Friday, December 16, 2005

San Pedro Boat Parade Music Update


A few weeks ago I told y'all about the boat parade we had in the LA Harbor and how we decorate boats with Xmas lights and go on to various judging spots in the harbor while entertaining the shoreline viewers. I also explained how we usually have music onboard but no one knows how to do it well - so I always get sucked into that role.

We got involved in this because Deborah's company greatly valued volunteership - well she is no longer with that company (having moved on to more moolah downtown) but we still get asked back to particpate on the boat because they love her so much. But I have never been sure the other anal retentive engineers who work on this project value her very-much music-opinionated boyfriend (me).

So this year I decided to sit back. Some guy named Rick was ramrodding the project and I was not going to get in his way. As with last year he picked out some typical Walmart Xmas CD's and was content with playing anything from Perry Como to Pat Boone as the boat glided along the shore to at least five judging stands. This is in vast contrast to the dynamic spot-on stuff I planned in the past but so be it - it was not my gig and I was happy to go along for the ride. Deborah still made me bring about 10 other CDs packed neatly in our bag of wine and pre-made margaritas.

In fact Deborah and I went top deck this time and got a real good eagle's eye view of the parade and just had a good time with another couple from the company. It soon became apparent though that Rick's favorite tune off this CD was Earth Kitt's "Santa Baby". Now until then I only knew her as Catwoman but I have learned differently since then - but this version, in this venue, and, yes, even to me, seemed a bit ribald - we soon started viewing ourselves up top as the pornographic Santa boat - sincle mostly kids lined the shore.

And then Rick had to turn tourguide. The "theme" of the parade was "the Magic of Christmas" and now Rick discovered the mike to the sound system and had to let everyone on shore know about this every 30 seconds - in a fairly nasal basketball coach bullhorn style. "Merry Christmas, everybody - this....is the magic....of christmas".

Now there is really nothing more obnoxious than a guy on a boat talking to you through a loudspeaker - we have nice lights - we have cheering crowds - we even have 50-year old porn Xmas music - but we don't need "this...is the magic....of Christmas" every 30 seconds.

The clamor went up for me to go down there and rip the mike from him but I was not having it. Instead we just screamed at him to shuddap but he couldn't hear us amid his constant proclamations that this season was "magical". So we just laughed and took it.

After the last judging stand we decide to make our move to play something good on the leg home. Deborah hopped down and lobbied that we play Gwen Sefani's new solo album on the way back. It turns our Rick' s girlfriend was fairly mortified by the krap he was playing and was a huge Gwen fan anyway - so much so that there was an impromptu 20-minute coversation about how she was an Orange County product from just down the road and that she saw No Doubt way before they were popular (and this was Rick's girlfriend?) . So anyway we got to do "Hollaback Girl" all the way home.

B-AN-ANAS! Now there's your friggin' magical Christmas.

P.S. - the couple we partied with on top now want us heavily involved in the planning process next year - and we STILL don't work there anymore. Must be our musical taste. (Deborah - you can stop waving now).

6 comments:

Brooke said...

Hilarious! And having seen the whole production myself (in the past), I can understand the frustration of Mr. Bullhorn.

Rock said...

Thanks Brooke - its cool to hear another South Bay interpretation.

wordgirl said...

What??? No Tom Petty singing, "American Girl"?

Shrinking Violet said...

Me Love Gwen Stefani. But I also love the Ertha Kitt "Santa Baby". I wish I could have been there to see/hear this! And, yes, next year, you be in charge of music. Even if you don't work there, no one should have to listen to "THIS IS THE MAGIC OF CHRISTMAS" or whatever. Yes, you should have ripped the microphone from him. That is WHAT BABY JESUS WOULD HAVE DONE.

Howard Roark said...

Ah yes. Rock and his MUSIC. How could anyone, who is not named Rock, ever be in control of party music? What is wrong with the good people of California? Sorry, that list would be way to long for this blog. Take it from my experience with the man....HE KNOWS MUSIC!

Abe Froman said...

Hmm...You know a good song to play in fron of the judging stands would be Israel Kamakawiwo'ole's Somewhere over the Rainbow.