie Louie is a lot of fun, and covers the FBI investigation.

Posted by: nihil obstet at May 6, 2005 11:36 AM

Oh those good old 60's! I loved Louie Louie, oh no say me got go now Yah, yah, yah, yah, yah. Louie, Loui oh no, say me got go now. A fine little girl she waits for me. I sail the ship upon the seas.
WE were so BAD in the 60's! Me got go now.

Posted by: Nancy at May 6, 2005 4:57 PM

You should listen to Todd Snider's wry take on the Louie Louie story on his album "East Nashville Skyline". It is shorter than Marsh's book. Short story, the FBI studied Louie ouie for two years and concluded that you couldn't understand the lyrics.

And while you are there, listen to another song called "Conservative Christian Right Wing Republican Straight White American Males". You should adopt it as a theme song (let's just say that Snider doesn't see eye to eye with the title group)

Posted by: plebian at May 8, 2005 4:06 AM

You should listen to Todd Snider's wry take on the Louie Louie story on his album "East Nashville Skyline". It is shorter than Marsh's book. Short story, the FBI studied Louie ouie for two years and concluded that you couldn't understand the lyrics.

And while you are there, listen to another song called "Conservative Christian Right Wing Republican Straight White American Males". You should adopt it as a theme song (let's just say that Snider doesn't see eye to eye with the title group)

Posted by: plebian at May 8, 2005 4:06 AM

I was watching the movie about Elvis tonight and wondered if Elvis had ever recorded Louie, Louie. That would have driven the wingnuts over the edge.

How can they possibly still be so stupid?

Posted by: GaryBoatwright at May 9, 2005 12:24 AM

That was one smart FBI agent, to swing spending two years listening to rock music on J Edgar's dime.

Posted by: Elliott Lake at May 11, 2005 10:35 PM

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