100 Greatest Songs of the 90’s #27 The Lemonheads – Rockin’ Stroll

Released : 1992

‘Fun is the most important thing. I’m glad we haven’t been real successful, because it seems like whenever you get successful you start to suck’, Evan Dando told the LA Times in mid 1992, as the band whose mid-80’s origins as fans of West Coast hardcore and The Replacements toured their fifth album It’s A Shame About Ray.

They say you get what you wish for, but Dando was probably speaking true; anyone who includes a song called My Drug Buddy on their record is just being too honest for their own good. That was eventually truncated to simply ‘Buddy’ at the label’s request, because via a scuzzed-up cover version of Simon & Garfunkel’s ‘Mrs. Robinson’, the rock star shit he’d never asked for duly arrived. Dando hated his version, recorded for a Japanese-only 25th anniversary edition of the film and released without his knowledge or permission. He has still yet to play it live.

Ironically It’s A Shame About Ray already boasted a cover version in Frank Mills, which had been taken from the 60’s musical Hair. Not that this mattered. Unwittingly Dando had already sold himself with Rockin’ Stroll, a sub-two minute side one, track one even in the CD age. The song’s floaty pop-punk hybrid was rounded out with stomping keyboards; the fact that it told by a baby wheeled round in a pram displayed an innocence of a different kind to writing a tribute about your spoon-sharing pal. Were we having fun yet? Yeah. But not for long.

3 Comments

  1. Admittedly, the Mrs Robinson cover was my gateway but I loved this album from beginning to end once it hit my CD player. And this is as great an opener as you will ever hear.

    Liked by 1 person

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