Evan Kessler Dot Com

The Home of the Brave

Stand By The Jams

Posted by evankessler on May 3, 2010

There are songs and bands whose existences can live in deep in the recesses of your memory and stay lodged there for an indefinite amount of time until someone comes along and turns those metaphorical brain pockets inside out with either  a direct reference to a specific moment in your musical upbringing or with a blow to the head that brings about a sort of selective amnesia that allows you to only recall obscure early 90’s dance tracks. Yesterday, while approaching third avenue in Manhattan from the south east corner  of 52nd street, my friend Jason seemingly out of nowhere mentioned a group that once promised to rock me in a way that was non-Freddie Mercury and non-Brian May related.

“Do you remember that group The KLF?”

I was confused by the question.  I thought I was the only person in the world who occasionally had the words “KLF is gonna rock you” bouncing around my head from time to time.  This was a revelation, how many other people our age were secretly humming relatively obscure early 90’s acid house tunes.  After the fog in my head cleared and the song was somewhat fresh, we discussed the shouted refrain that neither of us could figure out and seemed to instantly join the canon of misheard lyrics of our youth.  I thought it was “ancients approved” and Jason thought it was something like “agents of rude.” Mine made more sense to both of us, but as it turns out neither was right.

I quickly changed the subject to another KLF song featuring Tammy Wynette of “Stand By Your Man” fame. Jason had zero recall when I mentioned this.  I was able to remember the “all bound for mu mu-land” lyric, but he still had no idea what I was talking about.  Part of me was now thinking that I had conjured this entire video on my own. Fortunately, there is a thing called Youtube that can confirm all of your deep-rooted musical suspicions.

I watched this video briefly today and it struck me as one of the more awkward pairings of all-time.  Sure we’ve had our  fair share of those over the years like Jack White and Loretta Lynn, Nelly and Tim McGraw, David Bowie and Bing Crosby and a few others I’m probably missing, but  watching this nearly 20 years later had this odd power that made it feel confusing, memorable and groundbreaking all at the same time.  Anyway, you be the judge.  I still think the KLF is gonna rock you.


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