My Best Friend’s Girl by The Cars (Elektra, 1978)


The Cars debut album released in 1978 is about as perfect a first impression that you could make as an artist. Produced by Roy Thomas Baker, every song on that album is a killer and it brought them instant fame and success, becoming a bridge from 70s arena rock to 80s New Wave. Not bad for a band that had only been together for two years.

Actually, the musical partnership of Rik Ocasek and Benjamin Orr started more than a decade before when they met in Cleveland, OH in the mid-60s. It was only through perseverance, an eventual move to Boston and lots of luck that together they found the right group of guys to play Ric’s songs. Although Orr sang lead vocals on their first hit, Just What I Needed, Ric was the true frontman of the group, a tall lanky guy in black leather and shades. His whole demeanor suggested that he didn’t give a shit, which made him infinitely cool. Without raising the temperature of his voice, he communicated his feelings deeper than any trained singer could slide his vocal tones around syllables unusually emphasized, sounding less nasally than Dylan, less dramatic than Bowie.  He could make the simplest phrases sound totally hip and the dumbest ideas sound tons of fun.

Case in point: You’ve got your nuclear boots and your drip dry glove. Ok, Ric help me out. Was your ex-girlfriend an extra in The China Syndrome? I’m not sure what that means but I’m not sure I’d break up with a girl with those items in their wardrobe.

Also, suede blue eyes. That sounds so much cooler than blue suede. Maybe she was an Elvis fan. Maybe she was hooked on a feeling.

This single peaked #35 during the last week of 1978 unable to surpass Foreigner or Styx, but able to open the door for bans like the Talking Heads who were debuting at #40 with Take Me To The River as well as open the door to countless synth pop-rock bands in the 80s.




Baby Hold On by Eddie Money (Columbia, 1978)



1977 was not the best year for a straight-up rock artist to breakthrough with a new career, what with the advent of punk tearing down everything around them, crudely poking fun at the wealthy dinosaurs of music who got rich off the counterculture. Also, the disco tsunami was about to inundate the mainstream for the next two years until we had to metaphorically and physically blow it up.

But here was Edward Mahoney recording in Los Angeles in July of 1977, immune to any potential trends, just trying to get a little success in a fickle industry, hoping to validate his choice not to follow in the family footsteps of career policeman. Eddie heard another call and moved to the West Coast in the late 60s. He toiled for nearly a decade before changing his name and securing a recording contract with Columbia after Bill Graham heard him perform. Even with Bill as his manager and a debut album packed with solid pop-rockers that Eddie wrote or co-wrote as well as a Miracles cover, popularity was no sure thing. Eddie said I’m gonna take you to the top.

The first single, Baby Hold On, was released at the height of Bee Gees mania, and it began to climb the Hot 100 charts during the week when the Brothers Gibb had written 4 of the Top 5 songs. It entered the Top 40 on April 8, 1978, when the Gibbs owned half of the Top 10. Their hold was strong but not enough to keep Eddie down and by the time he peaked at #11 in early June, Money had turned his own dreams into reality. You know, the future’s lookin’ brighter.

Eddie ended up with 11 Top 40 hits stretching his success into the mid-90s. He was also inducted into Long Island Music Hall Of Fame in 2008. Baby Hold On was a flip on the Doris Day song Que Sera Sera whereas she tells her beau who knows what will happen, Eddie assures his doubting lover to trust him, that the future is in their hands. His fans held on and trusted Eddie and he rewarded them with a lifetime of great music.

Breakdown By Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers (Shelter, 1978)


Tom Petty is a rock and roll legend. That should not be understated. He is considered the leader of the heartland rock movement and an American icon. Their blue-collar stick-it-to-the-man punk energy may have mellowed over time, but his lyrics and attitude have always been straight forward, getting right to the heart of their intention. Tom & the Heartbreakers were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2002, the first year they were eligible.

Interestingly the first people to embrace him were not the US; they were the British. TPH had 2 Top 40 hits in the UK (Anything That’s Rock N Roll, American Girl)  before having any success in their native homeland. Of course, once they had some fortunes Stateside, they began to break out in a big way. And it all started with their first failed single which refused to die – Breakdown.

Breakdown was the first single released from The Heartbreakers’ self-titled debut in late 1976. It had a simmering mysterious quality to it due partly to Benmont Tench’s soulful keyboards and Mike Campbell’s melancholy downwards lick on the guitar over a steady, taking-my-time drum beat. Building up with Tom’s lo-fi verses crescendoing into a snarling chorus with label mate, Phil Seymour on back up vocals. Then it drops back down to a more confidently sung verse, like Ali going back to his corner before another round. Tom hits the chorus hard again before slithering away like a snake that finished his meal with ‘go ahead and give it to me’ seemingly a dare to his partner. And who doesn’t dig that fake intro? But…

It flopped. So did the subsequent 2 singles they released, even as they garnered status overseas. But as the band kept touring in the UK and in the US, Shelter Records decided to re-release the 45 in the Fall of 1977. The song’s chart run on the Hot 100 was a testament to Tom’s never say die energy, so let me lay it out for you.

November 5th, 1977 – The song debuts on the Hot 100 at #90, one spot below (Love Is) Thicker Than Water by Andy Gibb and one spot above Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood by Santa Esmeralda, both of which would peak higher than Breakdown. The #1 song was You Light Up My Life by Debby Boone. We needed Tom more than ever!

November 12th, 1977 – Breakdown jumps 10 spots to #80. Runaround Sue by Leif Garrett debuts at #79. It, too, would peak higher.

November 19th, 1977 – Breakdown jumps another 10 places to #70. Leif jumps 20 spots. Also, I Honestly Love You by Olivia Newton-John, a former #1 from 1974 has been re-released and sits at #63.

November 26th, 1977 – Happy Thanksgiving. But not for Tom who only moves 5 notches to #65 as the song loses its bullet. Meanwhile, future Wilbury, Jeff Lynne, leapfrogs Tom with the new ELO single Turn To Stone, now at #63, up 18 spots.

Now, this is where stuff gets real…

December 3rd, 1977 – Breakdown falls 35 spots to #100. What the hell happened? How did radio and those who held an interest in the song just give up? Leif Garrett not only enters the Top 40 but sits on top of Tom with another former hit, Surfin’ USA at #99. That’s right, folks. On this day we preferred two Leif Garrett cover songs to our American icon – Tom Petty.

So let’s recap: In early December 1977, The British love Tom Petty. The US loves Leif Garrett. That’s not a world I ever want to live in again.

Now that the song was on its way off the charts, it would be very difficult for it to ever become a Top 40 hit or just a well-known single. Remember this was the label’s second attempt to have a hit with this song. Maybe Tom and the band won’t even get a chance at a 2nd album. Would Shelter or ABC records drop them?

Thankfully they never had to go down that road. Through word of mouth and constant touring, miraculously the song rebounded. [I’m imagining a lot of cool parents or hip uncles and aunts buying the single or album for their kids/nephews during that Christmas.] And over the next 11 weeks, within the time span of 2 different Bee Gees #1 songs, it moved up 60 spots to finally hit #40 and Casey Kasem called the band’s name on February 18, 1978, its 16th week on the chart. It eventually became the only Top 40 song for the band in the 70s, even though they released 3 albums during that decade. [Don’t Do Me Like That peaked in February 1980 at #10.] Tom and Breakdown did not back down and it was the first of 16 Top 40 hits for him, with and without his band.

Success never comes easy. Careers like Tom’s don’t happen overnight. You gotta want it. And you gotta get lucky. Even though this would be the first of many struggles for Tom in the music industry, Tom wanted it. Tom got lucky. And as music fans, we should all be appreciative of that world because we are all better for it.

Runaway by Jefferson Starship (Grunt, 1978)


The entity of airplanes and starships gets a lot of undeserved flack in the annals of pop-rock. The fact of the matter is they had a 22-year career hitting the Top 40 amid name changes, personnel changes, and music changes. Who could have predicted that they would have 3 #1 hits in the late ’80s? (Say what you want about We Built This City, I think Sara is a beautiful song) Having a career like that means that they must have had a knack for understanding and embracing the ever-evolving pop landscape, knowing what their audience wanted and, of course, being extremely lucky.

Runaway, their 2nd single from the LP Earth, was their 4th Top 40 hit of the late 70s, a glossy yet mellow shot of AOR pop, that became their stock in trade – smoothly loping along with a George Harrison-esque guitar lick with a beat for easy nodding. Yes, for those that traded in their tabs for Js, Jefferson Starship had you covered. Man, I dug this song as a kid.

But here’s the problem with AM radio. I have always heard/remembered the lyrics a certain way, and I just recently found out I was wrong. I always heard the first line as:

You don’t know how much I miss you
But I love you like a son

Well, when coupled with :

I’d like to put my arms around you and run run run runaway

It felt like a guy getting close to someone who needed a father figure. It could be a boy’s uncle whose dad is away at war. I guess it also is a little creepy, especially if its a stranger talking to some kid.

I read that the lines are actually:

You don’t know how much I love you
but I love you like the sun
I’d like to put my arms around you
and we could run run run, runaway

That doesn’t seem as interesting to me. I love you like the sun? Who are you, George Hamilton? I started wondering what made me hear it that way. What was going on in my life at that time? Was I looking for a different dad or one that would ‘love me like a son.’? Then again, I always thought Marty said he was ‘sittin’, munchin on a flower‘ rather than just watchin all the flowers. Still do. I can’t hear it any other way. So what do I know?

The song was written by someone named N. Q. Dewey. I can’t find anything else written or recorded by this guy, and he doesn’t get special thanks on Earth’s liner notes, so I wonder if this a pseudonym. Maybe it was the zodiac killer. JS was from San Fran…

Any time this comes on the radio, I crank it up, praying for the extended album version. And by the time Marty repeats the first verse with that ache in his voice, I realize that I want to be this guy’s kid and runaway wherever. Maybe I’ll change my name to Jefferson…

Sometimes When We Touch by Dan Hill (20th Century, 1978)


Blame it on Alan Alda. The poster man-child for all things sensitive embodied the soft introspective and liberal kindness that the media pushed on males to become during the 70s. Alda’s squint and smirk stayed with us throughout the decade via the TV show, M*A*S*H and, after decades of bottled up feelings, became the go-to guy for the ‘new’ man. Some guys took this soul searching to hilarious new depths, but not many traveled in an emotional diving bell like Dan Hill and his Top 3 hit, Sometimes When We Touch, from his 3rd LP, Longer Fuse (good one, Dan)

Dan Hill is Canadian, which is French for either polite or passive, I can’t remember which. And even if Dan wanted to convey a feeling of warmth and intimacy, it feels like he wrote this song in a remote cabin somewhere on the Manitoba tundra, miles from civilization. Or maybe he was in a large Shining-like hotel, typing ‘subsides’ over and over on an old typewriter, until he went nuts. He may want you to think he’s a sensitive soul but instead, he comes off like a guy with a lot of restraining orders against him. How does anyone take these lyrics seriously?

You ask me if I love you
And I choke on my reply

Yikes! That’s not a good sign. Of course, I (cough, cough), love, er, ummm, you…or something…what?

I’d rather hurt you honestly
Than mislead you with a lie

Here’s some of that sensitive crap coming out. See he’s a good guy cause he’s being honest even if he’s crushing your soul in the process. Don’t get mad, the truth hurts. And yeah, I need you out of my house at the end of the week.

And who am I to judge you on what you say or do?
I’m only just beginning to see the real you

Is this a back-handed compliment? Is he saying that everything was cool until he found out who you really were? But hey if that’s your thing to be a total bitch all the time, that’s your trip, man. That’s a YP, not a MP.

And sometimes when we touch
The honesty’s too much
And I have to close my eyes and hide

Uh, wait. I thought you wanted honesty here. And now you’re saying it’s too much? And you wanna make like an ostrich?

I wanna hold you til I die
Til we both break down and cry
I wanna hold you til the fear in me subsides

This guy would like to hold you til he dies…ladies, the line forms to the left.

Ok, this is where Mr. Crazy shows up. Hold you til I die? I thought he was breaking up with her and now he’s getting all Single White Female on her. And who doesn’t want a boyfriend that’s so clingy that you have an emotional breakdown?

Romance and all its strategy leaves me battling with my pride.
But through the insecurity, some tenderness survives

Basically, he’s saying that he doesn’t want to work at a relationship, is he not? And even if he is a dick to her, she still loves him. Or maybe he’s saying something else? It’s vague, in a very non-cryptic, lazy way.

I’m just another writer still trapped within my truth

No, you’re not.

A hesitant prize fighter still trapped within my youth

When looking for an adjective that describes winning boxers, hesitant would not be on the list. Nor would childlike. Except for Mike Tyson.

At times I’d like to break you and drive you to your knees
At times I’d like to break through and hold you endlessly

Now there’s some brutal honesty. Dan admits he wants to smack his girl around. And then when he calms down or has what he calls, a breakthrough, then hold you and never let go. Ladies, are you getting excited yet?

At times I understand you
And I know how hard you’ve tried
I’ve watched while love commands you
And I’ve watched love pass you by

Doesn’t this sound condescending to you? It should be to the girl that’s he’s breaking up with.? Or to the girl that he’s letting know that he wants to keep an open relationship with.

At times I think we’re drifters
Still searching for a friend
A brother or a sister
But then the passion flares again

Ok, I get the ‘wanting’ companionship part. But comparing looking for a sister or a brother to ‘passion flaring’ is beyond creepy.

So to recap, Dan’s not in love with you. Dan doesn’t really want a commitment. And Dan wants you to respect that. But Dan doesn’t want you to go anywhere or be with anyone else. Or Dan is gonna get mad. Real mad.

We had this 45 in our house, which explains a lot of what I had to overcome in the relationship arena. Think about all kids born in late 78/early 79 whose parents had this gem on the hi-fi while they got busy. Now that honesty is way way too much.

Lay Down Sally by Eric Clapton (RSO, 1978)


It’s tough to figure the moment when I became officially into music as a kid, Top 40 specifically. There was always music playing in my house, in the car, at my school, in department stores and supermarkets, doctors’ offices, and from kids playing their radios outside. But the Spring of 1978 sticks out in my head for some reason. Whenever I heard Feels So Good or Baby Come Back, I get sucked into a wormhole of time travel and placed in my backyard between our red barnyard-like shed and yellow blooming forsythia.

Looking back through my parent’s stack of 45s, a good deal of them came from this time period. I can remember my parents coming back from shopping and having a stack that they immediately cued up on the stereo: Natalie Cole’s Our Love and Samantha Sang’s Emotion led the mix. I get the feeling that things were rocky between my folks and that my dad thought a trip to Record World might help my mom forget whatever dumb shit he did. The power of music is such that it sometimes did.

One 45 I remember making that trip back home was Eric Clapton’s Lay Down Sally and I have no idea why. We didn’t really listen to Clapton’s music, but then again this song really didn’t represent what Clapton had been about. I knew my dad was a closet country fan and loved to fiddle around on his acoustic guitar, but this was still a weird choice for a guy who hardly bought any music.

Regardless, this track took Eric back into the Top 5, 4 years after his breakthrough smash, I Shot The Sheriff and was another hit for the when you’re hot you hot RSO label, while also crossing over to the Country charts. But if Eric had kicked his heroin habit by the time he recorded this, you’d never know it from his performance. He sings like he’s a mile away from the mic and then suddenly gets closer and falls. I wouldn’t rank his guitar playing or solos on this high either, even if he was. It almost feels like he stops and looks around to see where he is or that he isn’t sure whether to even do a solo. Slowhand was definitely the right name for this LP.

I’m not saying it’s bad. It’s a weird entry in a catalog that’s full of so many passionate soul and blues-influenced rock songs. Of course, this is the guy who would also turn Layla into the aural version of Sominex in 1992. Adding to the strangeness is the song itself. For starters, the title Lay Down Sally doesn’t sound very romantic or grammatically correct. And when Marcy Levy, who is a background singer and should be in the background, loudly comes in on the ‘dontcha ever leave’ part and takes over the chorus, it makes you feel like Sally might be in more trouble than she realizes, like a menage is about to go horribly wrong, especially since there might be an unwilling participant. Marcy, take your hand off the door lock. Why can’t she just sit down if you just want to talk to her? Why does she have to ‘lay [lie] down’? There’s no difference between a ‘what’s your sign’ come-on at a disco and this song. It makes Eric come off like some sleazy lounge lizard with a faux-Southern drawl who’s more likely to pass out if and when Sally does eventually lie down.

You Needed Me by Anne Murray (Capitol, 1978)


There are certain songs that you hear and they immediately take you to a golden sunny day, a perfect 72 degrees, blue sky, light breeze kind of afternoon, whether it’s because you equate that song with good times or because it was popular during that one memorable summer. Or there’s just something about it that has a warm happy feeling that just makes you relax and have fun. You Needed Me is not one of those songs. You cannot listen to this song outside. It will ruin your day and fill it with grays and browns and endless barrels of self-doubt and pity.

I’m convinced that there was a record number of hookups by shocked people in 1978, as in ‘I can’t believe I’m with this person’, to which this song immediately spoke to them. Or we were so broken down during the 70s that our optimism of ‘we can change the world’ disintegrated into ‘Does anyone give a shit anymore? Oh, you do? Nice.’ This song is like the long Indian tear streaking down Iron Eyes Cody’s face as someone throws a bag of garbage at his feet. Like a bowl of marshmallows that have heated up and melted into a sticky mess that you can’t get out of.

Canadian singer Anne Murray was spitting out Country pop hits for 10 years before she just went ‘fuck it’ in 1978 and stopped trying any more. That’s when the hits starting pouring out. [Note to you kids out there. Current pop stars start their career with that moment rather than waste 10 precious years] Anne decided to jump into the deep side of the soft rock pool with concrete block strapped to her feet. That made her an unlikely recipient of a #1 1978 hit in the middle of Bee Gees-RSO discopalooza that was monopolizing the charts.

Anne seems like a nice lady and is a legend in Canada, but her vocals on this song are so lifeless and bland, I swear I can hear her doze off in between the verses. But maybe that’s the brilliance of Anne. Since there’s hardly an emotion, we have no idea if she’s saying thank you to this guy or completely ridiculing him. ” I cried a tear. You wiped it dry. Stop touching me!” You can tell this is where someone like Shania Twain built her ‘it looks like country but sounds like mellow rock crap’ career.

And I know Anne didn’t write these lyrics, but how the hell did she sing them with such a straight face?

I was confused, you cleared my mind
I sold my soul, you bought it back for me
And held me up and gave me dignity
Somehow you needed me

She sold her soul? To whom? The devil I presume. So what do you have to do to buy back a soul from the devil, besides keeping a lot of mouthwash handy?

You gave me strength to stand alone again
To face the world out on my own again
You put me high upon a pedestal
So high that I could almost see eternity
You needed me, you needed me

Thank you for helping me so that I don’t have to hang out with you. And thanks for worshiping me so much, that I almost died. I got a feeling they sang this song at many Synanon retreats.

You held my hand when it was cold
When I was lost you took me home
You gave me hope when I was at the end
And turned my lies back into truth again
You even called me “friend”

I would love to know how to turn lies into truth. That’s a trick not even George Constanza could perform.

So basically it sounds like Anne was a crazy bitch, did tons of drug, showed up at her job at Burger Chef constantly loaded, had sex with every bi-ped she encountered, money laundered, dealt in human trafficking, ripped tags off of mattresses, you name it. But this guy didn’t care, because he needed her. He needed her. Man how screwed up is that guy? Run Anne run!

Dust In The Wind by Kansas (Kirshner, 1978)


Kansas was one of those bands that really confused me as a kid. First of all, how could a band have the same name as a state? That didn’t make any sense to me. Was the entire state of Kansas involved in the band? You could have also made the same argument for Boston or America or Chicago, but for some reason, I was cool with those. Not Kansas. I even gave Toto a pass. [although I would have loved to have seen Dorothy Moore singing Tin Man opening up for a twin bill of Toto & Kansas)

Then there was the fact that my mom wouldn’t let me listen to them. “They’re too loud”, she said. “It’s just noise. It makes no sense.” Well, she was on to something, especially when it came to progressive rock. That, combined with their dramatic old century album covers and the pictures of the band with their giant long hair made me think they could be a little scary. Then I heard Dust In The Wind on the radio and thought, how could that be Kansas? I could rock myself to sleep to that song. I’m not scared at all and my ears are fine. But I still had just enough insecurity to give them and the song a bit of intrigue to me.

Can you imagine anyone writing such a serious song devoid of irony nowadays? You would be completely torn apart. In fact, people do that to this song using it for punchlines in movies, like Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure & Old School. And, like most hits are, it was written as an afterthought and recorded as the last song on Kansas’ Point of Know Return LP. Writer Kerry Livgren was picking a little tune out on his guitar as a finger exercise when his wife heard it and casually mentioned that he should write words to it. So he wrote some quick lyrics based on A Native American poem whose premise was ‘all that we are is dust in the wind’. Kerry used that thought and built the idea about how success and money don’t really mean anything when you’re dead. And then, ironically, this became the song which made him even more rich & famous than he was. Even in the digital age, he’s made at least a million dollars in download royalties.

Actually, it’s not a very cheery song, but it quite nicely broke up the Saturday Night Fever I’m-gonna-live-forever disco singles chart monopoly in early 1978, even taking the band onto the Country & Adult Contemporary charts. Maybe it was crazy-haired Phil Steinhardt’s violin/viola interplay. Maybe it was Steve Walsh’s straight-ahead impassioned delivery on lyrics like ‘and all your money won’t another minute buy‘, obviously written by a Jedi. Regardless, if any song should ever have been written about dust & wind, it should be by a group called Kansas.

If I Can’t Have You by Yvonne Elliman (RSO, 1978)

Hearing this song again takes me back to driving around Philadelphia in an almost fully carpeted Trademark van filled with cherry tobacco smoke. Now some of you may be looking at this 45 and thinking, What a cheap hit, she was riding the Bee Gees coattails on that one. I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong, dead wrong. As crazy as the 2001 Odyssey was in giving Tony & Stephanie first prize in a rigged dance contest when it was apparent that the Puerto Rican couple were way better dancers.

Hawaiian-born (Haven’t seen her birth certificate, so I’ll take her word for it) Yvonne had been slowly working her way through the music industry during the entire decade, playing the original Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar to touring with Eric Clapton and singing back-up on I Shot The Sheriff. When she married Bill Oakes in the early ’70s, he helped her get a record contract with RSO Records owner, Robert Stigwood. A few mid-70s Top 20 hits later, Robert kept her in mind to sing a song off the soundtrack to a new film he was producing, Saturday Night Fever. He had the Bee Gees write a soft ballad for her much like their track, Love Me, which she already had a hit with. But at the last moment, he suggested the Barry and the brothers sing How Deep Is Your Love and gave Yvonne a midtempo disco number If I Can’t Have You.

If it indeed was his suggestion, that was a stroke of genius. I can’t imagine anyone but Barry singing How Deep.., nor could I imagine anyone else doing justice to If I Can’t Have You other than Yvonne. The Bee Gees version, released as a B-side to Stayin’ Alive, was so heavy-handed, too synthy, and sluggish. Yvonne’s version, produced by Freddie Perren, was light, classy, and sensitive with a touch of Philly-soul. In the movie, the song plays off the unrequited love that doormat Annette was for Tony at the same time that macho Tony finds himself falling for Stephanie. The song grooves along perfectly, and there’s just enough ache in Yvonne’s voice to convey the longing and feeling of impending rejection that both will face. In other hands, this song is an album cut. In Yvonne’s, it’s a career-making smash.

And she’s friggin hot…that always helps.

Baby Come Back by Player (RSO, 1978)

Always be yourself. No matter how much that conformity may seem the path to success, be true to who you are. And you’ll have better stories. That’s the lesson learned for two musicians, Peter Beckett & JC Crowley, who decided to be who they were, separately attending a Black Tie party in t-shirts and jeans. The two guys found themselves amid a sea of black cumberbunds and immediately bonded over music and the depression of recent breakups. This meeting immediately led to a get together where they wrote one of the biggest hits not performed by a Gibb in 1978, Baby Come Back.

Player hit the top of the charts in early 78 for 3 weeks with their debut tune. Many in history have mistaken it for a Hall & Oates cut and who could blame them. From the bass & drum intro with the warbly guitar lick that sounds like it’s being played underwater to the chorus harmonies and high notes hit on the bridge,this slice of blue-eyed soul pop could have easily been dreamed up by the now famous Philadelphia duo. Except for one thing…it’s so chill. Yes, it has some high drama adn some passionate vocals, but that groove is mellow, it makes Pablo Cruise seem like Yes. And I’m sure there was a Pablo Cruise/Player concert some time back in the day, probably down in Mission Beach.

This is another of those West Coast songs that immediately puts me in that late 70s, So-Cal, Three’s Company, Hawaiian shirt state of mind. And when I was 7, I wanted to know where you could buy a mask of false bravado. That sounded so confusing, but so awesome.

And let’s talk about those lyrics, because when you read the verses, the first is almost the same as the second, except he flips the time of day. Pretty much the guy who lost his girl is fairly cool during the day or at least he feels like he has to bullshit everyone that everything’s OK. Not sure why? What does he do during the day? Maybe his girlfriend was his assistant manager at Wicks N Sticks in the mall and now that they broke up, she also quit her job. So everyone at work is wondering, ‘Hey, where’s Tawny? I need to switch my schedule.’ So he has that to deal with.

And then as the sun sets he really starts to lose his shit, like some horny werewolf. Now, what the hell does he do at night? He sounds like the Son of Sam, for Christsakes. Was he in a backgammon tournament and lost his practice partner? Does he miss snuggling under an Afghan rug watching Mannix reruns?

Then he wakes up, and he can’t deal with it. So he goes back out and spends more money, faking it as he goes. What a vicious cycle. Baby just go back to this guy already. You can blame everything on him, including the reason you cheated on him in the first place. I mean, c’mon. How is she gonna trust a musician in a group named Player?