Saturday, May 30, 2009

Saturday Soundtrack: 70's radio, 90's television

I think this might be a first for the Saturday Soundtrack Series: A song I heard outside of the perimeter set for the series (e.g., if I can remember correctly, from 1920 to the cinematic release of Saturday Night Fever) but which was recorded within the perimeter set for the series. This song is intimately tied up with the time I was clawing my way out of homelessness.

Having read the book What Color is Your Parachute I decided to apply for a job at Williams-Sonoma (I knew food but didn't want to actually work with food) in San Francisco. Remarkably, I got the job. And it turned out that I was very good at it. I sold up a storm. (Went out with a few of my customers, too. Any single men reading this, be advised, women who like food are fun dates. If you want a good time, don't go out with models. Go out with a woman who knows the difference between madeleine and an mandoline and I guarantee you will be pleased.) But the job didn't pay much.

Thinking, maybe, I could take my newly discovered sales talent somewhere else and get paid more, after about 6 months I applied for and got a job selling advertising at SF Weekly. While I was there I discovered that one of my co-workers was a huge fan of Ally McBeal. Once a week she and I would sit on the edge of China Basin, which was just outside our offices in the China Basin Landing building (One time a small cruise ship hit us.), and go over everything in the previous night's episode.

If you have ever seen the Ally McBeal show, you know music played a huge role, or perhaps, several roles in the show. One song that made several appearances over the course of the shows run was Barry White's "My First, My Last, My Everything". White released the song in 1974 and I didn't hear it until the mid-1990s but it has become part of my life and I often will start tapping my foot, humming the tune, and lo and behold, I am doing the dance. Basil tries to do it with me. Anselm begs me to stop. (Little does he suspect that later today is his first ballroom dancing lesson!) Without further ado, here are three clips from the show that use Barry White's excellent song. In case you are wondering, the dance seems to be a variation on the Hustle.

I almost hate to admit it but, if I had a television, I would so totally own the whole Ally McBeal collection. And I am now a huge Barry White fan, too.

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