Thursday, June 18, 2009

Killin' Time

KillingTime.ogg KillingTime.mp3
I do a bit of community theatre here in my adopted hometown of Union, SC. Our first production was Turn the Washpot Down, and it included a sort of stomping, boring a capella piece called Killin' Time. While it was good for what it was, my wife complained that the original song didn't really represent teenage life in Union as she knew it. Rather, she said it was a Yankee's attempt to describe life in the rural South. This is an attempt to rectify that. She had a whole lot of input into this, so you could rightly say it's all about my wife's adolescent years. It's her song, really.

Everything in the song is real. There was (and is) a fellow named "Booger", and one of the favorite pasttimes was to sit in the parking lot of Heart's Drive-in restaurant and just talk. "The Little Mint" was the original name of Gene's Fine Foods on Hwy. 176 By-pass. And Gene does in fact drive a bright red pick-up truck with a giant foam rooster head and tail on it. And the Dairi-O wasn't a drive-in or drive-through... you'd walk up to an outside window, place your order, and go eat it in your car (or take it home).

A lot of kids do pretty much the same thing now, though they're as likely to park in the Wal-mart parking lot as Heart's. The point here is that it is a really slow, boring way to spend your lazy Summer days. So naturally, I chose to emphasize that by making the music about as bouncy and exciting as I could. Also, a major pastime (for the girls) here is clogging... which is a form of dance, if you're not aware of it. It's a bit similar to Irish dance. My own neice, Michelle Owen, was Adult Miss American Clogger 2005. (here's a picture. She's the one standing in the center of the third row with the name tag) So part of the goal here was to create a song suitable for clogging.


If you listen to the music, you'll hear that I use the word "swing" instead of "cruise". In one of our Boogaloo productions I performed this on stage (with guitar), and at that particular moment the videotape may have glitched. Though I and everyone in the audience swears otherwise, the tape clearly has me saying "Then up and away we go to screw by the Dairi-O". I thought a change was in order. Union's a friendly town. It's not that friendly.

Killing Time
dfl & wmh - Oct 13, 2004
Sittin' in the drive-in parking lot
Layin' on the hood of Booger's car
We're satisfied with what we've got
With who and where we are.
And when the talk gets kind of slow we'll cruise down Thompson Boulevard
Oh yeah, we're having lots of fun down home in Union!

Stoppin' by the Little Mint
'Cause the food is heaven sent
And I can't believe my luck
That's Gene in the chicken truck!
Then up and away we go to cruise by the Dairi-O!
Who said that life was slow down home in Union!

[instrumental]

Yeah, yeah, no reason and no rhyme
No lookin' for no crime
Just chillun killin' time down home in Union!
Yeah, yeah, no reason and no rhyme
No lookin' for no crime
Just chillun killin' time down home in Union!

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