Monday, June 30, 2008

Fifty States: Rhode Island

Erin McKeown: Rhode Island Is Famous For You


Blossom Dearie: Rhode Island Is Famous For You


The basic premise of this playfully silly song, originally written for a patriotic 1948 Broadway musical review starring Carl Reiner, among others, is that while other states are famous for major industrial output, Rhode island is famous for you.

By implication, then, Rhode Island doesn't make much. But you rock, so thanks for suggesting it, folks.

There were, in fact, two different artists mentioned as sources for this one; since I had 'em, I decided to come in with both covers. Personally, I prefer post-folkie Erin McKeown's retro swingfolk to Ms. Dearie's sixties showtune singing, but only by a very slim margin.

Bonus track: Of several other much more recent songs which are actually about Rhode Island, I much prefer young Sonic Youth compatriot Jennifer O'Connor's hopeful ode to the great state as a setting for a fulfilled and partnered future. The lyrics are actually quite beautiful under all that awesome New England fuzzrock.

Jennifer O'Connor: Exeter, Rhode Island


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