My Answer to Question #26

Remember when the video above was on I do. I loved it. Even though I went to the University of Richmond, I love the Peppas. They do a killer job, whether they’re serenading NASCAR fans in the rain or ratcheting up the excitement at the Siegel Center, and the added touch of pumping Miley Cyrus’ voice in through the PA before blasting the chorus one more time is just outstanding. I get goosebumps when I watch that video — I really do.

Don’t get me wrong — I enjoy Richmond’s pep band. Just this past season, I had the chance to take my mom to her very first live basketball game, and I made sure to brag about how our pep band’s director is David Hood from No BS! Brass Band. I even pointed him out, like you would a local celebrity or athlete who is poised become a big deal out of town as well. Plus, the recent Robins Center renovations have them repositioned in the center of the student section (they used to be tucked away in a corner at court level) — an improvement that vastly increases the band’s atmospheric influence. Will that result in a “Wrecking Ball”-type video in the future? With Hood at the helm, I wouldn’t rule it out.

So why am I talking about pep bands? A couple days ago, UR’s athletics department sent me a survey asking about the experience I had at the games I attended last season, and while I was most excited to complain about the food, everything changed when I got to this question:

Survey Question

They didn’t ask for a blog post, but they’re gonna get one.

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The five records I really, really want to steal from my sister and brother-in-law

Brian records

Around 11 p.m. Central Time on Thursday night, Mrs. YHT and I landed in Chicago and were promptly picked up by my sister, who you might remember from this post about her Beatles fandom, and her husband, who you might remember from this post about his band, Czar. When I woke up the next morning, my head propped up by two pillows and the world’s most comfortable air mattress, I spent some time ogling their record collection, which was just a few inches away from my face.

And then I got jealous.

Listed below are the five records I really, really wanted to steal.

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The Dixie Cups

The Dixie Cups

I must have run across The Dixie Cups’ version of “Iko Iko” at some point in my 29 years on this planet, but I really listened to it for the first time a few days ago, and I think I’ve listened 15 or 20 times since. It’s totally brilliant. The spareness of the arrangement and the calmness of their voices contrast so nicely with the (literally) incendiary lyrics. It reminds me of how my dad loved that Back to the Future was set in a town called “Hill Valley” — the oxymoronic name creates a sort of void, like the thing cancels itself out and doesn’t actually exist. (He was big on postmodernism in his academic work, and he had a field day with BTTF.)

The crazy thing — ironic, maybe — is that The Dixie Cups’ version of “Iko Iko” almost didn’t exist at all.

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