Wednesday, June 5, 2013

David Geddes--Run Joey Run (1975)

     It might have just been because I grew up in the 70's, but it seems that for all of the good music that was around, there was also a high amount of musical debris floating on the landscape. This song was one of them. In pop music, there has always been a fascination with death and dying. Sometimes it would be wrapped in romance ("Last Kiss" by J. Frank Wilson & the Cavaliers--1964) or just a graphic description of the event (D.O.A. by Bloodrock--1971). Others were just sappy (I direct you to "Honey" by Bobby Goldsboro--1968 or to "Seasons in the Sun" by Terry Jacks in 1975...both are audio versions of a Lifetime movie).
     However, it's hard to place "Run Joey Run", but  David Geddes at least did well with the material given him. He had sung with a band in the early 70's, and also cut a few sides as a solo artist. After a sufficient amount of time, he decided to enter law school at Wayne State University in Detroit. While in school he received a call from producer Paul Vance asking him to come to New York City to record a song. It seems as if Vance heard him in a previous recording and thought the voice would work well for a song he had written.. So Geddes flew into the city and recorded, "Run Joey Run".
     The song reached number 4 on the charts, and it's follow up, "The Last Game of the Season (Blind Man in the Bleachers)" also entered the top forty. I can remember when hearing the song at the age of 14, it was difficult to figure out why Julie's (Joey's girlfriend) dad was so pissed off with Joey. As it turns out, Julie was preggy with Joey's kid. However, because of censorship issues, you just couldn't SAY that over the radio airwaves so it was framed in every way possible to let you in on the secret. Part of my confusion was the line, "Daddy please don't, it wasn't his fault...", she's pregnant...he's the dad (supposedly) who's fault WAS it?  So we have a song dealing with teenage pregnancy, violence, and child abuse (Julie's dad had been hitting her) all wrapped in 60's TV detective music. A true Shakespearean tragedy.....kinda.



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