I assume they like Alabama music in Hooker, S.D. … Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 295 of The Daily Dirt.
1. One of my all-time favorite groups — including both rock and country — has to be Alabama.
I saw Randy Owen, Teddy Gentry, Jeff Cook and Mark Herndon in concert several times in the 1980s, when the group was at its absolute finest. How good were those guys? Alabama absolutely defined a decade, securing 26 No. 1 hits in the 1980s alone, and 33 total over the course of the band’s career.
The 1980s and 1990s saw country music move away from its familiar twang with some much-needed bang, and Alabama was at the forefront of that movement.If there were a Mount Rushmore of Alabama hits, three are easy to pick — “Old Flame,” “Love In The First Degree” and “Feels So Right”. The fourth will always up for discussion, but I would not argue with anyone’s choice.
- 1. “Old Flame” (1981): “There’s an old flame burnin’ in your eyes, that tears can’t drown and makeup can’t disguise”. Owen is simply tremendous as the lead singer on this song, which might be the absolute perfect fusion of pop and country.
- 2. “Love in the First Degree” (1981): It’s still hard to believe the group released the first three songs on this list in back-to-back fashion in 1981. The rest, as they say, is (country) history.
- 3. “Feels So Right” (1981): Owen, Gentry and Cook are all cousins.
- 4. “I’m In A Hurry (And I Don’t Know Why” (1992): When the four first started performing together they were known as Wild Country.
- 5. “My Home’s In Alabama” (1980): The band also included elements of blue grass, folk, gospel and southern rock in its music.
- 6. “If You’re Play In Texas (You Gotta Have A Fiddle In The Band) (1984): Alabama is among the best-selling bands of all-time, regardless of genre. The group has sold more than 75 million albums.
- 7. “The Closer You Get” (1983): Alabama is the most awarded band in the history of country music, with more than 200 major awards from a variety of organizations
- 8. “Dixieland Delight” (1983): Groups like Restless Heart, Shenandoah, Exile, Diamond Rio, Lonestar and Ricochet admit they were heavily influenced by Alabama.
- 9. “Mountain Music” (1982): Herndon left the group in 2004, following a dispute with the other three members.
- 10. “Tennessee River” (1980): The band released its final studio album in 2015.
For the record, Owen is now 72, Gentry 70, Cook 72 and Herndon 67. Owen overcame a bout with prostate cancer and Cook suffers from Parkinson’s disease, a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects movement causes tremors.
2. This week’s disgusting international food item is bat, which is is low in fat and high in protein.
That’s the good news. Fruit bats are popular in soups, stews and curries around the Pacific Rim. During cooking, some bats give off a strong odor that is similar to urine. That’s the bad news.
In Thailand, bats are boiled alive in water with spices and mashed into a paste. Not sure if that is good or bad news, but apparently you can spread the paste on bread.
3. Here’s some more crazy — but-oh-so-real — names of U.S. towns:
- Hooker, Okla: The town of about 1,900 carries the slogan, “It’s a location, not a vocation”.
- Greasy Corner, Ark.: Reports indicate the town acquired its name from the not-so-sanitary conditions of a local restaurant.
- Ty Ty, Ga.: The town of about 700 takes its name from the nearby Ty Ty Creek.
- Flasher, N.D.: A terrible town to wear a trench coat.
- Hooker, S.D.: No, I’m not kidding. There are two of these places.
Steve Thought O’ The Day — When considering adding protein and reducing fat in his diet, Steve says he will choose chicken and/or fish … instead of spreading that bat paste on his whole-wheat bread.
Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. His assessment of the super-group Alabama is spot on…they were THAT good.
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