Saturday, June 23, 2012

Cusp Song of the Day: Why Can’t We Be Friends?

The '70s were undeniably a time of War. The band had a dozen top 40 hits, starting with "Spill the Wine" (with Eric Burdon) in 1970. "Why Can't We Be Friends?," from the summer of 1975, spent 13 weeks on the charts and rose as high as number 6. Sure, its lyrics and melody are repetitive, but the messy production and casual conversational style keep it fun and funky.

"Sometimes I don't speak too bright, but yet I know what I'm talking about." OK, let's face it, that's grammatically incorrect, a lazy rhyme and a half-assed rhythm. But who cares? We can't be friends if we're going to be judgmental.

The song has gone on to make huge amounts of money for its writers and performers, from sampling and cover versions to extensive appearances on TV and in movies. Who knows, maybe someday it will be on the soundtrack to a movie version of Cusp!

Speaking of Cusp, "Why Can't We Be Friends?" is the title of Chapter 8 and refers to Karen's confusion over her breakup with Patrick. It's one of three songs she hears right before she has to head out to the parking lot and break his heart. (Even in 1975 the idea of breaking up but remaining friends was known to be an impossible dream.)

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