When we were young and foolish, we lived life completely oblivious to the fact that we would one day look back on those times as the good old days. It didn’t matter how totally lame and ridiculous the pop culture of our formative era was, we will go to our graves thinking it was so cool when everyone was drinking Pepsi Free and trading Garbage Pail Kids. Nostalgia is a way for us to escape the humdrum shittiness of adult life, and the fond memories of fads gone by often come so easily into our minds… even if we still have a hard time remembering what life was like before everyone over 18 months had a smartphone permanently attached to their paw…
It’s a proven maxim that what comes around goes around, and old trends generally get a rebirth after 20 years when the generation that came of age with them starts staring down turning 40 like Death is already sharpening up a scythe with their name on it. So in the 90’s, there was a lot of reminiscing about the 1970’s. While the youth of that day were donning unwashed flannel shirts with pants hanging around their ankles, the thirty-somethings were dry cleaning those old leisure suits and breaking out the old school roller skates.
And as proof that acid flashbacks never quite go away entirely, some dipshit thought it would be cool to unintentionally mock everything about the decade, and actually started something called The 70’s Preservation Society. In 1991, he used it as an excuse to sell a compilation album full of music that was currently playing in the world’s finest elevators.
Yes, thanks to the shitty recording technology of this video’s uploader, it looks like we’re discreetly viewing that ad through the neighbor’s blinds… but given the decor of the President of the 70’s Preservation Society’s office, any peeping tom would want to immediately gouge their eyes out with a mood ring.
Our unnamed President of 70’s Preservation Society starts off by stating that he founded this excuse for receiving tax deductible dues to help keep the forgotten music of the 70’s alive. Heaven forbid we live in a world that can’t experience the joy of listening to songs about hippies having public sex, interracial dating, or a father shooting their daughter.
Mr. President gets up from behind his Pet Rock littered desk to tell us about the collection of pure 70’s iron pyrite he’s put together called “Totally 70’s.” The compilation album contains a whopping 23 songs…. or about one billionth of the total number of tunes that were cranked out during the decade. How such a small sample size can be dubbed “Totally 70’s” is about as much of a mystery as why ketchup that comes out of a fast food squeeze packet can be legally called “fancy.”
The leader of the Free world then goes on to claim that he’s only bringing us the very best of the era he’s totally stuck in. 15 of these 23 songs reached #1 on the charts, and each cut was a Top 10 hit! Naturally, I had to check up on this claim by painstakingly researching all twenty-three of these bell bottom grooves… because there are no lengths I won’t go to in order to uncover the truth for my readers…
The totally 70’s facts:
Fifteen Sixteen of these 23 songs reached the #1 spot on the Billboard charts. Why exactly the Chief Executive of smiley faces would sell his music collection short in an advertising world where that is the biggest no-no is head scratching… other than the fact that he’s obviously a moron and probably huffed a lot of leaded gasoline in his day.
Of the seven songs not quite good enough to take the top spot, only six of them can claim to have once been a Top 10 hit. Chi Coltrane’s “Thunder and Lightning” (which I embedded for your listening pleasure last week) only made it up to #17… making the 70’s Preservation Society President just as big of a liar as the Presidents we actually get to elect.
One of the songs, Mark Lindsay’s “Arizona,” was actually released in 1969…. a year that is not considered to be a part of the 70’s by members of the Gregorian Calendar Preservation Society. If it existed in 1991, I’d swear this self-proclaimed head honcho of all seventiesness lazily did all of his research on Wikipedia.
While it’s obvious by now that this impostor to the suede throne of 70’s shouldn’t be taken seriously, there’s another element to this commercial that turns the fur on my tail into a frizzed up afro. Although we are generally the most nostalgic about the era centered around our high school days, we also love to compartmentalize the history of coolness strictly by calendar decades. Nobody associates disco with Pac Man because they came to represent different decades… yet their peaks of popularity were closer together than the rise of valley girls and the fall of the Berlin Wall… two things so totally 80’s, that everyone alive in the decade obviously had to experience them both!
It’s the main reason I so despise the popular Bowling For Soup song “1985“… it’s so full of inconsistencies and even anachronisms (Who’s that other guy in Van Halen? Really!?!?) due to the meshing together of popular 80’s elements from all over the decade supposedly squeezed together in one short period of a woman’s life. Someone who dreamed of taking Tawny Kitaen’s place on the hood of Whitesnake’s car in the late 80’s was probably never much into Blondie, who had their last big hit in 1981.
If you were born smack in the middle of a decade like I was, chances are your best memories will forever be separated by the manmade nostalgia timekeeping barriers we put between sets of 10 years that aren’t even accurate to begin with. This totally sucks because now you have to pay dues to two different decades’ preservation societies to truly fulfill all of your yearning for yesteryear.
Jethro Tull wasn’t the only one who enjoyed living in the past… and because there’s always an opportunity for a quick buck to be made at the expense of a midlife crisis, The Nest would like to salute The 70’s Preservation Society and its unbelievably stereotypical, leisure suited President for packing together the tunes that not only gently rocked the disco generation, but also the Woodstock and MTV generations as well. We would be more than willing to turn back time and order your prehistoric compact disc compilation by written letter if it meant we’d have the funky joy of the most inexplicable #1’s of the 1970’s show up C.O.D. at our door three to four weeks later…