Time to in­tro­duce Dad’s Playlist

The Labradorian - - EDITORIAL - Steve Bartlett

On the first of day of au­tumn, on a lazy side street el­e­vated by the morn­ing sun’s golden glow, a crum­pled leaf trick­les from a tow­er­ing stand of maples and lands softly on the hood my car.

It’s a sim­ple, but beau­ti­ful, site.

All I can do is smile - be­cause au­tumn has ar­rived and hope­fully I’ll be hear­ing less “Des­pac­ito” as the song of the sum­mer fades into fall.

Words fail me in try­ing to de­scribe how tired I am of “Des­pac­ito.”

It’s been played more than 4.6 bil­lion times and it feels like I’ve heard it ev­ery time.

I just can’t take it se­ri­ously any­more. It’s be­come a Weird Al-ish par­ody for me - “Red Dori­tos, your cheesy flavours I like to eat-o. I just want the bag to never be finito. I can eat for­ever cuando esté con­tigo.”

So, with the leaves fall­ing, I’m op­ti­mistic “Des­pac­ito” has, like “Macarena” and “Achy Breaky Heart,” run its course and will sur­face only at ru­ral wed­ding re­cep­tions.

That evening, though, I re­ward my son for home­work well done with “Good job. You can watch one song on YouTube.”

To my dis­dain, he re­quests, “Justin Bieber ‘Des­pac­ito.” “Se­ri­ously?” I ask.

“Se­ri­ously,” he replies. He earned the video, so with­out ques­tion, I suf­fer through an am­a­teur record­ing of Bieber singing “Des­pac­ito” in con­cert.

I sense a coach­ing mo­ment and con­tinue the par­ent­ing rit­ual of try­ing to in­flu­ence a child’s taste in tunes, a tra­di­tion that be­gan when the first cave par­ent asked, “You bang rocks to­gether like that and call it mu­sic?”

“Let me pick a song,” I ask my son af­ter “Des­pac­ito” ends.

He agrees, likely be­cause it might lead to stay­ing up a lit­tle later.

Ran­domly, I play AC/DC “You Shook Me All Night Long (From Live at River Plate).”

Sec­onds into the song, I’m shak­ing my head like gui­tarist An­gus Young and hurt­ing my throat try­ing to sound like lead singer Brian John­son.

I’m rock­ing out, a one-man AC/DC trib­ute act, or as I like to call it, AC/DSteve.

My son lis­tens for a minute and starts singing “Des­pac­ito.” In the mid­dle of my jam! “That’s just not as good as Justin Beiber,” he says of AD/ DC.

I take a deep breath and de­cide now is not the time to ar­gue or dis­agree.

He’s en­ti­tled to his taste in mu­sic, sports teams and any­thing else. (It breaks my heart when he pledges al­le­giance to the Mon­treal Cana­di­ens.)

That doesn’t mean I can’t ex­pose him to Dad’s Playlist and in­tro­duce him to some songs he might en­joy though.

It in­cludes, but is not lim­ited to (and I’d love to hear your sug­gested ad­di­tions):

- “Panama,” Van Halen - “Knock­ing at your back door,” Deep Pur­ple

- “Nau­ti­cal Dis­as­ter,” Trag­i­cally Hip

- “Hey


- “The Chain,” Fleet­wood Mac - “The Trooper,” Iron Maiden - “Deuce,’ KISS

- “Master of Pup­pets,” Me­tal­lica

- “Eleanor Rigby,” The Bea­tles - “Money City Ma­ni­acs,” Sloan

- “Ruby

Stones Hey, My My,” Tues­day,” Neil Rolling

My plan is to in­tro­duce Dad’s Playlist to him “des­pac­ito,” which fit­tingly means “slowly” in Eng­lish.

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