Carl Gardner, lead singer of the Coasters, has died at age 83. [AP via Yahoo]
The Coasters are hands-down one of my favorite bands of the late-fifties-early-sixties. A bouncy, fun sound, and some of the wittiest lyrics of that musical era. Their songs featured stories, characters, and plots, juxtaposed against some serious jamming. I strongly recommend you get acquainted with their music, if you haven’t already. The AP obit quotes from their page in the Rock and Roll Hall of fame:
Beneath the humor the songs often made incisive points about American culture for those willing to dig a little deeper.
A couple of other gems from their great oeuvre:
Along Came Jones:
About how everything on TV has essentially the same plot. Also perhaps the best use of a wood block ever in popular music. It’s barely audible on this live version, but those of you who’ve heard the single know what I’m talking about.
You’re gonna need an ocean . . . of Calamine Lotion. Another great, singable pop culture reference.
Thanks for the music, Carl.